[POLL] Do you care about Key’s farewell speech?

From hero to Mr 2 per cent. The story of John Key’s departure from politics is almost as remarkable as his extraordinary rise.

One day he was at the top of his game, cruising to a fourth term, and still surprisingly popular for a third time prime minister. Within weeks of his bombshell about stepping down, Key is barely rating in the preferred prime minister stakes. A distant memory and he hasn’t left Parliament yet.

To be honest, I feel somewhat let down. ?He could have delivered an easy fourth term for National and then stepped away. ? But that’s the cold fish that he is. ?He may be personable and approachable, but he didn’t get where he is today by not being able to be stone hearted and brutal when the occasion calls for it. ? Read more »


Toodle pip Kevin. Enjoy the good life at Forest and Bird

The third-ranked Greenie will give his valedictory speech in the debating chamber at around 5:30pm before a shindig at the Green Party headquarters at Bowen House.

He quit earlier this month after being shoulder-tapped to be the new chief executive of Forest and Bird.

Mr Hague says he has mixed feelings about leaving politics, especially without having the chance to be in Government.

“We’re in politics because we believe in a vision, and so every day that takes us further away from that vision is one more blow. Eight years of daily blows is pretty tough.”

He’s held a raft of different portfolios over the years, his most recent being conservation, health and rainbow issues. Read more »

Today’s valedictory speeches starting at 4:15pm


The first will be totally missable, but the last three will probably be worth your time. ?Yes, even Darien.

Watch them on-line,?here

One of the, erm, dumber Herald editorials?

Editorial: Keep farewell speeches for deserving MPs only


Members enjoy valedictories. They are relief at last from the constant antagonism of party politics. Those retiring receive a more attentive hearing than they have had since their maiden speech. They go out in a burst of bonhomie from both sides of the House that heals old wounds.

Those not retiring enjoy the moment just as much.

Parliament becomes a club of hearty and generous members who understand their disagreements and can put them aside momentarily.

The truce is all the better for the fact that both sides know they will soon be in bitter combat for an election.

But if so many are leaving that their valedictories may take up sittings over several days, it is time to ask whether all deserve one. Few voters could name many of those retiring this year. Many are leaving because they have not been able to make much impact and accept that they should give others a chance. More credit to them, but valedictory time should be reserved for those who have made their mark and will be missed.

The obvious question: ?who decides which MP has “made their?mark and will be missed”? ?Some may not have been strong parliamentary performers but have been solid in their electorates, steady on select committees, or full on supporting the party and the voters but not doing so in an overt way.

So, what an idiotic suggestion. ?The mere process of deciding that will be more divisive and time wasting than a few valedictory speeches. ? Alternatively, parties will come to a backroom agreement to ignore any “made their mark and will be missed” rules and let the status quo prevail.

Here’s an idea – I think editorials should have the author’s name on them. ?That way we can give credit where it is due, or, in this case, point and snigger at an awful piece of work.

George Hawkins Valedictory

A very good valedictory speech from George Hawkins. Towards the middle he is?particularly?scathing of MMP.