Gayford tries to defend Ardern’s no show on Nation & Q+A

Journalists were already getting a bit snarky over Jacinda Ardern’s withdrawal from two scheduled weekend interviews, but consternation levels have risen after Clark Gayford tried to defend Ardern on Twitter.

Interviews with both Newshub Nation today and the other with Q+A tomorrow evening were de-scheduled by ardern. The reason given by the Prime Minister’s office was ‘a diary problem’, but there has been a lot of scepticism over that, especially as she cancelled both interviews, having already pulling out twice from Nation interviews this year.

Sam Sachdeva at Newsroom in Ardern’s chance to change the narrative:

The cancellation of planned media appearances with Newshub, TVNZ and Newstalk ZB, all put down to “diary issues”, will not help her; hell hath no fury like a journalist scorned.

Contrast that with a number of recent interviews with international media that have resulted in gushing profiles (a recent piece from the New York Times being aptly skewered by Mclauchlan), and the cognitive dissonance between glowing overseas coverage and the more complex reality of domestic politics could start to hit home.

This morning:

Watkins:

Hi. It was in The Nation’s diary. And presumably Q+A’s, tho I haven’t spoken to them. Even if she only found out about them on Thursday, she could still have done them. So I don’t accept ‘incorrect’. And why pull out twice earlier this year? I’ve never known a PM to do this.

And given your media experience, I’m sure you appreciate the difference between a studio interview and a stand up. But thanks for taking the time to tweet!

There have been a lot of very defensive tweet…

..but they can’t paper over what is an unprecedented intervention in the Prime Minister’s diary and media matters by their partner.

And to try to swing this to “hurting NZ greater than anything else at this time” is remarkable.

Ardern and now Gayford are hurting their relationship with media, and that may not turn out well for them.

85 Comments

  1. Gezza

     /  September 15, 2018

    Minor celebrity status clouds the judgement. He might think he’s relevant?

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  September 15, 2018

      ‘Do you know who I am ?’

      • robertguyton

         /  September 15, 2018

        A mastermind who shares her genius on… an obscure blog?

        • Gezza

           /  September 15, 2018

          I thought that was you?

          • robertguyton

             /  September 15, 2018

            “her” genius?
            Read for meaning, Gezza. Meaning.

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              I did. Just saying.

            • robertguyton

               /  September 15, 2018

              Couldn’t make any then? In any case, trading puerile slights with you is…boring. I’ve a live audience to entertain tonight and I have to set up the electronics to illustrate my talk. I’m at the Sherwood Hotel in Queenstown, if you’d like to come and listen. The morning’s talk and workshop was fully booked, as was last night’s film viewing at the library but we can put more seats into the room tonight if you turn up, filled with expectation and curiosity. I’m talking about community resilience and appropriate land use, amongst other topics and there’s to be a Q&A afterwards.

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              I’m sure you’ll consider you were as wonderful as you think you are.

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              trading puerile slights with you is…boring

              It’s fucking stressful for me, robert. I have to try really hard to remember what it was like to be 10 years old & act like you.

              Being a 10 year old doesn’t come as naturally to me as it does to you.

            • robertguyton

               /  September 15, 2018

              “I have to try really hard to remember what it was like to be 10 years old ”
              Your doing good, Gezza!

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              *You’re, or you are.
              Just saying.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  September 15, 2018

          It’s a quotation, an expression .

          ‘Do you know who I am ?’ (I am a VIP/celebrity to whom the rules that apply to the rest of you are irrelevant)

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  September 15, 2018

            And it’s ‘doing well’, not doing ‘good’ in this context.

  2. robertguyton

     /  September 15, 2018

    Could this post be any more petty, Pete?

    • Maybe you should ask Gayford yourself. He seems to have stirred twitter up quite a bit.

      Do you think partners of MPs should go public on the diary and media arrangements of MPs?

      • robertguyton

         /  September 15, 2018

        I couldn’t care less. I think you’ve lost your sense of proportion regarding politics; you’re posting on a tweet… tweet, tweet, twitter, twits, cheep, cheap!

        • You seem to be super sensitive to any perception of criticism of your preferred politicians. Why do you think that is? Is it because you haven’t been a fan of parties in Government before?

          How politicians, especially the prime Minister, get on with journalists is a very important part of the job. If they piss the press off they are going to struggle for favourable coverage unless earned.

          Ardern got very favourable coverage from the media for a long time, in fact so favourable it probably enabled her to form the government and become Prime Minister.

          The extended honeymoon seems well and truly over.

          She promised the most open and transparent government ever, but seems at least as bad as previous PMs and governments. This gap is widening.

