Sep 11, 2008

Winston Electoral Poison

This from John Armstrong in the NZ Herald

However, the problem for both her and Peters is that events have already moved on. Glenn's testimony has made Peters a liability to Labour. He is now electoral poison. Worse, National is now ignoring Peters completely and instead putting the spotlight on how much Helen Clark and Labour Party president Mike Williams really knew about Glenn's donation from the start.
National is now claiming the Labour Party hierarchy organised the loan to buy NZ First's continued support for the minority Government and then tried to hide it from public view behind what Bill English yesterday told Parliament was "a calculated set of mistruths".
Regardless of its veracity, Labour needs to put such an allegation to rest.
Even though the privileges committee is still some way off completing its inquiry, the Prime Minister must draw a line under this episode. Sacking Peters is the most emphatic means of doing so - but also the most messy politically.
Judging by his fightback last night, Peters would storm out of his confidence and supply arrangement with Labour in revenge. It would be an empty gesture in practical terms. With the current Parliament in its final couple of weeks, confidence in the Government is not going to be tested.