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Prosecuting Cunliffe

Written By: - Date published: 3:06 pm, December 5th, 2013 - 56 comments
Categories: david cunliffe, electoral commission, electoral systems, police - Tags: ,

no-right-turn-256No Right Turn writes on what should happen with David Cunliffe screwing up on election day. Sensible advice and commentary on what looks like a typical example of some of the innumerable silly mistakes and accidents that happen during election campaigns. The reaction of some on the right has been pretty damn hilarious when they compare what looks like deliberate concealment of electoral finance with a silly tweeting mistake.

David Cunliffe’s election-day tweet has been referred to police. Good. Its a clear (though minor) breach of the law, and the Electoral Commission has to uphold the rules. Unfortunately, judging by their past performance, the police won’t – they have no interest in electoral crimes, and even less in prosecuting politicians who could one day decide their budget and powers. So naturally, Graham McCready is stepping up and offering to bring a private prosecution.

I have two comments on this. Firstly, that its a sad state of affairs that this is necessary. We ought to be able to have faith that our police will protect the integrity of our electoral system, but we can’t. And that suggests that the police are in serious need of reform, and that we should shift prosecution power for electoral offences to a body which can be trusted, such as the Electoral Commission. Secondly, if McCready brings a case, Cunliffe should plead guilty. He’s already admitted posting the statement, and its intent to influence voters is clear. The offence carries a fine of up to $20,000, but its hard to see the maximum being enforced for a minor breach which was immediately corrected, reported and admitted. And it is not severe enough to require resignation from Parliament. Political honesty and the integrity of our electoral system would be served by Cunliffe admitting it, paying the fine, and moving on.

56 comments on “Prosecuting Cunliffe”

  1. gobsmacked 1

    Very good post by NRT. Especially on the broader issue – the police have been hopeless for years, get an independent body that cares about this stuff.

    Andrew Geddis makes a good point over at Pundit:

    “There’s the somewhat awkward fact that the Police are still sitting on top of a whole raft of complaints referred to them by the Electoral Commission following the 2011 election – including a number of people accused of using Twitter and Facebook to publish messages intended to affect how people vote. So if the Police were to move with alacrity to charge Cunliffe, this actually would be “unequal treatment” when compared to others who have committed similar actions.

    Please note that I’m not saying Cunliffe shouldn’t be charged here … I’m just saying that if he’s going to be treated like everyone else, he won’t be.”

    http://www.pundit.co.nz/content/cunliffes-folly

    For our swivel-eyed guests (“Cunlffe IS Banks!!!111!1″), the phrase “be careful what you wish for” springs to mind.

  2. Papa Tuanuku 2

    dammit, no-one on the left blogs seems to have picked up on the ongoing spying after the Tūhoe raids.

    • lprent 2.1

      Write a guest post and/or send us a link. See the contact us.

      But my general assumption is that the police will observe, spy, and generally keep an eye on things. That is part of their job. The difficulty is when they act on the basis of some paranoias out of one of those centres for stupidity (like the police centre in Otahuhu) and who have a extremely limited understanding of what they are observing. They just get in the way of the political processes.

      Aaron Pascoe being a particularly good example of how to present yourself as a rather shallow idiot who managed to raise hysteria to action in Operation 8.

    • JK 2.2

      Papa – I thought Maori TV news said they were unsure if the story about the ongoing spying after the Tuhoe raids was correct or not, and that they’d update it when they got more details. That was last night. Maybe tonights Maori TV news will have some more on that matter.

      • Murray Olsen 2.3.1

        No surprises there, really. The question I’m interested in is how do we stop it? I can’t see any way except by getting rid of the police and the spooks, then starting again.

  3. Tracey 3

    I just dont get how many seasoned politicians dont seem to know the rules that govern their jobs. be it credit cards, House rules (Brownlee) or electioneering

    • Puckish Rogue 3.1

      Maybe both National and Labour should get fined an equal and massive amount for the next breach so as to set an example to everyone?

  4. Will@Welly 4

    Great analysis. This is what needs to happen, Cunliffe pleads guilty, slap on the wrist for a silly mistake, Key gets to shut up. But Marshall has to go down as one of the most backward thinking leaders of the Policeforce in living history. His quote, early on in his stewardship, it’s a business, summed up his approach to law and order.

  5. I agree.

    A prosecution will help to sort out any ‘grey areas’ regarding ‘tweeting’, and the ensuing fuss will help remind politicians, particularly those who want to be Prime Minister, that they are not above the law and they can be still held to account.

    For the record, I don’t support any call for David Cunliffe to resign if convicted.

    The penalty is a $20,000 fine, not resignation.

    Let any mitigating circumstances be argued in Court, and this ‘bad thing be turned into a good thing’.

    Namely, make sure you are more familiar with electoral law, because, in my considered opinion, it isn’t a ‘good look’ when you are not.

    Penny Bright

  6. Crunchtime 6

    It needs to be clarified whether Cunliffe actually broke the rules.

    Tweeting isn’t a public activity. You have to be following Cunliffe already.

