Judith Collins’ memoir

Judith Collins is promoting her memoir.

NZ Herald – Judith Collins pulls no punches in her new book

Be prepared for an onslaught of Judith Collins’ headlines when her book, Pull No Punches, hits stores next month.

The book is a potent mix of personal and political life and we are sure anyone who has crossed “Crusher” Collins’ path will be quaking in their boots about her recollections and version of events.

Stuff has some coverage – The brutal business of politics: Judith Collins discusses memoir, John Key, David Bain, and being a survivor

Then-Prime Minister John Key had received a copy of an email which appeared to directly implicate his most powerful female minister in the Dirty Politics scandal raging during the 2014 election campaign. Before the day was out, Collins had resigned.

The episode was neatly wrapped up. National went on to win the election, and Collins was later brought back into the fold, after an inquiry concluded there was no evidence she had acted inappropriately. She continues to be one of the party’s most influential and popular figures.

It was textbook political management. But Collins has sought to re-open the chapter with a tell-all memoir. And she tells a very different story. Her revenge is served ice-cold.

She makes it clear Key betrayed her, putting optics before her career. “He threw me well and truly under the bus, and that’s what I’ve said in the book,” she says.

“He chose political management. And that’s the big difference. He is a significantly more ruthless person when it comes to politics than myself. And that’s probably why he became the leader of the National Party and the Prime Minister for as long as the number of years that he wanted to be.

“But I didn’t hate him for it and I don’t hate him now. He was doing his job. And his concern was the National Party winning the next election. It was very close to it. And he was protecting that, himself and also other people’s jobs.

“I couldn’t do it myself. I don’t judge him on it. He just made a different choice to what I would have.”

The book is subtitled ‘memoir of a political survivor’. She’s about to fight her seventh election, as the MP for Papakura, and over 18 years has held six ministerial portfolios and done two stints in Opposition.

Collins, 61, ground out the book over the summer break, writing for long days.

“Politics is a brutal business,” she says. “It doesn’t have to be as nasty a place as it is. And it is like what I expect a 1920s boarding school to be, complete with fagging. And I’ve said this in the book.”

It takes 200 pages to get into the real detail that will interest political junkies: the Key years. Collins kept detailed records and diaries. But there is much she cannot say, bound by cabinet rules of confidentiality. The last three years are not covered. That will come later, she says with a mischievous grin.

Collins is on Q+A this morning talking about her book. She looks very relaxed and enjoying getting her story out.

Leave a comment

24 Comments

  1. John J Harrison

     /  28th June 2020

    Rightly or wrongly Key knew how to cauterize an issue to save the party.
    Contrast his surgical treatment of a errant minister ( in his opinion) to that of Ardern re Clark and Twyford.
    The difference is akin to night and day.
    May this continue ,thus ensuring the demise of the COL.

    Reply
  2. Alan Wilkinson

     /  28th June 2020

    Should be interesting as is the timing. Who are her enemies?

    Reply
    • oldlaker

       /  28th June 2020

      When the book was announced some time ago I imagined it was timed to coincide with a bid to topple Bridges… in time for the election, or shortly after when he lost. Muller’s ascent has changed that… for now anyway.

      Reply
      • Collins made it clear the book wasn’t aimed at the current term and avoided clashing with or damaging current political aspirations. She wants to continue her own career so wouldn’t want to make a mess of that.

        Reply
  3. Blazer

     /  28th June 2020

    That must be a very big bus National has….and it must be getting very crowded underneath…it.

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  28th June 2020

      Collins got out from under. But “All political lives end in failure” – Enoch Powell. Unless you get shot.

      Reply
    • artcroft

       /  28th June 2020

      Not as crowded as Labour’s ship of fools though.

      Reply
      • Corky

         /  28th June 2020

        Let’s not forget the tethering lines to the coalition vessels are starting to fray as well, Arty.

        Reply
      • Blazer

         /  28th June 2020

        its ‘Muller time’…Bridges and Bennett have walked the plank…and the Jolly Roger has been hoisted.

        All Todd needs is an eyepatch….and a..prayer.

        Reply
      • duperez

         /  28th June 2020

        Ship of fools indeed. Wasn’t it was a car in which Collins had a problem finding her way to the airport in China? According to Stuff “a shadow had already been cast over Collins’ reputation.” Shadow as in standing in a stadium with lights from many directions and multiple shadows being cast in multiple directions?

