Vernon Small, who is not known for his right wing views calls the opening salvos of parliament for National:
Chalk up the first round of the political year to National.
Not just because John Key’s “state of the nation” speech delivered some actual news, in the shape of a revamped apprenticeship scheme (albeit using recycled money), against a rhetoric-heavy but news-lite offering from David Shearer.
More to the point National has grasped the early initiative by revamping the warrant of fitness regime and signalling an end to daily postal deliveries, two decisions that take another step into the 21st century.
The WOF decision will be popular, despite the self-interested protestations of the motor trade lobby.
Associate Transport Minister Simon Bridges was on the right side of the voters, and Labour risked getting on the wrong side by not giving its unequivocal backing.
The argument that a six-monthly testing regime was necessary to somehow save us from ourselves and our reluctance to self-police car safety is hardly a political winner.
National released the policy on the same day as Shearer’s first major speech in a blatant and successful attempt to overshadow it.
Arguably they didn’t need to bother.
In other words Shearer has failed to fire and hardened lefty commentators and journalists were left with a a double face palm as the only option after Shearer’s cheesy and rehearsed “angry” speeches fell as flat as his scripted delivery.