It’s clear now that John Key allowed one of the ministers he appointed to be bullied out of her job and replaced by a man chosen by Rodney Hide, and that he didn’t even ask Hide why. As more details emerge, it looks like Hide is the one in the wrong: he took sensitive ministerial documents out of Heather Roy’s office against her wishes and let his personal issues with her spill over into their ministerial work.
Will Key now discipline Hide and invite Roy, who has been acclaimed as a good minister in a bad bunch, back on board? Not likely. The guy’s barely awake these days.
But this story is far from over. And one of the issues is that the National/ACT confidence and supply agreement clearly states:
Heather Roy MP will be appointed to ministerial positions outside Cabinet. …
Mrs Roy will be appointed Minister of Consumer Affairs, Associate Minister of Defence and Associate Minister of Education.
It’s clear. The agreement says Roy is to be appointed a Minister. It doesn’t say the deputy leader of ACT is to be appointed. And that’s for a very good reason – if the agreement said ‘deputy Leader’ would allow ACT to make someone else a minister if they so choose, overriding the PM”s prerogative… kind of what happened.
Did neither Hide nor Key read the agreement before Hide and Boscawen muscled Roy out? If she argues she was forced to resign under duress, could she have a case to sue for her job back on the basis of the wording of the agreement?