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Collins under fire

Written By: - Date published: 10:06 am, April 16th, 2014 - 115 comments
Categories: john key, Judith Collins, national, same old national, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: , ,

Judith Collins stock

Judith Collins has gone from being one of National’s most assured performers and a likely future National Party leader to someone who is under increasing pressure and who must be one further disclosure away from being fired.

As Minister for ACC she has to take responsibility for policy which dictated that claimants who did not sign a form known as form 167 had their payments stopped.  The form is to authorise the release of information belonging to claimants to ACC.  The form is extraordinarily wide and some claimants have taken exception to it.  But even attempts to negotiate the terms of the authority has resulted in claimants’ entitlements being cancelled.

Judith Collins claims that she has only known about the problem for the past five days.  This seems unusual as Bronwyn Pullar amongst others raised this as an issue some time ago.  And Denise Powell, the woman whose appeal led to the ruling, has stated that the matter has been a live issue since at least 2009.

Collins’ ACC problems are dwarfed by the ongoing difficulties with Oravida.  Yesterday TV3 released details of a letter it had obtained under the Official Information Act in which Oravida director Julia Xu sought government help after Fonterra’s whey contamination scandal broke in July last year.  The letter to Tim Groser and Nathan Guy said that Oravida was facing “a marketing disaster.  On behalf of Oravida NZ Ltd I would urge the ministers and the NZ government to help us navigate through this difficult time.”

Which makes you wonder who the mysterious Chinese Government Official was who had dinner with Collins and the Oravida directors at the so called “private dinner” and was he there to help Oravida navigate what was a marketing disaster.

Winston Peters said yesterday that the dinner with the Chinese official was a result of the letter, and he claims he has official documents showing two cabinet ministers “rushed to do exactly as Oravida asked, including obtaining taxpayer funds to get special help for Ms Collins’ husband’s company”.

He suggested that Oravida received sterling support from the Government which the other milk companies did not.

He has promised further revelations today, presumably in Parliament.  It could be an interesting day.

John Key must be privately despairing. He has refused to disclose who the Chinese Official is. It should only be a matter of time before their identity is disclosed and then Key himself will face further questions.

And meanwhile Collins’ greatest cheerleader Cameron Slater is busily trashing Simon Bridges’ reputation (warning Whaleoil link).  I wonder if the intent is to damage the competition to Collins’ National Party leadership aspirations?  John Key and National must be becoming increasingly afraid what further reputational damage he will cause.

Update: And it is going to be a busy time for Collins during Question Time this afternoon.  Questions include:

1.  Hon DAVID CUNLIFFE to the Prime Minister: Does he have confidence in the Hon Judith Collins and her handling of her relationship with Oravida Ltd?
3.  GRANT ROBERTSON to the Minister of Justice: Was the employer of the senior Chinese border control official, who she had dinner with in Beijing in October 2013 on her Ministerial visit to China, from the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine also known as the AQSIQ?
6.  Rt Hon WINSTON PETERS to the Minister of Justice: Why will she not identify the senior Chinese border official with whom she met on 20 October 2013, and disclose the business that was discussed at the dinner with him that evening?
7.  IAIN LEES-GALLOWAY to the Minister for ACC: Does she stand by her answers to Oral Question No. 10 yesterday?
9.  KEVIN HAGUE to the Minister for ACC: Have all of the recommendations of the 2012 Independent Review of ACC’s Privacy and Security of Information been implemented; if not, why not?

115 comments on “Collins under fire”

  1. Ant 1

    Judith Collins, couldn’t be happening to a nicer person. 😀

    On the second point, it looks like both Joyce and Collins have been going after Simon Bridges. Joyce has been leaking stories to Brooke Sabin recently, Collins is obviously going straight to Slater.

  2. Clemgeopin 2

    Mr Cunliffe gave a very clear message regarding Collins, Key and Oravida in his excellent interview this morning on TV3.
    Watch in link below:
    http://www.3news.co.nz/Cunliffe-Govt-clicks-onto-foreign-buyer-ban/tabid/1607/articleID/340325/Default.aspx

    • Tracey 2.1

      karol

      I agree. the acc story should be the big one. several people complained over a fews… took someone able to sue to force it. go to nine to noon and listen to the interview with helen kelly… a lawyer… and a community councillor and jp.

    • mickysavage 2.2

      Very interesting. From the tape Key and Cunliffe were both lined up to speak to an Institute of Directors meeting. Key pulled out late and sent Joyce and Cunliffe decided to honour his commitment.

      Then National comes out with a line that Cunliffe was afraid to debate.

      Talk about spin …

      • Clemgeopin 2.2.1

        I think the media, the blogs and political commentators should wise up and call Key’s bluff every time. We can’t let him keep trying to fool many people all of the time.

  3. karol 3

    So, no privacy for us ACC claimants, but Collins tries to claim her dinners with foreign officials and her hubbies business are private….!

    • mickysavage 3.1

      Aye …

      I wonder if the Chinese Government knows about the involvement of the official?

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        I think you’ll find that it’s come as much as a surprise to them as to us which is, IMO, why National are trying very hard not to say who he is.

        • Tracey 3.1.1.1

          I dont agree. china will know exactly who it is imo. his name will reveal to kiwis that he was the key man to solve any border probs for oriveda.

          if they didnt know… they would have demanded it from key if they cared. key would have given it to them. imo

        • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1.2

          If the Chinese government has official knowledge of the dinner that will make it very hard for Collins to continue her corrupt pretence that it was a purely private matter.

          • mickysavage 3.1.1.2.1

            And if the Chinese Government does not know that the official was at the dinner this will make it impossible for Collins to claim that it was all above board.