    I understand Cunliffe pulling the tweet right away because it is a grey area – potentially his followers re-tweet it and it becomes more of a “public” thing. But personally I don’t think he is actually on the wrong side of the law. Especially since it was online mere seconds before it was taken down again.

    • Sacha 6.1

      “You have to be following Cunliffe already”

      Or someone you follow retweeted it. And you can look up anyone’s public timeline without even signing up for Twitter.

      • weka 6.1.1

        “You have to be following Cunliffe already”

        Or someone can say, anywhere at all, “Cunliffe tweeted x,y,z”, and anyone with a computer can go and look at it. Sounds public to me.

  7. Richard McGrath 7

    Agree Cunliffe should man up and pay the fine. But let’s not pretend he didn’t know his Tweet was electioneering. He was explicitly warned not to by the Electoral Commission and chose to breach the rules. I’m sure he’s sorry.. that he was caught.

    [lprent: If you want to make an assertion of fact, then on this site it is advisable to link to a source. In this case I have no knowledge of an "explicit warning". In fact I suspect that you are simply lying or at the very least inflating something to a bullshit level.

    If I see you do it again, then I'll probably simply ban you for stupid behaviour. I'd suggest you read the policy. This is your warning. In the meantime, since you don't appear to be responding to replies, you're getting moderated until I see an acknowledgement you have seen, read , and understand this note ]

    • Te Reo Putake 7.1

      “He was explicitly warned not to by the Electoral Commission and chose to breach the rules”

      Cite?

      “I’m sure he’s sorry.. that he was caught.”

      Er, caught by whom? He realised his own mistake and took the tweet down immediately. He then dobbed himself in. So, not ‘caught’ at all.

      • gobsmacked 7.1.1

        No, TRP.

        Cunliffe knew exactly what he was doing (because corrupt!) and didn’t know what he was doing (because stupid!) at exactly the same time. Also, he knew that heaps of votes would be won in just a few seconds, that’s why he done it, and deleted it, and reported it!

        • Te Reo Putake 7.1.1.1

          Cheers, gs, the scales have fallen from my eyes. Cunliffe must go! Free the Banks One!

          • Richard McGrath 7.1.1.1.1

            Nothing to do with Banksie, TRP, he is quite rightfully being prosecuted for his own alleged misdemeanours. But you’re right – Cunliffe must go (before a court).

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Try thinking for yourself for a change, Slater’s parrot.

              By reporting his tweet (having deleted it within seconds), Cunliffe put himself before the court. He was already there before you even read your lines.

              Please stop providing supporting evidence for Bright Minds And Dark Attitudes.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 7.2

      Arrgghhh! The stupid! It burns!

      Cunliffe’s actions are the equivalent of John Banks saying “Kim, if I help you in the future it’s better no one knows about your donation”, and then immediately dobbing himself in to the Serious Fraud Office.

      • gobsmacked 7.2.1

        It’s beautifully ironic that Richard McGrath criticises a guy who typed something and sent it without thinking … by himself typing something and sending it without thinking.

        Easily done, eh?

        • Dumrse 7.2.1.1

          You and your mate NRT are the ironic dickheads in this thread.

          • gobsmacked 7.2.1.1.1

            I’ll take it as a compliment, but how is NRT wrong?

            Which part of his post do you disagree with, and why?

        • Richard McGrath 7.2.1.2

          It *would* be ironic, if it wasn’t for Cunliffe having been warned not to post election-related comments on social media on election day.

          • gobsmacked 7.2.1.2.1

            Richard, your contention is that Cunliffe held these two opinions within seconds:

            1. “I am now going to deliberately break the rules. Heh Heh.”

            2. “I have just deliberately broken the rules, but have immediately changed my mind and wish I hadn’t.”

            That is absurd. What happened (just get out the razor and think it through) is that 1) Cunliffe acted without thinking about the rules, and then 2) thought about the rules – when it was too late. Some swearing may have been involved.

            Then you add – ignorantly, or dishonestly, I don’t know which – that he got “caught”. False.

            Of course his action was wrong, and he will have to face the consequences. But his right-wing critics – including Richard – are making it much easier for him, by implying his action was sinister, with malice aforethought.

            Which is stupid, like Cunliffe was (except he was stupid in seconds, you’re keeping it up over days). Hence the irony. Got it yet?

            • Colonial Viper 7.2.1.2.1.1

              Cunliffe knows the electoral rules around an E-Day very well (as he bloody well should having done it enough over the years).

              This was one of those basic *face palm* mistakes one makes early in the morning before you have your first coffee. Nothing more, nothing less.

      • Murray Olsen 7.2.2

        Banks fully intended to do that, but he forgot.

    • JK 7.3

      In my opinion, Its more likely a staffer or volunteer sent the tweet and DC himself is taking the blame for it.

      • alwyn 7.3.1

        Please don’t make remarks like that. I read it while I was sipping a cup of coffee and now I am going to have to clean the keyboard.
        It sounds as if you have never met a politician in your life. It is the staff members job to take the blame for the politician. Politicians never, ever, take the blame for something a staffer does. They may take the blame for something a more senior politician does but in politics taking responsibility for something only goes downward, it NEVER goes upward.

