For once, National’s Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully has acted as the underhanded strategist he’s reputed to be, ‘poaching’ Labour’s Shane Jones for a job as fisheries bureaucrat for the Pacific just ahead of the election.
That Jones finally accepted McCully’s January overtures is both a vote of no-confidence in his party’s chances this election – with the portfolio of Economic Development he could have expected a major role in any Labour-Green win – and also of its internal culture. Because it seems his disgust with Labour’s “identity politics” might finally have trumped his political ambition.
And he has been ambitious. Since his first appearance in what is euphemistically called “public life” he’s been a chancer, leveraging his own Maori identity early on into a plum job as chairman of the Waitangi Fisheries Commission.
He’s been feeding from the trough ever since – so, no change at all in that respect then – with increasing arrogance at every move up the greasy pole.
At least he’ll now be able to download porn on a taxpayers’ tab without journalists writing headlines about it.