  4. Wensleydale 4

    National MPs would eat their own first-born if it aided their ambitions. It’s quite entertaining to watch, especially when it involves a gurgling drop-kick like Bridges. Honestly, after his performance against Russell Norman, he must have spent the rest of the day punching himself in the face.

  5. karol 5

    NZ Herald, “Have your say” responses to should Judith Collins atep down as minister?

    Yes- 72
    No – 16

    • Tracey 5.1

      women are eventually dispensable to the nats.

      in oz guillard was pilloried out by rudd and others… now they have a govt the polls say many dont want.

      • Daveosaurus 5.1.1

        Judith Collins’ problem isn’t her gender; it’s her deep corruption.

        • felix 5.1.1.1

          It’s her agenda…

        • Tracey 5.1.1.2

          i agree. but the nats have a history of throwing their women mps to the wolves with less prevarication than their men.

          • ScottGN 5.1.1.2.1

            Indeed Tracey. God knows I’m not in the business of feeling sorry for Judith Collins but it has been striking the way that she’s been left to fend for herself as the Oravida Affair has developed. Aside from some frankly lukewarm support from the PM (and let’s face it, given how close he is to the whole sequence of events he couldn’t really do any less than he has) she hasn’t had any backup from her fellow Nat MPs – no support during QT in the House, they all manage to look terribly busy with paperwork when she rises to answer questions, no support outside of the House and unlike other MPs she hasn’t had received the typical ‘honour guard’ to get through the Foyer of the House and past the waiting journos and so has been reduced to scuttling through the back door.

    • Clemgeopin 5.2

      NOW: (Last collated at 3:31 pm)

      261 – Yes
      56 – No

  6. Penny Bright 6

    Is Minister for Justice Judith Collins going to be CRUSHED with CORRUPT ‘conflicts of interest’?

    In my considered opinion – YES.

    What concerns me is from where do Ministers / MPs / the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (DPMC)/ the party political Office of the Prime Minister / the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff Wayne Eagleson get their TRAINING / ADVICE / UNDERSTANDING about what constitutes corrupt ‘conflicts of interests’?

    Because, in my considered opinion, they don’t appear to have a clue.

    http://www.parliament.nz/en-nz/pb/business/qoa/00HOH_OralQuestions/list-of-questions-for-oral-answer

    Questions for Oral Answer

    Wednesday, 16 April 2014
    Questions to Ministers

    Hon DAVID CUNLIFFE to the Prime Minister: Does he have confidence in the Hon Judith Collins and her handling of her relationship with Oravida Ltd?

    GRANT ROBERTSON to the Minister of Justice: Was the employer of the senior Chinese border control official, who she had dinner with in Beijing in October 2013 on her Ministerial visit to China, from the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine also known as the AQSIQ?

    Rt Hon WINSTON PETERS to the Minister of Justice: Why will she not identify the senior Chinese border official with whom she met on 20 October 2013, and disclose the business that was discussed at the dinner with him that evening?

    Penny Bright

    • Hayden 6.1

      GRANT ROBERTSON to the Minister of Justice: Was the employer of the senior Chinese border control official, who she had dinner with in Beijing in October 2013 on her Ministerial visit to China, from the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine also known as the AQSIQ?

      Does he have glasses?

      Was he wearing a hat!?

      • karol 6.1.1

        And JC dancing on a pin in her answers.

        • Tracey 6.1.1.1

          with a smirk…

          bridges keeps tripping over the words conservation and consultation.

          • karol 6.1.1.1.1

            And skewered by Robertson’s last question about how her refusal to answer whether or not she met with the AQSIQ official, leaves open the interpretation that she did meet him?

            And JC dodged that one, too.

            Bridges slamming Greens as being anti-“growth” and thus anti- jobs, etc, is just scurrilous.

            • Tracey 6.1.1.1.1.1

              agreed.

              at least he has realised norman was not in govt nor a minister but tries to imply he could have influenced the labour govt.

              bill english on interest rates and housing was very slippery.

            • srylands 6.1.1.1.1.2

              Which Greens policies are not anti-growth? That is a serious question. Every single policy I can see on their website will reduce prosperity and reduce growth.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Ah, so what you’re saying is that the Greens don’t follow The Sacred Book of the Holy Market.

                I’m not an economist but the IMF and the World Bank say that reducing inequality boosts economic growth, and the Greens have pledged to tackle inequality, so they are clearly pro-growth.

              • aerobubble

                You idiot. When the oil dries up growth globally will end unless we divert the growth now to build the future. And we are, windmills now heat homes. How can you be blind, deaf, and stupid all at the same time, are you Slater?

              • Draco T Bastard

                Only in your ideologically driven heart that has no room for anything else – such as reality.

              • Tracey

                could you post your evidence that all their policies will reduce prosperity and growth using the growth in the gap between rich and poor in the last 35 years as your yardstick. tia.

              • Macro

                What is so important about “growth”???
                Continual growth is an impossibility only feasible to economists who live in ivory towers insulated from reality.
                1% growth per annum represents doubling every 72 years.
                2% – every 36 years
                and 3% – doubles every 24 years.
                In Adam Smith’s day with a world population far smaller than today and a vast undeveloped continent in North America it was possible to think of “unlimited growth” but today things are very different. If the people of Asia for instance were to “achieve” the life style of the western world it would require almost 16 times the current usage of the worlds resources.
                Your reverence for growth is the undoing of the economy. It simply is an unsustainable dream.

                • mickysavage

                  Growth is not necessarily a bad thing.

