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Jami-Lee Ross takes time out

Written By: - Date published: 1:50 pm, October 2nd, 2018 - 107 comments
Categories: jacinda ardern, labour, national, Politics, Simon Bridges - Tags:

The National caucus can’t be a very happy place right now.  What with a witch hunt being conducted and Simon Bridges sparing no effort or expense to find out who leaked his travel expense details.  And with inept negative leadership.

I feel sorry for their MPs, I really do.  Having to turn up day in and day out and rubbish the country and run it down and pick on the slightest thing to try and garner support.  Opposing a Tahr cull the process of which was implemented in 1993 under a previous National Government then watching as Eugenie Sage does a deal, gets the support of hunters to continue but reduce the size of the cull, and then makes the problem go away.

And having to deal with the political phenomenon known as Jacinda Ardern.  And seeing her effectively neuter your whole political strategy by being kind.

It must really suck.

And the strain is showing.

National’s whip Jami Lee Ross is taking time out to recover from health issues.  All the best to him.  At a personal level I hope he gets better and repairs himself. Politics can suck and have a terrible effect on people. I have seen this far too often.

There is speculation that he is the leaker although Simon Bridges has said that his leave is unrelated to the inquiry.  Interesting choice of words there, Bridges could have just said that he was satisfied it was not Ross.

My theory is that it is actually someone else.

But rumours that National’s caucus is an unhappy place are clearly true. And it is only going to get worse over the next couple of weeks as the inquiry draws to a conclusion.

In your comments please refrain from attacking anyone personally and address the political implications of the event.

107 comments on “Jami-Lee Ross takes time out”

  1. Dukeofurl 1

    In the leadership stakes, everyone had JLR on Bridges side. Plus he did well out of the rankings and responsibilities.

    Still my pick its someone who never supported Bridges and suffered accordingly.- yes its a long list.

    • Oh well.

      Sometimes you cant help it if you aint pretty and your legs are thin…

      FLEETWOOD MAC – Oh Well (1969 UK TV Performance) ~ HIGH …

  2. Kat 2

    Will Hosking do a piece on “should we be paying for this”.

  3. Muttonbird 3

    I’ll be very very very surprised if Bridges’ extraordinarily expensive investigations name any other National MP as the leaker.

    • mickysavage 3.1

      I see you have been having a bit of fun at a site that will not be named …

      • Chuck 3.1.1

        MS I agree with the first part below…

        “And having to deal with the political phenomenon known as Jacinda Ardern. And seeing her effectively neuter your whole political strategy by being kind.”

        Jacinda does tick the boxes as a political phenomenon. No need to list them as they are well known.

        The second part though is wishful thinking. Being kind does not translate into achieving your policy goals or being reelected.

        As the saying goes…You have to be cruel to be kind.

        Point in case leaving Clare Curran to dangle until she had her meltdown.

      • alwyn 3.1.2

        “A bit of fun”.
        Being an arsehole is a better way of putting it.

    • Chris T 3.2

      People do realise Ardern has also got an investigation going into their leak?

      • veutoviper 3.2.1

        Yes.

        Your next troll remark is?

        • Chris T 3.2.1.1

          Well presumably it is just as “extraordinarily expensive”

          • veutoviper 3.2.1.1.1

            No. They are very different investigations, even if they are both being funded through the respective Leader’s Funds.

            The inquiry into the leak of Bridges’ travel expenses is being undertaken by National, using PWC for the forensic work and Simpson Grierson who will then filter the results of the PWC findings and provide information to Simon Bridges and Paula Bennett.

            PWC and Simpson Grierson do not come cheap. Their inquiry is now over a month old (eg it started c 4 Sept) and the inquiry involves all National Party MPs’ communications dating from 8 February 2018 to August 2018 (56 if Bridges and Bennett’s communications are included) and presumably the communications of the staff of these MPs. So big bucks are flashing before my eyes.

            OTOH, the inquiry into the leak of the draft Meka Whaitiri report is being conducted by the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA). This because the original investigation of Whaitiri’s interactions with the press officer was undertaken as an internal Ministerial Services employment matter as the press officer was an employee of Ministerial Services (part of DIA).

