In an extraordinary day for democracy in Auckland, around half a million voters turned out to take back their city from Rodney Hide and the money men he sent in to finish the job that his Supercity legislation started.
Make no mistake this is a big result. The Mayoralty has gone decisively to Len Brown. While we do not yet know the regional breakdown, the margin of 60,000 suggests a trouncing in Manukau, a solid win in Waitakere, a win in Auckland city, and a narrow loss on the Shore. We have a progressive Mayor with whole of region legitimacy.
Len also has a Council he can work with. The result is a disaster for C&R with just 5 confirmed Councillors. To be clear, the result is not a clear “win” for left tickets, but that is the whole point – unlike C&R, City Vision and the left grasped that Aucklanders did not want a big party takeover. What people want are good community minded candidates who will speak up on local issues, protect public ownership, and get public transport moving. Len Brown and City Vision can and will work with a quite diverse range of Councillors who share these values.
There have also been major wins for progressives on the Local Boards across Auckland. Looking at the results briefly there have been major breakthroughs for the Shore Voice team, City Vision has stormed through in Albert-Eden-Roskill and Waitemata, while in Puketapapa the Roskill Community Voice team has picked up 2 seats – the best ever result for progressives in that traditional C&R stronghold.
Lots more analysis to follow in the days ahead. For now, it’s a night to celebrate the fact that our city did not lie back and let Hide and his corporate mates take over. We stood up, organized, and protected our communities. A lot of hard work starts tomorrow, but for now we can just enjoy the moment and celebrate our democracy.