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Russel Norman Wins Green Co-Leadership Contest

Russel Norman Wins Green Party Co-Leadership Contest

Words and images Kevin List

Green Party co-leader candidates Russel Norman and Nandor Tanczos chat while the votes are being counted

Seconds away from the announcement that…

…Russel Norman is the new Green Party co-leader

**********

This afternoon one of the backroom boys of the Green Party stepped out into the limelight and a grilling by the media as to how a non-MP would work as the new Green Party Co-leader.

Australian import but now proud Kiwi Russel Norman beat current Green MP Nandor Tanczos, former MP Mike Ward and Auckland academic Dave Clendon to fill the role left vacant following former co-leader Rod Donald's death late last year.

Mr Norman stuck to two key messages during his speech at the annual Green Party conference - messages that seemd to resonate with the delegates – Climate Change and Transport.

Mr Norman's closest rival for the co-leader's position Nandor Tanczos possibly didn't enhance his chances by veering off into a philosophical argument as to whether the Green Party was 'Green-Wing' (a new semantic term suggesting a shift away from the traditional right and left wing political axis).

Of the other candidates Auckland academic Dave Clendon came across as likable but failed to set the room on fire with his emphasis on Green Party members being conservative with a small c.

Former MP Mike Ward was plagued by microphone difficulties throughout his speech and the question and answer session that followed it later. Mr Ward's emphasis on less negativity - especially in press releases and his esoteric emphasis on the power of art made his message seem muddled when his microphone was actually working properly.

After winning the party's male co-leader position Mr Norman made a graceful acceptance speech and later on cleared up a mystery as to whether the Greens would be snuggling up with Dr Brash and the National Party.

Despite firing a broadside at Labour for the recent billion dollar 'roads budget' Mr Norman emphasised the difficulty of the Greens working with a party led by a 'climate change denier' – as Mr Norman described Dr Don Brash.

Portraits of the candidates hours before the vote

Green MP Nandor Tanczos in a slightly pensive mood after reading John Armstrong's NZ Herald column that tipped Russel Norman to be the next Green co-leader

Favourite Russel Norman appears chirpy some hours before the vote for co-leader

Dave Clendon had a nice line in self deprecating humour when he spoke at the conference and here flashes a hearty smile – knowing he's going in as an outsider

Mike Ward is deep in thought about something – perhaps having a crack at the Nelson mayoralty

*********

It was no contest for the female co-leader - Jeanette Fitzsimons happily signs up for another stint

New co-leader Russel Norman faces a veritable media scrum with Newstalk ZB's Barry Soper leading the charge

Some Green Party fashion – from casual chic to urban bohemian to bow-tie dapper

**********

Listen to the Green Party male co-leader candidates speeches

Scoop Audio.Scoop Streaming Audio: Mike Ward 03.06.06

Click here to download file (mp3)

Scoop Audio.Scoop Streaming Audio: Nandor Tanczos 03.06.06

Click here to download file (mp3)

Scoop Audio.Scoop Streaming Audio: Dave Clendon 03.06.06

Click here to download file (mp3)

Scoop Audio.Scoop Streaming Audio: Russel Norman 03.06.06

Click here to download file (mp3)

ENDS

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