Far be it for me to argue with a “decent journalist, trained and skilled” but it looks like the 1996 and 1999 elections were all part of some sort of conspiracy to hide reality from the whole of New Zealand.
I say this because a “decent journalist, trained and skilled” like Susan Edmunds in the Herald on Sunday says that Helen Clark was the Prime Minister in 1997:
Now I know Wikipedia isn’t acceptable as a source, Bryce Johns said so. However Wikipedia shows the results of both the 1996 and 1999 elections. It is clear there that Helen Clark didn’t become the Prime Minister until 1999.
They could of course be wrong…let’s check what the Electoral Commission says. It looks like they are in on the conspiracy too. Perhaps we better check the Herald, as the sole arbiter of fact. Matt McCarten says it was 1999 that Clark cried:
Helen Clark’s speaking invitation in 1999 was memorable for different reasons. We watched our iron maiden in tears after Waitangi’s real iron maiden, Titiwhai Harawira, who had campaigned for equal rights for women on marae for years, objected.
She queried why a Pakeha woman should be allowed to speak on a marae but not wahine. Clark was so humiliated she refused to return.
Audrey Young, who is a decent journalist, says it was 1998…but that Helen Clark was a future Prime Minister:
In 1998, Mrs Turia was at Te Tii with Helen Clark when Mrs Harawira reduced the then Labour leader to tears over her being allowed to speak.
It had hurt Nga Puhi to think a future prime minister could not feel safe at their marae.
I await the email from Bryce Johns saying that the Herald on Sunday “decent journalists, trained and skilled” have discovered previously undiscovered evidence that Jim Bolger never did win the 1996 election, and that Helen Clark was after all the Prime Minister in 1997…or was it 1998?…or was it 1999?