Friday, November 26, 2021

Mike Hosking: If National get this wrong, they risk years of political obscurity


I don’t mind that Shane Reti is the interim leader. The main reason being, if you are going to do this, try and do it properly. Far better to make a solid, well considered decision over a mad cap heat of the moment one. 

Whether Reti held the job for a while will matter not in the fullness of time. 

As for poor old Judith Collins, her demise will be quickly forgotten as well. We don’t spend a lot of time talking about the David Shearer years, the David Cunliffe years, the Andrew Little years, or the Bill English years. Not that most of them even had years to talk about, sometimes just months. 

The point is once you're gone, you're a feather duster. 

The real issue for National at the moment, is not as much the next leader, it's whether they gather in unison behind them. At one point there were plenty of people who thought Collins was right for the job, that’s how she got it. 

But the ensuing bitching, backstabbing, leaking, and general self-indulgence would have done anyone in. That is their major problem. If they cannot tidy up their discipline, you can elect anyone you want, it won't make a lot of difference. 

Yes, a leader can unite, a leader can spark the public's imagination, and from that comes a sort of fait accompli within something like a caucus. But the fundamentals of basic professionalism have to be there from the start. 

So, Mark Mitchell or Christopher Luxon?  Either is good or potentially good. 

Luxon has not shown himself to the wider world. So, he might be brilliant, or he might be a David Shearer type. Luxon ran a company, Shearer helped the third world. Both are affable, both looked like a prospect.  What you did and your back story is but a small part of the ingredients required to win in politics, though. 

A lot of Luxon is based on the idea he's the next John Key. He looked unlikely until he got Teflon. Even Collins looked kind of fun with the old crusher persona until it vanished with the pressure of leadership. 

Simon Bridges was the same. Never forget, lots of people liked him until they didn’t. There is a very real tangible step to be made between looking good and actually being successful. 

Mitchell? We know him well. To be blunt, we got him on the Wednesday slot because we thought he would end up, well, where he might be about to end up. Is he too nice though? 

Are either of these blokes just contenders because that’s all there is? Is Luxon a genius? Or just another bloke who looks okay, until we find out he's picked the wrong profession? So, the race is on. 

But here's the simple truth, National have made a spectacular mess of this. You have to earn support no matter who your leader is. If they can't see this as a circuit breaker, then ACT deserves to be the opposition. 

Mike Hosking is a New Zealand television and radio broadcaster. He currently hosts The Mike Hosking Breakfast show on NewstalkZB on weekday mornings.


Janine said...

National is goneburger! There are just too many divisions in the ranks to form a cohesive unit. Think of all the infighting over the last few years.
This is not going away.

A better idea is a breakaway party. Get rid of all the " wokes". At election time they form a coalition with Act. They might need to do some deals in the electorates.

I suggest Bayly, Upston, Reti, Willis and a couple of the bright young guys form a " proper" centre right party. Also, there is Penk and another top Northland guy who I think lost their seats last time. The rest could carry on as a sort of " Labour Light" party.

No Aotearoa, no separatism, justice and equality for all New Zealanders.

Tell us what they stand for.

Luke said...

I believe we all should be grateful that someone of Luxsons pedigree, is interested in a political career at all .It’s has always seemed to me that mostly the least capable members of the community, want to run the place That goes for national or labour.They are generally career politicians, who have lived off the public purse their whole lives And they are all very envious and threatened by anyone like Key or Luxson, who has been highly successful in the real world
But John Key proved how great is can be to have experience in high business, when running a government.The polls will quickly show national with ACT will have the numbers to win the next election
I believe successful people should be encouraged to enter politics, as there is a serious lack of common sense and practically in all government departments.We should rejoice now that Luxson is the party leader