Newly elected leader of the Labour Party David Cunliffe is on a plane to San Francisco this afternoon, citing a need to be on television after assuming his role as Leader of the Opposition.
Mr. Cunliffe, who yesterday successfully defeated a gay man and your rowdy uncle in a hotly-contested leadership election, has struggled to receive media acknowledgement of his accomplishment, due to ongoing coverage of two multibillion-dollar companies driving yachts around obstacles for the entertainment of journalists.
The important sailing event, which is held every whenever anyone can be bothered and watched by millions of dollars worldwide, sees two teams of highly-trained boating professionals compete both on water and in court to determine who will next have to deal with the enormous amount of paperwork involved in the subsequent competition.
Both One News and 3 News have been following the event closely, and last night ran one-hour specials after the boat of Emirates Team New Zealand nearly capsized but didn’t. Meanwhile, Mr. Cunliffe received a total of two minutes coverage, half of which were humorous outtake reels from when he had to bend down and tie his shoe.
But Cunliffe isn’t bitter about the lack of attention, saying he understands how important the competition has suddenly become to New Zealanders.
“Oh, no, look, it really is a great occasion,” said Cunliffe, wearing a Joy Division t-shirt as he spoke to media while boarding his plane. “I mean, there are all sorts of people out there who enjoy – what is it? – yachting. And I’m one of them. I really like boats. So I’ll be on the sea shore there watching the boats.”
When Cunliffe arrives in San Francisco, he intends to wave, walk past cameras and deliberately mingle in groups of spectators being spoken to by media.