Campbell Live is “more of a melodrama series than current affairs show”

Simon Bridges and John Campbell are going toe to toe in a knock ’em down, drag ’em out fight that Bridges appears to be winning with some lethal sledges with more than a bit of truth to them.

The latest instalment sees Simon Bridges describe Campbell Live as “more of a melodrama series than current affairs show“.

Mr Campbell essentially accused the minister of being incompetent after he failed to return calls to comment on stories aired on Monday and Tuesday night’s shows.

Mr Bridges then accused Campbell Live of having a “slant” on the issue of oil and gas and said he was out of the country during Tuesday night’s show and would only agree to a live interview because he feared his comments would be cut down to an embarrassing few seconds. 

Campbell Live executive producer Pip Keane called Mr Bridges’ response “ridiculous”.

“He is a Cabinet minister who is accountable to the people of New Zealand,” she said.

“We have been working on this Anadarko oil story for more than a week and we have called his press secretary, Lucy, repeatedly; we have also emailed and called Mr Bridges directly on his mobile and he has chosen not to respond.

“Repeatedly we have offered him a live interview.”

Mr Bridges had also refused to discuss the issue of a living wage for parliamentary cleaners on the show and had still not made a decision about Dunedin man Alan Dunlop who has been without power for three months, she said. Mr Dunlop’s power company applied to Mr Bridges for an exemption not to reconnect his power after a storm because it was not financially viable.

“If Mr Bridges continues to make himself unavailable, perhaps he needs to reconsider his role as a Cabinet Minister.”

Mr Bridges said: “I think Campbell Live is proving it’s more of a melodrama series than a current affairs show. I’m not going to get into some kids’ stuff argument with them. If it’s a serious, considered interview that’s live and unedited, I’m likely to.”

John Campbell has come to be the very definition of crusading advocacy media, conducting an d fabricating stories based on personal beliefs rather than newsworthiness.

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.