Labour stops hugging Xmas Island Crims – starts ?Con Air? fear campaign

Tracy Watkins has an opinion piece on the morphing of Labour’s rapist-hugging routine into a scare campaign about “Con-Air”.

Con Air is what the Opposition are calling it in Parliament – and if that sounds like the name for a Hollywood blockbuster, that’s because it has all the elements. A chartered plane, headed for New Zealand, with 20-odd serious criminals on board, some of them likely to have committed the worst sort of crimes.

The plane’s arrival strips bare the smoke and mirrors surrounding the argument over Christmas Island detainees.

Because despite all the shouting, the Government has been caught unprepared. It blames Australia, and there may be some justification for that. Australia failed the good neighbour test by failing to give us a heads up about a law change that would see a dramatic rise in the number of Kiwi expats deported for bad behaviour. ??

But blame also lies with our Government. It was slow on the uptake after Justice Minister Amy Adams was told in February there was likely to be a significant increase in the number of serious offenders deported to New Zealand after an Australian law change.

But the Government has only now got around to introducing legislation, which Parliament is scrambling to rush through before “Con Air” lands on Thursday.

And why do we need this urgent law change? Because these are bad bastards who are being returned, the very same people whom Labour was dying in a ditch for.

If passed in time, the new arrivals will be subject to monitoring that includes requiring all offenders returning to New Zealand to provide police with identifying information if they have committed an offence that carries a prison sentence under our law. They must also provide police with a sample of their DNA for the police DNA data bank.

The bill also puts in place a system of oversight by Department of Corrections, including conditions comparable with those which would come with a sentence of imprisonment in New Zealand.

A better system would be to house them with Labour MPs. They advocated for them after all.

I hope Kelvin Davis has plenty of bunks at his place.


– Fairfax