"These are the crucial questions we've been asking all week:
1. Who set up the Spencer Trust?
2. Who donates to it?
3. What is the money spent on?
4. Does New Zealand First receive money from the Trust?
5. How much?
6. Why isn't it declared? (Donations to parties over 10k must be declared)
7. What else does the Trust spend its money on?
But Winston will not answer these questions. He can't. Answering them will only confirm what he and his party are up to. His MPs are in the dark - they know nothing. They trudge to Parliament each day - grasping some pre-written patsy question to ask their leader.
Like, why did Condi Rice come to New Zealand and would it have happened under any other Foreign Minister? How embarrassing for them. What sycophants.
They owe their jobs to Peters. None would make it under their own steam. Barbara Stewart. Ever heard of her? Now Peters is making his MPs look like the hopeless docile poodles that they are. And these people call us meercats!
Peters now has no credibility. He does not believe in being accountable. His only defence is attack. He has promised on three occasions this week to 'clear things up'. He hasn't. What are you so embarrassed about Winston?"
Garner's point about the NZ First MP's is well made. None, with the possible exception of Ron Mark would make it into Parliament on their own merits. Last week, when they were reduced to asking supplementary questions about Peters's achievements, it was like watching a series of people delivering eulogies at a funeral.
Garner then turns to the allegations against Peters, suggesting that he knows a bit more than has been publicly disclosed to date:
"The Serious Fraud Office is the only way forward. Speaker Margaret Wilson is still sitting on her wig two weeks after Rodney Hide called for a Parliamentary Inquiry - that she must rule on. But this is much bigger than Wilson and the powers she has. The Privileges Committee can't audit trusts. The SFO can.
Hide won't release his letter to the SFO. The SFO has asked him not to. Hide got help writing that letter - he took advice. He won't say from who. My bet is that it's a private investigator. Perhaps a criminal lawyer. The approach to the SFO is very important. It must be carefully written."
There's a lot in this piece, and while I'm tempted to reproduce the whole shooting gallery, I'll leave it to readers to check it out. One thing is for sure. The MSM seem to have closed ranks on Peters, and he will struggle to bluster his way out of these allegations. But can anyone land the killer blow before the Appropriations Bill has its Third Reading next week, and the House's confidence in the Labour-led government is tested?