Cash for access


I know my readers flinch when their favourite politician gets in trouble, but let it be clear that he’s doing a fine job all by himself.

Prime Minister John Key has contradicted statements his own office made about a meeting with controversial Chinese businessman Donghua Liu.

Last year Mr Key’s office denied a dinner he had with Liu was a ‘Cabinet Club’ fundraiser.

But today the story changed, after pictures emerged of the Prime Minister meeting Liu at his Remuera home – a meeting that at the height of last year’s donations saga, Mr Key didn’t want to talk about.

His office at the time?said?the mystery dinner wasn’t a contentious fundraiser, but today Mr Key said he knew it was a Cabinet Club dinner.

Labour leader Andrew Little says the story change makes it look like the National Party is “fudging what actually happened here”.

….Mr Key was keen to keep his distance, admitting they’d met, but wouldn’t give specifics. However Mr Key’s office later said the pair met at a National Party fundraiser.

But today’s pictures reveal that fundraiser was actually the private dinner at Liu’s home ? complete with a smiling Mr Key and National’s Botany MP Jami-Lee Ross.

When asked last year if it was a Cabinet?Club dinner, the Prime Minister’s office replied in a statement simply saying no.

Within weeks of the dinner a $25,000 donation was made to the Botany Cabinet Club. After the election, Mr Ross refunded the money, and he didn’t answer calls to explain why today.

Was the payment?made to the Botany Cabinet club originally? ? It seems that information may also need to be corrected.

Someone panicked. ? It should just have been declared as a party donation, and they should just have gone “so what?”. ?By paying it back, not only have National shown they felt the public would think something dodgy was going on, they also made a life-time enemy of a very rich man who seems to be feeding the press all the good news.

Labour have been banging on about dinner at Antoines being Cash for Access. ?That clearly isn’t, as it is a public event. ?This one at the other hand, is at a person’s home, was done in secret, and the idiots panicked when they realised they prefer to back out rather than just go “so what?”.

It’s never the original transgression. ?It’s always in trying to cover it up that politicians stuff it up.


– 3 News