                  I would like to see a growth in happiness levels, a growth in the levels of satisfaction with life, a growth of library usage and book reading, a growth in the number of volunteers helping sports teams and historical societies and environmental groups, a growth in the numbers of people gathering together to sing, and a growth in the numbers of people attending local cultural events.

                  It is just that our current concept of growth is completely about consumption …

                  • Macro

                    Agreed Micky. There is a also a place for growth in renewables and efficient insulation of houses – both dependent upon the use of resources. But rylands, mantra and the mantra of many who harp on about growth is nonsensical in that it is no longer seen as the means to an end, but the end in itself.
                    Interestingly the originator of the concept of GDP Simon Kuznet, warned against the very practice that Politicians of both sides now indulge in. Kuznets helped the U.S. Department of Commerce to standardize the measurement of GNP. He disapproved, however, of its use as a general indication of welfare,[14] writing that “the welfare of a nation can scarcely be inferred from a measure of national income.”
                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simon_Kuznets
                    Making growth an end in itself is one of the pitfalls of many on the left as well as those of the right. So often we hear – “ah! we were better than you in having a bigger gdp!” But what all these people fail to see is that the western world is now at the limits of its growth trajectory. We are running out of resources. Every year Earthovershoot day falls earlier and earlier.
                    http://www.footprintnetwork.org/en/index.php/gfn/page/earth_overshoot_day/
                    What we need to be doing is working towards a more equitable distribution of those resources. Not growing our consumption of them.

              • framu

                you paint yourself as so smart then say something so chronically easy to pull apart as that

                your a joke mate

                heres a clue – theres more than one way to do business, theres more than one way to have growth and theres more than one kind of growth – the fact that the greens policies dont fit into YOUR paradigm is your problem not theirs

          • Clemgeopin 6.1.1.1.2

            [@Tracey who said: Bridges keeps tripping over the words conservation and consultation]

            and Consummation.

      • srylands 6.1.2

        The whole thing is ridiculous.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.2.1

          Do you think so? I thought you were dead set against government interference in the market. What could be more “interfering” than selling audiences with Ministers and using Ministerial influence to get special favours for your husband’s company?

          Or special favours for your party’s owners donors?

        • Draco T Bastard 6.1.2.2

          So, you think having corrupt MPs is Ok?

          • North 6.1.2.2.1

            No. It is you who are ridiculous SSLands, viz. richly deserving of ridicule. More so for the fact that you are not ‘connected’. Notwithstanding your dishonest pretensions. You are not an economist let alone a Gold Coast one. You are not a former diplomat. You are not Dame Edna’s estranged husband Sir Les Patterson. That Melbournian matron of supreme taste and style judged you immeasurably inferior. Yes. Dame Edna herself confided that to me. No prompting. Straight up.

  7. captain hook 7

    judith collins is a “big” thing and getting ridiculouser by the moment.
    she should just go now.

  8. aerobubble 8

    When a form is supplied and the fine print is missing, does that mean its illegal. Or does the plain english meaning apply where only the most generous reading can be applied by the less informed party. If so, surely its illegal for ACC to have assumed the privacy declaration would be anything but the most tightly reading from their point of view. And so the culture of impunity, that once you are their client they own your life and the most minimal transgression is serious, like flying to OZ.

    Put it another way, how can a document never be illegal. Surely it illegality depends on its purpose, and if it fails to meet its purpose then its inappropriate at best or unconscionable and worse. ACC used a now widely recognize mis-purposed document to do something unconscionable, deny ACC access.

    • Red Rosa 8.1

      I think this is getting close to the bone. Well said. Collins slid around the real point this arvo, which is intimidation and coercion.

  9. blue leopard 9

    Pretty crappy performance by Collins and Carter today in Question time – Collins getting the questioner to repeat the question on a number of occasions – which appeared to me to be giving her time to think of an answer, rather than not having heard the question and the biggest heap of rubbish being a comment from Collins saying she couldn’t be bothered answering the question – which she got away with. She also didn’t answer the extremely astute last question of Ian-Lees Galloway – yet got away with it due to a distraction in the house.

    Piss poor effort Collins and Carter – both making a joke out of question time.

    Good to see Labour, the Greens and NZ First working together on the truly incompetent rulings of the speaker.

    • Tracey 9.1

      collins tactic was to pretend the questions were too long so tgat carter would rule them out of order or allow any old answer to do.

      • Sacha 9.1.1

        And the reliable buffoon did exactly that. Despicable performance from both of them.

    • Clemgeopin 9.2

      I was quite dishoest and shocked at the blatantly biased attitude of the speaker! What a disgrace that he is quite harsh and often unfair on the opposition, but aids the government block unashamedly at the crucial rimes when serious matters are raised against the government!. Key get away with lots of crap. If the opposition MPs were to do that, Carter would be SURE TO RISE and threaten them.

      • Sacha 9.2.1

        Carter has never evolved from being a National Party MP. A real disgrace to the office.

        • felix 9.2.1.1

          Carter was given the job specifically because he could be counted on not to evolve.

        • aerobubble 9.2.1.2

          Carter disappeared up his own arse, between the butt cheeks of members asking short concise questions (which essentially mean more ability for ministers to run for cover with equally concise misapplied ineptitude) and the essential political creep into a long question (as the reality of government falsehoods are laid bare). Mercilessly Carter crossed over his checks, sorry cheeks, and a political precise concise question was too long for Carter tiny and now disappeared bum (due to his big head stuck up it).

      • Clemgeopin 9.2.2

        Oops, the first sentence should read—–disgusted and shocked.
        Third sentence——-crucial times.

        I wrote it while having a private dinner with a Chinese takeaway and sipping a little light Oravida.