    • QoT 7.4

      I’m sure he’s sorry.. that he was caught.

      Another blissfully ridiculous line of argument. I’m pretty sure David Cunliffe knows he has 6,000-odd Twitter followers. This isn’t a private email to Matthew Hooton we’re talking about.

      • Lloyd 7.4.1

        How many of those 6,000 were eligible to vote in the Christchurch electorate? And how many of those were not already Labour supporters and were liable to be swayed by the message? I would suspect the message might have influenced one or two voters, somewhat less effective than voting material funded by those ‘anonymous’ voters.

        Has anyone looked at what the decision to prosecute Banks will do to funding of the next major election?

    • Dumrse 7.5

      There’s none so blind ……… Others managed to publish a copy of the commissions letter warning of Election Day infringements.

    • Lanthanide 7.6

      Someone said, I believe on this site, that the Electoral Commission had sent a reminder to all candidates and parties on the day before the election, reminding them of the rules.

    • Richard McGrath 7.7

      Dear lprent

      I suggest you read this pdf document which appeared in he public domain nearly 3 days ago:

      http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Election-Day-Rules-for-Candidates.pdf

      I think it is fairly explicit about what can and can’t be done. I gather it was sent from Natalie McNaught, Senior Legal Adviser at the Electoral Commission at 9.14 a.m. on November 29 to representatives of the parties entered in the by-election.

      To quote: “On election day you must: … not post any new material on websites, which includes … social media such as Facebook and Twitter.”

      Oh, and by the way I have seen, read and understood your note.

      Cheers

      [lprent: Good. It isn't my job to read media or electoral bulletins. I very much prefer reading code or books.

      But if *you* state something as fact and then rely upon it for your argument on this site then *you* are expected to link to something in support so that other people can judge if you have made a reasonable interpretation. Or say why you cannot link to it - for instance an offline book. Otherwise it is merely a opinion given by an gibbering idiot playing dress-up as an authority.

      My concern is that I wind up spending far too much time having to read juvenile squabbling about respective assertions of fantasy masquerading as fact. While such flame wars are often fun for participants, they make for bloody awful reading for everyone else.

      Consequently I view comments that assert facts without support as being those from trolls trying to incite flame wars and act accordingly. ]

    • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 7.8

      Explicit warning from the Electoral Commission to all parties before the byelection:

      http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-o3HJoS0sFnQ/Up0LQnFvueI/AAAAAAAANYI/9dQ_A9t4H8I/s640/Electoral+Commission+29112013.png

    • Richard Down South 7.9

      What fine? until hes found guilty, there is no fine… thats like someone saying you stole money and you deserve to pay the fines for doing so… there is a prima facie case here for him to be prosecuted, but only the courts can decide if he broke the law, or the police (if they decide theres not enough evidence)

  8. Whatever next 8

    Seems odd to me that we do not involve police when a secret document is released to media(Kitteridge report), yet we involve police when it is bl***dy obvious to the whole country what and by whom a breach was committed.
    What are the police supposed to investigate?
    Whereas I would like to have the police check we have secure government thanks very much

    • Ron 8.1

      It is obvious what the police will do. First they will ask their good friends in the GCSB to search metadata for everything that Cunliffe has ever sent or received.
      Then the NSA can also be asked to do likewise because some of Cunliffe’s tweets may have gone outside NZ
      Then they will use their new powers to secretly tap all the computers/mobile phones even remotely connected to Labour (just in case) people that tweet such dangerous tweets could well be secretly working for some terrorist organisation.
      They will then wait until next year and publicly warn Cunliffe that he has committed a dreadful offence.
      Then all the information will be sent to Minister of Police and Crown Solicitor for comment.
      By then we will be up to election.

      Yup that seems to be the way that such offences are handled when committed by anyone that is not right wing

  9. Thomas 9

    It’s a stupid law, but it’s the law. If we want our electoral law to be respected, then it must have teeth.

    Repeal the silly parts of the law and create a body that can and will prosecute violations.

    • Lanthanide 9.1

      It’s not a stupid law at all.

      In Australia, you are allowed to electioneer on election day, but there’s a distance limit on how close you can do it to a polling place – I believe 50 metres or something like that. So around every polling place there’s a perimeter of party supporters campaigning for people to vote on their way to the booths.

      Seems very unseemly, to me.

