An uncharacteristically worthless story from Vernon Small keeps the Darren Hughes scandal alive for another news cycle:
The fallout over the resignation of Labour MP Darren Hughes has turned ugly as police confirm receiving an anonymous letter, and a witch-hunt begins within the party to find the source of coup rumours.
Some media received copies yesterday of a complaint sent to police making allegations about Hughes. It included contact details of three people and urged the police to contact them.
But one of the men named in the letter vehemently denied that anything untoward happened. “It’s just untrue. It’s just rubbish,” he said. A second refused to comment.
The writer claimed to be concerned “at the potential ramifications for my employment of sharing this information with you” as the reason for anonymity.
The writer is almost certainly a National Party staffer, so I think his job is pretty safe – although I guess it could have come from independent political commentator Matthew Hooton, or non-partisan public intellectual Cameron Slater, or some other highly reliable source that sets the news agenda for the press gallery these days.
What I’d like to see is an article examining the glaringly obvious role National and its activists played in spreading false rumours about a Labour coup: the Hooton/Ede/DPF/Slater nexus – although I guess writing such an article might compromise the authors chances of receiving more false rumours in future.