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Why are we paying Key’s legal expenses for him?

Written By: - Date published: 8:27 am, March 23rd, 2016 - 81 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, accountability, john key, journalism, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: , , , ,

Key has swallowed a dead rat in the settlement with Bradley Ambrose. He wanted to use taxpayer money to pay his settlement to Ambrose, but the public outcry drew attention to the rules and he didn’t get away with it.

Somewhat lost in the coverage of the back down is the fact that Key has still used taxpayer money to pay his undisclosed legal expenses in the case. Why? He was meeting Banks as leader of the National party, not in any ministerial capacity. Why does he get to use taxpayer money to pay his own bills?

RNZ – Teapot tapes: PM pressured to reveal legal costs

The Prime Minister is coming under pressure to disclose how much taxpayer’s money has been spent on legal costs in so-called ‘teapot-tapes’ defamation case.

John Key will not cover the cost of his cash payment to a freelance journalist from taxpayer funds, but his legal costs have already been paid out of his Leader’s Budget, which is taxpayer funded.

Emerson in The Herald:

teapot-dead-rat

81 comments on “Why are we paying Key’s legal expenses for him? ”

  1. Fustercluck 1

    Oh my god. I have reached near toxic levels of schadenfreude.

    • Tautoko Mangō Mata 1.1

      I gain no pleasure from seeing a person’s unprincipled character exposed. Instead I feel a mixture of pity and anger that there are people out there who will still continue to support and vote for such a person who is leading our country by the nose towards corporate rule.

      • Bearded Git 1.1.1

        Not just unprincipled but stupid. Key’s net worth may be approaching $100m by now if he has seen his fortune appreciate over the past 6-7 years like the other one-percenters. Yet he was daft enough not to pay Ambrose around$50k-$75k (he will be lying about it being really small); a drop in the bucket to him. It is the same in relation to the legal expenses-he should pay these out of his own pocket pronto or this will drag on an on.

        The teflon is flaking-off. It is issues like this that the electorate understands and picks up on. 46% goes to 45% and bingo; bye bye Johnny.

        • whateva next? 1.1.1.1

          “….bye bye Johnny.” ……and please take your photo album with you

          • Smilin 1.1.1.1.1

            Trouble with people like Key I

          • Smilin 1.1.1.1.2

            Trouble with people like Key is you get rid of one then a few years later there’s another . Look how long it took to go from Muldoon to him .The nats will be doing their damndest to make sure its not that long again fuck them .

          • Grace Miller 1.1.1.1.3

            You mean the Oravida mugshot file?

            Their head office looks like a National Party Conference!

            This vainglorious sexual fetishist prick should pay his own way on this; he won’t, though. The Emperor’s clothes are well and truly see-through.

  2. John Shears 2

    This in the same ethically repugnant attitude as the Tax avoidance by large International companies is in my opinion,

    Th PM way well pay his tax bill on his NZ earnings as I do on my superannuation payments and interest on my small savings but in spite of being on a generous salary he seems to be expert at avoiding paying from his own pocket for debts such as these.

    He has admitted he was wrong so just take a deep breath and pay,
    That is what real people do regardless of how difficult it might be.

    He says that he feels that we should wait and see what the OECD come up with as far as the International Co’s tax avoidance is concerned and his government is not a signatory?

    No evidence , just a thought that comes to me , but Is his reported $50 million plus wealth connected in some way to these tax thieves, that is what they are really, and is that why he is reluctant to do anything to correct this anomaly?

    • dv 2.1

      He says that he feels that we should wait and see what the OECD come up with as far as the International Co’s tax avoidance is concerned and his government is not a signatory?

      NOTE
      his Govt is NOT –Note NOT a signatory!!!!

      • It’s the same “someone else can go first” attitude that National displayed on climate change. They don’t want to be the first country to “anger” multinationals, as they’ve bought into the notion that taxation flight is a huge risk, rather than a minor one.

  3. mickysavage 3

    Someone should start a whip around for him. Seems poor John was that broke he had to rely on public money to pay for his defence.

