What will it take?

Dear Aaron,

If you were at the Mainland Conference in Hanmer to the end you’d have heard West Coast Tasman based list MP Chris Auckinvole’s final words.

You might remember him talking about the importance of the two wings of the party, the MPs and the volunteers,  and the good that can be achieved when they’re working in unison.

That was before we knew you hadn’t been at the conference dinner as any MP who took his responsibility to the party seriously, and respected the volunteers, would have been.

The party understands the competing demands on MPs – parliamentary duties, electorate work, family commitments – but just one weekend a year we ask you all to come to your regional conferences.

It’s an opportunity for volunteers to discuss policy with you, air concerns, get to know you. The social functions are an important part of that.

That you chose not to grace the conference dinner with your presence might have been overlooked. Your behaviour at the dinner you did attend can’t be and everything that’s happened since has made it worse.

I was part of the committee which met in 2011 to rank the party’s list.

Our deliberations are confidential but the rankings are not.

You were the lowest ranked sitting MP and anyone with any humility would have worked out why.

Once a list is ranked and put before the public at an election the party can’t change it. But someone can, as Paul Quinn did, turn down the opportunity to take up a place with his dignity intact and get on with his life.

You didn’t take the hint from your list placing and claimed the vacant seat. Why?

You’ve been reported as saying that you have enough money to live  on without needing to work so it can’t be the salary.

I don’t know if you did any good in the few weeks you’ve been back as an MP but in the last few days you’ve done immeasurable harm.

John Key and National have retained a fairly high and reasonably constant level of popularity in polls for several reasons. One of those is party discipline.

Both the wings Chris talked about have been strong and flying in unison.

Your antics are threatening that.

The Prime Minister has lost confidence in you and the president says the party is disappointed.

That is putting it very, very mildly.

If there’s one thing that gets volunteers riled  it’s an MP who doesn’t understand the importance of discipline and unity, doesn’t uphold the standard of behaviour expected and puts himself before the party.

What on earth are you thinking?

If your words and actions are anything to go by it’s not what’s best for the government, the party, parliament or the country.

What will it take to make you understand what you’ve done wrong and what’s the only thing you can now do to make it right?

Yours in disappointment,


12 Responses to What will it take?

  1. Alf Grumble says:

    Damned good letter, Ele. That’s pretty much what I told him, too, although maybe in less elegant language.


  2. Neil says:

    Alamein Kopu,Brendon Horan,Philida Bunkle,Gilbert Myles,Hamish McIntyre,Cam Campion,Brian Connell,Paul Quinn….
    The list goes on of people who slithered in unexpectedly to Parliament in either an election blitz or by a real accident.
    There are still others there who got there through ignorance of the voters – Richard Prosser,Eugenie Sage ,Gareth Hughes,Denis O’Rouke… .
    What happened with Paul Quinn last in 2011 was correct. The list ranking committee listens to the party and people. I was pleased to see Quinn receive a low ranking because of his boorish parliamentary behaviour. I am sure Ele knows that.
    That’s whats going to happen to Gilmour. However Gilmour would be better to cut his losses and slip back into the shade and get on with life.
    John Key has made his feelings very clear. He is the leader and is also backed up by Peter Goodfellow.
    Landslide victories are really not good for parliamentry life.


  3. inventory2 says:

    Well said Ele. When a senior and respected member of the party such as yourself is sending out messages like this, it’s time for Gilmore to do the only honourable thing left for him, and resign forthwith as an MP.


  4. Redbaiter says:

    Ele’s letter typifies the Nat’s inability to confront the lamestream media. They are so intimidated by these left wing jackals it is painful to observe.

    When will the Nats ever stop dancing to the tune of the media liberals???

    FFS grow some balls Ele and stand by your man.

    Continuing to try and ingratiate yourself with a pack of commie scum posing as media is a game you will never win.


  5. Andrei says:

    I guess Red, my friend, that this is yet another reason why I voted to dispense with MMP, we end up with unelectable dross polishing the green leather seats in the debating chamber.

    The only reason I can see for supporting keeping him there until the next election is that if he goes what he will be replaced with as we go even further down the 2011 National Party list.

    How does an ex labour party member, lesbian Maori maker of earnest left wing documentaries grab you as the next National member of Parliament?


  6. […] has covered this well enough already. So first of all, why the hell was Aaron not at the dinner? Ele eluded to this in a post earlier today, why was Aaron not at the Mainland conference. Having […]


  7. Stuart Nash says:

    Chris Auckinvole is not the West Coast Tasman MP. He lost the seat in the last election to Labour’s Damien O’Connor. Chris Auckinvole is a National List MP. In fact he was the only Nat MP to lose a seat in 2011. How ironic he is lecturing the Nat party on the importance of volunteers and MPs working together…


  8. homepaddock says:

    West Coast Tasman was jointly hosting the conference and Chris was speaking as one of the host MPs. But you are right he is now a list MP and I’ve corrected the sentence.


  9. Gravedodger says:

    Technically Nash is accurate but with the desperation for List MPs of all parties to gain a spiritual home, most if not all spend considerable sums of taxpayer money in perpetrating the charade.
    At least Auchinvole did represent The Coast for a term but his defeat should have seen him disappear. If he had true value and ability he then needed to attempt a return via the Coasters support or move with his party’s blessing to another electorate

    A repeat failure as a local body shank, Denis O’Rourke, now finds himself in the Parliament as a coat-tailer for winnie the stink and bombards listeners to local radio proclaiming he is the new Zealand First MP for “The South Island”.

    The lamestream media have repeatedly referred to the scab on the bum of the national party as the National member for Chch East.


  10. You were the lowest ranked sitting MP and anyone with any humility would have worked out why.

    I’m still trying to work out why such a strong candidate like Paul Foster-Bell was ranked lower than both Quinn and Gilmore.


  11. jabba says:

    the last line is so true .. and relates to any party


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