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Wednesday
Sep142016

'Team' Local Politics

One is entitled to ask precisely what it is that persuades candidates to join a team when it comes to local elections.

Does it mean?:

a) Members are just good mates, or

b) Their politics are aligned, and they will therefore exercise a bloc vote, or

c) They recognise a leader who will set the tone, and agenda, or

d) They will 'caucus' before meetings to agree on their approach to the each item on the agenda.

The question we need to ask is are we happy to elect such a 'team' for any of the reasons above? If not, then we should think very seriously before handing over the levers of power to such a group. 

Members of the 'TCDC Team' should perhaps be asked under which of the reasons above they choose to remain members of the 'TCDC Team.' Is it because they are incapable of thinking for themselves?

The most recent example of this 'Team' approach locally was the 'Rates Control Team' at the WRC to which Clyde Graf belonged, and still claims membership going into this election. As you may expect, it had a great deal more to do with 1080 than rates, and members were 'sprung at the trough' on one notable occasion.  

This 'Team' was also 'sprung' having coffee and muffins at a nearby coffee shop before proceeding into meetings, and when questioned by the Waikato Times, admitted that they were formulating a "joint approach" to each and every item on the agenda. Is that what we want for the TCDC - I don't think so.

Frankly, I believe that the 'Team' approach is totally inappropriate in local government - it is essential in national politics, but we should be able to expect our representatives to represent our interests in a manner that is not determined by their leader - in this case  the putative Mayor - French.

I have no confidence in his judgment and consider him far too beholden to the interests of the Eastern Seaboard., and influenced by Leach who clearly intends to 'hang around' - we would not be best served by him determining the outcome of proposals should he be elected by exercising the 'caucus' vote.

Voters should be be very concerned about the outcome of this election resting on the French 'TCDC Team', which by the way had the hide and audacity to adopt the 'TCDC Team' label - how dare they? As an aside, this form of labelling was referred to the Electoral Officer - Dale Ofsoske, who correctly declined to take any action on the grounds that there was no provision in the Act to prevent the use of the label. But that hardly excuses the attempt to create the impression of having official TCDC sanction. 

It is inevitable that some of this team will be elected, but I would strongly suggest that voters take the strategic route in order to ensure that the influence of the 'TCDC Team' is kept at an absolute minimum. Such would require voting in Thames for anyone other than Peters, Christie or Simpson, let alone French. 

 

 

 

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