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Transtasman Political Letter – 26 Jan, 2006 Digest

Transtasman Political Letter – 26th January, 2006 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..

26th January, 2006

It’s the economy, stupid ... The Govt is playing a hand now short of aces. Clark and Cullen are finding their reputations as competent economic managers being put to the test. Back from their summer break, they’re full of energy ... It’s Don Brash who’s also under test: can he de-stabilise this administration? If not, will he make way for John Key? ... And Winston Peters is back in town what will he bring to politics in 2006?

Chill Settles Over Economy

Job losses, export sector anguish, crumbling business confidence, rising petrol prices, suddenly the summer has turned politically chilly for the Govt.

War Of Words On High Dollar

Finance Minister Michael Cullen this week accused Opposition finance spokesman John Key of “failing to grasp economic realities.

Clark’s Eye On Fourth Term

Helen Clark has made no secret of her intention to contest a fourth term. Clark has always kept a close eye on Tony Blair’s “New Labour” project and she got some ideas on it when she talked with Blair and Gordon Brown in Downing street, in effect turning her summer break into a working holiday.

Brash Targets Govt’s Vulnerability

Opposition Leader Don Brash has declared his determination to fight the next election, whenever it comes, as National’s leader, a declaration which aroused scepticism in the Press Gallery, but no visible dissent from within Caucus.


Deputy PM Michael Cullen has a new Press Secretary. Mike Jaspers has replaced the long-serving Patricia Herbert who has moved to the private sector.

Play of the Week: Being Green Gets Harder

“It’s not easy being green,” Kermit the Frog once sang. The Green Party should be poised to do well out of the current political situation, but perhaps not as well as it might.

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