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Monday, 12 December 2011

Labour leadership primary

I don't really mind who the next leader of the Labour Party is. Both Davids support a New Zealand republic. Whichever David prevails in caucus, they've certainly got their work cut out for them.

I've heard anecdotal evidence though that the leadership competition has re-energised Labour's membership after a debilitating defeat. Former members who had lost interest in the party have renewed their membership just to attend the series of forums the party has held.

In 1998 a group called the Campaign for Conservative Democracy, despite having an ugly website, succeeded in its campaign to enable "grassroots" to vote on who the UK Conservative Party's next leader should be where the party had more than one candidate for leadership.

The rules weren't enacted until the 2005 leadership contest which saw David Cameron elected as party leader. The campaign re-energised the Conservative party's membership. So, my modest proposal is that Labour amend its constitution so that the next leadership competition where there is more than one candidate, caucus should decide who the top two candidates are, with the final decision to be made by the party membership at large. The Conservatives used a postal vote system. It might sound ironic, but NZ Labour could do well to copy the UK Conservative's leadership rules.