Politicians’ shortcomings being weaponised says Steven Joyce


In an interview with Newstalk ZB’s Kerre McIvor former minister Steven Joyce said politicians’ short-comings were being “weaponised” and those levelling accusations and exposing the actions needed to press pause.

“Nobody is perfect, and there are aspects of everybody’s lives that they’re not proud of. I would just say to the people that bring these things up is, ‘let’s just take a breath’.”

He said it was very easy to attack individuals without considering their families who were impacted by the publicity.

“Where it’s tough it’s probably like any job where you are working away from home three or four days a week for the whole year.

The difference is probably that there’s not 30 or 40 journalists camped outside your door the entire time and ready to keep scrutiny on you. That is the unusual aspect of the job.”

Former Ministers have addressed “trauma and humiliation” during their valedictory speeches.

One revealed that they had even contemplated suicide due to the intense pressure of being an MP, and subsequent media criticism.

Iain Lees-Galloway, who was sacked from Cabinet by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern two weeks ago, used his speech to apologise to his family.

He admitted that the relationship with the staffer was not appropriate, and acknowledged the power imbalanced involved.

But he said he and his family experienced “dehumanising trauma” after they were used for “headlines and clickbait.”

Another former minister, Clare Curran was sacked from Cabinet by the prime minister in mid-2018.

She said her time as an MP was a privilege, but at times she was made a “public spectacle.”

“Politicians should be held accountable. But we are not prey.

The accountability lacks perspective. If you don’t believe me, go ask the public.”


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News category: New Zealand.

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