Nov 6, 2008

Today's Trans Tasman

A very interesting Trans Tasman again this week, the week before the election.

TT's sister publication the Main report got the US election pretty right last Friday.

TT senses a mood for change...

We can't resist drawing reader attention to the following which shows how well TT is informed about what goes on inside Government departments and how well connected it is to the Diplomatic corps. We have felt for a while that Helen's support for Peters and the rushing through of the ETS are the main reasons why Labour might lose power on Saturday:

If Labour loses office this weekend, how much blame will be ascribed to Helen Clark’s embrace of NZ First and Winston Peters? The senior ranks of Clark’s Cabinet have been notable for their water-tight loyalty. But as nerves were stretched even tighter, the leaks are starting and it’s evident that many chafed under the indulgences granted Peters. Most angst attached to his status as Minister outside Cabinet. Ministers were aware this made the Govt look foolish overseas, as if the portfolio ranked near bottom in Govt priorities. How could the Foreign Minister not sit at the Cabinet table? Who argued his submissions? Many of Trade Minister Phil Goff’s international counterparts were dismayed the energetic and capable Minister had been sidelined, until the machinations were explained to them. Some think this is one reason for the trenchant in-house criticism of Peter’s $600m “Step Change” boost to MFAT funding. Murray McCully has flagged this will be subjected to heavy pruning under National, while Michael Cullen, whose books are drenched with red ink, will have the scalpel ready.