The noose is tightening. And time is ticking.
Hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayers money are being spent via the Leader’s office fund to expensive accountancy and law firms to find out who someone is that it took a couple of days for the police to find out.
And Winston reckons he knows who it is.
In Parliament this week he said this:
Now, they’re trying to find somebody who we know—that is, the identity of the leaker in the National Party, and guess who’s paying for the inquiry? Why, the New Zealand taxpayer, through the Leader of the Opposition’s leadership office funding. The New Zealand taxpayer’s paying for this absolutely mindless, hopeless inquiry, the end pathway and result of which we already know. So why don’t we just cut to the chase here? Pay the money to over to us, and we’ll give you the answer. Ha, ha! It is phenomenal.
You know what? Twenty-two days later, we still are no wiser. With these major New Zealand companies in full pursuit, and yet we formed the coalition Government in half that time—11 days—after we knew what the special votes meant. Eleven days to form a coalition; 22 days to try and find out what other people know: namely, who leaked on Mr Bridges. Now, there are members over there that should be very nervous. I won’t look at them, because if I do, or look where they should be, then the suspicion will be cast on them without us getting the reward of disclosure. We are famous for disclosure, especially when it comes to the National Party’s sins.
He finished off by saying this:
Can I just say, as we come to close, that the National Party in Opposition is “dysfunction junction”. Nothing’s happening there. It’s a total mess. The leader can’t even get one out of four National Party supporters. Whilst we’re interested in good public policy, all they care about is public relations. We strive for action; all they strive for is unction. The member needs to reveal to the public—that’s Mr Bridges—who the leaker is, or I will.
Here is the video:
Of course Winston may be bluffing. This would not be unheard of.
But a National insider is also convinced that he knows who the leaker is.
I believe that Winston Peters does know who the leaker is. It is pretty much an open secret now among National people. I understand that the leaker has admitted as such to some Young Nationals in Auckland. I also know now who it is, and that is from many sources, all saying the same name. The clock is ticking.
Observant and well informed journalists will also know as the leaker is now being shunned by caucus.
Jacinda Ardern, by sacking Meka the Muss has raised the bar on Simon Bridges. He can no longer be soft on this leaker. He has to rinse them and totally. Meka Whaitiri is still in parliament. If Bridges wants to appear stronger than Ardern then he is going to have to take a head, place it on a pike and let that be a warning for others.
Much as I have difficulty taking anything Cameron Slater seriously I do find that his comments on internal National Party matters are either accurate or part of a campaign. Or both.
So it seems to be only a matter of time before the identity is released. And then Simon Bridges is going to have to decide does he go completely over the top and punish someone with personal issues for releasing information a couple of days early or does he wuss out.
He has effectively boxed himself into a rather tight corner. He should have let it rest and laugh it off when the leak first happened.