Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Crank-calling Clayton

While intention is focussed intensely on John Tamihere, I thought I take the opportunity to highlight developments in the Clayton Cosgrove story. It stems from sunday when John Tamihere was revealed to have said:
"What [Clayton] used to do is get Clark’s home number, and Peter Davis’ work number and home number and he was in Mike’s support team, and he used to drive them nuts, he’d ring incessantly at all hours saying ‘leave Mike alone!’, and they knew it was him," Mr Tamihere says. "He ran that campaign, and it used to be nasty, naughty."

Herald on Sunday 10th April 2005
Clayton's reaction? According to the same report:
[H]e was upset and said he would "restrain myself". Later he phoned back with a statement: "That did not happen. It is not true."
Enter Ron Mark. While now a NZ first MP, in 1993 he was in the Labour Party. Not only was he close to Mike Moore but he was tipped as Moore's successor. His opinion?
[He] questions the attempts to paint this Tamihere talk as deluded. "It’s my understanding that Clayton was intimately involved in running the defensive and offensive for Mike."

NZ Herald 12th April 2005
It gets worse. In a Press article that isn't on-line (or is on-line but the Stuff's search ability is stuffed):
Clark acknowledged yesterday that she had once accused the Moore campaign of making "hate calls" to her supporters during the leadership contest But she said she did not believe Cosgrove had been involved.
Hardly the ringing endorsement that Clayton might have been hoping for. Seemingly aware of this, Clayton says in the same report:
She (Clark) has shown her faith and trust in me by appointing me to Parliament's top committee (finance and expenditure) in my second term to chair it," Cosgrove said.

"I've always had a very good working relationship with the leader and I'm just a bit gutted."
Let's have a look at the "very good working relationship", shall we? Clayton is the only second term Labour MP who did not end up with some position or sinecure on the Executive after the last election. Even first term MPs have ended up with a Private Parliamentary Secretaryship but such positions remain tantalizingly beyond Clayton's reach. That is why John Tamihere felt it necessary to expound on why Clayton has gotten nowhere quickly.

Moreover it's apparent that Clayton hasn't thought through his denials very well. If Helen Clark really believes that Clayton is innocent of making hate-calls back in 1993, then what has Clayton done to merit such shabby treatment?