Carter sees the writing on the wall | The Jackal

9 Aug 2021

Carter sees the writing on the wall

If there’s one positive thing you could say about the previous John Key led Government, it’s that his MPs generally towed the party line. In fact compared to what’s been happening within the National Party lately, they looked downright disciplined.

However, with Judith Collins at the helm, that’s clearly not the case anymore. Over the last year or so the blue “team” has become splintered into factions and is falling apart. Infighting is obviously a major problem, with Crusher banging heads with anybody who dares to question her authoritah.

It’s a strange dynamic, whereby National MPs who back a leader with very little public support have been handsomely rewarded, while others are ousted or are left to resign in disgust!

Yesterday, 1 News reported:

'No confidence' - David Carter explains exit from National Party

Former long-serving National MP David Carter has quit the party’s board in disgust at the re-election of President Peter Goodfellow.

The National board voted Goodfellow back in this morning, despite loud criticism of his involvement in the selection of some controversial MPs and candidates.

Carter has been on the board for nine months and told 1 NEWS he “hasn’t enjoyed the culture of the board”.  It’s believed he’d stood against Goodfellow.

“I have no confidence in the leadership of Peter Goodfellow,” he said.

“It’d be hypocritical for me to stay on when I have no confidence,” he said in a brutally honest interview with 1 NEWS.

The “inner sanctum” of the board works in a way he disagrees with and he never felt like he received the acceptance he felt he deserved.

In my opinion, Goodfellow should have been fired after it was revealed that he personally selected a Chinese spy to be a National Party MP.

Goodfellow was widely seen as an excellent fundraiser for the party.

But Carter disagrees, telling 1 NEWS while he remains the President, National will struggle to get the donations that it needs.

“Until there’s some change, we won’t have the dollars to win (the next election). National need support from corporate New Zealand and he hasn’t been successful at getting that.”

David Carter isn’t the only one to see the writing on the wall. Indeed, Chris Finlayson also recently left the party with a similar bad taste in his mouth. In fact the former Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations didn’t mince words when he said that the National Party had become a “disaster” under Collins’ so-called leadership.

In June, Stuff reported:

National Party is self-destructing, former minister says

Former National minister Chris Finlayson has lashed the current National Party as a disaster, placing the blame squarely on the leadership – both in Parliament and the wider party organisation.

He says the party leadership “deserve everything that’s come to them” after self-inflicted “brand destruction” over the past couple of years.

The comments will put more pressure on party leader Judith Collins who is already facing internal scrutiny over the resignations of former MP Nick Smith, and the current MP for Bay of Plenty, short-lived party leader Todd Muller. They will also pile pressure on current party President Peter Goodfellow.

Obviously not enough pressure otherwise Goodfellow would be gone by now.


Finlayson, who served as a National Party MP from 2005 to 2019 and held a number of ministerial portfolios, was scathing in his assessment of the current party. Speaking from his law office in Auckland, he said that the party didn’t need a detractor as it was doing well enough destroying itself.

“I don't think I've ever seen, in my life, brand destruction as devastating as that,” he said.

The same month, Stuff reported that Todd Muller was resigning as well:

Todd Muller resignation followed admission about anonymous article

National MP and former leader Todd Muller announced his retirement at the next election after admitting to his party he had been an anonymous source in an article criticising returning MP Harete Hipango.

But it has subsequently emerged that Muller’s resignation followed a late-night admission to his fellow National Party MPs that he had been one of the anonymous sources in a Newsroom article criticising Hipango, who is returning to Parliament following Nick Smith’s resignation.

It’s understood that this made National leader Judith Collins furious, and there was a threat that Muller could be expelled from caucus.

The caucus meeting was sparked by a different story concerning allegations of inappropriate spending by Hipango, which Collins has put down to an innocent “coding error”.

Collins was coy when asked about whether she wanted Muller to resign on Wednesday, saying the decision was not in her hands.

By rewarding a thief while punishing the whistleblower, Collins displayed a level of contempt for her party’s supposed Christian values rarely seen in New Zealand politics.

Crusher was also obviously lying when she claimed that Muller leaving had nothing to do with her. She is after all the National Party's current leader, and has subsequently also barred Muller from even attending caucus meetings.

Although they won’t directly say, Carter, Finlayson and Muller exiting National is all about who’s currently in charge of a party that’s stagnating at around 28% support. And with no end in sight to the backstabbing, there's no sign of their chances at re-election improving either.

Today, Newshub reported:

National Party 'letting it all hang out', losing public faith - political analyst Bryce Edwards

The conference saw the National Party lose another member - former Speaker and Cabinet Minister Sir David Carter - who resigned after challenging the leadership of party president Peter Goodfellow and losing.

"He says 'he's got better things to do with his time, he's not going to waste his time on the Nats', so that's a stinging review of the National Party," Edwards said of Sir David's resignation.

There was also the issue of the National Party voting unanimously against a Bill which will ban conversion therapy, despite MPs saying they support banning the practice.

Dr Edwards acknowledged being in Opposition is difficult for any political party and it can lead to negativity and "finger-pointing".

"It creates its own momentum of disaster - there's leaking to the media, infighting, no one pulls together."

Dr Edwards pointed out other parties disagree and have infighting too - the difference is they keep it under wraps.

"They keep it out of the public arena - National is letting it all hang out and it doesn't give the public much faith."

A political party that was once dominated by alpha males now rewards weak and ineffectual suck-ups who have become nothing more than Judith Collins’ errand boys. 

Take Simeon Brown for instance, who has been promoted well above his station simply because he regurgitates Crusher’s online propaganda without question. Then consider Christopher Bishop, who doesn’t even have the willpower to vote for what he actually believes in anymore.

This doesn’t bode well for the National Party, particularly when Judith Collins is effectively culling her own party of anybody who might have the slightest inclination about challenging her for the leadership position.

Pretty soon Crusher will be seeing allies as enemies and all that will be left of the National Party is a bunch of sycophants who won’t even be able to hold their own party to account, let alone mount any proper opposition to the current Government. And that’s not just a bad thing for National; it’s a bad thing for accountability within other New Zealand political parties as well.