Now that it’s over, let’s speak the truth about Mark Osborne

Mark Orborne was, is and remains seriously out of his depth.

National’s Northland byelection candidate Mark Osborne told supporters to brace themselves for some bad polls yesterday but insisted he was not out of the race.

With just two days of campaigning left, National is looking to boost its campaign after a 3 News-Reid Research poll last night put Mr Osborne on 34 per cent – well behind NZ First leader Winston Peters on 54 per cent. Three weeks ago, the same poll had Mr Peters on 35 per cent and Mr Osborne on 30. It indicated Labour’s nod to its voters to choose Mr Peters had caught on – Labour’s candidate Willow Jean Prime had dropped from 16 to 10 per cent.

Despite Mr Peters’ high result, only 43 per cent of the 500 Northland voters polled said they trusted Mr Peters while 48 per cent did not.

Yesterday, a cock-a-hoop Mr Peters told an encouraging crowd in Paihia to take him on in a two-and-a-half year trial and if he didn’t do better than National in that time they could kick him out in 2017.

A more despondent Mr Osborne told a small audience of councillors and business people in Kaikohe that a poll was coming and while it was bad news, he still believed it would be a “very tight race”.

Mark, National already squandered in excess of a 9000 majority. ?And instead of you being the silver bullet, you’ve proven to be at best someone who has no positive effect on the numbers. ? You know that they’ve been sending in all the National superstars in the hope some of it would rub off on you, but what happened is that at every event, the crowds flocked to them, and none of the pixie dust fell on you.

This is mostly due to a very poorly run campaign, but you also have to shoulder some blame here. ?You were sent to a gunfight unarmed. ?Winston Peters can not be debated. ?Every time you tried, you ended up trying to explain away whatever Winston alleged. ?He set the agenda, all you did was try to defend yourself.

Explaining is losing.

The last 4 weeks have been a master class in Winston setting the agenda, and National going “no it’s not”. ?Throw in a few blatant, and ultimately disingenuous, bribes, mix it with a general unease about being unloved and uncared for as an electorate, and you were always going to have a big job on your hands.

Sadly, you’re not up to it. ? You’ll go down in history as the man who took a 9300 majority and lost. ?Your political career lasted four weeks. ?As you’ve discovered, politics is brutal, and you are like a baby playing on the motorway.


– NZ Herald