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Labour MP Shane Jones to retire before election to take up Pacific Economic Ambassador role set up by National's Murray McCully

Labour MP Shane Jones to retire before election to take up Pacific Economic Ambassador role set up by National's Murray McCully

Senior Labour MP and former leadership candidate Shane Jones has confirmed he will not stand again for Labour at the September 20 election and looks set to accept a role offered by National Foreign Minister Murray McCully as a 'Pacific Economic Ambassador.'

The news broken at 6 pm by 3 News' Paddy Gower appeared to catch David Cunliffe's office completely off-guard. Political commentators said the shock showed Labour was in disarray and in crisis.

It was only confirmed by Labour officials late in the evening and has yet to be mentioned on Labour's website.

Kelvin Davis, who is next on the Labour list and will replace Jones, described the news as a "bolt from the blue."

Trading on iPredict drove the contract measuring the chance of a National Prime Minister at the next election up by 3 points to 74%.

Jones appeared to have revived his political career after a spirited bid for the leadership last year and his headline-grabbing claims under parliamentary privilege (see video above) earlier this year about the 'Countdown shakedown' sparked a Commerce Commission inquiry.

However, he had recently been reprimanded by David Cunliffe over his 'mollyhawk' attacks on Green MP Gareth Hughes.

"Over Easter I just had a deeply introspective time and was truthful to myself. I don't want to do it any more," Jones told the Herald.

"The leadership had a bit to do with it, but I'm 55 this year and I just want to go and do something else. I'm not able to give to Labour the 100 per cent that I ought to be giving. They need a team to stay for the long term and I'm not in that space," he said.

Cunliffe told various media Jones' decision to go had nothing to do with Cunliffe or Labour, and he wished Jones well.

In an almost as surprising twist just hours before Jones' retirement, the Herald's Claire Trevett revealed that Sir Wira Gardiner , who is close to the National Party and is Hekia Parata's husband, had donated NZ$1,000 to Jones' leadership campaign.

John Key said he was shocked and surprised and that the donation "sounded like a 'waste of a NZ$1,000."

More soon

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I fully expect, when I get back from work, to find a whole heap of comments about National and the creation of this public service job/bribe


Labour is f()(#1), they cant even run an up-to date  website , which a 10 year old can do .

They have no plan and are carrying on like a mullet on a drying  mud flat

They have gone on AD INFINITUM about who Judtih Collins had lunch with last year , and I know absolutely no one who gives a you- know-what about who she had luch with .

All this while we have some seriuos problems to deal with , like the budget deficit , the housing crisis , the consequnces of an open door immigration policy,  to name just three.


You cannot get cheap Labour these days, in these make work schemings!.

I always said Labour was left, not working, now I know I was not far enough ...right.

You cannot buy loyalty, no, not at any price!.

You cannot beat a redcoat turncoat, into a blue coated position of wanna be envy, just show em the munny.

I could go on.

But then New Zealanders change houses on a whim everyday, hoping for the the big payback.

And some will take it, anyway they can get it.

What does a Labourite do, when all is said and done....take the money and run.

Here is todays is not Friday, but so, so apt....

An old country fella had a teenage son, and it was getting time the boy should give some thought to choosing a profession. Like many young men his age, the boy didn't really know what he wanted to do, and he didn't seem too concerned about it.   One day, while the boy was away at school, his father decided to try an experiment. He went into the boy's room and placed on his study table four objects:
1. A Bible.

2. A silver dollar.
3. A bottle of whiskey..
4. A Playboy magazine.
'I'll just hide behind the door," the old fella said to himself. "When he comes home from school today, I'll see which object he picks up."
"If it's the Bible, he's going to be a good sort like me, and what a blessing that would be!
  "If he picks up the dollar, he's going to be a business man, and that would be okay, too.
"But if he picks up the bottle, he's going to be a no-good drunken bum, and Lord, what a shame that would be.
"And worst of all if he picks up that magazine he's going to be a skirt-chasing womanizer."
The old man waited anxiously, and soon heard his son's foot-steps as he entered the house whistling and heading for his room. The boy tossed his books on the bed, and as he turned to leave the room he spotted the objects on the table.  With curiosity in his eye, he walked over to inspect them.
Finally, he picked up the Bible and placed it under his arm. He picked up the silver dollar and dropped into his pocket.. He uncorked the bottle and took a big drink, while he admired the magazine's centerfold.
"Lord have mercy," the old fella disgustedly whispered. "He's gonna run for Parliament."  



Can't wait for the full story to come out on this one. 


Was he pushed?  We all know he was acting like the Labour leader, creating his own agenda, Cunliffe would have hated that.  Too many attacks on the Greens. 


Did he accept a bribe from National to walk away?  Politically speaking the timing is disasterious for Labour and a big win for National.


Is there a scandel we don't know about yet?


Or is it just as he says, he doesn't want to do it anymore....  Has one of Labour top leaders lost faith in his party?


Certainly National encouraged Shane Jones to jump with the newly created 'gone fishing' job in the Pacific. What 'push' factors were involved and were they the bigger issue, hard to know?  Shane being disappointed re not being the leader and having to temper his own agenda might have been a bigger factor?


It certainly is a win for National as it gives ammunition to there claim that Labour is too disorganised to govern attack. I think privately Labour candidates will be thinking Shane was selfish to jump ship at this time for financial gain (would he have got a similiar job after the election) at the expense of making their jobs harder.


Tough choice for labour loose Shane else Russell will not play


Or was it Winston not willing to play with Jones?  The Greens support is in the bag for Labour, the Greens are hardly going to side with National, it's NZ First that Labour needs to win over. 


You need to remember Winston was a National cabinet minister in the days before NZ first. He would be closer to Shane Jones than just about anyone else in Labour. In addition Jones was about the furthest of the Labourites from the Greens. His departure makes a Labour / Greens deal more likely and a Labour / NZ First one less likely. That might be what the Nats were after.

Despite Labours problems NZ First are still likely to be able to decide who Governs come October.


I'm hoping that the election is not a done deal, just yet, and I know of a lot of people who previously voted national but will not, in this election.

Ask around outside of your usual social circle, and you'll besurprise at the amount of anger with national.

People are copping on that with National in power, it is only a very small section of the population that is reaping any bemefits....


With the tongue firmly clenched between upper and lower jaws ,  I reckon he was pushed by the Greens via a proxy infiltrated  inside labour .

Its really a very Communistic way of doing things , is it not ?

Lets face it the communists always get rid of their enemies whether it be Trotsky with an icepick or anyone who voices anything contariran to their totalitarian view , they are dealt with , often ruthlessly .

And Shane did not hold back on his disdain for those Red Stalinists masquerading as Green environmentalists