Leaked emails herald new age of instability


We have never seen the Prime Minister look so weak. Today it looks as if he has lost his strong and choking grip on his previously loyal party.

For the first time since 2006 the National Party is showing voters an unstable organisation which is no longer unanimously behind the Prime Minister.

At parliament this afternoon the Prime Minister was asked whether it was a sign of instability after emails were leaked showing two crisis meetings organised by National’s North Shore MP and silver fern advocate Maggie Barry.

The Prime Minister maneuvered the question in his favour, telling reporters that “MPs meet all the time” and this was nothing new.

That’s correct. But emails being leaked by a supposedly loyal MP? That’s entirely new, and extremely damaging to the Prime Minister’s long-held public perception of being a leader who is supported by his colleagues. National, in contrast to Labour, has until now suffered no leadership questions. Tonight that changes.

It is uncertain who leaked the emails to the media after the story was released by Newshub’s Patrick Gower this afternoon, and will perhaps never be known. What is known, however, is anti-change MPs such as Gerry Brownlee and Judith Collins were not invited to the second meeting. Nor was backbencher and former suspected member of the ‘Collins camp’ Maurice Williamson.

Newshub assumed from the invite list that around 54% of National MPs support the flag change, and therefore the Prime Minister’s leadership – but only 10 MPs, including one minister and the chief whip, Tim Macindoe, were seen attending the meeting this morning.

As the news broke attention turned to Mrs. Collins, a well-known member of National’s Right, who have been quiet about their growing dissatisfaction with the “wasted opportunity” National’s popularity with the public has with John Key, who they believe has enacted too little right-wing change.

But Mrs. Collins cannot have been responsible given she was not invited to the second meeting.

Right-wing attack dog Matthew Hooton said of John Key in the National Business Review last year:

“You have sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go.”

“humiliation in the flag referendum next year may provide him with a suitable pretext to step down. He should take it”.

Remember a similar scenario playing out across the Tasman? Let’s not forget that within weeks of the leaks from inside Abbott’s cabinet, a coup was mounted, and the Prime Minister was gone. If you want to cause instability and make your leader look weak – leaked emails are just the answer; and let’s not hide from the truth – that was exactly the intention of the National MP, supposedly from the National Right, who leaked the emails today.

The question we are left with now is; will the Prime Minister jump, or will he be pushed? We are indeed in a new age of instability in the government.

Bennett Morgan 



7 thoughts on “Leaked emails herald new age of instability

  1. While I agree the drought of leaks in recent years in the National Party does make this one relatively important, I think you’ve concluded too much from a single instance of a relatively minor leak in terms of damage.

    People in a caucus can disagree with a leader’s project without not supporting that leader. Indeed on a grander level let’s not forget right-wingers Goff and Cullen got on board with Helen’s regime post-1996 and became staunch lutenients. Rudd and Gillard both had cross-factional support. Key’s own hegemonic leadership sucked up English supporters such as the Brat pack and Brash guys like Gerry. Success breeds loyalty and this is still the most successful modern prime minister in NZ history.

    As to whether the method of voicing this small dissent is indicative of things to come, I’d say keep watching. There’s every chance Key squashes the revolt, finds the leaker and royally Rogers them.

  2. You underestimate Judith Collins if you think she was NOT involved in these leaks. The goal was achieved. Who do you think wants Key’s job. That woman has proven she cannot be trusted and will go to any length to get what she wants.

  3. Most of the people in NZ that have anything between their ears already know that DonKey is the most hated PM in our history, its only the few asleep sheep that still either follow him or dont know. Now the National Party is waking up to the Liability Key is and the main caucus members are reading the writing on the wall. To Roz yes DonKey is the most successful PM to destroy NZ; to create more problems than any other past PM ; To be the biggest PM clown and recognised for his sleazy acts all over the world; to allow the sell off of more of NZ that any other PM. To grow the biggest deficit in the fastest time frame than any other PM. To turn his back on poverty, health care and NZ and to push for a stupid flag that is a real dog. If success is gauged by what damage DonKey has done then he is certainly Number one.

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