Matthew Hooton wrote:
The real reason Mr Mallard is abandoning Hutt South and bringing his 30 years in Parliament to a close is because he knows he would almost certainly lose the seat to National’s rising star Chris Bishop. …
If Labour is interested in reconnecting with the Auckland business community and the crucial aspirational middle class in West Auckland – which Mr Little and his finance spokesman Grant Robertson have so utterly failed to do – then it really has no choice but to opt for Sir Robert Jones’ right-hand man in Auckland, NBR Rich Lister Greg Loveridge, who is expected to put his hand up.
Most obviously, sitting on this year’s NBR Rich List at $80 million, ahead of Mr Key on only $60 million, the one-time test cricketer and Cambridge University graduate exudes everything Labour’s increasingly wacko membership despises, especially as most of his $80 million was made in Auckland property – albeit commercial not residential.
He would be a star candidate
However NBR later report:
NBR Rich Lister Greg Loveridge says he isn’t about to leave the boardroom for the parliamentary bearpit.
The New Zealand manager of Sir Bob Jones’ RJH, whose involvement with the Labour Party is longstanding, says speculation he will stand in veteran MP Trevor Mallard’s Hutt South electorate is wide of the mark.
So why not?
“I have no intention of getting into politics,” he told NBR in an email response.
“I have enough to do with running a company and having four small children.”
However, Mr Loveridge adds that last week’s column by NBR commentator Matthew Hooton, mooting the prospects of a candidacy, is “right in one sense.
“Labour needs to move away from leftist anti-trade and anti-growth populism and try to make an actual difference to people’s lives rather than keeping its bloggers happy.”
So like Shane Jones, he sees Labour heading in the wrong direction.