Claire Trevett examines John Key’s sledging of Winston Peters:
There is a beautiful thing emerging as the relationship between NZ First leader Winston Peters and Prime Minister John Key develops. The exchanges between the two men have the distinct look of the schoolboy pulling the cute girl’s pigtails in the classroom.
It has resulted in some pearler exchanges. Peters takes some pride in being one of Parliament’s orators, so Key has made a habit of pretending he doesn’t understand Peters’ questions in Parliament. He once asked the Speaker to get Peters to repeat a question because he was “mumbling” – prompting a retort from Peters that Key himself was “that man famous for his diction”.
On another occasion, Key effusively praised the Speaker for his apparent ability to understand Peters’ meandering questions – a feat no other person present was up to. He has corrected Peters’ pronunciation of Huawei and once told Peters his question was “incorrectly phrased”.
What Peters gets, he gives back. He has called Key the “recluse from Merrill Lynch” and the “Mandarin Candidate” because he was in the thrall of China.
I’m waiting for some wag to call a point of order and ask the speaker to require Winston to come to the house properly attired with his wig on straight.