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Robertson wants to be judged on ability

Mon 29 Sep 2014 In: New Zealand Daily News View at Wayback View at NDHA

Grant Robertson is playing down media suggestions his sexuality will be relevant in his contest for the Labour leadership. The New Zealand Herald’s political editor Audrey Young is among the journalists who believe Robertson being gay will be relevant in the race. She writes “Mr Robertson's sexuality and Mr Cunliffe's likeability may become relevant factors” in the context of “which candidate would have the widest appeal to middle New Zealand”. Robertson has responded: "There may well be some people who raise that. That's fine. But that's not where I think I'll be judged. "I'll be judged, I'm sure, on my ability to reflect Labour values," adding he was not defined by his sexuality. "It's an aspect of who I am just as I like rugby and drink beer and a few other things." Last year when Robertson ran for Labour leader, former President Mike Williams claimed Robertson’s being gay could work against him, especially in South Auckland, where some Pasifika union members expressed anti-gay sentiment when asked about his bid. However socially conservative Labour MP Su’a William Sio said the issue didn’t even come up in his Mangere electorate. Labour retained its hold in South Auckland at the election despite local MP’s Louisa Wall’s marriage equality bill being passed last term, and claims it had alienated Pasifika voters.     

Credit: Daily News staff

First published: Monday, 29th September 2014 - 9:08am

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