8 Oct 2010

Nine in race to represent Labour in Te Atatu

8:33 pm on 8 October 2010

Nine candidates will contest the Labour Party nomination for the Te Atatu seat in Auckland.

Former MP Chris Carter on Thursday withdrew his bid to stand for the party again.

Mr Carter was expelled from Labour Caucus for criticising leader Phil Goff in an anonymous letter to media on 29 July. He remains in Parliament as an independent MP.

The candidates announced on Friday night include list MPs Dr Rajen Prasad and Phil Twyford.

The other candidates are: small business owner Nick Bakulich, law student Jim Bradshaw, barrister Dr Michael Kidd, university lecturer Hamish McCracken, community advocate Ann Pala, lawyer Greg Presland and communications consultant Kate Sutton.

Labour Party president Andrew Little says it will not be an easy decision for the selection panel.

Meanwhile, Labour will hold a hearing on Monday that could result in Mr Carter being expelled from the party for criticising Mr Goff.

Mr Carter says Mr Goff is using him as a scapegoat in order to look tough.

The MP told Morning Report that Mr Goff had left him out to dry, as people had got away with criticising party leaders in the past.

Mr Carter says he admits he did something stupid but has tried to reconcile with Mr Goff, who is not interested.