Union secretary to take up candidacy
New Labour candidate for Maungakiekie Carol Beaumont knows she has big shoes to fill.
“Mark Gosche has been an extremely strong advocate, not only for people in the electorate, but for working people and Pacific people generally,” she says.
“He is a man of real integrity, personally and politically.”
Ms Beaumont was selected for the seat after four-term MP Mr Gosche announced his withdrawal earlier this year.
The trade union secretary has worked with Mr Gosche as part of the Labour team in the electorate for the past nine years.
And she says he’ll be alongside her on the campaign trail.
“Having his support is really helpful,” she says.
The Royal Oak resident has worked in trade unions, community health and adult education.
She will take leave from her job as Council of Trade Unions secretary later this year to focus on campaigning.
But she says door-knocking and community meetings are already under way.
Ms Beaumont says she’s keen to talk to people about what the Labour-led government has achieved, and what’s still to come.
“We’re pretty confident around what we’ve delivered and what we’re going to deliver. For an electorate like Maungakiekie they’re really important policies.”
She’s also keen to improve Maungakiekie’s below-average turnout rate for the election.
Mr Gosche won the seat by a 6000-vote margin in 2005 from National’s Paul Goldsmith, now an Auckland city councillor.
Since then electorate boundaries have changed, gaining parts of Panmure and Mt Roskill and losing sections of Ellerslie, where National polled strongly.
This year first-term Auckland city councillor Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga will contest the seat for National.
Mr Lotu-Iiga says he will step down from positions of responsibility at council before the election.