    If an average punter receives legal aid their lawyer is meant to certify that their handling of the case is appropriate and they have a realistic chance of success.

    Shame these same requirements were not applied to Key.

    • ianmac 3.1

      Legal Aid is just a loan isn’t it?

      • mickysavage 3.1.1

        Only the poor person’s version of legal aid.

      • Lanthanide 3.1.2

        I don’t think so, but it seems pretty hard to qualify for legal aid.

        • ianmac 3.1.2.1

          Looked it up. Should have done it at first.
          “Legal aid is usually provided as a loan. In certain circumstances, no repayment may be required.”

    • ianmac 3.2

      Key can’t be too hard up since he again has Max in the limelight. (From NZ Farmer on Stuff.)
      “He said his son Max was studying a double-major in Economics and Maths “and that sort of carry on”.

      “He sits there and says, ‘shall I go to Harvard and do an MBA?’.

      “I go ‘yeah mate, at some point you should and if you want to go we’ll pay’. Why? Because you’re paying a lot of money but you’re guaranteeing his CV aren’t you, that at some point it looks pretty cool.”
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/78158536/new-zealand-should-house-the-harvard-of-agriculture-says-prime-minister-john-key

    • alwyn 3.3

      “Someone should start a whip around for him”.
      That is what the Labour Party tried after they got pinged by the Auditor-General for using Parliamentary funds to pay for the pledge card wasn’t it? They changed the law to make it retrospectively legal and said they wouldn’t pay it back. Then they discovered that the public weren’t going to play along with that and decided they had to find the money somehow.
      I had friends, Labour Party members, who got a begging request. They were both very unhappy with the idea and never coughed up anything. There view was roughly “Bugger them. H1 and H2 stole it. Let them pay it”.
      I supposed someone might have given a little but, if I remember correctly, all the Labour MPs had to pay up.

      • mickysavage 3.3.1

        We did have a whip around and paid that money back. And no member that I know had the view that you claim your friends had.

        A number of members made substantial contributions.

        And the retrospective legislation was a technical requirement that had to be passed as had been explained to RWNJs millions of times. Doesn’t seem to stop the spin …

      • Trey 3.3.2

        but but but…….. Labour did it too. Jesus I am tired of that line.

        • alwyn 3.3.2.1

          No that is not the case. There is certainly no “did it too”
          Labour did try to get their members to pay up.
          As far as I know the National party have done no such thing.

  4. Why are we paying Key’s legal expenses for him?

    Because he can get that to happen, because even though he wears suits, gets to go to fancy places, plays golf with the American President and has a heap of money, at heart he’s an ordinary little scumbag.

  5. ianmac 5

    Gordon Campbell has the real oil on whether Key was right to get the original legal defence funds. Comment Micky?
    “If so, that would be surprising – since the rest of the Speakers’ rules place really strict conditions on when such costs – including legal costs – can be counted as being legitimate parliamentary business. Key can find some solace in one aspect of the Speakers Rules. Parts 5c(i) and (ii) for instance, count as valid parliamentary business : “participating in processes related to the formation of a Government; or (ii) participating in party meetings relating to post-election strategies….” Arguably, both were aspects of the Tea Party meeting in 2011 between Key and Act Party leader John Banks.

    However – and fatally for Key’s position – that clause 5(d)(ii) also says that the following do not count as valid parliamentary business :

    (ii) work directly related to the administration or management of a political party; or (iii) electioneering. (My bold.)
    http://gordoncampbell.scoop.co.nz/2016/03/22/john-key-putting-defamation-costs-on-the-public-tab/

    • mickysavage 5.1

      I would agree with Campbell’s comments. There is no way this meeting involved ministerial or government business. A clearer case of electioneering it is hard to contemplate.

      • TC 5.1.1

        Nor was it private being held in an open cafe with a full contingent of media, police and protective services.

        I passed parker on the street and asked him whattup. It was a stage managed public event with ali akram chatting with banksy outside waiting for shonky to showup.

