16 Nov 2012

Labour conference to begin amidst attacks on Shearer

8:16 am on 16 November 2012

Labour's annual conference begins in Auckland on Friday amidst continuing attacks on party leader David Shearer.

It will be Mr Shearer's first conference as leader, but he has faced a barrage from blogs and columns suggesting his position is under threat and that he should stand down.

MPs including David Cunliffe - the man touted as his most likely challenger - have rallied behind him and Mr Shearer says he has no doubt the support is rock solid.

He says that under his leadership Labour has halved the National Party's lead in the opinion polls.

Mr Shearer says the conference is an opportunity to articulate Labour's policies and vision for the future.

Former leader Phil Goff says much of the whispering campaign against Mr Shearer is driven by blogs, often aligned to the National Party.

Prime Minister John Key says Mr Shearer does not appear to have the support of all his colleagues.