New Zealanders share their thoughts on Labour: 'I think they may have lost the plot'

By Vaimoana Tapaleao, Nadia Marai, Francis Vaigalepa

The Herald asked a number of Labour voters - past and present - in downtown Auckland how they felt about the party and why they continued to back Labour or had decided to change their support.

Bradley Tapelu, 23

Bradley Tapelu. Photo / Moana Tapaleao
Bradley Tapelu. Photo / Moana Tapaleao

Labour supporter, but starting to have second thoughts.

"My views on the Labour Party are conflicted at the moment. I do agree with some of their policies and I'm open to anything that Labour's got at the moment.

"I agree with some of [leader Andrew Little's] terms, but I'm still kind of not 100 per cent [about] him at the moment, I think like a lot of politicians."

John Mains, 31

John Mains. Photo / Moana Tapaleao
John Mains. Photo / Moana Tapaleao

Labour supporter, but some changes need to be made.

"I support Labour, the second strongest parliamentarians at the moment. All the rest are pretty weak-minded. But we still need to do some more work [in] making Labour stronger in the way of facing their opponents, like National.

"We need a lot of people support to pretty much stand up and make the changes that we want -- but we need strong leaders to support that."

Wendy O'Neil, 62

Wendy O'Neil. Photo / Moana Tapaleao
Wendy O'Neil. Photo / Moana Tapaleao

Ex-Labour supporter.

"I don't support Labour at this point of time. I'm a bit disappointed in some of their policies in reactions to the latest things around housing and other social issues and defence, even.

"I think they may have lost the plot sometimes. I know they've got to counter National, but sometimes it pays to just stand alone and have your own policies and opinions."

"I thought their policies were reasonable and actually practical. But with the behaviour that's happening in parliament, both parties bitterly disappoint me. I wouldn't, at this point, support neither of them. In fact, Winston Peters is looking good and I thought I'd never say that."

Sammit Kumar, 28

Sammit Kumar. Photo / Moana Tapaleao
Sammit Kumar. Photo / Moana Tapaleao

Ex-Labour supporter.

"I used to vote for Labour, but I've changed my mind and I'm voting for National because I see there's not [much] support for Labour anymore. Everybody's voting for John Key and his party and he's making a bit of difference.

"Back then, [when I voted Labour] was Helen Clark and she made a lot of difference. Since John Key's come in, he's changed the whole government and there's more candidates in his seats now."

Phil Miller, 60

Phil Miller. Photo / Moana Tapaleao
Phil Miller. Photo / Moana Tapaleao

Strong Labour supporter.

"I support Labour because I think they have more of a social conscience and I think any party that's more aligned to business and the rich getting rich is short-sighted and socially destructive.

"I'd much rather we all paid more taxes and we stopped running this ambulance at the bottom of the hill mentality. Put more money into children so they're healthier and then there will be less crime and less cost to society later."

- NZ Herald

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