      • alwyn 9.1.1

        When I lived in Australia, in the 1990s it was slightly different to that. Party people, wearing rosettes and so on, were not allowed to electioneer in the sense of telling you how to vote. They were allowed to offer you cards listing their party’s preferred method of voting but they weren’t allowed to speak about it.
        With the ridiculous length of some of the Australian ballot papers the might actually might have been useful.
        I always refused them, telling the people that I never voted because it just encouraged the bastards. This would set them off in stutters because, as they would point out, it was illegal not to vote. I would suggest that I didn’t care, let them prosecute me. Of course I never bothered to tell them that, not being a citizen of Australia, I wasn’t allowed to vote anyway.
        That is actually a very good idea. Why should we let non-citizens vote? Australians have another good rule. Their MPs must only be Australian citizens. Dual nationality is not allowed. (I know there is a slight exception for people born in a country that doesn’t allow you to renounce citizenship but the MP has to show they made every possible attempt to do so)

      • Tracey 9.1.2

        at least it reflects the reality, that it’s about backing the winning team… hence the supporters groups, do they sing cool songs like at the football?

  10. North 10

    Now we’re discussing how it should be handled. That’s OK.

    But mayoral, sorry, moral equivalency ? Banks and Cunliffe ? Get real…….

    To conflate the behaviours affirms deep emotional trauma or deep intellectual dysfunction. Or, in the absence of mutual exclusivity to wit the case of the Actoid, both.

    Oh let’s get down to tin-tacks – anti-social, selfish, entitled wankers do not like it up ‘em.

  11. adam 11

    Storm in a tea cup. I lived in Aussie for years and they electioneer on election day – and it makes bugger all difference. I never noticed it making anybody change there mind.

  12. Tracey 12

    Have the names of all those who did similar things in 2011 been released? Lets put them with cunliffe in a room, live streaming while they get taught reading comprehension

    • alwyn 12.1

      For a fair number of them I suspect we would first have to teach them HOW to read, THEN we could teach them how to comprehend what they had read.

  13. Delia 13

    I bet if Key did this, some anti Labour posters here would say. “Whining left wing, leave our John alone he is such a cutie on the cat walk, he is New Zealand’s saviour and all the tripe you starry eyed guys come out with.

    • RedRobin 13.1

      “I bet if Key did this, some anti Labour posters here would say. “Whining left wing, leave our John alone he is such a cutie on the cat walk, he is New Zealand’s saviour and all the tripe you starry eyed guys come out with.”- cite?

      More likely scenario is there would be “Democracy Under Attack” headlines.

      • Crunchtime 13.1.1

        My observation is that anything that Key does wrong results a headline saying what Key thinks about accusations against him. “Key not phased by whatever blah blah”

    • karol 13.2

      Does John key tweet directly with the public, or does he leave that up to his minions?

