Friday, November 24, 2023

Kate Hawkesby: Nicola Willis looks like the most mature of them all

So has the anticipation of this government been greater than the event itself?  

Will it be under whelming when we finally see the state of it?  

Did we just build it up as this huge thing full of controversy and twists and turns, when in fact it was just a boring longer than expected meeting of negotiating endless minutiae?  

I actually felt sorry for them yesterday – especially the ones who are parents to young kids, like Nicola Willis. She was desperate to get back to Wellington and see her 4 young children, Chris Bishop was wearing a borrowed shirt because he'd run out of clothes... I mean all of that just reeks of a thing that went on longer than anyone expected. Longer than perhaps it needed to. I know even David Seymour was saying that.  

But how will we remember all this and Luxon’s abilities around it? Well, that’s the thing, possibly not at all. The news cycle moves fast, a week’s a long time in politics, this will all be ancient history before long. I don’t know that people will care in three years' time whether he spent two or three weeks negotiating a coalition deal, I think they’ll care more about how he’s run the country and a three headed government.  

That’s surely the true test.  

And if we do get it all revealed today, how much notice are you taking? How much do you care whose inside Cabinet and who isn’t? I mean I know political tragics like me will be fascinated, but can you really name all the Ministers of the previous government? Short of the ones who are terrible, or got in trouble, or said and did really stupid things that blew up in the news, we probably don’t really care who's in charge of what. Unless it affects you directly of course. Willie Jackson in charge of Broadcasting was always a bitter pill to swallow for many in the media myself included, but as long as they’re competent and don’t do anything stupid, we tend to forget about them don’t we?  

The coolest person in the room now though is Nicola Willis, isn't she? Not interested in the baubles, more interested in the business of governing, she says she never wanted to be deputy PM, Seymour and Peters can scrap it out between them, she's back to home to Wellington to see her 4 young kids who’re missing their Mum. I mean she’s all class and so far, looks like the most mature of the lot of them. I think in her saying what she said, she clearly showed the others up for what they are and removed herself from the fray. Good on her.  

She's keen to get on with governing, showing she’s truly about the good of the country, not the good of her ego. And I do think that's the risk being run here by Seymour and Peters. They start to look petulant and like they're holding the country to ransom, delaying the formation of a new government. Which look, I understand if you've had to swallow a lot of dead rats and you're going for broke on the final curtain, but if Peters wants Foreign Minister and Deputy PM I think that's a stretch. The Deputy PM can't be off travelling all the time, because what if they're needed at home to step up for the PM? 

Luxon's argument is best person for the job and spreading the talent... we get that, but as their wage payers we want to see value for money too. These guys are on the big bucks, they need to be competent and efficient.  

So far the most efficient one appears to be Nicola Willis, seeing the spectacle unfolding for what it is and saying ‘see ya guys, I'm back home to Welly.’ 

Kate Hawkesby is a journalist and broadcaster who hosts the Early Edition show on Newstalk ZB.

1 comment:

DeeM said...

Honestly Kate. If Nicola wants to spend so much time with her "4 little ones" then why did she go into politics, become deputy leader of National and now the Finance Minister for a government who has a shitload on its plate.

Get real! She likes the power and this trumps her spending lots of time with the kiddies. So stop pretending that she's Super-Mum, flying like a speeding bullet to collect her kids every day from school, making them dinner every night, then reading each one a bedtime story. And being there every morning to take them to school. Only then does she put the country to rights.
Whereas all the big, bad men are setting a terrible example, showing off their egos and scrapping over which position they get, but not Mother Nicola, patron saint of the egoless . Except her husband, maybe. Who probably takes on all those roles just as much as she does. Or maybe they have a nanny!

You're living in Disneyland.