The Herald reports:
A former Labour member plans to run a candidate in Te Atatu in protest at Phil Twyford’s use of Chinese-sounding names to analyse Auckland property purchases.
Former Labour staffer and political commentator Phil Quin, who resigned as a Labour member over the data analysis which he called racial profiling, said he hoped the candidate would win enough votes in 2017 to oust Mr Twyford from the seat. Mr Quin told the Herald he was searching for a candidate who could run as an alternative for Labour voters who had been made uncomfortable by Mr Twyford’s use of the housing data.
“I don’t expect such a campaign to win more than a couple of thousand votes – not nearly enough to win, but enough to force Twyford to rely on his high list ranking.”
If such a campaign were successful it would not damage the Labour Party overall or the number of MPs it would take into Parliament, Mr Quin said. “I’m not interested in helping National – that runs counter to my life’s work to date – and MMP allows us to target electorate MPs without affecting overall parliamentary representation.”
Many constituents in Te Atatu feel let down by Twyford over his Chinese surnames stunt. The electorate is 24% Asian and they don’t like being blamed by Twyford for high house prices because of their surnames.