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    Has Recep Tayyip Erdogan gone from model Middle East 'strongman' to tin-pot dictator?...
    No Right Turn | 14-04
  • Maritimes magazine Autumn 2014 now online
    This edition of the Maritimes magazine covers the new Regional Maritime Federation, the offshore oil and gas industry, the 2014 Interport sports competition and much more....
    MUNZ | 14-04
  • Climate change: Action is affordable
    Last month, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the second part of its Fifth Assessment report, showing the dire future we faced if we did not act to reduce emissions. Over the weekend, the IPCC released the third part...
    No Right Turn | 14-04
  • 85 more jobs killed by the NZ dollar – Christchurch textile firm in r...
    Date of Release: Saturday, April 12, 2014Body:  News that the high New Zealand dollar has claimed another textile firm has come as a huge shock to those affected, FIRST Union said on Saturday.Staff at Christchurch Yarns were told yesterday that their...
    First Union Media | 14-04
  • Gordon Campbell on royalty and its tourism spin-offs
    Ultimately the Queen’s longevity has been one of her most significant accomplishments. A transition to Prince Charles while the monarchy was in the pits of public esteem in the mid to late 1990s would have been disastrous for the Royal...
    Gordon Campbell | 14-04
  • World News Brief, Tuesday April 15
    Top of the AgendaWorst Climate Change Scenarios Can Be Averted, Panel Says...
    Pundit | 14-04
  • Images of women and mother blaming
    There have been a few stories in the media about New Zealand women and obesity and body image, some referenced in this editorial from the Herald on Sunday. This article blames mothers for teaching girls to put on lip gloss....
    frogblog | 14-04
  • A Matter of Time: Reflections Of A Waning Republican
    Time Lords: The historical transition of the Monarchy: from that which rules, to those who reign, was a remarkable constitutional innovation. Neither a true monarchy, nor yet a full republic, Britain’s constitutional monarchy offered its subjects something unique. "[A] constitution...
    Bowalley Road | 14-04
  • IPCC 5th Assessment Report – exposing NZ on climate policy
    The IPCC’s 3rd Working Group has just released the final section of its 5th Assessment Report.  Following WGI report on the science and WGII on impact, this one focuses on a response strategy. The Report recalls that annual global emissions...
    frogblog | 14-04
  • Maori Party / Key fundraiser
    The Political Anorak News is full of the $5,000-a-plate fundraiser for the Maori Party hosted by John Key at the Northern Club in Auckland. A few thoughts: Nothing illegal about this at all, or really anything immoral either. Key wants...
    Polity | 14-04
  • Collins must admit misleading Parliament
    ACC Minister Judith Collins must front up and admit she has misled Parliament over ACC’s policy to stop paying compensation to clients who refused to fill in its privacy form, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Judith Collins claimed Labour...
    Labour | 16-04
  • English confirms he has no plan to raise wages
    Finance Minister Bill English has confirmed he has absolutely no plans to lift wages, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues, Andrew Little says. “Bill English told the Chamber of Commerce yesterday that workers could expect a rise in average income of...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Govt careless and callous about threatened birds
    The National Government is increasing the threat to two of the world's most threatened and unique birds by opening up Victoria Forest Park to petroleum drilling, the Green Party said today.Scientists have recently published a ranking of the 100 most...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Genesis: The biggest fire sale of them all
    National has finished its asset sales with a massive bonfire of a fire sale, showing once and for all how much of a disaster this programme was, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “Just 68,000 Kiwis bought shares in Genesis,...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Interest rates rise but only smokes increasing
    Mortgage rate rises are making life harder for homeowners, and many of them will be surprised the latest CPI figures show inflation would be zero were it not for tobacco tax hikes, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “New Zealanders...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Term One Report Card for Hekia Parata
    Assignment Teacher’s Comments Grade      ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools
    Schools will be appalled to learn Education Minister Hekia Parata knew since January that hundreds of exam booklets had been returned to the wrong students but said nothing about it, Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Exams are stressful enough...
    Labour | 15-04
  • What has ACC Minister been doing?
    The ACC Minister needs to front up and explain what, if any, changes she has made to the broken culture of ACC rather than denying that she has any part to play in the dysfunction of her Ministry, the Green...
    Greens | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam tomorrow by a government whose record on wage growth is atrocious, Labour spokesperson on...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC have been denied cover, says Labour’s ACC Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The legality of ACC’s privacy waver,...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand
    The Ruataniwha dam decision released today has protected the Tukituki River and dashed the Government’s hope of the “one nutrient model” (TRIM) being adopted nationwide, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It is a massive victory for those in the...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Labour turns wheels for cycling safety
    With more than a million New Zealanders now using cycling as an attractive alternative means of transport it is past time their safety was taken seriously, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Darien Fenton says. Due to speak to a cycling rally at...
    Labour | 15-04
  • SPEECH: Institute of Directors
    LEADING AND MANAGING OUR ECONOMIC FUTURE David Cunliffe MP, Labour Leader Speech to the Institute of Directors 15 April 2014, Auckland It's a privilege to be speaking here. The Institute of Directors has a proud history of developing New Zealand's...
    Labour | 15-04
  • More Oravida endorsements from John Key
    The use of a picture of John Key in an advertisement for Oravida’s scampi products in a Chinese airline magazine is further evidence of an unhealthily cosy relationship between the National Party and this company, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 15-04
  • Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support
    Workers faced with redundancy at Canterbury Yarns need a redundancy support co-ordinator, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Last week, Canterbury Yarns was placed in receivership. Canterbury Yarns joins a long list of New Zealand manufacturers who have...
    Greens | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing Kiwis like more than getting on the road and going on holiday. But on...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Ae Marika! 15 April 2014
