Just so my readers aren’t totally out of the loop, Winston was censured last night but remains a minister without warrants (so much for the PM waiting on the Privileges Committee process).
The Maori Party have reported that someone (they’re not saying who exactly) tried to heavy them.
“An attack on our credibility over this issue by Winston is totally out of order, and without any substance at all,” said Dr Sharples. “The Maori Party values its political integrity and has spent three years in the house – walking our talk.
Dr Sharples said he was not only taken aback by the personal attack from Winston Peters, but was disappointed at the personal lobbying by a NZ First staffer and a government Minister over the past weekend to influence the Maori Party’s decision prior to the vote.
“I personally had two separate phone calls from a senior Minister urging me to vote in favour of Winston, and suggesting that there would be unpleasant repercussions from Maori people if I didn’t. Both Tariana Turia and myself were disgusted with this kind of activity, aimed at perverting the course of justice and fair play.
“But one thing Winston Peters said is right, and that is – the people will decide on November 8. His populist antics versus our integrity,” said Dr Sharples.
Funny thing was that on the radio this morning, he was forced to admit that Peter Dunne made his decision with integrity. The great thing about MMP is that there were about 6 or so parties around that table, all with different agendas, and only the two with an interest voted against – there was no National/Act conspiracy.
Oh, and the complaint they got him on was from Gordon Copeland, not Rodney Hide’s.
So that’s one of the three decided. Now we wait for the SFO and Police investigations. I’m picking a clean sweep of “guilty” verdicts myself.
Update: Keeping Stock reports…
It’s now officially government policy that lying to New Zealand and to Parliament is acceptable, and is not, to use Helen Clark’s words, a “hanging offence”. You don’t believe me? Read Michael Cullen’s comments from Stuff:
A low point indeed. Parliment has been bought so low for so long now it’s hard to remember when they they actually enforced standards of behaviour and integrity.