Does Key know why he replaced Roy with Boscawen?

Written By: - Date published: 10:58 am, August 18th, 2010 - 22 comments
Categories: john key, national/act government, rodney hide - Tags: ,

Yesterday morning, John Key expressed his confidence in Heather Roy as a minister. That was later backed up by Bill English, answering on behalf of Key in the House, who said that the Prime Minister always has confidence in his ministers, otherwise they would cease to be ministers. English also stated that who is a minister is the Prime Minister’s prerogative.

So, how come it was Rodney Hide that announced Roy’s replacement with John Boscawen as Commerce Minister and announced that he himself would be taking over Roy’s Associate Education portfolio. Isn’t that the PM’s job? In fact, I’ve yet to see Key say that he wants Boscawen to be a minister in his government. That decision seems to have been solely made by Hide and his caucus. Did Key simply agree to whatever Hide presented him with? It looks that way, with Key saying there is an “implied concept” that the Deputy Leader of ACT, whomever that may be (except Roger Douglas), becomes a minister in his government. So, if Hide has made David Garrett his deputy, Key would have shrugged and made room for him at the Cabinet table.

It was bad enough when Key sacked Richard Worth without explanation. It was highly suspicious when no adequate explanation was given for Phil Heatley’s departure. But, now, we have support partners doing the job of the PM in appointing ministers and no explanation at all being given by anyone apart from a rumour that it was to do with Hide stealing ministerial papers from Roy’s office. And if that story is true, it’s Hide that needs to be sacked.

We’re in a depressingly familiar position under this Key government: We don’t know why one of our government’s ministers was forced to resign yesterday. It’s not good enough in this age of supposedly open and transparent government. The really scary thing this time is it appears the Prime Minister doesn’t know either.

22 comments on “Does Key know why he replaced Roy with Boscawen?”

  1. tc 1

    What key doesn’t know would fill a library……the corpratocracy approach means, like Reynolds atop of telecom collecting the big bucks, he fronts an agenda and does all the PR stuff leaving the actual work and detail to the ones who have ability…..not many in the NACT regime.

    It’s also a clear sign there’s no respect being attributed to him by ACT (surprised anyone!) otherwise he’d be in the loop.

  2. randal 2

    well wodney was vewwy vewwy big on transparency and openness and all that palaver but when it comes to himself we already know that there is a different set of rules.

  3. BLiP 3

    You’ve already made the point about Worth getting sacked without explanation, its not exactly that difficult a fact to discern, yet John Armstrong seems to be oblivious. In today’s piece he says:

    The days when a New Zealand politician could get away with a “no comment” response in such situations are long gone.

    At least Armstrong draws the distinction between Goff’s handling of the Carter affair and ACT’s silliness.

  4. vto 4

    Does it also reflect the increasing disillusionment with government that replacing a minister in such a manner raises no issues with the general public?

    People perhaps roll their eyes and carry on getting on with the important things in their lives (which, further, is perhaps a bit disingenuous given the increasing power being accumulated by govt).

  5. sally 5

    I wonder if Pita could use the same liberty to replace Tariana with Hone, and John Key would have the same reaction?

  6. Carol 6

    I do think Key was consulted before it became a done deal. There was something on Nat Rad this morning about Key being informed about it on Monday night. But Key is keeping his distance from it so he’s not drawn into the discussion. But then, do we know Key didn’t have some influence on rolling Roy? We have no way of knowing, it’s all been kept so secret.

  7. Does Key know why he replaced Roy with Boscawen?

    Ahhh no but he is relaxed about it and he going to kick the tyres on it …

  8. gobsmacked 8

    It’s just the next stage in this fascinating (terrifying) scientific experiment. We’re all the guinea pigs.

    Original assumption: “They can’t get away with it.” (see not only the silence on Worth, but abuse of urgency, abolition of elections, Bennett’s privacy breach, refusal to answer questions – “brush-off” – etc, etc).

    Swivel-eyed scientist: “But who says they can’t get away with it? Let’s find out what happens … Ooh, it seems they can! Let’s turn up the dial some more …”

    “Er, are you sure, Professor? Nobody’s ever gone to that level before!”

    Scientist: “Turn it up, I say! Let’s see what this baby can do!”

    … and so it goes on.

    There are no rules that can’t be broken. There is only what John Key can get away with. With the weakest media scrutiny in the Western world, it turns out he can get away with plenty. All he needs is a shrug and a smile. Who knew?

    Next: the new Governor-General. (Gasp! “You can’t do that!” … but who’s gonna stop him?).

  9. Cnr Joe(inamomentofclarity) 9

    Having just skimmed the guest post on the free market –
    So these mutts think the free-market works as individuals – with all information they need to make the right choices – do just that: make choices.
    But these mutts also with-hold so much information.
    But then that’s how they conned their way into the job in the first place…..