    Our MANA AGM down in Rotorua on the weekend was a sold-out affair – even the media were struggling to get in! Political conferences can be very dull, but not this one. We had a great line-up of speakers including...
    Mana | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around 3000 New Zealanders develop bowel cancer each year and about 1200, or 100 a month,...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. Justice Minister Judith Collins has just recently indicated her...
    Labour | 13-04
  • IPCC report shows Government ignoring climate experts
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) report into climate mitigation, just released in Berlin, shows the National Government is ignoring the pleas of the world's best climate scientists.The report says deep and fast emission cuts are vital from all...
    Greens | 13-04
  • Japan’s quick turnaround on whaling disappointing
    News that Japan plans to recommence some form of “scientific” whaling programme so quickly after the International Court of Justice’s ruling against it is very disappointing, says David Shearer, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealanders expected the ICJ ruling -...
    Labour | 13-04
  • Reviewable tenancies will increase risks for vulnerable children
    Instead of kicking families out of their homes if they can pay their rent, parents with young children should have the opportunity to purchase equity in a state-built home over time, the Green Party said todayFrom July, Housing New Zealand...
    Greens | 13-04
  • 48,000 New Zealanders drinking faecally contaminated water
    Some 48,000 people were provided with water that had issues with faecal contamination, 18,000 of whom were from Canterbury, the Green Party said today. The Ministry of Health's Annual Report on Drinking-Water in New Zealand for 2012/13 shows that 48,000...
    Greens | 12-04
  • Labour will move to save the Kauri
    Labour will spend $20 million over the next 10 years to stop the spread of Kauri dieback disease, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “We are facing an ecological disaster with over 11 per cent of the Kauri trees in the...
    Labour | 12-04
  • SPEECH: Saving our Kauri
    Seech notes Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. As a West Auckland MP I am very aware the kauri is an important part of this place. The Waitakere Ranges with their thousands of kauri, are a taonga....
    Labour | 12-04
  • MANA to continue negotiations with the Internet Party
    The MANA AGM has decided unanimously tonight to continue negotiaitions with the Internet Party. Within a month further negotiations, further consultation with MANA branches and a final decision on whether to proceed with a relationship is expected....
    Mana | 12-04
  • National’s tax dodge
      National’s insistence that it is cracking down on tax dodgers is little more than a bit of election year chest beating, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Revenue Minister Todd McClay surely doesn’t believe collecting $100 million of an estimated...
    Labour | 12-04
  • Housing prices go up – Gens X & Y give up
    Today’s REINZ report shows house prices continue skyward while first home buyers are dropping out of the market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand the national median house price has risen...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Do Key and Adams support Chorus appeal?
    John Key and Amy Adams must tell New Zealanders whether they support Chorus’ appeal of the High Court’s ruling in favour of the Commerce Commission, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Chorus’ appeal is a waste of time. The company is...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Is Judith Collins unapologising
    Judith Collins appears to have retracted her apology for failing to disclose her meeting with her husband’s fellow company directors and a senior Chinese border control official just weeks after being ticked off by John Key for not doing so, Labour...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Media Advisory
    There have been a few minor changes to the MANA AGM agenda. Moana Jackson is unable to attend due to family commitments. Speaking in his place on Saturday morning MANA is pleased to welcome Georgina Beyer and Willie Jackson. MANA...
    Mana | 10-04
  • Green Party requests inquiry into Peter Dunne and Trust
    Green Party MP Denise Roche today wrote to the Parliamentary Registrar of Pecuniary Interests requesting an inquiry into whether Peter Dunne should have included his involvement as chair of the Northern Wellington Festival Trust on the Register of Pecuniary Interests...
    Greens | 10-04
  • Veterans short-changed
    The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “A...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Tribute for Maungaharuru- Tangitu settlement
    Labour Member of Parliament for Ikaroa-Rāwhiti, Meka Whaitiri paid tribute to Maungaharuru-Tangitu today as their Treaty of Waitangi settlement became law. “The Bill acknowledges Treaty breaches that left Maungaharuru-Tangitu virtually landless. Today we were reminded of the history, mamae, loss...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Neglected rural and regional roads will cost more lives
    The government must take urgent action to prevent more accidents to truck drivers and other road users of increased logging trucks on neglected roads, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Transport spokesperson. “The dangers to drivers and other road users in the...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Judith Collins’ refusal to answer a disgrace
    If John Key is holding his Ministers to any standards at all, he must make Judith Collins answer questions about the senior Chinese official she met during her taxpayer-funded visit to China last October, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Judith...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Ryall needs to heed hospital workforce issues
    The public health workforce, the same one Tony Ryall argues is making a lot of progress is facing increased pressure and staff burnout through his continued shuffling of the deckchairs, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Mr Ryall uses all...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Key ducks but can’t avoid High Court slap
    The High Court’s slap in the face to John Key and his Government over Chorus has left it with no option but to accept the Commerce Commission’s lawful process in deciding the price of copper, says Labour’s associate ICT spokesperson...
    Labour | 09-04
  • First home buyers shut out as LVRs bite
    The bad news continues for young Kiwis as the latest Core Logic report shows the proportion of first home buyers has declined since LVR lending restrictions came into force, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. Twenty two centres across the...
    Labour | 09-04
  • MANA – and, or, or not – DOTCOM
    Both MANA and the Internet Party share goals in common with other parties, like getting rid of National and reining in the GCSB. There are also differences, as there are with other parties as well. MANA accepted a request to...
    Mana | 09-04
  • Wise heads want wise response
    Labour accepts the challenge laid down by the Wise Response group to protect and future-proof New Zealand’s environment and economy. A petition calling for urgent action was presented to Labour’s Environment and Climate Change spokesperson Moana Mackey at Parliament this...
    Labour | 09-04
  • Greens support high profile Kiwis’ call for climate action