  10. S Franks on with Mora – “why not concentrate on some real issues instead of Collins and this dinner” – “no one is interested”. Just listened to Collins getting Mary-ed and read the reports of Parliament today – Cunliffe may have it right, that Collins is toast – with Winnie on it as well as Labour I sense mortal blows being delivered.

    Labour leader David Cunliffe has used the protection of parliamentary privilege to attack Justice Minister Judith Collins over her links to milk exporter Oravida, labelling her the “minister of corruption”.

    Cunliffe accused Collins of lobbying for the interests of her husband’s business while in China on taxpayer-funded business and told Parliament she was “toast”.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9949636/Judith-Collins-dubbed-minister-of-corruption

  11. Paul 11

    NZ Herald running a forum on whether Collins should go.
    Vast majority who have entered a comment say yes and by the most popular comments are in favour.
    When Herald readers go against you, the Tories will be worried.
    Also 317 typed comments. Hardly a lack of interest. Corruption and the stench of it will cost this government.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11239082

    • logie97 11.1

      “… and it’s contemptible the way members in the house are using parliamentary privilege to ask these questions …”

      Of course she and Lockwood Smith and Hyde never did when they were in opposition. What goes around comes around. Ask Benson-Pope.

    • Tracey 11.2

      but bm and slylands said no one cares…

  12. North 12

    Afternoons with Mora today. The Panel – former Act MP Stephen Franks and guffawing clown Joe Bennett. Collins and corruption. Franks asserts effectively that it’s the duty of a New Zealand Cabinet minister to promote New Zealand business, wherever, whenever. We should hope that our ministers are ‘connected’. The whole Collins business as an issue in Parliament and on the airwaves is a nonsense says Franks.

    Not a mention, not a skerrick about Collins’ husband being a director of Oravida and she besties with the beneficial owners. The elephant in the room but no one saw it apparently. Neither Bennett nor Mora said a word.

    So Franks’ softness on the now stark appearance of self-interest corruption, indeed proslytising for the same (the brown paper bag full of $$$ not proven) is let to pass ??? I look forward to your entertaining analysis Morrissey. To strengthen me. To have me optimistic that there are a few stops before banana republic. Or uprising.

    What have we become ?

    • Tracey 12.1

      he works alongside jordan williams, right?

      • felix 12.1.1

        He keeps Jordan on a leash. Only lets him out of the basement to talk to the media.

      • karol 12.1.2

        Some righties are probably so immersed in the ethos of the corporate dominated world, with its cronyism, sense of superiority (“wealth creators”) and entitlement/privilege, they probably have lost touch with what a lot of Kiws see as corruption.

        • Tracey 12.1.2.1

          i agree. so ingrained is the pursuit for money that many truly cant see what is wrong with the behaviour. slylands mantras reflect this well.

    • Paul 12.2

      Mora’s Panel is overrepresented by ACT and its acolytes.
      Money talks on RNZ.

      • Morrissey 12.2.1

        Money talks on RNZ.

        Actually, when you listen to the likes of Jordan Williams sounding off, you realize pretty quickly that it’s more a case of stupidity talks on RNZ.

  13. dave 13

    it looks like the labour party have woken from the long slumber today cunliffe,robertson on fire today a government in waiting flexed it musles cunliffe is going make a great PM

    • marty mars 13.1

      Cunliffe needs to get even more morally outraged by this – I hope he gets absolutely disgusted and red with rage and then releases it in a controlled and determined way on target – that’ll bring in the votes.

  14. felix 14

    5 questions on Collins’ scandals in the house today.

    4 that she can’t answer without incriminating herself and 1 that the PM can’t.

    Just to be clear, she is utterly, utterly fucked isn’t she?

    • ScottGN 14.1

      Yep felix, I think she is. Her performance in the House today was easily the worst we’ve seen from a Minister in a very long time.

    • srylands 14.2

      Yes sure looks like she is. I guess you will be buying up large on those underpriced ipredict stocks then. I have shorted them so we will match up nicely. List your buy order.

      I still think it is a load of crap. Hence my shorting the stock. I back me to make money out of this over you Felix. So pony up that gorilla son!

      • felix 14.2.1

        What stock are you talking about? Collins for next National Leader? I shorted that 18 months ago when you idiots were all rubbing yourselves into a frenzy over her.

      • Tracey 14.2.2

        cos everyone has spare cash to gamble with aye slylands

        • felix 14.2.2.1

          stylands is allowed to gamble half his pocket-money* as long as he cleans his room.

          *it’s a kiwi term, stylands. It means “allowance”.

  15. vto 15

    I picture a lot of noise

  16. So collins is trying the “you are attacking my family” defense – not really much of a get out of jail card that one imo

    “I am absolutely disgusted at the way in which some people want to make an issue out of something that is not an issue.”

    When asked why she would not front media she said “if people want to speak to me then they can make an appointment to see me in my office and do an interview. But I am not going to put up with these filthy allegations about my family.

    “I am a family person and I am so disgusted at the way that people like you and your colleagues have used my family in such a disgusting manner.”

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9949636/Judith-Collins-dubbed-minister-of-corruption

    Bit of filthy and lots of ‘disgusted’ there – but Judith we want to know what was discussed.

    • felix 16.1

      lol we used her family?

      Would that include her husband who uses Judith’s self-drive ministerial car to commute to Auckland daily, with the petrol tab picked up by the taxpayer for the last 5 years?

