Should he stay, or should he go?
As if the week could not have got any worse for John Key, there are now rumors surfacing on social media among Left-leaning commentators of a plausible coup in the party, to replace John Key with a leader perhaps a little more fit in guiding National to victory in 2014.
The rumors started when Matthew Hooton, former National party advisor, questioned the motives of several Young Nat members who began to ask questions over how a change in leadership might come about. Hooton tweeted:
“Why are factions within the @nzyoungnats asking their deputy president what the rules are for selecting the @NZNationalParty leader? #nzpol”
The motives for the YoungNat questioning is not yet clear, but a few are describing it as suspicious.
The suspicion arises after several weeks of extremely damaging headlines following the fallout of the Collins and Williamson sagas, and John Key’s perceived poor handling of the matters. The Prime Minister today stated in a post-cabinet press conference that the matters had been dealt with, and the media should start to focus on his visits of Northland and Southland.
Matthew Hooton continued to harpoon the National party, sharing a link on his Twitter to a WhaleOil blog entry which allegedly critiqued the Prime Minister’s handling of the Maurice Williamson case. Hooton tweeted;
“It seems @Whaleoil is not very happy with @johnkeypm #nzpol.”.
One thing is for certain though, the questions come at a strange time. Perhaps it’s a sign of a not-so-confident young faction of the National party. Or could it be the truth is stranger than fiction, and there really are quiet calls for a full-on coup?
It’s doubtful. In frail times, Key is holding the weight of a increasingly poor-performing party on his back, and as long as he is doing so, National are still in this race.