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Key fails to rule out funding from Lord Ashcroft

Hon Dr Michael Cullen

Deputy Prime Minister

9 September 2008 Media Statement

Key fails to rule out funding from Lord Ashcroft


John Key needs to explain exactly what relationship the New Zealand National Party has with multi-million dollar political donor Lord Michael Ashcroft after failing to deny serious allegations in Parliament today, Deputy Prime Minister Michael Cullen said.

Today during question time, the Prime Minister raised the possibility that Lord Ashcroft could be providing financial assistance to the National Party without donating directly to the Party. John Key did not make any attempt to deny the suggestion as an MP normally would if an inaccurate suggestion was made.

“John Key clearly felt there was some reason to lie and evade questions when asked if the National Party had met with Lord Ashcroft,” Dr Cullen said.

“We know that Lord Ashcroft played a significant role in bringing the controversial strategists Crosby Textor to the United Kingdom and blames the late hiring of the firm for the Conservative Party’s loss in the 2005 British General Election.

“We also know that Lord Ashcroft donated $1 million to the Liberal Party campaign in Australia last year.

“Mr Key has not refuted my suggestion that Lord Ashcroft could have had a role in bringing Crosby Textor to New Zealand. And today he sat quietly while the Prime Minister pointed out that there are other ways Lord Ashcroft could be helping the Party financially.

“What exactly is going on Mr Key?”


ENDS

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