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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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    The main impact of the Government’s agreement with Auckland Council today will be simply to delay still further decisions needed to relieve the city’s traffic congestion, says Labour’s Auckland Issues Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “Government has been aware for more than… ...
    4 days ago
  • Serco inquiry extended
    A two month delay to the Government investigation into prison fight clubs shows the extent of problems within the Serco circus, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “My office received a tsunami of complaints so I’m not surprised the terms… ...
    5 days ago
  • Truck Shops ignore consumer laws
    A damning Commerce Commission report out today highlights the failure of the Government to protect poor and vulnerable families from unscrupulous truck shops, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesperson David Shearer. “The report found that 31 out of 32 firms it… ...
    5 days ago
  • Taihoa at Ihumatao says Labour
    Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford has called on the Government to rethink its controversial Special Housing Area in Māngere. Auckland Council is today meeting to discuss the development which borders the Otuataua Stonefield Historic Reserve. This project is to get… ...
    5 days ago
  • Figures suggest National deliberately excluded farming
    Figures showing the dairy industry would be categorised as high risk if there were a further five severe injuries within a year, strongly suggests National designed its flawed system to deliberately exclude farming, Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway… ...
    5 days ago
  • Bleak report on the state of our children
    A damning conclusion by the Children’s Commissioner today that ‘we don’t know if children are better off as a result of state intervention, but the indications are not good’ should make fixing CYFs a top priority for this Government, says… ...
    5 days ago
  • Dodgy data used to justify axing KiwiSaver kickstart
    National’s agenda to run down KiwiSaver has become even clearer from a scathing critique of the Government’s justification for axing the $1000 kickstart, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Since National came to power they have not only continually undermined… ...
    5 days ago
  • Unsecure website risks Ashley MoBIEson hack
    Experts have raised security concerns that vulnerabilities in MoBIE’s half million-dollar website could lead to a possible Ashley Maddison-style hack, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “The real issue here is not what data is immediately available, but what… ...
    5 days ago
  • Democracy still the loser in Canterbury
    The Government has demonstrated once again how arrogant and out of touch it is in denying Cantabrians the same democratic rights as the rest of the country, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson Megan Woods.  “The Environment Canterbury Bill which has been… ...
    6 days ago
  • Waiver cost still a mystery
    The Government still has no idea what it’s going to cost community and voluntary groups to get a waiver from the fees police will charge to carry out checks on their staff and volunteers, says Labour’s Community and Voluntary spokesperson… ...
    6 days ago
  • China exports fall 27 per cent in a year
    Exports to China have fallen by 27 per cent over the last 12 months - showing that the looming economic slowdown should have been expected by the Government, says Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark. “The Chinese economic slowdown should… ...
    6 days ago
  • National should support all families for 26 weeks
    Families with multiple babies, and those born prematurely or with disabilities, are the winners from moves to extend paid parental leave to 26 weeks but the Government must give all babies the same head start in life, Labour’s spokesperson for… ...
    6 days ago
  • National’s health and safety shambles puts school camps at risk
    Reports that schools are considering scrapping student camps and tearing out playgrounds highlights just how badly National has managed its health and safety reforms, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Schools have been left completely in the dark about the… ...
    6 days ago
  • National’s asset stripping agenda hits schools
    National’s fire-sale of school houses and land is short-sighted, mean-spirited, and will have huge unintended consequences that we will pay for in years to come, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. Documents obtained by Labour show the Ministry of Education… ...
    6 days ago
  • Takahe massacre supposed to get all New Zealanders involved in conservation
    The Minister’s claim that a  botched cull of one of New Zealand’s rarest birds was a way of getting all New Zealanders involved in conservation is offensive and ludicrous, Labour’s conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson says.  “An email from Minister Maggie… ...
    6 days ago
  • Serco circus rolls on with revelations of fight club practice
    Further revelations that a Serco prison guard was coaching inmates on fight club techniques confirms a fully independent inquiry needs to take place, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The Minister’s statement today that a guard was coaching sparring techniques… ...
    6 days ago
  • Government targets put ahead of students’ education
    The Government must urgently reassess the way it sets NCEA targets after a new report found they are forcing schools to “credit farm” and are undermining the qualification, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “A PPTA report released today says… ...
    6 days ago
  • ER patients in corridors as health cuts bite
    Patients are being forced to wait for hours on beds in corridors as cash strapped hospitals struggle to keep up with budget cuts, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. “People coming to the emergency room and being forced to wait… ...
    7 days ago
  • Not too late to fix Health and Safety for New Zealand’s workers
    The Government and its minor party supporters are showing an arrogant disregard for workers’ lives by not agreeing to a cross-party solution to the botched Health and Safety bill, Opposition leader Andrew Little says. “Yesterday I wrote to the Prime… ...
    7 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Council of Infrastructure Development
    Tēnā Kotou Katoa. Thank you so much for having me along to speak today. Can I begin by acknowledging John Rae, the President, and Stephen Selwood, the chief executive of the Council for Infrastructure Development. ...
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank points finger at Govt inaction
    In scathing criticism of the Government’s inaction, the Reserve Bank says Auckland housing supply is growing nowhere near fast enough to make a dent the housing shortage, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Reserve Bank deputy governor Grant Spencer today… ...
