Thursday, November 25, 2010

Newcastle Labor concerns

My thanks to hunternewsfeed for this one.

Poor Labor cannot put a foot right at the moment. It appears that the rank and file are upset over the decision not to run a pre-selection campaign in Jodi McKay's state Newcastle seat.

I am very careful on this blog to avoid party political positions, for this feeds into the issues I put on the table in yesterday's Wednesday Forum: Overcoming division.  By the way, I have already got some very good comments here that give me material for later discussion. But do feel free to comment further.

I haven't met Jodi McKay. I cannot make a judgement on her personal views. However, I would say that as Minister for the Hunter I would like to see more comment on the way that the Hunter might be developed. I would also like her to address the question of the way that the Hunter might better integrate with areas further north.

To the present, the focus has really been on the integration of Newcastle with the various Sydney metropolitan strategies. 

What about it Jodie? Willing to try something new?


Mark said...

Jim, Jodi McKay has from memory done more for Newcastle itself than any other sitting member. I honestly believe that she has the best intentions however she will always have to submit to party bosses and their metro-centic views and opinions whilst in the Labor Party.

More on a separate issue though,
I didn't see or hear of her pulling other Hunter based Labor MPs into line as Minister for the Hunter when a motion was tabled in Parliament over the electricity contract issue involving local employer Hydro Alumimium and Delta Electricity. Two Labor MPs from the area that were very vocal about Government interference with electricity contracts didn't even bother to show up in Parliament. She should've pulled them into line.

Divide and Rule!

Jim Belshaw said...

Interesting comment, Mark.

I am too remote to judge Ms McKay's performance as a local member, but I have been critical about her role as Minister for the Hunter because I thought that it, the creation of the Ministry, was really a nominal political gesture. Your comments seem to confirm that.

With the Government on the nose and people lining up to challenge in Newcastle, it seems to me that Ms McKay has both an opportunity and indeed need to articulate new positions, to move away from divide and rule.