Just when I thought their collective amnesia and rewriting of history could not get worse, Phil Goff hits a new record.
Here is the NZPA story:
Prime Minister John Key should stop protecting former minister Pansy Wong and sack her after she misused MPs travel perks, Labour leader Phil Goff says. …
“She is aware of when she broke the rules and how often she broke the rules. It doesn’t need a speaker’s inquiry to confirm that.” …
“I just remember the constant attention that was given to Chris Carter. No excuses for Carter. I never made any. Excuses are being made for Wong,” he said.
“Other MPs have been prosecuted criminally for doing what she has done. She is still there as an MP, she ought not to be.”
When asked about leniency for former Labour Minister Taito Phillip Field, who is in jail for misusing his position, Mr Goff said that case needed to be determined in court.
“He was prosecuted. He was booted out of the Labour Party and I say there is enough evidence that the same should happen to Pansy Wong.”
So Phil Goff is demanding Pansy be booted out of Parliament without even any sort of report or inquiry. Further down we will look at Labour’s record on this, but let us put things in perspective. Pansy claimed a perk she should not have. For doing so she was immediately sacked from Cabinet.
Numerous Ministers in the last Government had the taxpayer pay for things, which they were not entitled to. We paid for Shane Jones’ porn, amongst other things. None of those former Ministers have quit Parliament over it. Even Chris Carter was merely demoted from the front bench to the second bench. That was in fact a pathetic punishment.
But let us look at our friend Taito Philip Field. Did Labour sack him without even waiting for an inquiry? No, they did not. Here is what they did.
- Refuse to sack him when allegations arose before election
- Refuse to have an inquiry before the election
- Defend Field as being only guilty of helping his constituents
- After election announce an inquiry with no powers
- When inquiry finally reports (six months later – and Goff is complaining about a two week wait) it details dozens of abuses, lies and the like from Field.
- Amazingly Labour still defends Field, with Cullen saying he is only guilty of working harder for his constituents than National MPs
- Also Clark holds out the possibility that Field could return to the Ministry, despite the abuses listed in the report.
- And Labour at no stage move to evict Field from caucus for his criminal behaviour and multiple abuses. They only kicked him out when he publicly mused that he could stand for another party, if not re-selected.
So Goff’s hypocrisy is simply staggering. In Government they defended a corrupt MP, even after a damning report highlighted his abuses. In Opposition, they are demanding Pansy be sacked from Parliament without even waiting for any sort of report.
Let me be clear – if the report by the Parliamentary Service concludes criminal behaviour has been involved, then the Police should prosecute. Even if no criminal behaviour is involved, what emerges from the report may be serious enough that Pansy is not re-selected as a candidate, or even is expelled from Caucus. But those decisions can not be made without knowing the facts.