    • McFlock 16.2

      lol

      But sometimes the shit just seems, everybody only wants to discuss me
      So this must mean I’m disgusting, but its just me I’m just obscene
      Though I’m not the first king of controversy
      I am the worst thing since Elvis Presley,

  17. Clemgeopin 17

    Shakespeare’s message for Judith and Key:

    ‘This above all: to thine own self be true,
    And it must follow, as the night the day,
    Thou canst not then be false to any man’.

  18. framu 18

    the thing i find odd with collins insisting that no business was discussed at the dinner means that…
    A) she was paying attention to the conversation enough to recall this
    – and –
    B) she was aware of the problem of oravida being discussed at dinner given the people attending

    neither of those things gel with the fact she was incapable of spotting the problem with going to an arranged meeting at oravida itself during the same trip

    so either collins is really staggeringly thick, senile or telling porkies

    • Clemgeopin 18.1

      She was ACTUALLY on her way to the airport, but then it dawned on her that she was a little too early and decided to just drop in for a QUICK cup of tea. That’s all there is to it. She explained all that to Key anyway.

  19. fisiani 19

    I attended a private meal last week with John Key. He has not revealed my identity. I actually had a private meal last year with Judith Collins. Questions must be asked to reveal who fisiani is and what we talked about. What nonsense. 18 sitting days to go and how many questions will Labour waste on trying to pin down the next PM as to who poured the wine.15,000 people came off benefits and found work in the last yea. The economy is booming and wages are growing. The phone is off the hook for Labour. Smear and baseless allegations are apparently all that is left. There is an entire war room at Labour HQ in Parliament presumably searching desperately for more smears. Have a Happy Easter.

    • felix 19.1

      No-one cares who you have dinner with though fisiani.

      What we care about is a Govt Minister using her position to advance her own private business interests, and a PM helping her get away with it.

      • fisiani 19.1.1

        Got any proof Felix and I do mean any proof of “advance her own private business interests” or are you just smearing. How about a link to such proof?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 19.1.1.1

          Tell me, are there advantages in having that sort of access to senior government ministers?

          Other than Chinese border officials coming to dinner, that is.

        • not petey 19.1.1.2

          All Felix does is smear, bluster and play to the locals here Fisiani, you should know that by now.

          Although having done a bit of research on the poor chap that does at least spare us from his musical efforts.

        • felix 19.1.1.3

          “Got any proof Felix and I do mean any proof of “advance her own private business interests””

          If there were “proof” she’d be gone. The “evidence” however is mounting daily in the house, not that I’d expect you to know the difference.

    • Weepu's Beard 19.2

      Was Wayne Eagle there at dinner? What about Margaret Malcolm?

  20. Ross 20

    Margaret Malcolm has a vested interest in Collins keeping her job. If Collins loses her job, Malcolm could lose hers. Of course Malcolm is going to support the Minister’s version of events. But Malcolm – given her vested interest – should be keeping her mouth shut. I note that almost six months have elapsed since the dinner. Malcolm must have a very good memory if she can remember everything that was said at the dinner.

    • Morrissey 20.1

      Only ACT party members and the likes of John Key are dim enough, or dishonest enough, to “not remember” significant encounters. Of course Malcolm can remember what was said at that dinner, just as Collins can. Not every last word of course, but certainly the gist of the conversation.

  21. Tanz 21

    lawyers should back each other up, she was a top lawyer.