  6. alwyn 6

    I find it rather funny that Winston Peters has the gall to climb on this bandwagon.
    This is the fellow who pinched about $150,000 of taxpayer money for the 2005 election campaign. He then co-operated with an equally morally corrupt Labour Party to make it retrospectively legal and then refused to pay it back.
    Are we seriously willing to listen to that charlatan on this subject?

    • Hanswurst 6.1

      Who cares about “gall”? Enough has been written about Mr. Peters’ exploits; he’s been well and truly put under the microscope and the findings are there for all to see. His points about Key right now seem to be right on the money, and that’s all that is relevant to the case at hand. Quit the stupid distractions.

    • adam 6.2

      Stop spinning alwyn, it’s getting tired. And rather close to bald face lying, actually the stuff about Clark is. And you know I’m no fan of labour, so me defending them means you are talking a lot of feces.

      Note:

      Winston paid for that mistake big time, remember when NZ first was crucified by your lot?

      They were voted out of parliament! Punished by the voters.

      They do.

      • TC 6.2.1

        Yup and winnie has the fridge well stocked with items he will be serving up over the coming months

    • Trey 6.3

      but but but…….Winston did it too

      • alwyn 6.3.1

        You are quite wrong. This is a question of Key not claiming taxpayer money for the damages and a suggestion that he might repay some money that people claim may have been wrongly paid.
        Winston certainly spent a great deal of money that he had no claim on.
        What Winston did was to support a retrospective change to the law that let him keep it.
        Then he, unlike Labour, DID keep it. Not a cent was ever returned to the taxpayers.

        • Trey 6.3.1.1

          So Key plans to repay the money already spent on legal fees?

          • alwyn 6.3.1.1.1

            How would I have any idea? I have no more knowledge of what the rules are about such a thing than anybody else round here. It isn’t really comparable is it.

            • lprent 6.3.1.1.1.1

              Exactly comparable. It was an activity done by MP(s) for their political party. That was the line that the right were running at the time.

              Directly comparable. Or a case of massive hypocrisy on your part.

              Key or the National party should pay their own legal costs. I as a taxpayer should not.

  7. slumbergod 7

    He has his own Uncle Scrooge style Money Bin so why can’t he use his own money to pay for his screw ups? This is one of the problems with rich people — they just never have enough and they cringe when they have to spend any of it. I was cringing this week about spending too…do I splash out and pay for a flu vaccine knowing it will be all my spending money gone for the week. Key is such a prick.

  8. Observer (Tokoroa) 8

    Poor Alwyn
    .
    he would rather lie – than speak a straight word. What a disgusting way to live.

    • alwyn 8.1

      There, there diddums.
      Why not sit down and have a nice cup of tea.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1

        You’re the one who seems to be all heated up and are spinning the lies.

        • alwyn 8.1.1.1

          And just which lies are these? You throw your accusations around very widely but never give any details. Hardly surprising I suppose. You can’t actually identify any can you?

          • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1.1.1

            There’s this one.
            And this one.

            • alwyn 8.1.1.1.1.1

              There is not a single word that is false in the first comment.

              The only bit in the second is “I suppose someone might have given a little”
              I checked later and my supposition (not a statement of fact) was wrong. They apparently raised about $385,000 before they hit on the MPs for the remaining $435,000.

              Is that the best you can manage?

      • Murray Simmonds 8.1.2

        I enjoy reading sensible comment and pertinent debate on important issues but I’m really getting rather sick and tired of that inane, lame duck comment every time someone utters a truth that’s too close to the mark for alwyn’s liking.

        Why not just go away, alwyn? I don’t think anyone here will miss you.

        • alwyn 8.1.2.1

          Don’t read them if you don’t like what I say.
          There is no law that says you have to read my comments.
          On the other hand perhaps you think I should be silenced because I say things that disagree with your possibly warped view of the world. Could it be that you are disturbed by me uttering a truth that is too close to the mark for your liking?
          Tough.

        • Wensleydale 8.1.2.2

          Stop giving him oxygen. He’s the internet forum equivalent of an excitable Jack Russell that won’t quit yapping. If you ignore him, he’ll likely get bored. I know it’s infuriating when someone habitually skews the truth, distracts and deflects in order to derail discussions and confuse the issues, but I suspect, like most trolls, he thrives on the attention. Don’t give him any.

