Written By: - Date published: 10:55 am, September 3rd, 2017 - 48 comments
Categories: Dirty Politics, election 2017, winston peters - Tags: #ChangeTheGovt, come at the king, dirty politics, king maker
National deciding to go after Winston Peters was a high risk strategy, and it has backfired on them – Heather du Plessis-Allan: Campaign just got uglier
The week started with the hit job on Winston Peters. There’s nothing as ugly in politics as a takedown attempt.
There’s no doubt in my mind that it was the National Party who ordered the hit on Winston Peters over his superannuation overpayments.
It’s hard to believe otherwise.
At least two ministers and a political operative in the party appear to have known Peters’ private information when none of them should have.
And once it has information, the National Party has a reputation for using it against political opponents.
Deputy leader Paula Bennett herself revealed private details about a beneficiary in 2009. Last year her office leaked information about the chairman of Te Puea Marae. I could go on, or you could just read Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics.
That’s the sound of your dirty record catching up with you National. At long last.
This is the day that Peters has turned fire on National for, he alleges, leaking his private NZ Superannuation information. Leaning back in his chair, he rouses. “You talk about data-sharing? I’ve been rather busy these past 48 hours because people have been data-sharing on me. They’re pretty quick to data-share when they have a malignant purpose!”
“I said in the first instance one would talk to the party with the most votes,” he acknowledges. “But that’s only in the first instance. The reality is, the first phone-call may not come from the party with the most votes. That doesn’t mean you say, sorry, I can’t take your call because I’m waiting for a call from someone else. It’s only a rule of thumb and a very loose one at that.”
Peters and the NZ First board may refuse to say. But there can be little doubt that the prospect of allying with a fresh and resurgent Labour Party must be more appealing than propping up a fourth term National government led by those he believes tried to politically assassinate him this week.
Peters holding the balance of power is still an ugly scenario – vote Green Labour. But if he does, the odds of him going with tired dirty nats went way down this week.