Liam Hehir skewers Chloe’s Swarbrick repeated claims she is a reluctant politician. He notes:

Swarbrick was born in the year of Our Lord, one thousand, nine hundred and ninety-four. She completed university studies in 2016. It was that same year, with great reluctance, that a political career was essentially forced upon her as made a high profile run at the Auckland mayoralty at just 22 years of age. Generating significant media buzz, she placed a very creditable third. …

What followed was an intense contest for Swarbrick’s political loyalties. Both Labour and the Greens courted the very reluctant candidate. Somehow the Greens were able to coax her into a reluctant continuation of her political journey. Swarbrick was no doubt horrified when she received an extremely comfortable list placing that all but assured her reluctant election to Parliament in the 2017 election. 

Success has continued to follow Swarbrick. She won a brilliant if reluctant insurgency for the seat of Auckland Central in 2020, which she won despite a massive shift towards Labour. With great reluctance, she went on to successfully defend it last year. 

Things were looking up for Swarbrick when her career looked stymied by the ascent of Marama Davidson as female co-leader of the party. This made it very hard for Swarbrick to advance because, even if James Shaw retired, there would not be another space in the ruling diarchy for another female identifying candidate. 

However, destiny intervened once more. The Greens actually changed their rules in 2022 so that there could be two female co-leaders. That meant, in the event of Shaw’s retirement from the leadership, the path would be open for Swarbrick to reluctantly resume her political ascent. …

And so, with great reluctance, Swarbrick was forced to take climb yet another rung of the ladder. “[We] need everyday people to not leave politics to the politicians,” she reluctantly announced, drawing a firm line between herself as a non-politician politician and the career politicians who treat politics like a career.

Hehir concludes:

The cynics have been quick to point out that that Swarbrick has spent almost all of her of her post-university life either running for office, getting ready for office or holding office. This is a bit misleading, however. Because while political success and glory has pursued Swarbrick relentlessly, that’s not her fault. 

The record is clear, this is a very reluctant politician.

Would be nice if the media adopted the same scepticism to such ridiculous claims.

Comments (82)

Login to comment or vote

Add a Comment