        The way her staff were treated when she resigned still rankles with her she wrote. Jason Ede likewise it seems. “(He) was collateral. He was not well looked after. Jason Ede was employed to do a job and he did his job.”

        She has feelings for the way Ede was treated but no problem with what he was employed to do and how he did it. Shit happens I suppose. It’s sad when it happens to you after you try to visit it upon others.

        https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11329167

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  28th June 2020

          You don’t think Labour has equivalent staffers feeding their media and social media supporters?

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  28th June 2020

            Name one that was like Ede working full time in the Pms office feeding material to bloggers like stories, gossip and even graphics as detailed in DP.

            Reply
          • Lprent says no at The Standard: https://thestandard.org.nz/judith-collins-dirty-politics-hypocrite/

            I think that is probably right these days, but quite a few years ago there were definite party connections with posts. Now the authors do personal posts, although sometimes influenced by what information they get from whatever party connections they may have.

            There’s really no indication that they are doing dirty ops for the PM or Ministers like Slater did (he even seems to have been cut adrift by NZ First since he resumed posting, and ‘Xavier’, who seemed to be doing PER for NZ First, hardly posts any more).

            Bradbury seems to not be privy to any parliamentary party inside information.

            Farrar has a close knowledge of what National are up to and while he isn’t totally partisan he gets more that way leading up to an election.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  28th June 2020

              Blogs aren’t where it is at now. It’s mostly social media: FB, Twiitter etc.

            • Yes, blogs are pretty much niche with little political influence now.

              They must be struggling at The BFD, they have been doing more posts trying to explain how well they are doing and trying to recruit subscribers than attacking National these days.

          • duperez

             /  28th June 2020

            I don’t know. If they do I’d like to be in the room when they discuss the strategies they’d use.

            While some don’t appreciate sports analogies I see it like this: When the tactics are being talked about, plans and approaches canvassed, would they say “Bite ears, gouge eyes, screw and kick nuts, just don’t get caught.” I know those things wouldn’t have been said to Richard Low when he went on the rugby field. Were the metaphorical equivalents have been said or have been in the mind of Jason Ede?

            His contact Cameron Slater?

            Reply
  4. One thing that Collins claimed that i have trouble believing – she said she wouldn’t be a ruthless party leader like Key. She also said she calls things as she sees them and won’t suffer fools. Seems contradictory.

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  28th June 2020

      Not necessarily. I think she is saying she wouldn’t sacrifice truth for perception as she says Key did.

      Reply
      • Duker

         /  28th June 2020

        Wouldnt sacrifice Truth for perception ? hahahaha
        3 crushed cars, even Kiwibuild could claim it was a huge success if you only counted the fingers of one hand.
        Shes very active on social media trying to bend the truth in favour of perception.
        Sorry mega fail on that one.

        https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/98513231/just-three-cars-destroyed-under-crusher-collins-law

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  28th June 2020

          You didn’t read your own article obviously. The law succeeded in solving the problem.

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  28th June 2020

            What ‘solved problem’ , thats just spin which was debunked years ago.
            The law requiring a car to be crushed bigger than the factors Collins quotes to ‘bend the truth’ and get out of her failed policy. A number of loopholes is the car owner ‘did not know’ it was being raced.
            The Car is confiscated and destroyed on 3rd offence as described below

            36AContravention of section 22A
            (1)A person commits an offence if the person—
            (a) operates a motor vehicle in a race, or in an unnecessary exhibition of speed or acceleration, on a road in contravention of section 22A(1); or
            (c) without reasonable excuse, operates a motor vehicle on a road in a manner that causes the vehicle to undergo sustained loss of traction in contravention of section 22A(3).

            It stretches credulity that ‘racing ‘ and ‘sustained loss of traction’ no longer occurs because only 3 people had a 3rd offence and had their car destroyed.
            reality shows the racers have gone underground and take measures to avoid the cops
            Land Transport Act
            http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1998/0110/latest/whole.html#DLM434511
            and section 129A of sentencing act.
            http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2002/0009/latest/DLM2602502.html

            Reply
  5. Fight4nz

     /  28th June 2020

    “Not timed for the election”
    A Tui billboard there.
    Suddenly a number of new faces around trumpeting for the Nats, lambasting The Government.
    Getting a head start for this election. When you have the resources and that win at all costs attitude there’s no time to lose!

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  28th June 2020

      I’d be pretty sure that timing was front of mind for the publishers. Probably so too for the author though that may have been more of a personal opportunity.

      Reply

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