            So all or the majority of the costs of the original investigation and the inquiry into the leak of the draft report will be internal DIA costs, apart from any costs incurred from using any external investigators, getting outside independent legal advice etc.

            The scope of the Whaitiri inquiry is also much more limited. It is focused on looking at who had a copy of the draft report – apparently a very limited number of people over a very short period of time a day or so before the draft report was leaked.

            Hope that helps.

            • mickysavage 3.2.1.1.1.1

              The leak you are referring to very possibly came from within the police force. Of course it should be investigated.

              • Muttonbird

                Wow. Explosive if it were the case elements within the Police are in collusion with the opposition to undermine the government.

                • Not uncommon in third world banana republics.

                  It happens.

                  The Westminster tradition is only soluble as long as it suits, it seems…in some country’s less endowed with principles…and the rule of law…

                  And an unbiased legal profession.

                  Thanks, John Key and co.

                  Nice precedent, you got there.

                  Glad your gone.

                  Hows Operation Burnham inquiry’s going , BTW?

                • KJT

                  Not surprised. Senior police seem happy to tell people not to vote for “left wing Governments”. Being good little authoritarian followers, and NACT supporters, is an advantage in a police career.

              • patricia bremner

                That does not surprise.

      • Michelle 3.2.2

        it might be their leak ( labours) but who leaked it and who has been leaking and has form in this area at the moment

  4. R.P Mcmurphy 4

    sorry mickey savage but after policy or maybe before, the vote comes down to do you like this person as a person.
    in jamie lee jimbobs case I do not and I dont like the policy and the party he espouses either.
    He has a cultivated arrogance and a voice that common folks mistake for integrity.
    as for the leaker well it keeps this blog alive as the machiavellian maestros and mavens demonstrate their propensity to wave wands of mindnumbing meaningless prose about things most people dont give a stuff about.

  5. Pete 5

    It will be a lot happier when Judith gets the job.

  6. Michael 6

    I do hope Mr Ross gets better and stops leaking (if that is his diagnosis). But I think it will take time and don’t see why we should pay him so much money when he should be on Jobseeker Allowance (with jobsearch obligations possibly, maybe, contingently, perhaps) deferred, just like everyone else whose health prevents them from turning up to work (I wouldn’t say “doing a full week’s work” because, after all, the guy is a member of our political class).

    • Michelle 6.1

      yes I agree with Michael what a luxury to have month of work with pay when him and his party have been putting the boot into working people including our teachers and Nurses to name a few. jay-me was one of the worse mongrels for kicking people when they were down and now we are expected to have some sympathy for him.
      It seems what goes around comes around but it take time before some people get their come up ins .

  7. patricia bremner 7

    Then R.P. Mcmurphy, 4 why bother visiting the site??
    By the way, it appears you may have had lessons from a certain politician.
    Especially the last sentence!! Very Jonesque!!

  8. Scooter 8

    “Regardless of the job we do, our personal well-being should always come first.”

    That’s a pleasant sentiment but its just not reality for many workers. The guy who colluded to outsource jobs at POA and disempower workers to the point where he attacked their right to strike now needs time off for his health and his family. Something he actively worked against for other people to incorporate into their lives. If it is genuinely a health issue I hope he recovers but its very difficult to summon up much empathy for JLR

  9. ianmac 9

    When the Sprinboks toured in 81 I was angry with the tour and its organisers.
    I felt sympathy with the athletes who were at their peaks and bursting to play

    I feel angry with Opposition, JL Ross and their organisers. Trite. Carping. Petty.
    I feel sympathy for JLR as Health is pretty all encompassingly important. Get well lad.

  10. Grantoc 10

    Well Mickey I also hear that the Labour Party is not a particularly happy place either at the moment. Here are some reasons for that:

    1. Still down in the polls cf with National; regardless of Jacinda’s ‘star dust’ ( I suspect
    that that’s wearing thin with many of the punters in NZ btw, despite the interest
    in her in New York last week.)

    2. Labour parliamentarians unhappiness at having to kowtow to Peter’s; especially
    re employment law reforms and his insistence at being regarded as a equal
    coalition partner.

