Winston on Paula Bennett

Perennial opportunist Winston Peters comments on Paula Bennett.

If Prime Minister John Key had any political sense he would shift his Cabinet “powder keg” – Minister Paula Bennett – to the back benches with haste.

She’s prone to outbursts.

And doing dumb shit.

At Budget time she plucked a figure out of the air and decided to solve the Auckland housing crisis with a $5000 “leave Auckland” bribe. Finance Minister Bill English tried to hide his surprise and shock, but you can bet there were some words behind those ministerial walls.

Let’s face it, Bill takes some persuading to use taxpayers’ money for the greater good, even if their issues are not their fault, or they are deserving, or it might make us a better nation.

This week he pulled a rare trick to stop parents getting 26 weeks parental leave.

Not something he will look back on and be proud of – surely.

As I have constantly said other ministers have been sacked for less.

But when a marae picks up the government’s social duty and pulls out all stops to shelter people the last thing the government should be doing is ignoring them and attempting to tarnish their reputation.

But the “powder keg” did just that. First, she refused to visit the marae and learn some home truths. Then, in an unbelievable display of dirty politics, she revealed private information about the head of the marae to her staff. Then she blamed a press secretary for mentioning it to the media. It is fair to assume that making the information public was deliberate.

Unfortunately it looks like a media stitch up, but on the surface the facts aren’t good for Paula Bennett.

The Minister has a track record. In 2009 she gave benefit details of two women to a newspaper after they criticised her decision to scale back a training incentive allowance.

It was a morally unfair attempt to turn the public against them.

For his own security in office, the Prime Minister would do well to bring such behaviour to an end by isolating the Cabinet “powder keg” before it destroys them all.

I agree with Winston, and that isn’t that often. Paula Bennett has a bad case of third termitis coupled with an outrageous arrogance, she is a risk. If I was the opposition I would mercilessly hound her in parliament.


– RadioLive

Do you want:

  • Ad-free access?
  • Access to our very popular daily crossword?
  • Access to daily sudoku?
  • Access to Incite Politics magazine articles?
  • Access to podcasts?
  • Access to political polls?

Our subscribers’ financial support is the reason why we have been able to offer our latest service; Audio blogs. 

Click Here  to support us and watch the number of services grow.

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.