Does Barclay have something on English? | The Jackal

30 Aug 2017

Does Barclay have something on English?

The Todd Barclay affair is odd because normally his type of misconduct would see an MP ousted from the house. Sure, the National party with their slimmest of majorities needs Barclay to be able to pass legislation. But that’s coming at a considerable cost to their credibility and subsequent hopes for reelection.

Bill English in particular is looking decidedly dodgy by attempting a cover-up.

First he lied about his knowledge of the issue and then he stupidly said he didn’t think secretly recording someone was illegal. English then claimed the recording might not exist, after providing a Police statement on the matter. He also confirmed that National had paid a considerable amount of hush money after saying there was nothing to hide.

Now we learn that a National party advocate, likely chief of staff Wayne Eagleson, successfully pressured the Police into withholding information from the press about the PM's involvement.

That last one is where English has likely come unstuck.

Yesterday, Radio NZ reported:

Ombudsman investigating police over Barclay saga

The Ombudsman is investigating complaints over the police handling of the Todd Barclay affair.

Police first investigated the case last year but decided they had insufficient evidence to prosecute Mr Barclay, who had refused to be interviewed.

If this were an opposition MP, the Police would have found the required evidence.

Documents released under the Official Information Act show someone on behalf of the Prime Minister asked police early this year not to publicly release text messages between Mr English and the electorate chairman at the time, Stuart Davie.

The requests continued and a month later the police said neither Mr English's statement to police, nor any texts, would be released to the media.

Ombudsman Peter Boshier said there were complaints about how the police handled information requests and he was investigating.

Police re-opened their investigation into Mr Barclay in June. The case was closed last year when police concluded they had insufficient evidence to prosecute Mr Barclay.

The fact that the Police re-opened the case shows that they mishandled it in the first place.

The IPCA decided not to look into the police handling of the matter after it received a complaint in June. It said it was satisfied there was no misconduct or neglect by police investigating the case.

Which is no surprise really. The IPCA is simply a mechanism to try and limit Police accountability and prosecutions.

The Ombudsman on the other hand has some real powers to find out exactly what has gone wrong with the Police investigation, and perhaps even shine some more light on why English is at pains to protect a little scoundrel like Todd Barclay.

Could Barclay have something on English that means the PM will risk National’s reelection prospects in order to keep it secret? What exactly is on the illegal recordings and 450 text messages sent between English and former party staffer Glenys Dickson?

Let’s hope this scandal blows wide open to show just how corrupt the Prime Minister really is before voters go to the ballot boxes on September 23rd.