If John Key ‘bleeds blue’ it was a purple shade at the National Party Conference. The age of chivalry seemed to be dead after Key’s ‘Yeah, Nah’ type response when asked his views on the leader by a media itching to discredit Judith. They were not disappointed.

Given the ongoing Covid environment and the lengthy money scramble, the government-of-non-delivery’s get out of jail free card for victory at the last election; and the bought media’s constant negative barrage against Judith Collins and National and the relatively easy treatment of Jacinda Ardern, Key could not find it in his heart to publicly endorse warrior Judith.

As a seasoned politician and former PM for 8 years, John Key knows politicians are actors on a political stage and moreover perception is everything so a vote of confidence from him would go a long way in the public eye. Key is not the generous individual I once thought.

George W Bush is now officially an honorary Democrat; is John Key vying for the New Zealand equivalent? Ardern’s chaotic government has not elicited much criticism from Key apart from saying, “She is not that interested in the economy.” Yes, he has criticised the shambolic MIQ system, but even Labour voters are doing that!

Former National MP, Minister and Speaker of the House, David Carter, missed out on the Chairman of the Board role and went wailing to Stuff throwing a tantrum because he lost: his reputation taking a beating, and support for National out the window, as he wallowed in self-pity.

Does he have proven successful fund-raising experience, like Goodfellow, a huge part of the role? Doubt it. After 9 months as a board member, he wanted it all and he wanted it now. Goodfellow’s term comes to an end next year, when he has to relinquish the role, a likely time for the election of a new Chairman.

The media pushing the negative, are making much of this, but The NZ Herald’s Jason Walls talking on Newstalk’ ZB’s Week-end Collective provided some balance, saying there was a unified feeling at the conference with some good issues, like mental health, covered.

National’s Board takes care of the financials and fundraising and oversees candidate selection, where major changes in the process have recently been made. One of their new members has her own HR company who should be advocating for more thorough vetting of the most suitable candidates and less emphasis on just personality. Our charismatic ideological PM is testament to that error.

They do not get involved with the day-to-day politicking and policy-making of the party like Labour’s unions do, who provide funding with strings attached. And how! Think banning charter schools and heavy regulations on businesses and landlords. The unions have Labour over a barrel and had a major say in those decisions.

And just to add balance, Ardern has the Maori caucus in her other ear (read Nanaia Mahuta, who is running the show with her He Puapua roll out). Happy days, New Zealand.

Chris Bishop discovered loose lips can get you into all sorts of trouble if your ‘friend’ decides to share your text comment on social media. Bishop’s desire was to support the banning conversion bill at the first reading rather than take the party approach, well-articulated by Simon Bridges, of opposing it and demanding changes to decriminalise parents for advising their teens.

Judith Collins puts it bluntly:

‘We’ve only got 33 votes and there’s an overwhelming majority to get it there. But we want to make it really clear to the Government and their anti-parenting type behaviour, and anti-parents frankly, that we will not stand by and allow this to happen without making such a song and dance about it that the whole of the public knows. No one would be talking about it now if we hadn’t stood up for parents.”

Bishop and Nicola Willis, two of the traitors who joined Todd Muller last year in his coup overthrowing Simon Bridges, which turned out to be a bit of a fizzer, were fortunate to get welcomed back to the fold by new leader Judith Collins and given top portfolios. Willis has not put a foot wrong, positively promoting her party and leader and becoming somewhat of a star in the House prosecuting beleaguered Housing Minister Megan Woods.

Hardworking Bishop has a sterling record and much to keep him busy dealing with the incompetent government’s Covid response. If Bishop’s raison d’être is social justice there are other parties who would welcome his considerable talents. (Ditto newbie Chris Luxon #notmyfutureprimeminister.)

Bishop’s heart is in the right place, but he must keep in mind:

There is no ‘i’ in team

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Wendy Geus

I did my writing apprenticeship as a communications advisor. Like all writers, I am highly opinionated, so freelance writing is best for me. I abhor moral posturing, particularly by NZ politicians. I avoid...