          So I believe it is newsworthy. It’s the spin merchants who seem to be out protesting.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  September 15, 2018

            It may seem a minor issue, but it isn’t. It either shows total incompetence or a blatant lack of consideration for other people. It’s unacceptable in a PM. Their time is important to them and nobody likes being made to hang around for someone who doesn’t bother to show up.

            Stand-up is about it. Except that it’s not all that funny.

            CG has just made things worse by his defensiveness. He’s making excuses, not explaining anything.

            If a national or international crisis had happened, it would be different, of course.

            • robertguyton

               /  September 15, 2018

              “It may seem a minor issue, but it is n’t.
              Fify.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  September 15, 2018

              It is. It shows either incompetence or arrogance, or both. Other people’s time and arrangements don’t matter at all, only Miss Ardern’s are at all important.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  September 15, 2018

              I mean that it IS not minor.

            • robertguyton

               /  September 17, 2018

              Well why didn’t you say so, Kitty. Imprecise language just doesn’t cut it around here.

  3. Corky

     /  September 15, 2018

    Did Clarke Gayford tweet on his own accord? If so, does he not realise the media are sharks always sniffing for any hint of blood? If Jacinda knew he was tweeting, or suggested he tweet, then she has no idea about the job she does. Having a baby may hint in that direction.

    And if Tova is asking questions….geez.

  4. Alan Wilkinson

     /  September 15, 2018

    Is Jacinda following Clare into melt down territory?

    • She might just be moving further towards message control, but that isn’t working very well so far.

      She has a big announcement to make tomorrow:

      In that light, it’s easy to see the Prime Minister’s speech this weekend to a handpicked crowd as a Trumpian attempt to reset the narrative by returning to rally mode.

      Is the event (marking the one-year anniversary of the election a little early, before Ardern heads to the United Nations) a panicked attempt to recapture some of that initial “stardust”?

      Not so, says her office, insisting there will be substance on display as a result of months of work.

      A foundational document for the coalition

      Ardern will unveil what is intended to serve as an organisational framework for the Government as a whole, with a dozen or so high-level objectives outlining its social and economic goals.

      It’s something akin to the last government’s Business Growth Agenda, albeit with a left-wing slant – a foundational document against which all policy and legislation should be tested, weeding out anything which is off topic or unnecessary.

      https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2018/09/14/237782/sam-sachdeva-arderns-chance-to-change-the-narrative

  5. PDB

     /  September 15, 2018

    Not only did Gayford get involved in something he has no business getting involved with but he has given information out that directly contradicts that given by the PM’s own office so someone is lying.

    Gayford is doing more damage than good, especially with the suggestion that Ardern needs ‘saving’ by him, or needs him to speak on her behalf whilst she avoids the hard questions in preparation for tomorrows stand-up in front of a hand-picked crowd of Labour diehards.

    • Gezza

       /  September 15, 2018

      He’s made himself a bloody target for the MSM sharks in future as well.
      Should be parenting and keeping things cool at home. Definitely no genius.

      • PDB

         /  September 15, 2018

        Yep – all he’s done here is further muddy the waters in regards to Ardern’s ‘diary issues’ – in fact people might be even more inclined to believe she lied about the no-show considering the obvious contradiction in stories between Gayford and the PM’s office.

        • Gezza

           /  September 15, 2018

          Melania actually has more clues.

          • PDB

             /  September 15, 2018

          • Gezza

             /  September 15, 2018

            Christ. Who the hell am I gonna be able to vote for, Pants?

            I’m not a female, freak, weirdo, transgender, gay, gender fluid, commie or eco-warrior – so the Girls Rule Everyone Even Numbnuts Party’s out.

            National’s got Simon in charge so they’re out.

            Winston can’t be trusted, so they’re out.

            Labour looks like it’s imploding & it’s leader has lost all credibilty for open and honest government (at least Key & English never stupidly pretended about that).

            Most of the clowns I see in the Chamber at Question Time are spread evenly throughout all the seats.

            Stymied at the moment, tbh.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  September 15, 2018

              Might owe Corky an apology then?

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              Fair enuf. Corky, I apologise for Sir Alan again.

            • Traveller

               /  September 15, 2018

              Do a Corky

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              Can’t. My head won’t fit up there.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  September 15, 2018

              Apologies still suit you, Sir Gerald.

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              There’s still hope – they’ve all got until October 2020 to pull themselves together & for one of the parties to somehow look credible. I’m only stymied for the moment. The Party Vote’s anyone’s. If Labour’s offering is O’Connor again that’s not an option. And I won’t vote for the Green feminist, whoever she ir or zer is. Husdon’s not an encouraging thought. But you never know. Anything could happen by then. Fucking anythink’s happening now.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  September 15, 2018

              Er….did you see if your head would fit ‘up there’ or is it an educated guess ?

