Sep 24, 2008

They Have Stooped Pretty Low

From today's Dominion Post Editorial

Mr Peters and Prime Minister Helen Clark have attempted to dismiss the committee's findings as a politically driven exercise. They are not, as an examination of the votes of the Green, Maori Party and UnitedFuture members of the committee shows. The first two, at least, are closer politically to Labour than National, but Green Party co-leader Russel Norman and Maori Party MP Te Ururoa Flavell chose to believe Mr Glenn rather than Mr Peters. So did UnitedFuture leader Peter Dunne.

That should be a matter of regret to Mr Peters who, whatever anyone thinks of his politics, has added greatly to the drama and theatre of the House during his long parliamentary career. It should also be a matter of regret to the prime minister and her Labour colleagues. The finding that a senior politician knowingly misled Parliament not only diminishes his standing but that of the institution and the MPs who operate within it. It is further confirmation that politicians cannot be trusted to meet even the most basic standards.


In Mr Peters' case, Miss Clark has the power to demonstrate that such conduct is not acceptable for ministers in her government. That she has not done so because she harbours the hope that support from NZ First might enable her to form a fourth government after the election is a matter of regret.