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Transtasman Political Letter – 11 November Digest

Transtasman is a subscriber newsletter published weekly and read widely in New Zealand and abroad. The following is a summary of this week's edition. To subscribe and read the full newsletter see..

11th November 2005

Parliament resumed this week, still in shock after Rod Donald’s sudden death
... Winston Peters wore his widest grin (as well as the baubles of office)
…Next week he might get to meet Condoleeza Rice in his search for political fame and fortune
…NZ scored a triumph at the UN
…Gerry Brownlee was on the mark calling for a more formal constitution
…And can the economy escape a hard landing?

Donald’s Loss Raises Questions Over Green’s Future

The loss of Rod Donald’s political shrewdness leaves a massive question mark over the long-term future of the Greens. Arrangements since the last election starkly demonstrated their shortage of political influence at the hard edge of MMP.

Diplomatic Victory For NZ In World Court Posting

Sir Kenneth Keith’s election to the International Court of Justice at The Hague drew rare bipartisan support at Parliament. National MPs, lawyers Richard Worth and Wayne Mapp, joined PM Helen Clark and Foreign Minister Winston Peters in offering congratulations.

Cabinet’s Role Diminished

Gerry Brownlee got it only half right when, in the same breath, he criticised Governor-General Dame Silvia Cartwright and the formal conventions of the NZ constitution which he claims Helen Clark unilaterally has chosen to amend in the formation of the new Labour-led Govt.

Moves On The Trade Front

Trade Minister Phil Goff has been quick to invite National to send a representative as part of the NZ delegation to the crucial WTO Doha Round talks in Hong Kong next month.


Nat leader Don Brash continues to flirt with political danger by over explaining his views on policy and events. When he outlined his post-spat dialogue with renegade MP Brian Connell he gave such detail the Rakaia MP felt able to take further issue with him.

Play of the week: Best And Worst As Parliament Resumes

The death of Rod Donald stunned the political scene this week. The upset was genuine, from all sides of the spectrum. Donald was genuinely liked, even by people who could not abide his politics.

Transtasman is a subscriber newsletter published weekly and read widely in New Zealand and abroad. The above is a summary of this week's edition. To subscribe and read the full newsletter see..

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