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              Previous stool sample vs hat size.

  6. lurcher1948

     /  September 15, 2018

    FUCK FOLKS WHO GIVES A FUCK

    • PDB

       /  September 15, 2018

      Obviously Gayford did or he wouldn’t have tweeted the MSM with some alternative facts?

      • Corky

         /  September 15, 2018

        I know you only have two more energy payments left from the government, Lurchy. But there’s no need for gratuitous swearing.. cheese and crackers without chutney is better than nothing.

    • David

       /  September 15, 2018

      Bridges baby is a few months older than Neve and he has more young kids at home yet he can manage to keep his appointments and commitments with a staff of 1% of what the PM has Lurcher what is the difference ?
      Given Ardern et al think gender is just a social construct….just kidding

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  September 15, 2018

      Someone who shouts in capitals?

    • lurcher1948

       /  September 15, 2018

      Did I say that,I’m grumpy, got gout in my knee REALLY SORE sorry for swearing

  7. PDB

     /  September 15, 2018

    The fact Ardern needs to ‘relaunch’ her govt tomorrow, less than a year after being in charge isn’t a good thing…

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  September 15, 2018

      That’s a really good point. It should have been obvious, but I must admit that I didn’t see it.

  8. Zedd

     /  September 15, 2018

    another ‘drop of blood.. in the water ?’ 😦

    OR was she just needing to spend ‘family time’ with Neve ?? :/

    • Zedd

       /  September 15, 2018

      Yes.. she is PM, but also a ‘new Mum’ & maybe.. that also needs her precious time too !

    • Gezza

       /  September 15, 2018

      Who cares? She took on a woman’s full-time job and a woman has done it twice before.

      • Zedd

         /  September 15, 2018

        maybe that would be true.. If she starts missing her time in parliament (her actual Job).. BUT a TV interview or two.. who really cares.. as I said a ‘drop or two in the water’ attracts the ‘circling sharks’ (MSM, opposition MPs & Tory cronies).. but hardly a ‘deadly attack’.. methinks

        • Gezza

           /  September 15, 2018

          It’s the caught out lying end of sainthood that’s the story.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  September 15, 2018

            She knew that she was about to be a new mum; she took the PM’s job on, and warbled on about how she could do it….

            If she can’t…she should resign and let someone who can do the job take over.

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              It’s just not an issue, the baby. If you can have a baby and be the PM, fine. If you can’t, don’t.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  September 15, 2018

              Precisement. But don’t take money for work that you are not doing.

            • Gezza

               /  September 15, 2018

              She can’t do this job. There is no way in hell she can do this and stay sane and healthy. She had absolutely no preparation for this and she hasn’t got the stamina or the smarts. I’m not going to like watching it but i think she’s in trouble.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  September 15, 2018

              That’s my feeling too, G. I can’t see this ending well for her.

    • PDB

       /  September 15, 2018

      I think it obvious by now her office lied as she didn’t want to be having bad press & tough questions just before telling us tomorrow what a great job her govt is doing.

  9. David

     /  September 15, 2018

    I get he is protective over the Mum of his baby who is having a rough time of it, perhaps finding it a bit stressful. Good on him for that but either he is lying, Ardern is or her office is.

    He probably thinks she should maybe step down temporarily and help out a bit around the house, he had quite the lifestyle by all accounts and now he is 24/7 child minding so its been a huge adjustment and the novelty may be wearing off.

    • PDB

       /  September 15, 2018

      I think they are all lying – more stories than Hans Christian Andersen.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  September 15, 2018

        Possibly have really bad memories like Robert.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  September 15, 2018

          I thought that the baby was in the Beehive. Either dad’s there, too, which seems odd, or he isn’t and mum’s looking after Neve.

          If she is, she’s not a fulltime PM, although she is being paid to be one.

          If the novelty’s worn off, that’s his hard luck.

    • It is not his place to poke his nose into Government matters. His girlfriend is the Prime Minister of a First World country, not some whingeing pop singer who has been upset by another whingeing pop singer. If she can’t handle the job without him chipping in his two penn’orth, she shouldn’t be in it.

      If she does need support she has an army of well-paid professionals with the wherewithal and the skills to provide it; his support should stay within their home. Crass public utterances from a live-in boyfriend – particularly one who thinks her appointments are kept in the dairy – are not likely to end well. It does little to strengthen her already dubious claim to be ‘man enough’ to run a country.

      It is like a Muppet Show without the humour. Where is the green frog when you need him?

  10. Loki

     /  September 15, 2018

    Cancellation to avoid being questioned about the LIE she told about the CTO job.

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