Prime Minister John Key says there is nothing unethical or inappropriate about charging guests at a Maori Party dinner $5000 a head to sit with him for part of the evening
It has been reported that 15 Maori leaders were charged $5000 a head to attend a dinner with Key at Auckland’s exclusive Northern Club. Maori TV’s Native Affairs is screening footage of the event this evening.
Guests were reportedly promised face time with Key. Key’s office this evening did not deny that, but said there was nothing inappropriate or unethical about the practice.
Part of the deal was that Key would change his seat often throughout the evening so everyone had a chance to talk to him “confidentially”.
To me the significance of this fundraiser is that National has four preferred coalition partners who they’d like to go into government with instead of doing a deal with Winston Peters. ACT, United Future, the Conservative Party and the Maori Party.
Now, those first three parties will rely on National giving them an electorate seat. And now the Maori Party is reliant on National to raise money for them so they can afford to campaign, because they can’t attract funding by themselves.