Sep 18, 2008

Oh What A Tangled Web We Weave

Hooton has breaking news on the Labour First strategy to discredit Owen Glenn. Hooton claims impeccable sources on this one. It is a must read.

Clark/Peters Axis to accuse Glenn of funding National
Stand by for more insane spin out of the Beehive today, following up Michael Cullen’s ridiculous claim that John Key was
in some way responsible for the world financial meltdown and Helen Clark’s disgusting performance yesterday claiming Key, if he was prime minister, would have killed 60 young New Zealanders.
Today, I’m told by people with close links to the Beehive spin machine, the Clark/Peters, Labour First Axis will claim that Owen Glenn has been secretly funding that National Party and that National has then “hidden” these “donations” by failing to declare them to the Electoral Commission. Peters wants to appear before the Privileges Committee in public to make this claim. Clark hopes it will generate sufficient doubt to smear National and avoid her having to fire Peters, who it now seems clear has something on her or her government, preventing her from acting, as Bill English has alleged.
The basis of this latest lunatic spin, according to those I have spoken with, is that $40,000 of the $100,000, that Owen Glenn paid on Peters’ request to his lawyer Brian Henry, was then paid to the National Party or a trust associated with the National Party to pay the $40,000 court-costs ordered against Peters as a result of the court finding there was no merit in Peters’ case in Peters v Clarkson (the Tauranga electoral petition.)
Labour First will allege that the money should have been paid directly to Bob Clarkson and not to the National Party. If the money trail that Labour First alleges is true, National would be able to answer that as it paid for Mr Clarkson’s legal defence there is no problem here - that the money simply went, as the court intended, to the entity that paid the legal fees in question. But the Clark/Peters Axis will then try to tell us that the money should have been declared by National.
Secondly, the Axis will allege that Clarkson should have declared that it was National, or a trust associated with National, that originally paid for his defence, not him personally. They will then try to say that as neither Peters nor Clarkson paid their legal fees personally, their situations are analogous, and that therefore the Privileges Committee should find Peters has done no wrong.
This of course is simply mad and bad people clutching at straws. Mr Clarkson was the defendent. If his party originally paid his legal fees that is hardly a scandal. He then won. The legal fees were repaid by the loser, Peters.
If my sources are correct, this is going to be a truly pathetic attempt by Labour to throw mud around - but it’ll be the third day running and, by my assessment, Labour First has so far lost every day’s media coverage since the election day was announced. These are people who will say and do literally anything to get a bit of anti-National mud out there.