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Labour Goes To The West Coast

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Phil Goff
Phil Goff

Wellington, March 16 NZPA - Labour MPs descended on the West Coast today for regional "reconnection" visits and a caucus retreat.

Party leader Phil Goff said it was part of a programme to reach out to communities.

"Labour wants to listen and talk about the issues that concern ordinary New Zealanders," he said.

After Labour lost the election Mr Goff acknowledged that the party had lost touch with voters on important issues.

The 43-member caucus will hold its retreat in Greymouth tomorrow.

Mr Goff and deputy leader Annette King visited Hokitika and Greymouth today.

On Wednesday they will be joined by a group of MPs, making contact with people in Dobson, Stillwater and Paroa.

Other groups of MPs will spread out around the region.

Labour has ground to make up on the West Coast.

In heartland territory -- the Labour Party was founded in Blackball -- it lost the West Coast-Tasman seat at the last election.

National's Chris Auchinvole beat Labour's sitting MP Damien O'Connor by 971 votes, and National scored 44 percent of the party vote against Labour's 33.4 percent.

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