    3. Unhappiness in the ranks at the dismissal of two Ministers in recent weeks
    leading in one case to a revolt by the Labour party Maori caucus led by an out of
    control Willie Jackson (who is clearly more concerned with employer rights than
    employee rights – why is he even the Minister of Employment?)

    4. Looming strikes throughout the primary and secondary school sectors by
    teachers; to date sycophantic supporters of the Labour Party. Its not good policy
    to piss off one of the strongest parts of support base.

    5. Robinson’s struggle to keep house hold costs under control as they sky rocket
    away; eg petrol.

    I could go on; but the above on its own is making the Labour Caucus extremely unhappy from what I hear.

    • ianmac 10.1

      Hard luck Grantoc. If Bridges says he is part of the Labour Caucus and tells you these fanciful myths, just get yourself a grip on truth and reality.
      Not one of your Five Myths is true.

      • Grantoc 10.1.1

        Your comment makes no sense ianmac.

        So read carefully. I’ll do my best to keep it simple so that you might just get it. This is true and real.

        The main item on RNZ’s checkpoint this evening was about looming strikes in the primary and secondary school sectors, including teachers’ disdain for Minister Hipkins. This is unsetting the Labour caucus. This is not a ‘fanciful myth’ but a cold hard fact.

        • Muttonbird 10.1.1.1

          ianmac wonders how you know it to be cold hard fact when you are not even remotely close to the Labour Party, let alone the Labour Caucus.

        • ianmac 10.1.1.2

          You can’t be serious Grantoc. If I said that the defection of JL Ross has caused panic and arguments in the National Caucus and that it will cause Bridges to resign, would you believe it?

    • mickysavage 10.2

      Have I struck a nerve Grantoc? Interesting that you should reply to my comment about National having problems by just saying that Labour has similar problems …

      • Grantoc 10.2.1

        Your comments on your understanding of morale in the National Party seemed to be the main point of your blog Micky. Jamie Lee – Ross’s situation seemed only to serve as a platform for you to launch your opinion’s from.

        I thought it would be useful to redress the balance by pointing out some of the problems within the Labour Party that are presently affecting morale therein.

    • Clive Macann 10.3

      Re petrol cost. The tax of every litre (bar Auckland) is the same. So tell me why ChCh pays 40 cents a litre more than I do outside my gate (out in the country) at Gull? Bullshit that the Govt is doing this. Go lay the blame right where it belongs with the Fuel suppliers instead of political bashing. Remember that the latest 3.5c rise was set up by the previous Govt. Talk to John Key about that one.

      • Dukeofurl 10.3.1

        auckland has a fuel pipeline to marsden pt refinery.
        all other nz ports have coastal tanker delivery or are supplied by road tanker.

        thats the reason for cost difference , apparently. i think up to the 1980s there was a standardised price so that auckland paid more so that people in invercargill could have same price.

        • Pete 10.3.1.1

          Is petrol cheaper or that much cheaper at the petrol station where the Marsden Point road joins State Highway 1? Just up the road from the refinery. No.

          • Dukeofurl 10.3.1.1.1

            no petrol station gets its gas direct from refinery.
            they all get it from the local brand /wholesaler distribution point. in that case maybe it comes from auckland by tanker or from whangarei

            do you go to the tip top factory to buy ice cream cheaper direct or is the only way to get it is from dairy or supermarket

            why are we even talking about this here ?

          • KJT 10.3.1.1.2

            It is piped to Whangarei, and delivered from the depo there.

            By the way, delivery, even to the South Island, is a small fraction of the petrol cost.

            Recent rises are simply price gouging by the oil companies. I wouldn’t be surprised if there is an element of pique, for refusing them continued licenses, to destroy the environment.

      • Bewildered 10.3.2

        It’s becuase Auckland is way more competitive in chasing the customer thus requiring a lot more flexibility around price re supply and demand You will need to suck it up,: this spreading of this aucklad tax was well anticipated before it came into force re a market response so go talk to Cindy. I warn you though socialist really struggle with unintended consequences

    • Ad 10.4

      The Labour Party caucus are having a fine old time and doing what they should do in power: deliver benefits to millions of people as soon as they got in.

      They don’t give a damn about the polls, because they’re in power.

      They don’t give a monkey’s about Winston Peters.

