1930 Parnell by-election

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Parnell by-election, 1930

← 1928 general 7 May 1930 (1930-05-07) 1931 general →
Turnout 86.54%
  Bill Endean.jpg No image.png Thomas Bloodworth, 1920s.jpg
Candidate Bill Endean W. Alan Donald Thomas Bloodworth
Party Reform United Labour
Popular vote 4,852 3,230 2,122

Member before election

Harry Reginald Jenkins

Elected Member

Bill Endean

The Parnell by-election of 1930 was a by-election in the seat of Parnell held on 7 May 1930 during the 23rd New Zealand Parliament. The by-election came about because of the resignation of the current member of parliament Harry Reginald Jenkins who chose to re-contest his seat. The seat was won by Bill Endean of the Reform Party.

Results at general election

1928 general election: Parnell[1]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
United Harry Reginald Jenkins 5,642 46.64
Reform James Samuel Dickson 4,793 39.62
Labour John Yarnall 1,661 13.73
Majority 849 7.02
Informal votes 83 0.68
Turnout 12,179 86.54
Registered electors 14,073

The election of Jenkins was considered a surprise. Dickson had held the seat 1911 but the Reform Party (New Zealand) suffered significant losses in this election.

Cause of by-election

Jenkins was a big supporter of Gordon Coates who was the Prime Minister and leader of the Reform Party before 1928. However, at that election the United and Reform parties won an equal number of seats and the United party formed a coalition with Labour. Therefore, Joseph Ward became Prime Minister. Jenkins was critical of the deal United had done with Labour and so quit the party and became an independent.[2] On 21 March, he then announced that he would resign from the electorate and contest the by-election.[3] This was a controversial move but Michael Joseph Savage believed that he had done the "right thing".[4]

Selection process


Jenkins, after resigning, decided to join the Reform party and announced that he would try and win selection as their candidate. He said "I feel also that Reform is the safest of the three parties, because Reform will never be dictated to by Labour as the United Party has been." He also stated that he would not run as an independent if he was not selected.[5] There were four Reform nominations for the seat, these were: R. Glover, Jenkins, Bill Endean and James Samuel Dickson.[6] Endean was eventually selected.[7]


Many different candidates were suspected to be involved in the selection process for labour. Among them were Thomas Bloodworth who had run for this seat in the 1919 election, and Yarnall who had run at the previous election. Auckland City Councillor Ted Phelan likewise declined to seek nomination.[8] Yarnall, however, eventually declined to run and Bloodworth won the nomination from Mary Dreaver.[9][10]


W. Alan Donald was selected as the United candidate.[11]


W. C. Hewitt originally announced that he would stand as a Liberal-Labour candidate but did not do so.[12] A. Fletcher intended to stand in the interests of the unemployed.[13] These two candidates did not actually compete in the by-election.


The election was seen as a judgement on whether or not United supporters agreed with their deal with Labour.[14] Donald spoke in defence of his party's record, claimed that a loss for his party could cause an election and that a small surplus would be announced in the budget.

Bloodworth said that Labour would introduce real measures which would bring about real changes to New Zealand.[15]

Endean was heavily favoured to win after receiving an endorsement by the New Zealand Truth.[16]


The following table gives the election results:

1930 Parnell by-election[17]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Reform Bill Endean 4,852 47.55
United W. Alan Donald[18] 3,230 31.65
Labour Thomas Bloodworth 2,122 20.80
Majority 1,622 15.90 +8.88
Informal votes 32 0.31 -0.37
Turnout 10,236 72.74 -13.81
Registered electors 14,073

Endean won 22 of 24 polling places.[19][20]


  1. ^ The General Election, 1928. Government Printer. 1929. p. 4. Retrieved 29 November 2014.
  2. ^ "Working for Fusion". Evening Post. CIX (55). 6 March 1930. p. 10. Retrieved 13 July 2013.
  3. ^ "A By-Election". Evening Post. CIX (68). 21 March 1930. p. 10. Retrieved 13 July 2013.
  4. ^ "Will Resign". Auckland Star. LXI (68). 21 March 1930. p. 7. Retrieved 14 July 2013.
  5. ^ "Mr. Jenkins joins up". CIX (73). The Evening Post. 27 March 1930. p. 10. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  6. ^ "The Parnell Seat". The Evening Post. 4 April 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  7. ^ "Mr. Endean's Selection". Evening Post. CIX (87). 12 April 1930. p. 10. Retrieved 14 July 2013.
  8. ^ "Labour Party's Plans". The Evening Post. 28 March 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  9. ^ "Parnell By-Election". CIX (75). The Evening Post. 29 March 1930. p. 11. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  10. ^ "Labour Candidate". CIX (79). The Evening Post. 3 April 1930. p. 10. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  11. ^ "Mr W. A. Donald". The Evening Post. 7 April 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  12. ^ "Parnell Vacancy". The Evening Post. 25 March 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  13. ^ "Parnell By-Election". CIX (88). The Evening Post. 14 April 1930. p. 12. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  14. ^ "Labor may capture Parnell Seat". New Zealand Truth. 27 March 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  15. ^ "Campaign Opened". The Evening Post. 16 April 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  16. ^ "Why Endean should win". NZ Truth. 1 May 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  17. ^ "Final Figures". The Evening Post. CIX (112). 14 May 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
  18. ^ "By-election Campaign". Auckland Star. LXI (99). 29 April 1930. p. 9. Retrieved 29 November 2014.
  19. ^ "Final Figures". The Evening Post. CIX (112). 14 May 1930. p. 12. Retrieved 16 July 2013.
  20. ^ "Won by Reform Candidate". The Evening Post. 8 May 1930. Retrieved 11 August 2013.
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