  10. Carol 10

    Labour has been suuccesful in getting the ACT change of dep. leader & ministerial posts debated in Parliament. Darren Hughes has just referred to the NACT confidence and supply agreement that the relationship would be based on good faith & no surprises.

    And Hughes is asking about Hide removing a classified defense document from Roy’s office and bullying her.

    Boscowen made his challenge for the dep leadership on 5 Aug. And Hughes is saying that it is impossible to believe Key didn’t know about it. He is also saying Roy’s name was written into the NACT supply & confidence agreement.

    • Carol 10.1

      Darren Hughes, damn good, fiery speech!

      And English is going on about the Labour Party’s history, Carter etc… rather than answer to the current case about Roy.

  11. Carol 11

    Hide is just saying that he informed Key 13 days ago, that Boscowen had challenge for the deputy leadership. Hide discussed it in detail with Key and kept him informed with every step.

    • Carol 11.1

      Whoa1 Lots of stuff airing in this debate.

      Mallard has just said that Roy complained about Key, Hide, Davo Henderson & ermmm … Bob Parker (is that his first name), inappropriately went away on a trip to Queenstown together. ie, the implication ebing they have a bit of an exclusive buddy relationship.

      Also, Hide gave the classified defence documents, taken off Roy’s desk, to a member of ACT’s board, a blogger, but also ex-military & with “integrity”, so now the documents are in the hands of the SIS.

      • mickysavage 11.1.1

        Hide gave the classified defence documents, taken off Roy’s desk, to a member of ACT’s board, a blogger, but also ex-military & with “integrity’, so now the documents are in the hands of the SIS

        No wonder he is nervous. If there is any truth to this the following should happen:

        1. He should be stood down from Cabinet.
        2. There needs to be an urgent inquiry to see if national security has been breached.
        3. The police and SIS should then be asked to investigate to see if crimes have been committed.

  12. tc 12

    To true MS…..however based on the MSM’s track record watch this get swept under the big blue carpet and run over with a steamroller big enough to make brownlee look like a stick figure.

    Funny that Hide’s refusal to answer is deemed ‘silly’ by some in the MSM but whenever NAT ministers do it it’s ‘clever’ or ‘authorative’ or simply portrayed as tough leadership on issues…FFS.

    As for breaching nat security….sideshow seems to do it often when revealing what our troops are doing rather than simply refusing to disclose….plonker.

    • Lew 12.1

      based on the MSM’s track record watch this get swept under the big blue carpet and run over with a steamroller big enough to make brownlee look like a stick figure.

      You were saying?


      • Carol 12.1.1

        Hmmm. Interesting article. Thanks for the link, Lew. And the allegations directly contradict what Hide and the Nats were saying about the issue. Hide claimed, that NACT had more efficient and democratic processes than the Labour Party; that there was no reason for Roy being replaced, other than that Bascawen had decided to challenge her deputy leadership because he thought he could do the job better.

        In parliament today, NACT made a big play of how they do an efficient & democratic process of role change, without the circuses that Labour have, eg with cameras following Carter around parliament.

      • mickysavage 12.1.2


        Act can kiss goodbye to the female vote for a start …

        I am watching the disintergration of the ACT party with a sense of morbid fascination.

        CAPCHA removes ; )

      • Jum 12.1.3

        Checked out your link, thanks, Lew. Having finished the article on bully boy Hide dismembering his party cohesion, my eyes strayed to the list of headlines and settled on the ‘toxic sea slug’ one. How appropriate.

  13. Rex Widerstrom 13

    So, if Hide has made David Garrett his deputy, Key would have shrugged and made room for him at the Cabinet table.

    Part of me wants to see that scenario. Alright it’s the same part of me that used to brew nitroglycerine in my parents’ spare bedroom, but still…

  14. gobsmacked 14

    Apart from the blood-letting (or rather, flooding) in that Herald article Lew links to, the reference to Wayne Mapp is the one that DEMANDS demands a thorough investigation.

    If true, then the Defence Minister explicitly did not want the Associate Minister to lose her job. Quite the opposite.

    So a minister who was competent, according to her National ‘boss’, has been ousted for reasons that have nothing to do with her performance. Against the wishes of the Minister and (of course) Associate Minister.

    Therefore, keeping Rodney Hide happy is more important to the Prime Minister than the New Zealand Defence Forces. And that is a scandal.

    • Jum 14.1

      Act no longer has any defence portfolio, I gather. Since Key knew they were planning to ‘assassinate’ Roy, politically, is there a reason for Key to keep defence matters locked in his closet?

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