April 23, 2014
Clues sought to Jones’ departure
Political commentator Willie Jackson says continuing opposition from fellow Labour MPs may have contributed to the departure of Shane Jones.
The former Alliance MP says Mr Jones has been the party’s star performer this year.
He’d redeemed himself in the eyes of the public for past mistakes, but not in the eyes of colleagues, and yesterday’s resignation announcement was probably inevitable.
"If you know you’ve got no support from the women, if you know you don’t rate with the Maoris, if you know you’re not going to be the leader and if you know Labour’s not going to be in Government, it’s a pretty easy choice isn’t it," Mr Jackson says.
But Labour leader David Cunliffe denies the resignation of Shane Jones points to problems within the caucus.
He says Mr Jones was a highly-valued colleague who will be sorely missed by the party.
Mr Cunliffe says he knew Mr Jones was considering his future, but the timing of yesterday’s resignation came as a surprise.
"I don’t think this is at all about internal Labour Party stuff. Shane is a valued colleague. He is well respected across the caucus. He and I have a good and close relationship and I don’t think that’s an issue. Shane of course was a contender in the leadership race. That was an open process that everybody had a say about and he’s been fully respectful of the outcome. I just don’t think that’s an issue at all," he says.
David Cunliffe says he is looking forward to having Kelvin Davis back in parliament replacing Shane Jones on the list.
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