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Labour Announce Election Process Details

Labour Announce Election Process Details - 23 August 2013

Scoop Audio+Video+Photos

By Hamish Cardwell


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Labour has announced details of the process to replace David Shearer who resigned yesterday.

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Video will viewable at approximately 1.30pm

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Party president Moira Coatsworth told reporters at a press conference at Labour headquarters in Wellington that the leadership elections were a historic occasion, with caucus, party members and affiliated unions all getting a say.

She said it would give the eventual leader a strong mandate.

“The most Machiavellian processes are the ones that happen behind closed doors.”

However, some members of caucus were less enthusiastic about the election than party members, she said.

Voting would be held at hustings meetings held throughout the country were members could hear candidates speak. There would be a mail-in option for people with disabilities or those who lived in remote areas. Parts of the meetings would be closed to media.

Party general secretary Tim Barnett said the election was “a significant process involving thousands of people”.

Votes would be weighted according to a formula with caucus allotted 40 percent, party members 40 percent and affiliated unions 20 percent.

People would be allowed to vote more than once if, for example, they were members of both the Labour Party and an affiliated union. Union delegates would consult with people in their workplace before voting, while the Service and Food Workers Union members would vote individually.

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Nominees must be members of caucus and have their nomination papers seconded by two other caucus members.

Nominations close 10pm Monday 26 August, with the list of nominees to announced the following day.

The election will use a single round preferential voting system where members rank their preferred candidates.

A code of conduct for nominees was being finalised and would be released on Sunday. Mr Barnett said he expected it to include rules around election spending.

Ms Coatsworth said while she had had confidence in David Shearer as leader there had been feedback that Labour needed someone who would give them a boost in the polls. She did not accept that there was a division between caucus and the membership.

Final election results were expected to be announced on Sunday 15 September.


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