Greens put Norman up for Mt Albert
Before we go any further there is a selection process - so he needs to be confirmed officially - but he's the Greens' man in Mt Albert. Norman Nominates - from Frogblog:
Russel has described himself as the “underdog”, and said he did not believe National could win the seat. The Herald reports:
He said National had ruined its chances with plans to “bulldoze their way through the electorate”… and the ramming through of the Auckland governance changes.
These are the issues that Phil Goff in his letter to the electorate this week said Labour would make their own: The SH20 motorway tunnel and the Auckland super city and in particular getting a referendum held. This focus and common front of policies will put a lot of pressure on the National candidate.
Norman is most certainly the underdog. I don't think he has the personality to get much above the 11% party vote they got in the electorate last year no matter how much grass roots support is available to be tapped in the area. The Greens have massive potential in Auckland, but have gone soft. The biggest strategic failure of the last two elections was not targetting Auckland Central - now it's gone blue instead of Green.
He risks damaging himself as leader rather than raising their profile if - if - he get's creamed. The Greens need that back-stop electorate seat guarantee of not being wiped out if they duck under 5%, so a co-leader running makes sense... if they can win or poll respectably. I can't see how Russel can win and I'm not confident he can get over 15%. That 15% would probably be enough to get the National candidate in though. It's a gutsy call, but one they have to make to show they are serious. The electorate awaits.
[UPDATE: The Green's take on the SH20 motorway issue is not to build it (tunnel or otherwise) at all:
The transport dilemma is a classic example, said Dr Norman: “The old parties are arguing over two bad ideas in Waterview. They want to either bulldoze a suburb or blow $3 billion. The Green Party offers a better solution. We would fix the public transport system first, relieve congestion and give Aucklanders a faster, cheaper way to get to work and the airport.”
That's a good point of difference with Labour in the campaign. What can we get for that $3b? --UPDATE ENDS]
Labels: Mt Albert by-election