Curran has hardly covered herself in glory, but her actions fall short of the sackable offence of misleading the Prime Minister. Claire Trevitt, NZ Herald
Foul ups in government
By Roger Childs
Jacinda’s first 100 days were a dream run, but all good things come to an end. Governments will always have ministers and other MP who will queer the pitch and bring joy to Her Majesty’s Opposition.
John Key had a swag of them – people saying the wrong thing, lying, talking to the wrong people, unwisely using the government credit card, having delusions of grandeur.
Last year Todd Barclay should have had his day in court over illegally taping conversations and Prime Minister Bill English was less than truthful over what he knew and said.
Another government on, the Minister of Broadcasting has dropped her leader in it.
Apparently the protocols “say” that Ministers shouldn’t arrange to meet their top public servants in public. Why this is so is hard to fathom.
Broadcasting CEO, Carol Hirschfeld did have coffee, or even breakfast, with her Minister Clare Curran in downtown Wellington. Big deal?
The ensuing crisis started with dishonesty over whether it was planned or just a fancy seeing you here! Mind if I join you? Both parties were less than honest and a lot of time, and taxpayer money has subsequently been wasted.
It was planned – Curran had it in her diary.
National have loved it. Having been pushed out of the headlines by on-going Jacinderism, they have been waiting for their chance to pounce. The shenanigans at the Young Labour Camp got them and the media going, but the infamous Judith Collins somewhat overdid it by saying if she had been one of the parents of the assaulted girls she would rip out the throats of the offending males!
Then the loose cannon Shane Jones got himself into trouble for berating Air New Zealand over their regional services policy.
Honesty is always the best policy
On the face of it, Curran talking to Hirschfeld at the Astoria shouldn’t been wasting such a lot of our elected representatives’ time and be the subject for select committee interrogations.
However, honesty was a casualty in this interaction. Why couldn’t the protagonists just tell it how it happened from the start? Curran embarrassed her boss and probably should resign, but no doubt the fat Minister’s pay packet is too good to give up.
What most people want to hear from the Minister is detail on the plans to set up a commercial-free television channel along the lines of the Australian one.
This was promised in the election campaign and it’s time to deliver.