All bad news in the media today for Brian Connell. First we have the publicity over his vow not to cut his hair until Don Brash is no longer Leader. Good God – are you 12???? I mean seriously, one is a Member of Parliament.
Then we have David Carter saying that the Independent had confirmed to him prior to the Caucus meeting that they knew someone was going to confront Brash. I had certainly heard the day after it happened that the Independent had the story written in advance and were just waiting for the Caucus meeting to then confirm and file the story..
On top of that one of Connell’s staff, now on either annual or sick leave depending on who you believe, confirming Connell had spoken top the Independent earlier that day. There’s also scuttlebutt around that there has been a refusal to hand over cellphone records showing or disproving if a cellphone had been left switched on and transmitting during the caucus meeting.
And finally in the Herald story, he threatens to take a few people with him if he does retire from politics. Later when he realises it was on the record he says he was “musing” not “threatening”.
The Press has a story about Connell no longer living in his electorate. The Press also notes that he has put out no press releases in two years and asked only 14 written parliamentary questions this term (something I and Andrew Falloon highlighted a week or so ago).
NZPA also reports on the threat to bring others down and how the suspension came as a complete surprise. I’m amazed it was such a surprise as I actually raised the issue on TV twelve days ago and it seemed obvious to me by the response that MPs wanted to take some action.