It seems a long time ago actually just earlier this year that Minister Maurice Williamson rang the police on behalf of a Chinese immigrant. His explanation that he rang in his capacity not as Minister but the electoral MP or just as a friend did not wash and he had to resign. Only a couple of months back Minister Judith Collins communicated with gutter blogger Cameron Slater. Her explanation that she rang him as a long time friend did not save her from her downfall.
This week the Prime Minster in Parliament fobbed off a question from Greens co-leader Russel Norman how often he had spoken with the same “gutter blogger” (Toby Manhire) by saying that he hadn’t spoken with him “in my capacity as Prime Minister”.
The Media comments were scathing for instance the NZ Herald editorial October 24 : “Speaker gives PM, ministers a licence to duck for cover” or Fran O’Sullivan October 25 : “When it’s the Prime Minister who is being asked to account for his own actions during Question Time, resorting to semantic gymnastics and logical contortions to avoid accountability just looks too cute by half.”
Call it ‘too cute by half’, call it ‘a cavalier disregard for the accountability and integrity of his office’ (editorial) or call it just plain arrogant the question remains why can the New Zealand voter not see the true colour/character of the man. Are we still all queuing up to have a beer with him at a barbecue ?
May be Mr Key should add a new portfolio to his list : “Minister for Double-standards”.
Come to think of it remembering the PM’s often re-played efforts on the cat walk he should for good measure add “Minister for silly Walks”.
Sorry John Cleese.