Key denies Beckham remark in Parliament

John Key. Photo Getty
John Key. Photo Getty
Prime Minister John Key denied in Parliament yesterday that he had said British football star David Beckham was "as thick as batsh*t".

He also said if Beckham had heard the entire conversation he had had about him "he would actually feel quite good about it".

Having made the denial in Parliament, any conflicting evidence could see him referred to the privileges committee for misleading Parliament.

It was reported by Radio New Zealand that he made the comment to a group of students at St Hilda's Collegiate in Dunedin last Friday.

According to the report, Mr Key said Beckham was handsome and nice but was also "as thick as batsh*t".

The issue was raised in question time by New Zealand First leader Winston Peters.

In the House, Mr Key said Mr Peters was relying on "hearsay".

Mr Peters: "Yes or no, did he not say at a meeting with schoolchildren that David Beckham was as thick as bat ..."

Mr Key: "Categorically I did not say that, no.

"If it helps in terms of clarification, I am reluctant to swear in Parliament but if the member is asking me whether I used the word 'batsh*t', I did not."

Asked later what he did say, Mr Key said it was a private conversation and he would not repeat it. He refused to say whether he swore.

- Audrey Young of the NZ Herald

PM's right to privacy

Could be digger. My thought was he was checking to make sure there was no recording of it (mobile phone) before denying it. Whatever the answer, it is very very odd behaviour. The fact that he will not swear in parliament I assume is a backup in case there is a recording out there.

One further issue. Why is it that sports people, entertainers etc. have apparently no right to privacy in the press when it is deemed to be "in the public interest", while the Prime Minister of our country can (and does - think 'teapot') use "it was private" to maintain silence when it is very clearly "in the public interest" to know what was said?

 

Strange denial

The delay in 'denying' he made that comment is interesting, to say the least. Is he now able to  safely deny he made the comment because the students concerned have been 'spoken to'?

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