Stuff's Top Ten: John Key moments

Last updated 10:20 03/06/2011
Hamish Coleman-Ross

A look at some of Prime Minister John Key's "Key moments". National Anthem played by Blueberry Jam. Video by Hamish Coleman-Ross.

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They are what make us either love him or loathe him: "Key moments". We're using the inaugural Stuff 'Top Ten' list to look at some of our Prime Minister's most talked about times.

From blokes' jokes to cannibalism quotes - John Key has, on occasion, shown he has a special way with words. And, since his election in 2008, the ever-affable Key has also displayed talent for creating awkward situations.

Just this week he hit the headlines watching his son planking - it led one reader to label him "New Zealand's embarrassing dad", but others will like him more for it, not less.

Stuff's listed 10 "Key moments" and featured some on video. Post your own suggestions in the comments below.

1. Being eaten for dinner by Tuhoe:

Following an announcement Tuhoe would not be given Te Urewera National Park as part of a Treaty of Waitangi settlement, Key made a joke about the iwi:

"The good news is that I was having dinner with Ngati Porou, as opposed to their neighbouring iwi which is Tuhoe, in which case I would have been dinner, which wouldn't have been quite so attractive," he said.

2. Calling US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, "President Clinton":

During a press conference with Clinton in front of gathered media, Key came out with this gem:

"So anyway, President Clinton..." Key said before bowing his head, smiling.

He then continued: "Secretary Clinton... close..." before concluding the conference.

3. Mincing down the runway at a fashion show:

Key performed an affected walk while modelling the uniform to be worn by volunteers during the Rugby World Cup, before executing a girly little turn at the end of the runway. The clip has since been played over and over on television and turned into a GIF on the web.

4. Saying on Tony Vietch's show that Liz Hurley was "hot":

Key was named a "sexist" by the British press after this one - where he said on broadcaster Tony Veitch's radio show that Liz Hurley was "hot." He also listed Jessica Alba and Angelina Jolie. Despite comments that it was inappropriate to talk about women on Veitch's show given his conviction for domestic violence, Key said he was "comfortable" with appearing on the programme.

5. Posing with Prince William, sausages and a beer in hand:

Never one to shy from a photo opportunity, Key made the most of manning the barbie with Wills, flipping steaks and swigging beer during the barbecue at Premier House. Because he's just a normal bloke. Yeah Right.

6. Planking with Max:

The photograph of Key and son Max was posted to the Planking New Zealand sport league Facebook page at the weekend.

It shows the Prime Minister standing behind Max, who is lying face-down on the back of a couch.

Comments on the photo included people asking Key to "stop trying to be cool, please."

7. Riding the tiny Shotover buggy:

Another publicity shot - this time Key was attending a Shotover event, where he hopped into a racy buggy to take it for a spin on the gravel. It could have gone okay, except Key couldn't get the buggy into gear, and the car was so small his knees were nearly around his ears.

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8. Key's visit to the Queen:

After his lunch at Windsor Castle - when one of the Royal corgis licked his hand - Key described his lunch with the Queen as "fulsome," because he was full.

9. Gems affectionately dubbed "Keyisms", including "Afghanistanians""

Some of the words to slip from Key's mouth have included his plural for text message ("textses") and his description of those texts - the word "lewid", a cross between "lurid" and "lewd". He also referred to rumours National president Peter Goodfellow was being pressured to resign as "scuttlebug" - which can mean a very lewid sexual practice - instead of "scuttlebutt".

Our favourite, though, was his determination not to prejudge MP Richard Worth, insisting he would not be "Judge Judy and executioner". Apparently the reality TV court show has got a lot meatier.

10. Leader of the Labour Government

It was his first National Party conference as leader, so you can't blame him for being a little nervous, but forgetting the name of your own party is never a good look. During the conference Key said he was going to lead "a Labour Government" when some hardliners in his party were worrying his compromising style would create a "Labour-lite" administration.


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