PM: Collins on 'last chance'

John Key
John Key
Judith Collins' decision to leak information to blogger Cameron Slater was "unwise'' and she is now on her last chance, Prime Minister John Key says.

Speaking before the anniversary celebrations of the Maori King's coronation celebrations outside Turangawaewae in Ngaruawahia, Mr Key said he could only take Ms Collins' word that she only leaked private information such as public servant Simon Pleasants' numbers and not his name.

I think there are some details there which I think it is unwise of a minister to pass on.''

But he said it did not change the basic point that she was very strongly of the view that she did not leak the name, just the numbers.

It is now the second time Ms Collins has been put on notice that she was on a final chance after failing to mention a dinner she had with the heads of Oravida during a trip to China.

Mr Key said that was still in place and denied she was now on her "last last'' chance.

"What she's on is on her last chance after what happened last time. But at the end of the day she's also subjected to a left-wing smear campaign. And people will actually see that as well for what it is.''

Other than the unwise move of sharing private information, Mr Key generally trusted Ms Collins' judgement. 

He said a lot of the information in Nicky Hager's book Dirty Politics was "pretty old", "highly contested'' and much was "highly selective''.

Mr Key claimed Labour was using a smear campaign to bring National down instead of bringing out new policies.

In March, following the Oravida revelations, Mr Key was asked whether Ms Collins was on her last chance.

He said: "I wouldn't want to be in her shoes if there was a repeat of it.''


Non action

It shows his philosophy of governing is to do nothing as long as he can in every case. Guess the 'market' will take care of this problem too, by the people voting them out. Taste changes in the market place. Maybe our taste for the flavour of laissez-faire politics has been over done. You can go off things, can't you? That's what happens in the all-powerful market. Those that live by it fall by it.

I'm confused

Umm, John I'm confused - you said she was on her "last chance" when the whole Oravida Chinese scandal blew up in her face - is this her "last last" chance, or her "last last last" chance? How many lasts will she get before you actually will sack her?

Get it in proportion?

This is like watching a squabble over who waxed the surfboard, while everyone including the press, are ignoring the wave.

When there are not enough resources to go around, there will always be those smart and cynical enough to rise to the top, take more than the others. That cannot be acknowledged publicly, of course, so we inevitably have varying degrees of lying fed to the masses.

Or not fed, as there are a few individuals who carefully make sure the debate is stifled. Some of them in the media.

Key Government

I think this government is bringing down itself.