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  • Budget 2015: A clever patch-up job, but stitched together by broken promise...
    A closer look at Budget 2015 shows a government making it up as it goes along. While it's a clever political document, it shows National is trying to plug a lot of political holes with a diminishing amount of capital… ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 hours ago
  • Funding the Basin Flyover Fight
    Yesterday the Architectural Centre in Wellington have launched a fund raising campaign to fight NZTA’s continued waste of our money on expensive lawyers for their hopelessly unimaginative and retrogressively conceived Basin flyover project. Here’s the Give-A-Little site with a recap of… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
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  • If The SIS Director Wants To Tell Us The Truth, She Should Commission Ficti...
    Memorable Presentation: Rebecca Kitteridge, the first woman Director of the SIS, laments the fact that the necessarily secret work of her agents cannot become the subject of a reality TV series - as it has for Police and Custom Officers. For… ...
    10 hours ago
  • The value of parenting
    This week, as part of the Budget, the government introduced a bill to address child poverty. This bill will require parents receiving income support to look for part-time work once their youngest child is three years of age rather than… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    10 hours ago
  • Let Them Eat Scraps: Bill English’s Budget Outflanks The Left By Moll...
    Never Mind The Quality, Feel The Love! Bill English's seventh Budget may be weak in terms of economic effectiveness, but politically it's a genuine sand-kicker. Labour's Andrew Little is still rubbing his eyes. IT’S BEEN 43 YEARS since a National… ...
    10 hours ago
  • Bloody marvelous
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    Politically CorrectedBy sleepdepriveddiva
    12 hours ago
  • Congratulations #CanonMediaAwards 2015 winners…
    ...
    Politically CorrectedBy sleepdepriveddiva
    12 hours ago
  • National Minister refers to PM as “Wild Eyed” Right-Winger!
    . . It’s not often that Ministers of this increasingly desperate and inept government make a statement that is unerringly accurate – but on Friday 15 May, on Radio  NZ’s Morning Report, GCSB Minister, Chris Finlayson did just that. Minister… ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    13 hours ago
  • Truly Depressing
    Yesterday a thought crossed my mind that was so appalling that I decided not to mention it to anyone for at least 24 hours so I could b sure it was a real notion and not just an emanation from… ...
    13 hours ago
  • Document Shows Elizabeth Warren Is Right About TPP
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    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    21 hours ago
  • Singing the Budget Blues
    Despite our 'rock star' economy over the past three years it has not increased Government income to the level expected and the Government has not been able to deliver its promised surplus. If income doesn't change, but priorities shift, then the… ...
    23 hours ago
  • Submit on Mill Rd
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    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    1 day ago
  • Budget Blues
    Twenty five dollars a week can’t be bad, can it? For families on the breadline, it’s surely better than nothing and every little helps. And when the total spend is $790 million, that’s not peanuts, is it? – even if… ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 day ago
  • Punakaiki Fund and Snowball Effect
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    Lance WiggsBy Lance Wiggs
    1 day ago
  • Anniversary of Sri Lankan Tamil Massacre
    This is not going to be a happy story but if the Green Party of Aotearoa doesn’t want to know who else will? May 18th marks the anniversary of what is known as the ‘Mullivaikal massacre’ of Tamils in 2009 at… ...
    frogblogBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 day ago
  • Game review: Republique
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    1 day ago
  • Rodeo: ‘Family entertainment’ or animal abuse?
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    frogblogBy Mojo Mathers
    1 day ago
  • Labour MPs are taking it to the Government in the House over their destruct...
    ...
    1 day ago
  • The price of rotten cops IV
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Best and worst New Zealand flag designs
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    1 day ago
  • World News Brief, Friday May 22
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    1 day ago
  • A hard rain is a’gonna fall.
    Although I am loathe to prognosticate on fluid situations and current events, I have been thinking about how the conflict in Iraq has been going. Although I do not believe that the Islamic State (IS) is anywhere close to being… ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • Got business out of town? Need a hire car?
    Whether you are heading of town for a conference or taking a break and need a hire car, your TEU Member Advantage program has you covered.  Use your member benefits to access either reduced car hire rates or excess on… ...
    1 day ago
  • An abuse of the OIA
    In the wake of revelations that Prime Minister John Key had systematically and repeatedly bullied, sexually harassed and assaulted a cafe waitress, the New Zealand Herald published a piece exposing the victim. It seemed like retribution, and the involvement of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    frogblogBy Eugenie Sage
    1 day ago
  • Calling Peak Car?
    There’s often a lot of discussion around the future of transport – particularly in cities. We’ve talked many times before about how transport trends are changing, how we’re seeing people drive less and catch PT more, how changing preferences amongst younger people in… ...
    1 day ago
  • Australia’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on...
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Fiji: Removing the opposition
    Last year, Nauru's government abused its parliamentary majority to suspend the opposition from Parliament on a spurious privilege motion. Its a disease which is spreading: last night, Fiji's "democratic" regime did the same, suspending an opposition MP for making a… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2015: Don’t worry about the surplus, worry about this… Whiteboar...
    Bill’s budget put a bit of extra change in the pocket of poor families, but that came at the cost of the promised surplus. But should you be worried about it? With government debt still only at 25%… ...
    Gareth’s WorldBy Gareth Morgan
    1 day ago
  • The productivity trap – heads they win, tails we lose
    The article below was written in 2006, so some of the stats are a bit dated.  However the fundamental argument remains.  For instance, NZ productivity growth continues to be poor and NZ capitalists remain behind most of the OECD in… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • Attention leftie campaigners: Watch Lynton Crosby
    This is a video of Lynton Crosby, of Crosby/Textor fame and infamy, talking about how he approaches campaigns. It is well worth an hour of any serious campaigner's time - whether they're of the left or the right. I've… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Out there in the world
    Friday Music posts here don't generally have much to do with my day job helping make a media TV show, but next week's Media Take is an exception. We're putting together a New Zealand music month-themed programme and one of the… ...
    1 day ago
  • Government announces plan to grow Auckland housing bubble
    The key initiative in yesterday’s budget is a plan to grow Auckland’s housing bubble. Auckland’s housing bubble is projected to take over from dairy farming as the fastest-growing sector of the New Zealand economy. Consider a typical Mangere housewife. For… ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    1 day ago
  • Paul F Tompkins: The undisputed king of podcasts
    When Paul F Tompkins got into comedy in the mid 1980s, the formats with which he’s achieved most renown and popularity didn’t actually exist. “None of them did!” he yells, laughing, into the phone during an interview about stage… ...
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2015: What does it mean?
    ...
    1 day ago
  • What next?
    It feels really, really surreal to nearly be done with my degree. And terrifying, mostly. Right now I have a single 2000 word essay remaining for Politics of Protest and then three exams mid-way through next month, and… that’s it.… ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    2 days ago
  • Solo parents forced to work; but where are the quality jobs?
    The Government is increasing the expectations of paid work from solo parents without any thought as to where the jobs will be, the Council of Trade Unions said today. “There are already 100,000 part time workers who are wanting more secure… ...
    CTUBy andrew.chick
    2 days ago
  • April-15 Patronage
    Another month and another good patronage result from Auckland Transport – particularly for rail. Patronage in April is naturally down on the madness that is March due to the combination of a 30 day month, ANZAC day, Easter and School Holidays/Uni holidays.… ...
    2 days ago
  • April-14 Patronage
    Another month and another good patronage result from Auckland Transport – particularly for rail. Patronage in April is naturally down on the madness that is March due to the combination of a 30 day month, ANZAC day, Easter and School Holidays/Uni holidays.… ...
    2 days ago
  • Children and steady-as-you-go – but how steady?
    There are three political dimensions to the budget’s star “children in hardship” item. One is John Key’s ownership. That fits his protestations of concern about disadvantaged children — though action has been slow coming. He made his pile in… ...
    Colin JamesBy Colin James
    2 days ago
  • Thoughts on budget 2015
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    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • What if your MP was decided on the flip of a coin?
    The provincial election in the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island finally came to an end a couple of days ago when its last MLA was declared elected following a judicial recount.(What - you didn't know that Prince Edward Island… ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Budget 2015
    From the outset, the slogan for yesterday’s Budget – “The Plan Is Working” – begged to be mocked. There’s actually a plan for the national economy? Who knew? And its been working for whom, exactly? Not for families in poverty,… ...
    2 days ago
  • Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific
    Speech – New Zealand Government I am delighted to have the opportunity to speak at this International Conference on the Future of Asia.22 May 2015 Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific (speech delivered to 2015 Nikkei Forum, Tokyo,… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago

  • How many victims missing out on protection?
    Hundreds of domestic abuse victims could be missing out on getting protection orders because they are unable to get legal aid, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“In the last two years some 351 people who applied for legal aid for… ...
    3 hours ago
  • Government kicks hardworking whanau
    A major incentive to help young Kiwis and people on low incomes to start saving has been kicked out from under them with the National-led Government ramming through short-sighted legislation under Urgency today, Labour’s Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says.… ...
    3 hours ago
  • Speculator tax political stunt gone wrong
    Bill English’s admission he doesn’t know whether National’s new speculator tax will have any effect shows last weekend’s announcement by the Prime Minister was a desperate political stunt, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “This Government is so desperate to… ...
    6 hours ago
  • The value of parenting
    This week, as part of the Budget, the government introduced a bill to address child poverty. This bill will require parents receiving income support to look for part-time work once their youngest child is three years of age rather than… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    10 hours ago
  • Another new tax, another broken promise
    National has unveiled yet another new tax in this budget – a rural broadband levy that will almost certainly result in an immediate price hike for internet and telephone connections across New Zealand, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said “The… ...
    1 day ago
  • Anniversary of Sri Lankan Tamil Massacre
    This is not going to be a happy story but if the Green Party of Aotearoa doesn’t want to know who else will? May 18th marks the anniversary of what is known as the ‘Mullivaikal massacre’ of Tamils in 2009 at… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 day ago
  • Labour MPs join youth to take part in 40 hour famine
    A team of Labour MPs took part in the 2015 World Vision 40 hour famine and we were told by World Vision and the young people, that it was the first time MPs had joined them and how appreciative they… ...
    1 day ago
  • Rodeo: ‘Family entertainment’ or animal abuse?
    Recently  TVNZ ran a story with confronting footage showing rodeo animals being punched, repeatedly shocked with electronic prods and having their tails violently twisted over their backs. It was clear that significant force was being used behind the scenes to make… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    1 day ago
  • Budget puts the squeeze on police
    The Government has cut funding to the New Zealand police force in the latest Budget, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The reduction is a whopping $15.3 million that could put front line officers at risk. ...
    1 day ago
  • Crucial social services take another hit
    The Government looks set to slash half a million dollars of funding for critical social services, including Women’s Refuge and Barnados, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni “Taking $500,000 from organisations aimed at improving the lives of vulnerable families… ...
    1 day ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 day ago
  • Budget silent on small business
    The Government has completely ignored one of the most important sectors of the economy – small and medium-sized enterprises – in Budget 2015, Labour’s Small Business spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. "A stunning 41 per cent of jobs were created by… ...
    1 day ago
  • Thank you John, it’s been bloody marvellous
    The departure of John Campbell is a blow to current affairs investigative journalism, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Campbell Live stood out in its field. Its axing comes as local broadcasting in New Zealand remains in a state of… ...
    1 day ago
  • KiwiSaver cut shows no long-term plan
    National’s cutting of the KiwiSaver kickstart is incredibly short-term thinking, typical of a Budget that is woefully short on ideas to generate wealth and opportunity, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “New Zealand’s savings rate is far too low. KiwiSaver… ...
    1 day ago
  • National hits the panic button for its 7th Budget
    National has hit the panic button for its 7th Budget in a desperate attempt to look like they’re taking action to reduce our shameful child poverty rates, but they are giving with one hand and taking with the other, Opposition… ...
    2 days ago
  • Panic and back-flips can’t hide twin deficits
    National’s token measures to fight fires they have left burning for seven long years can’t hide a Budget that is long on broken promises, short on vision and fails to reach surplus, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “After being… ...
    2 days ago
  • Auckland land measure seven years too late
    National are so desperate to look like they are doing something about the Auckland housing crisis they have dusted off Labour’s 2008 inventory of government land available for housing and re-announced it, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Despite National… ...
    2 days ago
  • Access to gender reassignment surgery essential
    I was frankly disgusted to hear the Minister for Health say that funding gender reassignment surgeries is a “nutty idea”. A recent study found that in New Zealand 1% of young people identified themselves as transgender, and 3% were unsure… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Global milk prices now lowest in 6 years
    The latest fall in the global dairy price has brought it to the lowest level in six years and shows there must be meaningful action in tomorrow’s Budget to diversify the economy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Dairy prices… ...
    3 days ago
  • Big risks as CYF checks stopped
    Revelations that Child, Youth and Family is no longer assisting home-based early childhood educators by vetting potential employees should set alarm bells ringing, Labour Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Doing away with an extra mechanism for checking potential new employees… ...
    4 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    4 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    4 days ago
  • State of origin
    Kiwis are increasingly concerned about the food they give their families. New Zealand consumers have the right to know where their food has come from, particularly when it involves animals, and should be able to expect our Government to label… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    4 days ago
  • Relationships Aotearoa
    It is disturbing that Relationships Aotearoa, a voluntary organisation set up in 1949 to help couples struggling with their relationships following the upheavals of World War II, may be forced to close, says Acting Spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community… ...
    4 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • House prices to a crack $1 million in 17 months
    The average Auckland home is on track to cost $1 million in 17 months’ time if nothing substantial is done to rein in soaring price rises, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Auckland’s house prices have skyrocketed 63 per cent… ...
    5 days ago
  • Vital support services can’t be left in lurch
    The National Government has big questions to answer about how a provider of services to thousands of vulnerable New Zealanders is set to fold, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. Relationships Aotearoa which provides support and counselling to families, individuals… ...