    1 week ago
  • Chickens come home to roost on climate change
    The Government’s gutting of the Emissions Trading Scheme has caused foresters to leave and emissions to rise, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods. “The release of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Facts and Figures Report for 2014 on the ETS… ...
    1 week ago
  • Website adds to long list of big spends at MBIE
    The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s $560,000 outlay on its new website is further evidence of excessive spending by Steven Joyce on his pet project super ministry, Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark says.  “Hot on the heels of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Brownlee warned over EQC repairs but ignored them
    Gerry Brownlee was warned that EQC’s underfloor repairs weren’t being done properly by industry experts, the cross party working group and in public but he arrogantly ignored them all, says Labour’s Earthquake Commission spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove.  “Today’s apology and commitment… ...
    1 week ago
  • Serco wants in on state house sell off
    The Government must keep scandal plagued outsourcing company Serco away from our state housing after their disastrous record running Mt Eden prison, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Today it has emerged that at the same time Serco was under… ...
    1 week ago
  • Come clean on Pasifika education centre
    Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iinga needs to come clean and tell the Pasifika communities if he’s working to save the Pasifika Education Centre or shut it down, Labour’s Pasifika spokesperson Su’a William Sio says.  “I’m gutted the Pasifika Education Centre funding… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Time for NZTA to work on alternatives to flyover
    The High Court decision rejecting the New Zealand Transport Agency’s attempts to build the Basin Reserve flyover must now mean that NZTA finally works with the community on other options for transport solutions in Wellington, Grant Robertson and Annette King… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Shiny new system leads to record truancy
    Record high truancy rates shows the Government’s much-vaunted new attendance system is an abysmal failure, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Data released today shows truancy rates have spiked more than 15 per cent in 2014 and are now at… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Woodhouse wrong about quarries
      The Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Michael Woodhouse was wrong yesterday when he said limestone quarries were covered by the farcical Health and Safety legislation, says Labour’s Associate Labour spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “He said he ‘understood’ limestone quarries… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Taxpayers money spent on culling one of our rarest birds
    It beggars belief that four endangered takahe were killed by incompetent cullers contracted to the Department of Conservation and the Minister must explain this wanton destruction, says Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It must not be forgotten that there are only… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing NZ must immediately move family
    Housing New Zealand must immediately move a Glen Innes family whose son contracted serious and potentially fatal health problems from the appalling condition of their state house, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Te Ao Marama Wensor and community workers… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • No understanding of the value of overseas investment
     The Government has now admitted it has absolutely no idea of the actual value of foreign investment in New Zealand, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “It is crucial that the Government starts to understand just what this overseas… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Another bridges bribe from Simon Bridges
    Simon Bridges is embroiled in another bridges-for-votes controversy after admitting funding for a replacement bridge in Queenstown is “very much about… the 2017 election”, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Transport Minister is today reported as telling Queenstown locals… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Saudi tender process reeks of SkyCity approach
    The tender process for the $6m investment in a Saudi sheep farm reeks like the SkyCity convention centre deal and once again contravenes the government’s own procurement rules, says Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson David Parker. “The $6m contract… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Maori Party should stand up for workers
    The Government’s proposed Health and Safety Reform Bill does not go far enough to protect those in specific industries with the highest rates of workplace deaths, says Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “We are told that Maori workers are more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister must explain budget blowout
    Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell must explain a budget blow out at Te Puni Kokiri, after the organisation spent more than 2.5 million dollars over their budget for contractors, says Labour’s Associate Māori Development spokesperson Peeni Henare.  “For the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Successful effort to raise the issue of GE trees in proposed standard
    Many thousands of people submitted on the proposed National Environmental Standard –  Plantation Forestry (NES-PF).  A vast majority of the public submissions were particularly focussed on the NES having included GE trees in its mandate. People want these provisions removed,… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Fair Share Friday – Thoughts and Reflections
    As part of our Fair Share  campaign, Green MPs have been doing a series of visits to community groups across the country to have conversations about inequality in New Zealand and what communities are experiencing on the ground. I visited… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Crucial Auditor General investigation welcomed
    The Auditor General’s decision to investigate the Saudi sheep scandal is important, necessary and welcome, Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David Parker says. “The independent functions of the Auditor General are a cornerstone of the New Zealand system of… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • KiwiSaver sign-ups continue to fall
    New KiwiSaver sign-ups in July were 45 per cent below the monthly average, despite John Key saying axing the kickstart “will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver”, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Contact bows to pressure
    Contact Energy’s decision to cut its pre-pay rates to be in line with its customers who pay monthly is good news and the company deserves credit for responding so quickly, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesperson David Shearer.  “Two months ago… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • I’m pushing for a ‘fair go’ for solar
    My Fair Go For Solar Bill was pulled from the Members’ Ballot last week and is set for a vote in Parliament. In this blog post I explain some of the background to the bill and how it aims to… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Key must explain why Health and Safety Bill pulled
    John Key must explain why his Government is delaying the Health and Safety Bill when Pike River families have travelled to Wellington specifically to register their opposition, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Yesterday afternoon John Key suggested the bill may… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Diving for sustainable scallops
    Last week, there were calls for scallop dredging to be banned in the Marlborough Sounds, following scientific report saying that 70% of the Sounds had been lost from dredging, trawling, and sedimentation from forestry. At the same time we see… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago

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