Jack Elder

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Honourable
Jack Elder
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for West Auckland
In office
1984 – 1993
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for Henderson
In office
1993 – 1996
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for New Zealand First list
In office
1996 – 1999
Personal details
Born (1949-07-03) 3 July 1949 (age 67)
Nationality New Zealand
Political party Labour (1978–1996)
New Zealand First (1996–1998)
Mauri Pacific (1998–1999)
Other political
New Zealand Democratic Coalition
Spouse(s) Claire Girling-Butcher (died 13 November 1999 (1999-11-13))
Children Dr Edward Elder
Profession Teacher
Cabinet Cabinet of New Zealand

Hon. Jack Arnold Elder (born 3 July 1949) is a New Zealand former politician. He was an MP from 1984 to 1999, representing the Labour Party, New Zealand First and Mauri Pacific.

Early life[edit]

Jack Elder was born and raised in West Auckland, attending New Lynn Primary, Avondale Intermediate and Kelston Boys High School - where he was head boy and captain of the rugby first fifteen.[1] Elder studied politics and history at the University of Auckland alongside future Prime Minister Helen Clark and future Minister of Defence Phil Goff. Elder was awarded a B.A in both History and Political Studies as well as a M.A in Political Studies before spending a decade sitting on several New Lynn Council boards including being elected Deputy Mayor in 1980, while teaching at schools such as Rutherford College and Henderson High School.

Member of Parliament[edit]

Parliament of New Zealand
Years Term Electorate List Party
1984–1987 41st West Auckland Labour
1987–1990 42nd West Auckland Labour
1990–1993 43rd West Auckland Labour
1993–1996 44th Henderson Labour
1996 Changed allegiance to: NZ First
1996–1998 45th List 7 NZ First
1998–1999 Changed allegiance to: Mauri Pacific

Elder was first elected to Parliament in the 1984 election as the Labour MP for West Auckland, having previously made unsuccessful attempts in Helensville in the 1978 election and the 1981 election. He was re-elected in the 1987 election, the 1990 election, and in the 1993 election. Within the Labour Party, Elder was a supporter of Mike Moore, and belonged to the more economically liberal wing of the party. When Helen Clark replaced Moore as party leader, Elder remained aligned with Mike Moore, and when suggestions arose that Moore would found a new party, Elder was considered likely to follow. In the end, Moore remained with Labour, but Elder was still dissatisfied. On 4 April 1996, Elder left the Labour Party to join New Zealand First, a centrist conservative party led by Winston Peters.

National Coalition Government[edit]

In the 1996 election, Elder was re-elected to Parliament as a list MP for New Zealand First, having unsuccessfully contested the Waipareira electorate. When New Zealand First formed a coalition with the governing National Party, Elder was appointed to Cabinet, becoming Minister of Internal Affairs, Minister of Police,[2] and Minister of Civil Defence. As Minister of Police Elder officially opened the Queenstown Police Station on Friday 10 July 1998. When New Zealand First's coalition with National began to collapse, however, Elder joined the group of MPs who quit New Zealand First and continued to offer support to the Government. He officially left New Zealand First on 18 August 1998. In exchange for his continued support for the government, Elder was allowed to remain Minister of Internal Affairs and Minister of Civil Defence, although he was no longer part of Cabinet.

Later, Elder joined with four other former New Zealand First MPs to found the Mauri Pacific Party. Elder eventually chose not to seek re-election, and retired from politics at the 1999 election.

Later life[edit]

Elder spent time off from working, before returning to teaching two years after leaving Parliament.[3]


  1. ^ Profiling the events that shaped our community, 1967 (abstract), Western Leader, 11 February 2003, p. 5.
  2. ^ Chronology of Roles, Ministerial Inquiry into INCIS, Ministry of Justice, November 2000.,
  3. ^ Kerry Williamson (2009-05-16). "Registry idea shelved after pro-gun lobbying". Fairfax NZ News. 
New Zealand Parliament
New constituency Member of Parliament for West Auckland
Constituencies abolished
Constituency recreated after abolition in 1975
Title last held by
Martyn Finlay
Member of Parliament for Henderson