    5 days ago
  • Treasury and IRD on a capital gains tax
    Both the Treasury and IRD have been advising the National Government on the benefits of a capital gains tax. Documents released to the Green Party under an Official Information Act request show that John Key has been selective with the… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    5 days ago
  • Charity legislation needs review
    It is unacceptable that the big corporate based charities claim  millions in annual income tax exemptions, while small community based and operated non-profit organisations  struggle to gain official charity status, Labour’s acting spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community Sector Louisa… ...
    5 days ago
  • John’s panic-Key response to housing crisis
    John Key needs to tell New Zealanders what caused his sudden change of heart that led to the Government’s scrambled and last-minute housing measures, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “The Prime Minister’s sudden rush of blood to his head followed… ...
    5 days ago
  • Keep our Assets Christchurch Campaign: An update
    I recently presented my submission to keep Christchurch Council assets at the Christchurch City Council’s public hearings on its 10 year plan on 13 May. The hearings are live-streamed and recorded so you can watch them on www.ccc.govt.nz. The Council’s… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    5 days ago
  • John Key finally admits there’s a housing crisis
    John Key’s weak measures to rein in the astronomical profits property speculators are making are an admission – finally – that there is a housing crisis, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “But yet again National is tinkering with the housing… ...
    6 days ago
  • Government stifles voices in CYFs review
    The Government’s exclusion of the Māori Women’s Welfare League in a panel on the future of CYFs is a cynical ploy to stifle views, says Labour’s Māori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “It's unbelievable that a significant review on the future… ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the Otago Chamber of Commerce
    Thank you very much for the opportunity to be here today. It’s a pleasure as always to be back in the town that raised me. Growing up in St Kilda meant that there was one thing that was a big… ...
    1 week ago
  • Key can’t just be Prime Minister for Parnell
    John Key must show New Zealanders in next week’s Budget that he is more than the Prime Minister for Parnell, and is also the Prime Minister for Pine Hill, Putararu and Palmerston North, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. In… ...
    1 week ago
  • Stop the conversions
    This week, some Waikato locals took me and intrepid photographer Amanda Rogers on a tour of some  lakes and waterways in their region, and up to the massive dairy conversions in the upper catchment of the Waikato River. It… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • More regional jobs go in Corrections reshape
    News that 194 Corrections staff are to lose their jobs will have ramifications not only for them and their families but for the wider community, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. Prison units at Waikeria, Tongariro and Rimutaka face closure… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government’s climate meetings off to a bumpy start
    On Wednesday, I attended a hui and an evening meeting that the Government had organised in Nelson as part of its climate change consultation tour, to support the Nelson community telling the Government to take meaningful action on climate change.… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Taxpayers the only ones left feeling blue
    Ministry of Social Development bosses could have saved themselves thousands of dollars in consultants’ fees by providing staff with rose-tinted spectacles, Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. A report out today reveals the Ministry is spending over half a… ...
    1 week ago
  • Why are the regions still facing restrictions?
    Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford is questioning why the regions should continue to be saddled with LVR lending restrictions announced by the Reserve Bank today. “Labour has been calling for the regions to be exempted from LVRs for the best… ...
    1 week ago
  • The high costs of weak environmental regulation
    Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere is described on the Department of Conservation website as “Canterbury’s largest and New Zealand’s fifth largest [lake], and an internationally important wildlife area.” But the lake is also polluted by nutrients leaching from farms in the catchment.… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • Submissions to Wellington City Council on their Gambling Venues Policy
    Every three years Councils across the country are required to check that their gambling venue policies are still fit for purpose and they can choose to consult on their policy if they are thinking of making changes. Councils don’t have… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank action shows Govt out of touch and out of ideas
    The Reserve Bank’s unprecedented measures today show it understands the serious risks of the overheating housing market – in complete contrast to John Key’s refusal to acknowledge the crisis, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The Bank is right to… ...
    1 week ago
  • Send us your snaps: 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year we've hit a milestone. We're turning 25.To help celebrate a quarter of a century, please send us your photos from the last 25 years of the Green Party Aotearoa New Zealand! Note: Photos must be jpg, gif or… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year the Green Party sends 25. To help us celebrate a quarter of a century please send us you photos of 25 years of the Green Party!Photos must be jpg,gif or png and smaller than 2MB. If you are… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bay growth plan too little too late
    Today’s Bay of Plenty growth study from MBIE is another example of Government spin - lots of talk but little action, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Cunliffe.  “This is a region that desperately needs to develop the downstream processing… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government bows to ACC pressure
     The Government has finally buckled to pressure from Labour and the New Zealand public in making a half billion dollar cut to ACC levies, but the full benefits are two years away,” says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “$500 million over… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • False figures cloud Auckland transport facts
    The Prime Minister should apologise and issue a correction after both he and Transport Minister Simon Bridges have been caught out misrepresenting facts on Auckland’s transport spending, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Both John Key and Simon Bridges have… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt books confirm National can’t post surplus
    The last publication of the Government’s books before the budget shows National will break its promise of seven years and two election campaigns and fail to get the books in order, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government is… ...
    2 weeks ago

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