Wellington Scoop

Norbert Hausberg: Independence, or not, in the mayoral campaign

by Norbert Hausberg
As a candidate for Mayor, trucking around the meetings with the other mayoral hopefuls is interesting in many ways.

Yes you meet great locals and receive direct feedback. You get cups of tea and homemade cake. You meet the ward candidates. You talk to the current Mayor in German (he is good). You learn what people are really concerned about. But there is never enough time to challenge what the other candidates are saying. Promotional time is short.

So what is the story with independence? How independent can a candidate really be? Well being supported by your family does not count. Of course they support you even when not appreciating your policies, at least I hope so.

Have a look at the incumbents. Justin Lester never mentions he is independent and good on him. Everybody knows he is Labour and that’s where his alliance is. It gets tricky with the other two. Andy Foster claims he is fiercely independent. Hold on is he not supported by the movie industry? Yes that is an open secret but why does he not acknowledge it or cut out the “independent”?

A similar story with Diane Calvert. She is claiming proud independence. Or was she the fiercely and Andy the proudly independent? It does get a bit blurry after a while. So Diane is supported by the Wellington Party. The thinly disguised offshoot of the National Party, created to convince Wellingtonianxds to get National to take over the city council. She never acknowledges it either. But the Wellington Party refrained from standing a mayoral candidate after she put herself forward. Very much the same set-up as ACT in Epsom. A semi independence you might say. Also open knowledge she does not want to mention.

As with all candidates the money flowing is only published well after the election. That is when everyone has lost interest in the election and its aftermath. Soon it’s all forgotten anyway. The daily news takes over.

The other candidates for the position I have no information about. Stop stop, hold on there is me! Supported by myself and I! As long as the two are happy to pay and don’t talk about it, all is good. Let us keep it a secret too.

There is an old German proverb I would like to quote here:

– Whose bread I eat, whose song I sing –

Let us hear it from all the mayoral candidates and have them put their cards on the table.