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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    Bill English's attempt to restore his damaged credibility over the Todd Barclay affair has backfired after his claim to have "reported" Mr Barclay's actions to Police has proven not to be true, says Labour MP for Wellington Central Grant Robertson. ...
    4 days ago
  • Keep it Public
    The Green Party strongly supports the Tertiary Education Unions call to #KeepitPublic Keep what public? Out quality tertiary education system that National is trying to open up to more private for-profit providers with a new law change. The (Tertiary Education ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    4 days ago
  • This ‘technical error’ is hurting big time
    Jonathan Coleman cannot resort to his ongoing litany that the Ministry of Health’s $38 million budget blunder is an error on paper only, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “He might keep saying it’s a ‘technical error’ but the reality ...
    4 days ago
  • Labour to invest in public transport for Greater Christchurch
    Labour will commit $100m in capital investment for public transport in Greater Christchurch, including commuter rail from Rolleston to the CBD, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “As the rebuild progresses, there are huge opportunities for Greater Christchurch, but ...
    4 days ago
  • Green Party will repeal solar tax
    It’s ridiculous for an electricity distribution monopoly to apply a charge on solar panels but worse than that, it’s harming our effort to tackle climate change. Hawke’s Bay lines company Unison last year announced a new solar charge for their ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    5 days ago
  • English fails the character test over Barclay
    Bill English is hoping this scandal will go away, but he is still dodging important questions over his role in covering up for Todd Barclay, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    5 days ago
  • Government must apologise for Christchurch schools stuff-up
    The Ombudsman’s findings that the Ministry of Education botched the reorganisation of Christchurch schools after the 2011 earthquake are damning for an under-fire National Government, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “The Ombudsman has found the reorganisation of schools in ...
    5 days ago
  • Government’s multinational tax measures weak
    The Government’s proposals to crack down on multinational tax avoidance, by its own admission only recovering one third of the missing money, means hardworking Kiwis will bear more of the tax burden, says Labour’s Revenue spokesperson Michael Wood. “The Government ...
    5 days ago
  • World Refugee Day – we can do our bit
    I’m really proud that yesterday, on World Refugee Day, the Greens launched an ambitious plan to increase the refugee quota to 5000 over the next six years. Of those places, 4,000 will be directly resettled by the government and another ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    5 days ago
  • PM’s leadership in question over Barclay affair
    The Prime Minister must belatedly show some leadership and compel Todd Barclay to front up to the Police, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “Twice today Bill English has been found wanting in this matter. ...
    6 days ago
  • Another memory lapse by Coleman?
    The Minister of Health ‘couldn’t recall’ whether the Director General of Health Chai Chuah offered his resignation over the Budget funding fiasco involving the country’s District Health Boards, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “In the House today Jonathan Coleman ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English needs to come clean over Barclay
    Bill English needs to explain why he failed to be upfront with the public over the actions of Clutha-Southland MP Todd Barclay, following revelations that he knew about the secretly recorded conversations in the MP’s electorate office, says Labour Leader ...
    6 days ago
  • Minister, show some backbone and front up and debate
    Rather than accusing critics of his Te Ture Whenua Māori Bill of telling ‘lies’, Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell should show some backbone and front up to a debate on the issue, says Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP Meka Whaitiri. “Te ...
    6 days ago
  • Equal pay for mental health workers
    Today, mental health workers are filing an equal pay claim through their unions. Mental health support workers do important and difficult work in our communities. But because the workforce is largely female, they are not paid enough. It’s wrong for ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    7 days ago
  • Nats’ HAM-fisted housing crisis denial
    National’s decision to knowingly release a flawed Housing Affordability Measure that underestimates the cost of housing is the latest evidence of their housing crisis denial, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    7 days ago
  • New Pike footage builds compelling case for mine re-entry
    New footage of the Pike River Mine deep inside the operation, revealing no fire damage or signs of an inferno, provides a compelling reason to grant the families of Pike River’s victims their wish to re-enter the drift, says Labour ...
    7 days ago
  • Labour will get tough on slum boarding houses
    The next Labour-led Government will legislate a Warrant of Fitness based on tough minimum standards to clean out slum boarding houses, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It’s not acceptable for New Zealanders in the 21st Century to be living ...
    1 week ago
  • Green Party tribute to Dame Nganeko Minhinnick
    Haere ngā mate ki tua o paerau; te moenga roa o ngā mātua tupuna. Haere, haere, haere. It was with a huge sense of loss that we learned of the death of Dame Nganeko Minhinnick yesterday. The Green Party acknowledges ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Urgent answers needed on DHB funding
      Jonathan Coleman must come clean and answer questions about what actual funding DHBs received in Budget 2017, says Labour Health Spokesperson David Clark.   ...
