City Councillor smears submitters

Stuff reports:

A post by Wellington City councillor referring to public submitters as “absolute knobs” has been removed from Twitter.

Paul made the comment about a group of Mt Victoria residents who were part of a video submission on the council’s draft spatial plan on Wednesday. …

The group appeared on video at the council meeting as part of a submission by Mt Victoria resident Phil Kelliher, who spoke to hundreds of affected residents about the proposals.

“Shout out to these absolute knobs in the bottom right corner who said they enjoy living in Mt Vic cos [sic] the poor people live ‘out there’ and the wealthy people live ‘over here’ and it’s good for networking,” Paul said.

So these ratepayers had taken the time and trouble to make a submission to the Council, and Cr Paul is insulting them in real time on Twitter, calling them knobs.

She also smeared them by claiming the direct opposite of what she said. They were saying they don’t want wealthy and poor people living apart.

In the video, one of the women said she opposed medium-density housing in the suburb because it would lead to unaffordable housing for some people currently living in the area.

“I don’t think that’s a good idea at all, because the people that can afford to live in those [new homes], it won’t be us.

“The more up-building you try to do in the city, the more expensive it becomes.”

She said the current arrangement meant people from all different backgrounds were able to mingle together, but the new housing proposals could create a situation where “the poor people live out that way and the rich people live up this way”.

So the opposite of what Cr Paul claimed.

Paul appeared to misunderstand the comments, and said she took them to mean that the woman wanted wealthy people and poor people to be separated.

She told Stuff on Friday she still believed the comments were arrogant and were an example of “white privilege”.

And to make things worse she smears them again.

Is this really what we want from elected representatives? That if they disagree with your submission, they’ll smear and abuse you on Twitter in real time?

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