But he did play a crucial role in helping journeyman Andy Foster knock over Justin Lester. Team Gone By Lunchtime size up the local elections, gaze plaintively at the dramas in the NZ First Party, and ask how bad the new poll is for Jacinda Ardern.
Annabelle Lee-Mather, Ben Thomas and Toby Manhire discuss the local election hullabaloo of the weekend, from the shock victory of a veteran councillor blessed and backed financially by the power couple of Wellywood to Phil Goff seeing off his bellicose challenger John Tamihere.
New Zealand First has made headlines in recent weeks after its president controversially quit, a series of leaks relating to historic party information, and Shane Jones blurring his ministerial and party roles. (This podcast was recorded before he started firing semi-automatic guns on holiday.)
Plus: a new Reid Research poll for Newshub shows a big drop for Labour. How major is it, and should Jacinda Ardern be worried?
The Spinoff Weekly compiles the best stories of the week – an essential guide to modern life in New Zealand, emailed out on Monday evenings.