Judith Collins be gone
I was in Taneatua for a rendezvous when someone came up clasping their mobile phone and told me Judith Collins has just resigned. Wow, Key finally pulled the trigger. The roadshow was coming to Whakatane and Kim Dotcom and the entourage of Internet Party and local Mana branches were in town. When they arrived we all rejoiced the resignation - the sacking of the Justice Minister - in Tuhoe St.
Looking at the smoking gun email that the PM used to ditch her, it looks weak - as weak as Key had been in tolerating her all this while. Now he pulls the trigger for some bullshit innuendo in a malevolent fantasist's email. Any votes gained by looking strong and decisive are lost three or four-fold by conceding her as a liability and the cause of disunity. Now she is blocked from Cabinet by Key she will plot revenge from her electorate - so the drama is far from over.
The reason Key has used to get rid of her is a creation. The revelations in the Hager book are worse from what I have read this far, but Key had trashed the whole book and everything in it so he had to generate something fresh, something he was not aware of. Odds are the blanked name is David Farrar and it was the same David Farrar which gave Key the polling data showing Collins an electoral drag. And then a day or so, maybe hours later, this email magically appears. That's my hunch anyway. Add it to Winston Peters' allegation that someone from the Collins camp approached him about a Collins-led post-Key coalition government and the PM does not lack a motivation and interest to put her down.
The worst thing about the email is not that Slater suggests former Minister Collins "is gunning for" the SFO Director, it is that a reporter at the NZ Herald was in the habit of providing emails from and about the SFO to Slater in the hope he would get a story in return based on Slater's close relationship with the former Minister. This entails that the NZ Herald reporter was in fact giving these communications to the former Minister - just via Slater.
Why didn't the reporter just go direct to Collins with this? After all that is where the info will end up. Why would a reporter want to empower a middleman the likes of Slater? Slater is not a source he is a medium. Why do these journalists resort to playing Slater's game? It's all very yuck.
I haven't even finished reading the Hager book yet, but the consorting with journalists, the manipulation of iPredict, the shadowy role of PR consultants and so on is all laid bare in that one
email the PM has been so kind in releasing to the public. If this is how the PM reacts from one faffing email it begs the question: what would he do of he actually read the book?!