  9. ankerawshark 9

    Poor old John eh? Having to pay his own legal fees! How about we start a give a little page for him? (NOT). Maybe the trolls could do this……………….

  10. mary_a 10

    Because he is a two faced, lying, perverted, thieving git!

  11. Observer (Tokoroa) 11

    .

    Hi Alwyn

    So kind of you to suggest I make a drink of tea. Will you keep up your routine of sayIng to yourself: “Alwyn I must not tell lies” – three times every hour ?

    But just between you and me, do you get paid by John Key and Billy English for making lies up?

    Or are you just an unpaid fool?

    Regards from Tokoroa

    • alwyn 11.1

      At least I am smart enough to have worked out what the “reply” symbol is there for.
      Can’t you learn even that? Are you really that much of a fool?

      • Trey 11.1.1

        Answer the question. Are you paid to troll this site?

        • alwyn 11.1.1.1

          Don’t be silly. I am neither paid nor a troll.
          I do it from a simple desire to try and educate the ignorant.
          When it comes to Economics there are an amazing number in that category who I try and enlighten, aren’t there?
          Quite a lot of bigots as well.

          • Murray Simmonds 11.1.1.1.1

            alwyn : ” . . . .I do it from a simple desire to try and educate the ignorant.”

            That is possibly the most IGNORANT comment i have EVER read on this website.

            Alwyn, please open a free school – i dunno – anywhere really*, and then we can see how many enrolments you get. You know, enrolments that are attributable to your superior skills as an educator and to the market forces that you no doubt so fervently believe in . . . .

            * for starters i”d suggest perhaps in outer Mongolia – or better still at the bottom of the Kermadec Trench.

            Even if your free school is in the middle of downtown Auckland my guess is that your enrolments would be pretty much zero, zilch, mei you, naatch or whatever.

            Good luck and please go away. You apparently have far too much time on your hands.

            • alwyn 11.1.1.1.1.1

              Now, now. Calm down. This really cannot be good for your blood pressure.
              I have, to another of your comments, told you that you really don’t have to read them if you don’t want to.
              Please stop doing so. I don’t want to read in the paper of someone whose head exploded because I said something he couldn’t understand.
              If it bothers you have you considered the simplest solution? Why don’t you go away?

              • Muttonbird

                You are a sorry little person, aren’t you? Grow up for your family’s sake, at least.

                • alwyn

                  There, there. Are you also upset when people say things that you are incapable of understanding?
                  Now just breath deeply and relax. In… Out… In… Out…

                  • Muttonbird

                    Ha. You’ve exhausted yourself there buddy. Time for bed you funny little oink. It’s flag day tomorrow, your leader’s greatest day.

      • Johan 11.1.2

        Why put yourself in a position to be banned, again?

  12. Anne 12

    Has the media been chasing after NZ Taxpayers Union boss, Jordan Williams to ask how they feel about the taxpayers paying John Key’s personal legal fees?

  13. Observer (Tokoroa) 13

    To: Anne

    What the Trolls, Alwyn and others overlook is that John Key deliberately attempted to steal money from us tax payers. He was trying to blatantly steal our money.

    Just as Bill English was trying to get his houses subsidized by we tax payers.

    Now large scale theft appears not to be a problem for National politicians and their devotees.

    John Key also pushed Her Majesty’s Police Force into defaming and wrongly accusing an innocent man. Again that is not a problem to National and their devotees.

    So the added cost of the Police was lumped on to us tax payers.

    We object to that theft. And we despise National and its Trolls. Constant vigilance is our only way of stopping Key and English screwing us. They are here only to screw and screw us over.

    • Chuck 13.1

      Observer you are one paranoid fella! If I had to pick from your little list of items above it would be this one…”John Key also pushed Her Majesty’s Police Force into defaming…” Ambrose’s statement admits he accepts Key had a genuine belief that the recording was done on purpose. Like wise, Key accepts Ambrose did not do it on purpose. It speaks volumes that Ambrose settled, remember he was the plaintiff and could brush away any and all offers from Key.