      The dismissals meant the PM got more options and others got more responsibility, because they’re in power.

      They will get it together with the teachers just as they did with the nurses and all the others, because they are in power.

      Robinson is watching household cost inflation as much as the Reserve Bank – and inflation is just fine.

      You could go on but no one but diehard National supporters give fuck.

    • Cantabrian 10.5

      Who is Robinson Grantoc? You mean Grant Robertson? You can’t even get the Finance Minister’s name correct let alone the rest of your post. There are no problems in the Labour caucus save for the normal cut and thrust of politics.

    • Delia 10.6

      No one in charge of the country is unhappy, irritated at times and bit frustrated, but never unhappy..that caucus put Jacinda Ardern in there. Nice fantasy though.

    • Ngungukai 10.7

      Sounds like you have a mild form of depression ?

  11. Stuart Munro 11

    It’s all part of the Gnat regeneration process, a generational change. Unfortunately some of the older and less appealing members seem to be waiting until they are completely silicified – this takes a long time and requires nearly total immobility. Nevertheless the move from being deadwood to petrified wood does increase their value as coffee table ornaments.

  12. Michelle 12

    why do you feel sorry for the national mps they deserve everything they get after the way they treated us for 9 yrs bugger them they get good pay and have kick many in the guts now expect sympathy

  13. Cinny 13

    Am always dubious when a person in a position of public responsibility stands down/relocates/takes a break due to health issues/family, especially when they don’t offer any more information. JS

    Time will tell.

    • mike 13.1

      right honorable Ross must have a real leaky reason

    • Drowsy M. Kram 13.2

      JK, BE and SJ stood down in part to spend more time with family – good luck to them!

      Can’t remember the official reason for deBarclay toddling off, though.

    • Dukeofurl 13.3

      To me it has the ring of confusion marketing’
      Corporates do it all the time to cover their tracks………

      Who would have thought that 2 different national mps were in crisis at much the same time.
      If you think that I have a choice of cell phone plans for you to consider

  14. mary_a 14

    According to the link below in his statement, Simon Bridges refers directly to the health issue as concerning Jamie-Lee Ross himself and not a member of his family.

    Strange that Bridges also makes reference to the leak(er) of his own expenses, while discussing Ross’s health problem being the reason he is stepping back for a while (to get well)!?! This will give rise to speculation.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12135542

    • Muttonbird 14.1

      But BM is certain it’s because of Ross’ family and not Ross himself because he read it on a forum. He hasn’t been able to back it up but I sure do believe him, don’t you?

  15. Nick 15

    Heard Soimin on the radio saying something along the lines of its very embarrassing type of health issue for jlr, whatever that was meant to infer. Strange why the ‘bridge to nowhere’ would refer to it in that way.

    • Muttonbird 15.1

      He’s just sticking the knife in now.

    • Cinny 15.2

      Totally agree with you Nick… is like wtf simon, why would you say…

      ‘A potentially embarrassing personal health issue.’

      Talk about maximum media and public interest baiting with those words.

    • woodart 15.3

      perhaps ross has had a dose of conscience, that would be embarrassing to a right winger.

  16. Morrissey 16

    I’ve just published the following comment on a de facto National Party blog:

    Stupidity is not the same as mental illness. To have the National Party’s spin doctors cynically invoke serious health conditions to use in their own intra-party squabbles is beyond obscene.

    Shame on Jamie-Lee Ross for his cowardice and his inability to stand up for himself and criticize his failing leader in public. And shame, shame, shame on the National Party for its horrible abuse of what is a serious and real problem for many people.

    So far, the reaction to my post has not been positive….

    https://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2018/10/ross_on_leave.html/comment-page-1#comment-2323715

    • Chris T 16.1

      Your link is to a page without that comment

      • Muttonbird 16.1.1

        All comments of a similar position are being deleted from that forum, supposedly the home of free speech.

        Never mind the thousands of unsubstantiated accusations in comments relating to Labour Party ministers and MPs which appear there every single month.

        Oh, the hypocrisy, the severe hypocrisy.

      • Morrissey 16.1.2

        Sorry, Chris—the egregiously anti-free speech “six complaints” rule at Kiwiblog means that anything a few right wing nutters conspire against is sent into limbo. You know that this anti-democratic, illiberal, anti-free speech rule has been used against you when you—and only you—see the following five words above your post….