    The Green Party fully supports a group of high profile Kiwi business people, lawyers, academics and commentators delivering a petition to parliament today calling for the Government to take the threat of climate change more seriously.Wiseresponse, a group of over...
    Greens | 09-04
  • Mayor’s jobs initiative shows up inactive Govt
    Auckland Mayor Len Brown and the Auckland Council are to be congratulated for providing opportunities for young people to get into work, but it stands in stark contrast to the National Government overseeing spiralling youth unemployment, Labour’s Employment, Skills and...
    Labour | 08-04
  • National discovers public servants needed after all
    New figures released today show National has done an embarrassing U-turn after discovering it actually does need the public service, Labour’s State Services spokesperson Maryan Street says. “Wellington now has the most public servants it has had since 2000. Figures...
    Labour | 08-04
  • School closures about saving Hekia, not kids
    The National Government's decision to merge Phillipstown and Woolston schools is another disaster for Christchurch and proves this Government is more interested in saving face than in what is best for children, the Green Party said today."Hekia Parata's stubborn refusal...
    Greens | 08-04
  • Cosgrove writes to invite Countdown to Committee
    Labour’s Commerce spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove has today written to the Chief Executive of Progressive Enterprises Dave Chambers, asking him if he would accept an invitation to appear before the Commerce Select Committee. “Yesterday National MPs blocked my motion to invite...
    Labour | 08-04
  • Phillipstown will get reprieve under Labour
    A Labour government will allow Phillipstown School to stay open, with a review after two years, Labour’s Associate Education spokesperson Megan Woods says. “Hekia Parata has failed the Phillipstown community with today’s decision to close the school. “It is disgraceful...
    Labour | 08-04
  • State Housing waiting lists go through the roof
    The waiting list for State Houses has risen by over a thousand in the past three months, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Low income people are feeling the sharp end of National’s housing crisis. A shortage of affordable houses...
    Labour | 08-04
  • Hekia Parata fails to answer basic questions
    Education Minister Hekia Parata’s inability to answer even the most basic questions about her proposed new Executive Principal roles will have alarm bells ringing in school communities all around the country, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Schools are already concerned...
    Labour | 08-04
  • Guy gets it wrong by any measure
    The Ministry for Primary Industries being forced to reprint rulers designed to help recreational fishers measure their snapper catch is right up there on the incompetence scale, Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “MPI is having to spend another $8000...
    Labour | 08-04
  • So the US has assassinated a NZ citizen – what did Key know?
    A non judicial assassination by the US on a NZ citizen raises questions. Key made the idea that NZers were training with terrorists part of his farcical defence for the GCSB mass surveillance legislation. I say farcical because even if...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Something Better Than Something Worse: Why John Key could become our longes...
    IN HIS MEMORABLE holiday-home encounter with the host of Campbell Live, the Prime Minister, John Key, did not rule out running for a fourth term. Were he to be successful, the long-standing record of Sir Keith Holyoake (11 years and 2...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • GUEST BLOG: RIO TINTO WINS 2013 ROGER AWARD
      Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third  The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand were: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2. The criteria for judging are...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • National drowning in an ocean of poisoned milk
    It is becoming difficult to keep up with which National Party MP is bleeding the most at the moment. Simon Bridges is being crucified by Whaleoil almost as much as Greenpeace are attacking him, suggesting Cam is seizing the moment...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Want to get rid of synthetic cannabis? Legalize real cannabis
    Have we managed to appreciate the madness that synthetic cannabis is legal yet more harmful than organic cannabis which is illegal? I find the current moral panic over synthetic cannabis difficult to become concerned with when alcohol is FAR more...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Save our homes – stop the evictions!
    “We will keep on fighting because it frightens me to think my grandchildren could become homeless,” Tere Campbell told me. Tere is a member of Tamaki Housing Group. In September 2011, tenants in 156 state homes in Glen Innes received...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The daily humiliation of women and the constant policing and shaming of our...
    The last few months have been particularly bad for the shaming and policing of women’s bodies in the media, both in New Zealand and globally. First we had NZ Newstalk ZB presenter Rachel Smalley referring to women weighing over 70kgs...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • A case study of racism by Police at Auckland Airport
    A couple of days ago I returned from Samoa after attending a family matter and some contract work. Spending a few days in the warmth of our homeland was welcome relief from the cold weather starting to make its presence...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • An acute shortage of emergency youth housing
    The housing crisis is effecting everyone in Christchurch but some are more vulnerable than others. Recently I attended a workshop on emergency youth housing hosted by the 298 Youth Health Centre, who I worked for from 2001-2003. Over fifty people...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The Oceans Issue
    The ‘Earth’ is 71% water but our oceans are the last frontier. The oceans are huge, relatively unexplored, full of weird and wonderful diversity. In New Zealand we’re never far from the sea, and our identity, our landscapes, our communities,...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Fear of South Auckland
    Fear of South Auckland...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • TV News Geography
    TV News Geography...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The best bit about gay sex
    The best bit about gay sex...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • On not voting 1
    On not voting 1...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • On not voting 2
    On not voting 2...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Labour on trucks
    Labour on trucks...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Claire Trevett shows how biased msm works
    Read this nonsense by Claire Trevett… David Cunliffe denies claims he is ‘running scared’ Labour leader David Cunliffe has dismissed claims he is running scared from Prime Minister John Key and playing hard to get over a Campbell Live series...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Why won’t Judith Collins identify who the Chinese ‘bureaucrat’ is?
