Over the next few days the caucus and wider party must articulate a new vision for the party.
But that gives no time to establish why Labour’s share of the vote dropped 7 percentage points from 2008, an 85-year low point for the party. Fairfax blogger David Farrar contends the question Labour should be asking and answering before naming new leaders is why it lost that much support. He notes that in 2002 National dropped 9 percentage points from its 1999 result. It did not replace its leader immediately, but commissioned a review to ascertain where it had gone wrong. The results of the review triggered significant change for the party.
Labour is bound to baulk at taking advice from a Right-wing commentator. But it looks like good advice for any well-beaten party, no matter the colour of its stripes.
It is good advice. I never deliberately give bad advice when I blog, in some sort of psychological trick. Labour would do better to delay their decision. The new leader will get a brief mention before Christmas and then disappear over the summer. Far better to keep the contest going over January and elect the new leader just before Parliament resumes in February, to heaps of publicity.
I can understand Phil Goff not wanting to stay on as Leader for longer than necessary, but there is a sensible solution. Appoint an Acting Leader for two months or so, as they do in Canada. The Acting Leader could be Annette King or even Trevor Mallard.