Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Christchurch East Candidates

The following candidates are standing for Christchurch East:
Boyd, Lynda (Alliance)
Chapman, Kyle (Direct Democracy)
Dalziel, Lianne (Labour)
Hopkinson, Paul (Anti-Capitalist Alliance)
McCammon, Mary (Green Party)
O'Connell, Kevin Patrick (Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis)
Peters, John (ACT)
Round, David John (National)
Silcock, Karen (Jim Anderton's Progressive)
Wilson, Dianne (United Future)
The sitting MP is Lianne Dalziel who won it with a majority of 14,864 votes in the last election.

Lynda Boyd is yet another mysterious candidate. She's listed on the Alliance site as the deputy chair of the Alliance Canterbury branch and her email address indicates that she's a student at Canterbury but there is nothing else about her. The Alliance won 466 party votes and 315 electorate votes at the last election and given the nature of their voters, I expect their share of the vote to remain stable at best.

Kyle Chapman is well-known as the former chief obscenity of the National Front. His blurb makes interesting reading in what it does not say:
He served some time on the Christchurch Safer Community Council. His ability to get the job done was well known at street level - his qualifications being social work based. Through the years he has been part of other types of work [my emphasis - PHM] within the community. This has, at times, led to a high profile.
The "other types of work" happened to be being a contact person for the dissemination of hate literature. When found out, he was forced to leave the Safer Community Council. Also of note is the sentence "His political experience has grown somewhat since he stood for the Christchurch Mayoralty". That was last year. Why did he not mention his leadership role in the National Front, which began in 1997?

Lianne Dalziel has been a notable MP ever since she entered Parliament in 1990. Her majority of 14,864 at the last election was large but that could be in jeopardy over her forced resignation as Minister of Immigration as voters do punish erring candidates and MPs on election night. I don't expect her to lose her seat over this as she has spent over a year in the wilderness as penance (even if she's still spinning the circumstances of her fall).

Paul Hopkinson, the Anti-Capitalist Alliance candidate, is a teacher that was prosecuted two years ago for burning the NZ flag at a protest. He was acquitted on appeal because the Judge was a goddamned PINKO! decided that in light of the Bill of Rights Act, defacing the flag had to be something stronger than merely burning it. What that was, he didn't say but publicly using the flag as toilet paper would be a safe guess. In between his recent court case and now, Paul has moved from Wellington to Christchurch for unknown reasons.

Mary McCammon the Green Candidate has a background as a children's entertainer. Her views are harmless garden-variety greenies (she approves of Mike Ward) rather than being half-baked demented nonsense like Keith Locke.

Kevin Patrick O'Connell is standing for the Aotearoa Legalize Cannabis, which astounds me. Given that they didn't have a party political address this time around and given that Blair Anderson wasn't standing under their banner, I had thought they had overdosed on weed to the point of terminal lethargy. The party website is singularly uninformative about the candidate.

John Peters stands for ACT again having stood for it in 2002. Then he received 1,212 party votes and 841 electorate votes, a slight improvement on the 1999 results. I expect the numbers to be reduced in the coming election due to ACT's low polling. I note that in 1999, John stood for Te Tai Tonga, one of the Maori seats, but there's no indication of any maori ethnicity in his profile.

David Round stands for National. He has a good pedigree as a law lecturer but when reading his letters and articles in the Press, I always felt that his thought processes were wayward. National received 4,368 party votes and 4,920 electorate votes at the last election. I expect these numbers to improve significantly but not to the point of unseating Lianne Dalziel. At a list ranking of 56, he is not likely to become a list MP.

Karen Silcock is standing for Jim Anderton's Progressives. Her profile is somewhat odd in that just under half of it consists of a declamation of Jim Anderton's views on apprenticeships. I simply do not understand why this should matter so much to a "married mother of three" as opposed to Jim's policies on drugs. Jim's party received 1,171 party votes and 834 electorate votes in 2002 and, in my opinion, they are likely to receive even fewer votes this time.

Lastly Dianne Wilson is United Future's candidate. Her profile is fairly respectable but doesn't say anything about why United Future was the party for her. United Future received 2,394 party votes and 1,532 electorate votes in 2002; as with all United Future candidates, I expect a collapse in their support.