Labour promises close look at Tamihere's bid to rejoin
John Tamihere will have to wait until November to find out if the Labour Party will take him back as a member - and it could depend on whether others in the party raise objections.
As Tumeke pointed out last month, Tamihere is running in Waitakere for Labour. The fear that the repeal of section 59 has put into social policy is now such a chip on their collectives shoulders it has generated it's own gravity orbit to recapture one of the party's brightest but most errant moons, John Tamihere.
I just don't think you can over play how deeply scarred Labour are over the repeal of section 59.
The 'social engineering' label with it's slower alcohol syndrome country cousin 'PC Nanny State' have rampaged across the wrecked landscape of the Labour party policy battlefield. So burnt by the backlash, the Party allowed third way bennie bashing Pagani Doctrine to lead David Shearer into the desert for 40 days and 40 nights.
Labour's dog whistling bennie on a roof speech was an attempt to tell their blue collar electorate that they aren't those same PC stormtroopers that Helen led. It's a clumsy middle class belief that the only way to win the blue collar vote is to appeal to their bigotry.
So what does a left wing party that's too frightened to do any social policy do? They inoculate the issue by appointing a red blooded bloke as Minister of Social Welfare to negate the perception of social engineers.
Enter stage door right, John Tamihere. The left, the sisterhood, the gay mafia and anyone with a basic education and progressive outlook will be horrified that the bad boy of the left is back in a west Auckland ute wanting to charm the masses. The crazy bat shit stupid crap he said to Wishart and the championing of Charter Schools has made him a heretic, which makes him perfect.
Tamihere running in a general seat tipped as Minister of Social Welfare would inoculate the Party against the psychological twitch the repeal of section 59 has left them so scarred by. Having a bloke like Tamihere front Welfare would change the perception of welfare under Labour and probably appeal to those voters who are influenced by such knuckle dragging.
The problem for Labour is would anyone with a social conscience tolerate it?
Firstly Carmel would need to be given a much higher placing on the list as payback, secondly the left would need to hear from Tamihere a much broader view that is deeply entrenched on the economic left. If Tamihere was to start talking about a massive state house building program in conjunction with social welfare, empowering unions and rising inequality, he could woo the left.
If he's going to be a right wing dick however, he'll get slaughtered. The Labour Party membership and the left blogosphere want a Labour that is far more to the left, if Tamihere's seen as the new vessel for the right, in the way the Pagani's were, he will get the same treatment.