The ODT editorial:
The Labour Party Opposition and its leader are enjoying low support, as measured by opinion polls, and seem unable to gain any political “traction” on any issue for long.
Mr Goff is a pleasant enough chap, not notably charismatic, and cut largely from the same dogged cloth as his predecessor but with stronger links to Labour’s working-class origins.
The parliamentary team he leads is shy on obvious talent and too obsessed with points-scoring to obtain the lasting interest of most voters.
Recent activity in the House during question time by leading members of the Labour Party has been petty almost beyond belief.
Petty is one word for it.
If its members are still shell-shocked by being kicked out of office after nine years of enjoying its full fruits, then it is time – to use the vernacular – they “got a grip”.
Voter support will return to Labour, but it will have to be earned.
One reason delaying its return is the question of trust.
There were sufficient numbers of dodgy practices by Labour when in government to help speed the party’s exit from power; any attempted repetition of that behaviour so early in its term of Opposition should be a dominating concern of Mr Goff and his colleagues.
And the message voters will read from it, is they have not changed.
Part of the problem is their public faces are not changed a lot from Government. They really need to be using Robertson, Nash, Davis, Ardern etc more.
Labour’s tactic when adverse reports are aired has been to keep Mr Goff well out of sight and this has been the case with Mr Barker’s economy with the notion of integrity – as it has been when some other senior members, including Trevor Mallard and Chris Carter, have needed their leader’s public guidance on their behaviour.
It is hardly good enough for a party hoping to rebuild the confidence of voters in it, let alone acquire the trust required to be elected to government.
Some of the new Labour MPs must be wondering why their senior colleagues keep fucking things up.