When a Government are having to defend their actions they are not setting the agenda, Given it is a week before National’s first budget the ‘Rankin’ situation is not what they will be wanting. But as the previous Government illustrated, it’s not getting into a mess that matters – it’s how you get out:
NZ Herald Editorial: The appointment of Christine Rankin as a Families Commissioner is so wrong on so many levels that, unsurprisingly, it took John Key some time to mount a defence…Mr Key is refusing to walk away from Ms Rankin. He insists that she can “operate properly” as a commissioner. He is wrong. Ms Rankin will be unable to say anything about family issues with any degree of credibility. She will be assailed for every comment that she makes. Her appointment was a mistake from the start. It is now completely untenable.
John Armstrong: As far as National is concerned, however, Rankin’s interview on TVNZ’s Sunday programme injected shades of grey into a matter that had previously looked black and white. It is accordingly much more problematic for Key or anyone to make moral judgments in an official capacity, especially without full knowledge of the facts…The Prime Minister could hardly sack Rankin because the [Sunday’s] revelations had suddenly entered the public domain. Doing so would also have meant he was effectively reprimanding Bennett for not acting herself and for her failure to inform him she had talked to Rankin.