As Peters names a third Saddamite in New Zealand, the question has to be asked whether Paul Swain should resign as Minister of Immigration?
I don’t mean resign in the sense of any personal wrong-doing, but in line with the honourable tradition that when a Department fails so miserably, the Ministers steps aside as a sign of accountability. Personally Paul Swain is (in my opinion) one of the better Ministers in the Government, and I will always hold him in some high regard for recommending to Cabinet that the telephone local loop be unbundled. So I am not suggesting he be removed from Cabinet, but that he resign the portfolio as a way of signifying to his department how bad their failure has been, and a new Minister can come in and kick some heads in. Having a Minister fall on their sword is the most powerful signal one can send to a Department about how badly they have failed.
I do not like NZ First’s stance on immigration. I think they have done a huge amount of scare mongering over the years. However the failures of NZIS (and there have been many over the years including the lie in unison scandal) have now given Peters some credibility. That may come to be the true tragedy.