Reports of demise premature

When even supporters are criticising a leader it ought to be a safe bet that he’s about to be toppled.

But it appears reports of Phil Goff’s political demise were premature.

A well informed source tells me one of those tipped to replace him, David Parker, spent the weekend in the south. It is possible to plot by phone and email and it could be he was standing back to let others do the work.

But it is more likely that the lack of an obvious successor who could unite caucus and the danger of a leadership change this close to the election, are holding the knife-wielders back.

It’s all very well saying the enemy of my enemy is my friend when you’re fighting, but once the common enemy is dispatched the friendship will fail without something, or someone, strong to keep them together.

When Labour’s leader and president don’t appear to be communicating well and caucus is divided into factions it would take a strong and widely popular person to make a positive difference to the party’s electoral appeal.

There doesn’t appear to be anyone who could do that for Labour, yet.

No viable alternative isn’t a vote of confidence in Goff but it will give him a stay of execution for now.

12 Responses to Reports of demise premature

  1. robertguyton says:

    So, no rolling of Goff?
    But everybodysaid….


  2. Cadwallader says:

    He’ll stay but not due to his abilities, for he has very few, he’ll stay because who’d wish to lead this gaggle of weirdos and depose him for the privilege? Despite want happens to Goff, Annette King ought resign, afterall it was in her home where Dazza’s offending occurred.


  3. JC says:

    IMO he’s staying because there is no competing and/or compelling ideology to coalesce around because National is covering most of the middle ground bits.

    Thats left Goff and co to fiddle with bits of GST and tax with no idea of how to fund them.. hence Goff saying he’ll do it with an unexplained or defined “growth”.
    No matter where you look Labour runs into this same barrier of no middle ground to peg out.

    I might add Helen Clark had the same problem, but she covered it with an over the top and unsustainable feeding of the Middle Class under the cover of very good economic conditions. Right now the left doesn’t have that cover, additional spending looks both foolish and irresponsible, the so called poor have been recompensed as shown by the CPI and there’s simply nowhere to go without breaking Party ideals.



  4. Fredinthegrass says:

    You dont suppose, Rg, that the ‘blogging’ industry did a MSM over the Labour leadership do you. After all it did whip up a bit of a stir in blogging circles. Could they be accused of influencing the ratings at iPredict?
    No, surely not. Not the ‘blogging media – never!!??


  5. robertguyton says:

    Never trust a blogger Fred. The only people with less accountability are those who comment on those blogs.


  6. gravedodger says:

    My dear old Mum had a little quote she often used, “there is many a slip twixt cup and lip”. The significant meeting is scheduled for today and I await the outcome of how the Caucus react to the widely held view that Mr Goff’s handling of the “hughes afair” was inept, vague to the point of disingenuous, contemptable of the media, dishonest to the public (supporter and opponents alike) and viewed against the constant attacks on John Key’s handling of Worth (they are still banging on about it as we Type/speak), extremely damaging to the leadership abilities of Goff and by association the wider party trying to present an image of a government in waiting.
    To rebuild and leave the lingering smell of the widely discredited reality that the micromanaging Ms Clarke left as a legacy , a perception that was polished by the attitude of many of the out going administration that the electoral success of the Key government was just a ghastley mistake the voters would correct at the first opportunity, the present parliamentary labour group have to break with the past and present the image of a team of the future. That aint gunna happen with a leadership who’s start date of political life predates the birthdate of a significant number of voters. “Bring back Buck” had a big resonance in the year or so after Shellfords dumping but rapidly became just another gag line for a laugh as time moved on. Phil Goff and Annette King should have the political smarts to recognise that fact and retire and let the army regather its image to appeal to the demographic and economic reality that is 2011 not present a leadership whose origins were conceived in the middle of last century.


  7. Inventory2 says:

    Call me a conspiracy theorist, but I still reckon that there is a link between Judith Tizard taking up the Hughes vacancy, and Hughes’ tenure of the leadership. If Goff was to stand aside, Louisa Wall would fill the vacancy created by Hughes’ resignation IMHO. If Goff elects to tough it out, the cost is Judith Tizard.

    Sheesh, who’d want to have to make THAT choice!


  8. Inventory2 says:

    Whoops – should be “Goff’s tenure of the leadership ..”


  9. Goff’s career will in my mind for ever be associated now with the TINA ( There Is No Alternative ) theory, a theory he advocated in the Lange government regarding economic reforms. How ironic his career will end on same note.


  10. robertguyton says:

    The same applies to National of course – the lack of a viable alternative means that Key is safe – for now.


  11. homepaddock says:

    Robert no leader stays in that position for ever but there are no rumours of Key’s demise.

    There are viable alternatives but a united caucus under a popular leader is able to focus on what matters – governing the country not doing the numbers for a coup.


  12. gravedodger says:

    Old Phil has just had a glimpse of the feelings the condemned would endure when the phone rings at 23 59 hrs and the prisoner is returned to the waiting cell.
    Oh and robert I would personally be comfortable with Tony Ryall or Stephen Joyce but not your old mate from Dipton, he like Mr Goff has had his opportunity and it didnt work just as he shares the mantle of being a good minister. Longevity in politics tends to accumulate the negatives and ignore the positives.
    Also before you ask as I am sure you will be worrying, I am in good shape to make tomorrow and am relieved that Labour are staying with Phil as they will get a surge in the polls from the events of the last month. When a political party is threatening the 20% band it becomes harder to continue the dive as the ground comes up very fast, just ask Bill when you call him next.


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