        Your comment is awaiting moderation.

        Fortunately, the posts remain on the computer of the person who sent them. That’s why Muttonbird can retrieve his censored posts, and why I can retrieve mine.

        Here, for your delectation, are the ones that angered so many Kiwibloggers this afternoon…..

        http://morrisseybreen.blogspot.com/2018/10/censored-posts-on-kiwiblog-re-jami-lee.html

        • alwyn 16.1.2.1

          Lots and lots of your posts are sitting there Morrissey, along with a number by Muttonhead.
          I’m afraid that the delusions you both have that they are out to get you are about as silly as the content of your posts.

        • Muttonbird 16.1.2.2

          Remarkable that a handful of reports by a tribe of malcontents short on morals and intelligence is enough to send to moderation.

    • millsy 16.2

      Reading comments on a Kiwiblog post is enough to give one mental health issues..

  17. OnceWasTim 17

    Geez, they wasted no time in updating Wikipedia. 14:48

  18. chris73 18

    Prediction time. JLR is toast. It’ll be either a resignation and by-election or he’ll be stuck in the most far away back bench seat you can find and he’ll retire, at the next election

    But he’s gone burgers

    • Anne 18.1

      I knew someone who did something similar to the National Party leaker many, many moons ago. He was not a politician but he did belong to a high profile profession. He was subsequently diagnosed with a bipolar condition and placed on medication. He went on to live a normal and productive life.

      I’m just putting it out there because people like that former acquaintance – regardless of what they may have done – should be supported and not vilified.

    • Dukeofurl 18.2

      But JLR is a bridges backer at the leadershi contest! It’s most likely still Bishop or another Auckland mp

    • Tricledrown 18.3

      Don’t think so Chris 73 National will just rehab JLR like Key did with Collins.
      National have a lot of ambitious people in the Party like a pack of hyenas looking for a weakness in the alpha.
      Talking of that Paula Bennett looks very old and worn out wouldn’t be surprised if their caucus is reshuffled by Xmas.

      • Michelle 18.3.1

        pull- a is looking old and worn out cause she is and she has already done her part destroying many peoples lives.

  19. Muttonbird 19

    Hey Micky. Post title should read:

    Bridges takes Jami-Lee Ross out

  20. Chris T 20

    I think Bridges will live to regret adding the potentially embarrassing comment

    There are very few potential issues someone could have that can be classified as embarrassing in this day and age, without getting a lot of people angry at a lack of sensitivity

    Not the brightest spark.

  21. Morrissey 21

    Being demoted by the incompetent Bridges is bad, but Jami-Lee Ross had a far worse night back in 2013, when he was summarily smashed to the boundary by David Shearer…..

    Open mike 25/07/2013

  22. AB 22

    Here’s the dilemma.
    Do you wish for an end to the suffering of a man whose political ideology, if implemented, will cause suffering to others? Because once he returns to health, then his capability to eventually inflict that suffering, is increased.

    Probably you have to wish for an end to current suffering, in the hope that the future suffering can be prevented. On those grounds, I hope JLR gets better.

    Of course it may be a total sham to cover up that JLR is the leaker. But then I don’t get to pose an interesting ethical question.

  23. ianmac 23

    Audrey Young has for once an interesting take:

    If Jami-Lee Ross is not the National Party leaker, then the timing of his time-out from politics is cruel.

    Because if he is not the leaker, many people are left wondering whether he is.
    That means Ross will be on leave when the leaker is identified, if that person has been foolish enough to leave a trail – and everything to date suggests the leaker has been foolish enough to be identified.

    National leader Simon Bridges said Jami-Lee Ross’s departure it was unrelated to the ongoing leak investigation.

    Bridges’ has been careful with his words.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12135781

    • Sacha 23.1

      She seems much less convinced of his innocence than I expected.

      • Anne 23.1.1

        Her last sentence says it all really:

        Whatever the outcome of the leak inquiry, Jami-Lee Ross will still be on full salary and he will have plenty of time to contemplate his future in politics.