      • Observer (Tokoroa) 13.1.1

        Okay Chuck

        You don’t like me pointing out John Key’s attempt to steal money rather than pay his own Defamation costs.

        You don’t like me pointing out that John Key attempted full scale theft. You don’t like me pointing out that John Key dramatised his defamation by saying that it was equivalent to media using texts of dead persons in the UK.

        The Police entry into the Teapot Drama was based on very shaky non substantiated evidence. Key’s caterwauling was monstrous.

        Have the Police investigated John Key’s interception of little girls Chuck? If not why not?

        He is an unsavoury would be thief at the ready. Please point out to me my paranoia? You have lapses of integrity often Chuck?

        • Anne 13.1.1.1

          Don’t bother with them Observer…

          These “trolls” are not worth the time and effort trying to educate them.

          They are ignorant beyond belief.
          I suspect some (including Chuck) are emotionally unstable.
          Many are lacking any form of intellect (as evidenced by their inability to write a complete and grammatically correct sentence – let alone their appalling spelling) so its impossible to rationalise anything with them.

          And the rest are unpleasant, red-necked ‘plebeians’ who should be ignored at all times.

          • Murray Simmonds 13.1.1.1.1

            Urrk – yep, after re-reading my comments to alwyn above i think this is a much better way to say it, thank you Anne.

            its just that sometimes exasperation gets the better of me . . .

          • Observer (Tokoroa) 13.1.1.1.2

            .
            Hello Anne
            .
            Your advice is good. I have to agree that the march of the Trolls is a bit like the opening of the doors of Bedlam. The release of the not quite sane.

            Mr Key is a strange unpredictable being with an unusual and unsavoury mind set. The trolls are caught up in his weirdness. The same way birds of a feather flock together.

            Enjoy the Easter Break – Anne.

        • Chuck 13.1.1.2

          I have no issue with letting you point out anything you like Observer real or imaginary. If I agree or not is a different story…

          As Anne very nicely says above I am emotionally unstable, so I better go and ask my nurse for more of those nice blue pills!!

          • Anne 13.1.1.2.1

            Yes, that was a bit uncalled for – tossing you in with the crackpot rwnjs. I apologise. Try being a little less deliberately provocative with your comments and it will be less likely to happen.

  14. An example of how the world works:

    https://networkonnet.wordpress.com/2016/03/19/part-2-rangiora-is-about-the-schools-assets-in-which-i-set-out-to-nail-peter-hughes/

    “Peggy Burrows says: “Who was it who said today, ” I was present in my role as the Leader of the National Party not the Prime Miniser, so the Natonal Party will pay the settlement.” Isn’t he a multi-millionnaire???

    Well I was in present in my role as Principal of Rangiora High School … But I have to pay my own legal fees. There will be no deal!! There will be no silence!! The truth will set us free … “On the balance of probability” – what rubbish!!

    He who has the deepest pockets wins – and I don’t have access to the public purse, the gravy train or the public trough!!”

    • ianmac 14.1

      Excuse my reposting this but…
      For those who have an interest in the strange happenings at Rangiora High School, the Listener has a detailed post. Did the Ministry go through all this to get their hands on the millions held by the 100 year old investment Held by Rangiora High? How can they do all this to a successful school, lead by an industrious hard working Principal.
      “For Peggy Burrows, that pathway has been cut abruptly short. With lawyer Richard ­Harrison (who represented Christchurch Girls’ High School principal Prue Taylor when she was sacked in 2012), Burrows will challenge her dismissal.”
      http://www.listener.co.nz/current-affairs/education/school-daze/

    • ianmac 14.2

      Thanks for the link repateet. I do hope this blows up on the Ministry of Ed and on Parata.

  15. Phineas 15

    Dissolve councils in Canterbury dissolve school boards in Rangiora.
    Business as usual they might as well set up nationwide Provincial Governors and call John an Emperor

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  • Speech to Constitutional Kōrero conference
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