- Date published:
7:32 am, July 21st, 2020 - 267 comments
Categories: election 2020, making shit up, national, same old national, spin, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: andrew falloon
Yesterday this crazy election campaign became even crazier.
At 3 pm news broke that Andrew Falloon was standing down for mental health reasons. The response by lefties on twitter was refreshing. The general consensus was that he should be given space and there was hope that things worked out for him.
Te Reo Putake posted this post and concluded:
All the best to Andrew Falloon. I hope he finds nothing but kindness, positivity and practical support in the future.
But things quickly deteriorated. At 5 pm Radio New Zealand announced that the cause of his depression was the drunken sending of inappropriate graphic material to a woman who was not his wife. Then it became incendiary when it emerged that the woman was a teenager.
Things got worse and more bizarre. Later last night the Herald posted:
The Herald understands that Falloon’s version of events is that he was at a party several weeks ago and briefly left his phone unattended – and at that time acquaintances used it to send the sexual image in question.
A claim that the dog ate your homework would normally attract more credibility.
National says it knew about the issue last Friday after Jacinda Ardern’s office did the very decent thing and with the consent of the complainant sent the allegation directly to Judith Collins’s office to deal with. Shades of Andrew Little and his treatment of issues relating to Mike Sabin.
There was this attempt at a defence on behalf of the National Party. I listened to it on the way home and found it very hard to suppress my laughter at the claims. All of them.
When I have some time I might go through them in detail.
This is nothing but an abject disaster for the National Party and reinforces every single negative perception about them. And it makes candidate and list selections even more fraught.
Judith is wanting to be leader of the country. Her handling of this particular incident I am sure will persuade many swinging voters that she should never be trusted with the position. Imagine wanting to try and spin that decidedly inappropriate behavior by a Member of Parliament was a case of mental illness.
This morning she has come out all tough on it and demanded that Falloon resign immediately. This jarrs with her statement yesterday. She also said that there is a second allegation of inappropriate behaviour that media have heard about. Today will be an interesting day.
And why should the taxpayer continue his pay? Most workers would be down the road if they faced similar allegations.
I used to be in awe at National’s discipline and unity and the way they managed to go through issues. No longer. This will further stall National’s omnishambles of a campaign and sap further support and confidence from them.
I hear that the makers of the thick of it are thinking of a spin off series involving the events within an opposition party and believe that the events this year in New Zealand involving the National Party will provide all the material they need. But they have a problem. There is probably more than enough material for a couple of seasons.
Update: Falloon has resigned.
I wonder what persuaded him to go without a fight.