Party News from the January 1973 issue of the Socialist Standard
Well at long last the New Zealand election is over, and you will have seen the not entirely surprising result. Incidentally, the October Standard’s cover Labour’s Programme for Capitalism couldn’t be more appropriate. With the shipping delay August & September’s issues came in reverse order, and it’s only now that we can get the August issue in the bookshops. However, in a couple of weeks when we put the October issue out, we rather think that it will go like a bomb!
We are all very satisfied with the results of our own efforts in this election. As you know we put up one candidate in the Tamaki electorate, this is the scat held in Auckland by the former Minister of Finance, Robert Muldoon. We have done some national advertising (a very expensive business), weekly local advertising, and distributed two leaflets to each household in the electorate, a total of 27,000, plus some meetings including one lunchtime meeting with the Watersiders (dockers). Despite all this, I must confess not one of us anticipated more than say a dozen votes. Socialist-minded people do not just happen as we all know too well. However, the grand total was 80 which we are all delighted with, particularly when you consider that the vast bulk of the work was done by only seven members, many meetings had to be cancelled because of the weather, adverts (deliberately?) put in obscure sections of newspapers and so on. The full result in Tamaki was as follows:
We have had some marvellous financial support from sympathisers, which made the advertising and printing of so many leaflets possible, and I don’t know what we’d have done without it. We feel we have achieved the main thing we had in mind, and that was to put the party on the map. There arc considerably less people who, when told the name of the party say “Who?”
I’m very happy to say that the members mainly involved in this election campaign were so elated at the result, and with the number of written and telephoned enquiries as a result of the leaflets, that they have already forgotten blistered feet and weary bones (those leaflets took some distributing, believe me), and are already tossing around ideas for the next one in three years. We made a lot of mistakes of course, but a full diary of our activities has been kept, and we intend learning by them. We are also hoping of course that present members who did not take part this time will be encouraged to in the future. (Not to mention all the new members we hope to make in the meantime!)