Bill English

National's problems are entirely of their own making and come down to some bad decisions. But the real concern will be that it now seems the Prime Minister has been involved in a cover-up

Short term: It's been a terrible day for Todd Barclay. A day that started out with the Prime Minister fudging for you, but which is ending with the same PM keeping his distance and his career hanging by a thread. But longer term: It's been an even worse day for the 'Honest bill' brand.

Auckland is like a rat in a maze of the National government's making. But Phil Goff is determined to find his own way out... and he just might be about to find a door

Lisa Owen doesn't look much like Steven Joyce. Or Simon Bridges. Or Bill English for that matter. But Phil Goff didn't seem to notice or care when he sat down to be interviewed by her on The Nation this morning. While Lisa sat across the table from him, it was those men he was talking to.

It's a Key-less budget giving National a new selling point... an Election Year Budget... and a Catch-Up Budget. And it's a budget that starts the thaw after the frozen years. But is it enough for New Zealand and New Zealanders? 

This was a budget almost three terms in the making. Budget 2017 is the culmination of Bill English's determined commitment to surpluses and his ethos that the public sector should do "more with less". This is the year he finally gets to say, 'hey, now you can do more with a bit more'.

Bill English seems to think that New Zealand could become a part of a new, non-US Trans Pacific Partnership trade bloc without Parliament having to look at the issue. I'm pretty sure he is wrong about that.

As everybody should very well know, the primary rule for surviving a horror movie is: "When it appears you have killed the monster, NEVER check to see if it's really dead." Because if you do so ...

It's too easy to call an inquiry just to put the questions to bed, so the Prime Minister has called it right. Why put people through the mill without incontrovertible evidence?

I don't want to be disrespectful to a fellow pundit, but to my mind Bill English has got it right by deciding not to hold an inquiry into allegations that New Zealand soldiers may have committed war crimes in Afghanistan. The evidential threshold just hasn't been met.