    1 week ago
  • Treasury puts Māori Land Service on red alert
    A damning Treasury report raises serious questions about the delivery of Te Ururoa Flavell’s proposed Māori Land Service, giving it a ‘red’ rating which indicates major issues with the project, says Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP Meka Whaitiri.  “Treasury’s Interim Major Projects Monitoring ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Economy stalling after nine years of National’s complacency
    The second successive quarterly fall in per person growth shows the need for a fresh approach to give all New Zealanders a fair share in prosperity, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kiwi kids deserve much more
    All Kiwi kids deserve so much more than the impoverished picture painted by the shameful rankings provided by the UNICEF Innocenti Report Card, says Labour’s children spokesperson Jacinda Ardern. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • NZ Zone a precursor to a total nuclear weapon ban
    New Zealand’s nuclear-free zone, legislated by Parliament in 1987, is something we all take pride in. It’s important, however, that we don’t let it thwart its own ultimate purpose – a world free of nuclear weapons. That goal must be ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham
    2 weeks ago
  • English must confirm we still stand by our principles on UN resolution
    Bill English must tell New Zealand whether we remain in support of the UN Security Council resolution on Israeli settlements in Palestinian territory, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “After Foreign Affairs Minister Gerry Brownlee’s evasive answers to repeated questions on ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori party drop the poi on Māori health
    The Māori Party have dropped the poi when it comes to supporting Ngati Whakaue and Māori interests in Bay of Plenty by allowing an iwi owned and operated service Te Hunga Manaaki to be brushed aside in favour of a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour to invest in Whanganui River infrastructure
    Labour will work in partnership with the Whanganui Council to repair and redevelop the city’s Port precinct in advance of planned economic development and expansion. To enable Whanganui’s plans, Labour will commit $3m in matching funding for repairing the Whanganui ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Parihaka: an apology
    An apology only works for healing if it is sincere and if it is accepted. We teach our children to apologise and to be genuine if they want to be forgiven. On Friday, June 9 at Parihaka, the Crown apologised ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Survey shows many international students plan to stay in NZ after study
    Most international students in New Zealand at PTEs (private training establishments) who have a plan for themselves after study intend to stay in New Zealand to work. This shows how low-level education has become a backdoor immigration route under National, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Councils step up as Nats drop the ball on housing crisis
    Phil Goff’s Mayoral Housing Taskforce is another positive example of councils stepping up where National has failed on housing, says Labour Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Time for a breather on immigration
    Labour will introduce moderate, sensible reforms to immigration to reduce the pressure on our cities, while ensuring we get the skilled workers our country needs, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “New Zealand is a country built on immigration. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Inaction puts Māui dolphins at risk
    Conservation Minister Maggie Barry was at the United Nations Oceans Conference in New York last week, trying to convince the world that the New Zealand Government is doing a good job at protecting our marine environment.  Yet last week after ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    2 weeks ago
  • National unprepared as immigration runs four times faster than forecast
    National has been caught asleep at the wheel by record immigration that has outstripped Budget forecasts, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • First home buyers shouldn’t carry the can for National’s failed policies
    The introduction of tighter limits on lending to first home buyers would see them paying the price for the National Party’s failure to recognise or fix the housing crisis, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Nine years of denial and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Motel bill blows out as Nats fail to deliver emergency housing
    Minister Amy Adams has admitted at select committee that National has now spent $22m on putting homeless families in motels as it fails to deliver the emergency housing places it promised, says Labour Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Minister, how out of touch are you?
    What was going through Jonathan Coleman’s head in the Health Select Committee this morning when he claimed he was unaware that an estimated 533,000 people have missed out on a GP’s visit in the last 12 months due to cost, ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Divided we fall
    I’m getting pretty sick of the politics of division in this country.  The latest example was yesterday’s comments from NZ First leader Winston Peters having a good go in the House at driving up fear and loathing towards people of ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    3 weeks ago
  • Labour’s Electoral Amendment Bill to enhance democracy
    Democracy will be enhanced under Labour’s Private Member’s Bill which will have its First Reading today, says Labour’s Local Government spokesperson MP Meka Whaitiri. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Police underfunded despite rise in crime
    As crime continues to rise dairy owners are scared for their lives and communities reel under a record increase in burglary numbers, it has now been revealed that Police received less than three quarters of their bid in this year’s ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Road pricing years off, public transport investment needed now
    With road pricing still years away, Labour will step up with investment in public transport to ease Auckland’s congestion woes, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Call to protect Easter Sunday in Auckland
    Auckland’s Labour MPs are backing the community to protect Easter Sunday by retaining current trading restrictions in the city, says Labour MPs Aupito William Sio and Michael Wood.  “The Government’s weak and confusing decision to delegate the decision over Easter ...
    3 weeks ago
  • $2.3 billion shortfall in health
    The funding needed for health to be restored to the level it was seven years ago to keep pace with cost pressures has widened to a massive $2.3 billion, says Labour Leader Andrew Little.  “We used to have a health ...
    3 weeks ago