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Brash must pull Brownlee into line

Hon Steve Maharey

30 August 2005 Media Statement

Brash must pull Brownlee into line

Cabinet Minister Steve Maharey has called on Don Brash to back his Deputy Gerry Brownlee or pull him into line, after he accused Labour of being behind leaks of emails sent to Brash from the Business Round Table.

"Brash must either pull Brownlee into line or back his claims," Steve Maharey said.

"These are serious allegations for Mr Brownlee to be making, including allegations of criminal activity. Brash should either front up with the evidence or apologise for these allegations."

Steve Maharey said the accusations had also called into question the credibility of senior journalists.

"Is Dr Brash suggesting journalists lied about the source of the leaks when they said that the emails were leaked by a 'National Party source concerned at the influence of big business on the party'?

"Does Brash seriously think members of the Labour party have access to his emails?

"If Dr Brash wants evidence of a 'dirty tricks campaign' he need look no further than his own party. Between Mr Brownlee's mud-slinging and the damaging leaks from within National, he has plenty to occupy him.

"These leaks are deeply embarrassing to National because they continue to expose the deep splits within the party and its lack of readiness for office.

"This is clearly an attempt by National to deflect attention from the serious divisions within the party. Unless Brash can front up with any real evidence, he should stop smearing his political opponents and start dealing with his own dirty laundry."

"These accusations cannot deflect attention from the fact that Dr Brash needs to come clean on who is influencing National party policy, what they want and whether they paid for it by supporting his leadership."

ENDS

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