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Labour To Keep Raking The Coals Of Election Night Brief

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Phil Goff
Phil Goff

By Maggie Tait of NZPA

Wellington, Nov 13 NZPA - Newly anointed Labour leader Phil Goff says any navel gazing period into why the party lost the election would be brief.

On Tuesday Mr Goff and his new deputy Annette King were elected unopposed by the party's 43-member caucus.

NZPA and other media reported Mr Goff's comments yesterday that it was a mistake to ram through the controversial Electoral Finance Act without widespread support and Labour would like to take part in a review.

Today he said there were details and process issues Labour could have done better.

"If I say that to you now I will be accused of a flip-flop, and if I don't say it, you will say he's learnt nothing from the past," he said.

Mr Goff said Labour was proud of many things it had done.

"We made our mistakes, there are things we could have done better. We will go, as the Labour Caucus, through the process of looking at what we've done in the past, what we can learn from that experience, where there was a disconnect with the electorate and how we can reconnect with it."

He would not say what other failings had been. One disconnect though was unhappiness at Labour's support of changes to the law around child discipline and other social issues.

Mr Goff said the party would seek the public's view of what went wrong and then sink its teeth into the Opposition role and developing new policy.

"The Labour caucus isn't going to spend all of our time examining our navel looking back in time, we will learn what lessons that we can, but we will start almost immediately looking forward."

Already on the attack, Mr Goff said people may find in time Labour's failings "might pale into insignificance".

Mr Goff praised outgoing party president Mike Williams for his work and said a new president, yet to be elected but tipped to be unionist Andrew Little, would help provide a new start.

NZPA PAR mt mgr

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