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Labour's Louisa Wall says she'll be back

Thu 13 Nov 2008 In: New Zealand Daily News View at Wayback View at NDHA

Lesbian Labour MP Louisa Wall might have narrowly lost her seat in Parliament on election day, but she tells she's still absolutely committed to the Party and the next election in 2011. Out of the House... for now: Louisa Wall "It's a little too early to say what I'm going to do work-wise now, but in terms of my political future I'm still hard Labour – I haven't changed my values," she says. In her Maori electorate of Tamaki Makaurau, over half of all Party Votes were for Labour, though Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples won that seat on Electorate Votes. Wall says she was thrilled at that result, as she held strong against a candidate with extensive media coverage. "I had some of my political team phone me at 1am on the night of the election, asking me when we're having our next meeting. I missed the count this time, but my team's solid, and is keen on us giving it another whack in three years." Talking about her eight months in Parliament, Wall says she doesn't know how people might think MPs are lazy. "The lifestyle in Wellington is pretty tiring. You either fly in on a Monday or really early Tuesday morning – it's a 6am flight. The bell rings at 10pm which means you can only go then. And you're up late preparing for select committees which start at 9am. And the weekends are full of community events to go to. It does take a lot out of you. You work very hard." Some of the behaviour in Parliament really isn't good, she also observes. "It's like a war. Or a game of rugby – you just go hard-out, then after it finishes, everyone's nice to each other again." Wall says she never had any negative experiences as an MP, apart from seeing some negative blogging just after she was sworn in – "some stuff around my sexuality," she explains. "You become public property. It's not actually a job – being an MP is a lifestyle choice." Looking ahead, she says she's pretty upbeat and is sure she can get a good job. "What I do have now is a bit of time. But I'm absolutely committed to 2011, and being part of the Labour Caucus that regains the House."    

Credit: Daily News Staff

First published: Thursday, 13th November 2008 - 3:08pm

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