    Rumour as to the real reason Judith Collins won’t reveal who the mysterious Chinese ‘bureaucrat’ is who dined with her at a private dinner is because the Chinese ‘bureaucrat’ wasn’t some lowly border official and they are actually a junior ranking member...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Fighting PNG corruption and social media gags with … outspoken blogs
    Graphic: shutterstock.com Dr David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific THE BLOGGING war is hotting up in Papua New Guinea – just when things are getting riskier with draconian proposals over cybercrime law on the horizon. The state target for...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • UNbelieved – the true racism of NZ
    Racist Cartoon by Al Nisbet sums up the casual racism NZers enjoy The New Zealand government must consider United Nations rebukes on their indigenous rights record as ordinary and unremarkable by their casual reaction to the latest indictment - delivered through the clear and clinical...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • What has ACC Minister been doing?
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: What has ACC Minister been doing? Tuesday, 15 Apr 2014 | Press Release Judith Collins has made such little progress on ACC’s unacceptable privacy practices and needs to be held to account for...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools Schools will be appalled to learn Education Minister Hekia Parata knew since January that hundreds of exam booklets had been returned to the wrong students...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand The Ruataniwha dam decision released today has protected the Tukituki River and dashed the Government’s hope of the “one nutrient model” (TRIM) being...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Labour turns wheels for cycling safety
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Labour turns wheels for cycling safety With more than a million New Zealanders now using cycling as an attractive alternative means of transport it is past time their safety was taken seriously, Labour’s...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • SPEECH: Institute of Directors
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: SPEECH: Institute of Directors LEADING AND MANAGING OUR ECONOMIC FUTURE David Cunliffe MP, Labour LeaderSpeech to the Institute of Directors15 April 2014, Auckland It’s a privilege to be speaking here. The Institute of...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • More Oravida endorsements from John Key
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: More Oravida endorsements from John Key The use of a picture of John Key in an advertisement for Oravida’s scampi products in a Chinese airline magazine is further evidence of an unhealthily cosy...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • 85 more jobs killed by the NZ dollar – Christchurch textile firm in recei...
    Source: First Union – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 85 more jobs killed by the NZ dollar – Christchurch textile firm in receivership News that the high New Zealand dollar has claimed another textile firm has come as a huge shock to...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support Tuesday, 15 Apr 2014 | Press Release Canterbury Yarns joins a long list of New Zealand manufacturers who have been driven to the wall by a...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Boots Riley to perform live in Auckland
    Press Release: Mana Tamaki Branch are excited to announce that we have a very special guest, Boots Riley, coming to our very own neighbourhood! On Tuesday April 15 at 7.00pm Boots will be hosting a political discussion and Q&A followed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Comparing Maori Party $5000 per ticket John Key Fundraiser at sexist Northe...
    So MANA can’t contemplate an alliance with Kim Dotcom because he is wealthy and MANA is not and that’s a terrible hypocrisy. Shock. Horror. So what is one to make of the Maori Party holding a $5000 per ticket closed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • David vs Goliath – Key’s housing affordability TV debate challenge
    John Key allowed his frustration to get the better of him at yesterdays press conference when he responded to a question on housing affordability by shooting back that he would debate David Cunliffe on the issue. Cunliffe has accepted. The...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Deborah Manning joins Team Cunliffe
    Deborah Manning is a very good friend of mine and seeing her join Team Cunliffe in Wellington is just another example on top of Matt Mcarten and Clint Smith’s appointments that Cunliffe is serious about putting together the best strategic...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • If a tree falls in a forest, does Simon Bridges hear it?
    If a tree falls in a forest, does Simon Bridges hear it?...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • A picture says a thousand words, this one says about 20 000
    A picture says a thousand words, this one says about 20 000...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Comparing Key to Snowden
    Comparing Key to Snowden...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Latest Banksy
    Latest Banksy...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Valuing Teachers
    Valuing Teachers...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Plans-to-tax-the-rich-will-result-in-capital-flight-and-the-talented myth
    Plans-to-tax-the-rich-will-result-in-capital-flight-and-the-talented myth...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • TPPA is corporate thuggery
    TPPA is corporate thuggery...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Why we need feminism
    Why we need feminism...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Method In His Madness: Why did Russel Norman make Labour an offer it couldn...
    THE LINE FROM LABOUR is that the Greens made them an offer they couldn’t accept. Delivered in the condescending, world-weary tone one usually associates with a headmaster reprimanding one of the dimmer boys from the Lower-Fifth, the suggestion, clearly, is...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • iPredict has possible MANA-Internet Party alliance at 3 seats
    Latest iPredict scores has MANA at 1.1% and the Internet Party at 1.5% – combined that’s 2.6%, the party list percentages would roughly be… 2 seats (i.e. electorate and one list): (1.2%) 3 seats: (2%) 4 seats: (2.8%) 5 seats:...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Adam Bennett and his wonky Tai Tokerau logic
    Adam Bennett, the NZ Herald’s political reporter, has published a column with some wonky Tai Tokerau logic… Unless the Mana Internet alliance pulls off the unlikely feat of reaching the 5 per cent mark on election night, all of this...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Boots Riley performing for MANA fundraiser
    Mana Tamaki Branch are excited to announce that we have a very special guest, Boots Riley, coming to our very own neighbourhood! On Tuesday April 15 at 7.00pm Boots will be hosting a political discussion and Q&A followed by an...
    The Daily Blog | 14-04
  • Businessman who is taking Blogger to court for defamation attacked
    The NBR are reporting (paywalled) that Matt Blomfield, the businessman taking Cameron Slater to court for defamation, has had been attacked last night with shots fired at his home. How vicious and nasty. Thoughts are with Matt and his family....
    The Daily Blog | 14-04