Then: Labour Minister David Parker accused of financial wrongdoing (filing incorrect returns). He resigns Ministerial portfolios and as Attorney General while the Companies Office investigates. Cleared of all wrongdoing (the returns were correct) and later reinstated as a Minister.
Now: National Minister Richard Worth accused of financial wrongdoing (using Ministerial position to seek personal gain). Given a warning, then a final warning, then a series of final warnings as more details emerge. No real sanction of any form.
Then: Labour Minister Lianne Dalziel illegally leaks private information to the press and is accused of lying to the media to cover her involvement. Resigned as Minister. (Reinstated two years later after the next election).
Now: National Minister Paula Bennett illegally leaks private information to the press and appears to have lied to the media to try and justify her involvement. No sanction of any form, as PM John Key is “comfortable” with this behaviour.
Then: Labour Minister Marian Hobbs and Phillida Bunkle (Alliance) accused of rorting MPs allowances for Wellington accommodation. Both immediately stood down from Ministerial duties during investigation. The Auditor General declared their payments legal, but Bunkle never regained her ministerial position, and Hobbs voluntarily paid the money back.
Now: National Minister Bill English accused of rorting MPs allowances for Wellington accommodation. PM John Key is comfortable with this behaviour and scolds critics for “persecuting” Bill.
Then: Opposition leader John Key spent his time ranting at the imagined evils of the Labour government (“I’ve had nine years of being told what lightbulb I can screw into the house, what shower I can take, what food I can eat, what things I can do, what thoughts I am allowed to have”!!!). Key promises new standards of accountability and a tough “one strike and you’re out” standard for his government.
Now: What a joke.