As you read below that Winston has been caught in another lie, just remember that Helen Clark’s firm policy is that multiple and repeated lies to the public are no barrier to serving in her Government. The Herald reports:
NZ First leader Winston Peters says he did not use a helicopter for election campaigning – but the photographic evidence suggests otherwise.
Mr Peters has flatly denied using a helicopter to campaign, calling the suggestion “stupid”.
“Did you see me flying around in a helicopter? Who would try and campaign out of a helicopter?”
But the Herald has obtained a photographic sequence of a smiling Mr Peters posing before taking off from Gisborne Airport shortly before the 1999 election.
Even his lies are getting feeble.
Mr Peters’ denial followed a report he demanded the free use of a helicopter during the 1999 campaign from his wealthy backers in the Vela family.
The MP wanted to paint the helicopter in NZ First colours and fly it into rural areas, according to documents obtained by the Dominion-Post.
“Tell him [Philip Vela] to hire me an unmarked helicopter. So I can paint it black/white and NZ First. Then I can drop into small rural towns and schools,” he wrote in one.
“Tell those bastards I want a helicopter. Don’t give me this crap about the machine needing repairs.”
So this could be a good test case of how authentic those papers are. What was the actual helicopter used?
The helicopter in the Herald’s photographic sequence is black-and-white. It was registered to Philip Vela until June 1999, but had changed ownership to the Auckland office of Eurocopter by the time the photo was taken on the campaign trail that October/November.
Just a coincidence I am sure!
Well done to Gray Eatwell for keeping and supplying the photos. He stood for NZ First in 1999 and is standing as an Independent in Tauranga this year.
The Dom Post also covers this:
Winston Peters appeared to be posing a rhetorical question when he asked “have you seen me flying around in helicopters?”
The problem was that several people – including a Dominion Post journalist and a former political colleague – were happy to answer that they had seen just that.
Once again I stress, that Helen Clark is saying she has no problems working with Winston again. She is unconcerned that he is a serial liar. She is unconcerned that her Government’s decision making may be tainted by a cash for policy scandal. She just says it is nothing to do with her and if Winston makes it back she will have him as a Minister again.