Clown from Wellington in a Clown Shirt to stand in Mt Albert

Geoff Simmons is to stand in the Mt Albert byelection, confirming that the party run by a clown, advised by a clown is in fact standing clowns in?electorates.

Gareth Morgan’s Opportunities Party has announced it will contest the Mt Albert by-election – but the party founder will not run.

Instead, the newly formed party has put forward its chief of staff Geoff Simmons to contest the seat. Simmons is an economist who has worked for the Morgan Foundation. ?

Announcing the candidate this morning outside the Mt Albert War Memorial Hall, Morgan said Simmons would be the “thorn between two roses” – a reference to Labour MP Jacinda Ardern and Green MP Julie Anne Genter, who are also running.

He also said competing against Labour and the Greens would be a “David and Goliath” battle because they were well-funded and established parties.

Nominations for the February 25 by-election close today. Other confirmed candidates are independent Penny Bright and Socialist Aotearoa candidate Joe Carolan, formerly of Mana Movement.

Morgan formed the Opportunities Party late last year, and is aiming to meet the 5 per cent party vote threshold to enter Parliament. He initially said he would not run candidates in electorates but has more recently said he has had approaches from people wanting to represent the party across the country.

It will be interesting to see if Gareth Morgan will use evidence based?decision making to determine whether or not his party is viable after the clown loses in Mt Albert.

Personally, I think The Morgan Foundation is being cute by saying Geoff Simmons is on a leave of absence while he involves himself in political matters. That just shows that when he fails he will be back and presumably take another leave of absence when it suits to avoid having the charitable status of the Morgan Foundation compromised. Still it is Gareth Morgan’s plaything, he will think he can do whatever he likes, there is a problem with rich men playing politics where they have a habit of thinking rules don’t apply to them.


– NZ Herald