Serial trougher Claudette Hauiti – whose only noted attribute between replacing the arrogant Aaron Gilmore and last week was illegally employing her partner as her electoral assistant – can’t even tell you how much she ripped the taxpayer off. John Key doesn’t care enough about it to find out how much it is. She will however break Gilmore’s unhappy record of shortness of office. Except of course, despite her hanging offence, she’s not resigning, but accepting another 5 months’ pay (including 3 months after the election). She’s quite happy to take yet more off us, despite being found out, and Key is happy to let it happen.
Gerry Brownlee was at least happy to offer his resignation – because he was found out, and only for Minister of Transport; but still a relatively high degree of personal responsibility for National Party minister. Key however thought it entirely fine for his minister to break the rules he sets for everyone else – and then continue to oversee the officials who are investigating him. It seems a straight resignation offence (even to John Armstrong), and Key’s leniency because Brownlee’s been “good” in his books should be only taking Transport off him, not all his portfolios.
And then Jonathan Coleman – old “Smokey” – has been caught lying to the public about knowing about the FBI’s investigation of Dotcom. He was informed about the investigation before Dotcom was granted permanent residence. How being under active investigation by our police and the FBI means he was still continuing to fulfil the “good character” test that was required for permanent residence seems strange to say the least. At least Dotcom seems to be doing his best to give them comeuppance.
Meanwhile Murray McCully has kicked his scandal to the long grass, with an enquiry overseen by him, that rules out investigating him, and ensures that officials will be held accountable and not the Minister for his department. Key continues to refuse to apologise like he promised to, and Murray’s yet to have the guts to apologise in person.
All arrogance from a government that feels entitled.
Of course, despite this barrage of scandals by the government expect to mianly see more criticism of Cunliffe for having a 3 day holiday (while Key has 11 days), for apologising for the terrible state of domestic violence in this country and for failing to force the media to talk about the important issues he actually wants to discuss.
(For a lighter look at politics, this week’s Toby Manhire is very good…)