16/08/2017
Dieuwe de Boer
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Labour Colludes to Topple Australian Government

If you think that this crazy election couldn't get any crazier, you would be wrong. It has been revealed that Labour MP Chris Hipkins colluded with the Australian Labor Party to try and bring down Australian Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce. While the Australians seem to have resolved the constitutional crisis at their end, this move could have led to a total collapse of their Coalition government.

David Farrar writes:

It is no big issue that sometimes there will be different parties in power in NZ and Australia. Governments go out of their way to forge a good relationship regardless of the side of the political fence you are in. Two good examples are Helen Clark & John Howard and John Key & Julia Gillard. They worked together for the good of both countries, putting aside the fact that they know NZ National Party would of course prefer their sister Liberal Party to be in Government, and the same for NZ Labour and Australian Labour.

So it is not a big thing that each party may have a few activists who go over and help at an election time, or even share campaign advisers etc.

But what is a big thing is for an MP of one country’s Parliament to use their role to help the parliamentary party of another country’s Parliament. And that is what Chris Hipkins did by asking these two written questions (1, 2)on behalf of Bill Shorten.

It would have been obvious to Hipkins that Australian Labor wanted this information to bring down a Government MP. He may not have known it was the Deputy Prime Minister but he would have known why Australian Labor was asking, and also be aware the Australian Government has a one seat majority in the House of Representatives and so the loss of even one seat could bring down the Government.

Let's see what the next few weeks hold and if we can top this.