Native Affairs - Dirty Politics Panel

The harpoons continue to fly across the bow of Parliament this week in the wake of investigative journalist Nicky Hagar's new book.

'Dirty Politics' claims to reveal the dark underbelly of National Party politics, documenting how key figures in the party attempt to manipulate media coverage and attack its opponents using blogs such as Whale Oil.

The book which Hagar says is based on several years worth of hacked emails and Facebook conversations that contains serious allegations, some of which appear to implicate the Prime Minister.

Among them:

  • That John Key's office advised Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater to make official information act (OIA) requests and had the information quickly declassified and released to him in order to embarrass the Labour Party.
  • That John Key's office accessed private information via a security flaw on the Labour Party website.
  • That Cameron Slater discussed a police source leaking police evidence against Urewera Raids accused with then Police Minister Judith Collins and the publication of it on his blog.
  • That Collins referred to Labour MP Carmel Sepuloni as 'Septic Tank' and leaked the name of a parliamentary services employee to Slater who then became the target of death threats.

John Key has dismissed Hagar as a left wing conspiracy theorist and has once again been forced to stand by Collins.

But is the scandal enough to rock his seemingly unsinkable ship?

Mihingarangi Forbes is joined by media consultant and former press gallery reporter Scott Campbell, Maui St blogger Morgan Godfrey, and TV political editor Patrick Gower.