        • alwyn 23.1.1.1

          Like Clare Curran and Meka Whaitiri I suppose.
          Still on their full salary while they contemplate the ruin of their careers.
          Have they been seen in Parliament lately?
          Or in their electorates for that matter.

          • Incognito 23.1.1.1.1

            Less than accurate, I’m afraid. They got stripped from their Ministerial portfolios and this would have come with a reduction in pay. However, they are still MPs with responsibilities who fulfil their duties and should be paid for this commensurate with those duties.

          • Delia 23.1.1.1.2

            Both are still MPs and Clare Curran is supported by her electorate, not one person asked has said a word against her, I suppose that is what happens when you do a reasonable job in your actual electorate especially when a super flood wipes out homes (and you are there helping)

          • Michelle 23.1.1.1.3

            but did they have months of work alwyn like jay-me is going to have with full pay

  24. Draco T Bastard 24

    National’s whip Jami Lee Ross is taking time out to recover from health issues.

    Is he still being paid?

  25. Ad 25

    National caucus breathes a sigh of relief …….

  26. Pete 26

    So Bridges wants conjecture about what a “potentially embarrassing personal health issue” is.

    My guess is stuffed by the fact that it isn’t ‘potential’ it’s certain. That is, an embarrassing issue is mixing with fuckwits like Simon Bridges and Judith Collins. That’s enough to have someone want at least three months off work.

  27. barry 27

    JLR is taking sick leave.

    as he will be away more than 2 consecutive days, i assume he will provide a doctor’s certificate.

    his 5 day’s sick leave will run out soon and then he will use annual leave, then live off his savings until his stand-down period ends and he can get JSS.

    Of course his doctor will decide that (even if he can’t take the pressure of his current job) he can flip burgers and they will arrange an interview for him after he has worked on his CV extensively, BUT he will have to take a drug test.

    Or am I wrong?

  28. cleangreen 28

    Jamie Ross was just a ‘dead space’ anyway so “god riddance to bad rubbish” I say.

    I hope others in the National caucus follow his lead too.

    • Grantoc 28.1

      Jacinda would be proud of you cleangreen for the way you represent the “kindness’ in politics that she recently talked about. Not.

      You sound bitter and angry and unforgiving – no trace of kindness. You are Just ‘dead space’ in on the left.

      • KJT 28.1.1

        Ordinarily I would feel some sympathy for a person who is unwell.

        However for all the lives he was intent on destroying while, being an arrogant entitled Fauntleroy, in Parliament.

        Well.

        Kharma.

  29. cleangreen 29

    So Nikki Kaye feels some solace for Jamie does she?

    Well if these two National Caucus members felt so enamoured by ‘health issues’ to keep them from their duties perhaps they should have thought about all the thousands of elders and poor among us all who their Government abandoned when they wound down the public health and dental services in NZ also shouldn’t they have?

    • Michelle 29.1

      did niki kay have to wait months or years for her cancer treatment she would have been fast tracked in the meantime many kiwis are dying while waiting for cancer treatment, medicines and many other health needs are not being met including screening, operations , ACC entitlement are being denied. And mental health services are stretched. All of these areas were cut and neglected under jamies government.

    • KJT 29.2

      Five days sick leave, then job seekers allowance, after he has used all his savings and sold his assets.

      As they wish on everyone else.

  30. ianmac 30

    Wasn’t JLR the one who was ushered into Botany on the back of some pretty dodgy attacks on the previous MP in 2011? Part of a plan to get ultra conservative MPs elected as was Smith in the Kaikoura Electorate.

  31. Rosemary McDonald 31

    There was this surgeon who had a reputation for, regardless of whatever proceedure caused one to fall under his knife, whipping out any heamarhoids one might have…but had been too embarrassed to mention to ones doctor.

    • KJT 31.1

      Used to be the medical person at my work, often several days from the nearest doctor. Most common complaints were hemorrhoids and constipation.

  32. thechangeling 32

    Got zero sympathy for Ross. The National Party maybe better off without him but I doubt it. Leopard’s don’t change their spots easily. The party he represents is a nasty bit of work and exemplifies the ‘Master and Servant’ ethos that the Nats want to force upon all of us. Born to rule, arrogant, sanctimonious and pretentious are other synonyms that ooze from his party.

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