Like Judith Collins before him, Maurice Williamson is being cute about abusing his position as a Minister, doing the now familiar, ‘What? Can’t a guy just pick up the phone on behalf of a constituent?’ routine. It’s nonsense because Ministers of the Crown work out of large offices filled with staffers to whom they delegate almost all of their interactions except those that take place at the very highest level. If any normal person – whether they’re one of the Minister’s constituents or not – tries to meet with a Minister they’ll get a call back from an EA, or an email from an adviser, and if the Minister’s office needs to communicate with someone on your behalf then that’ll happen through a staffer too. That’s how it works. It means the majority of public servants never ever speak with a government Minister beyond a perfunctory meet and greet. And because that’s how it works it is basically impossible for a Minister to call a public servant directly and not give that person the impression they’re being pressured by that Minister.