Labour to reveal election candidate list

  • 01/05/2017
Andrew Little (file)
Andrew Little (file)

The Labour Party has delayed the release of its list for the general election in September after initially saying all would be revealed on Monday. 

The party's candidates to take on National now won't be unveiled until Tuesday.

Newshub understood it was good news for Willie Jackson and bad news for veteran Trevor Mallard.

But it is believed some of those candidates are unhappy with their placings, including Mr Jackson, with a meeting to be held tonight.

Northland lawyer Willow-Jean Prime is the big winner, being given the top-ranking spot for a Māori that will likely get her to Parliament.

Mr Jackson is ranked behind her, and will only get to Parliament if Labour gets 30 percent of the vote - about where it is polling.

A Labour insider told Newshub Mr Mallard is ranked lower than expected, and may struggle to get back as he has given up his Hutt South electorate seat.

However, Labour leader Andrew Little said those rumours weren't right.

"I'm very confident Trevor will be back in Parliament after the 23rd of September".

Current list MP Sue Moroney fell on her sword on Sunday, saying she had lost support from the party's ruling council for an electable position on the list and will not stand at the election.

Mr Little praised her work in Parliament.

"Sue's been fantastic, she's done amazing work as an MP, the reality is we've got a whole lot people lining up to be MPs and as we went through, there's just not enough room for everybody.

"I let Sue know she was up against some pretty stiff competition and that's the decision she made."

The list is to be made public on Monday.

While Mr Little was coy about who made the cut, he said he was "very satisfied" with it.

"I'm very satisfied with the gender balance on the list and the ethnic balance and the geographical representation and every other box we needed to tick."

It is known that Labour has shoulder-tapped Mr Jackson to stand as a list candidate, promising him a winnable spot, so there will be interest in what it is.

Labour Māori seat MPs are all pinning all their hopes on electorate wins and have asked to stay off the party's list. That frees up space for Mr Jackson.

Mr Little says when putting together the lists it gets very competitive, especially this time around.

"Right now we've got a lot people lining up wanting to be Labour Party candidates, either in the electorates or on the list, and we've got to try and find room for as many as we can."

Left-wing political commentator Chris Trotter says he knows there's been a lot of very interesting discussion about the rejuvenation process the party's undertaking.

"It's a brutal business, politics, and when a party is in a mood to rejuvenate and it's in a mood to put new faces towards the top of its list, then those who have been around a while and generally failed to set the world on fire, clearly the Labour Party is of a view should have a line drawn underneath [their careers]."

Labour had 27 electorate MPs and five list MPs after the 2014 election.

NZN / Newshub.