Today in politics: Wednesday, July 31

Last updated 05:00 31/07/2013

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Politics

NZ won't be pushed out of TPP negotiations - Tim Groser NZ First MP Denis O'Rourke slams forced health insurance policy Colin Craig could run for Auckland Mayor Kingmaker Winston regains his crown Government aims to tackle high domestic violence rates Winston Peters goes all-in on 'tens of thousands' NZ First membership increase Pike River: Five years without a body to bury Protest over plans to end regions right to be GMO free Summit wraps up New Zealand's presidency of the United Nations Security Council Steven Joyce to attend yet another fashion show - this time in Vietnam

Media advisers in for the spin

It pays to be a spin doctor. Figures released under the Official Information Act yesterday revealed there are now more media advisers working for the Government than there were in 2009.

The comms teams working for ministers was boosted from 32 in March 2009 to 36 last month. And the media advisers are all earning more.

In 2009, 21 earned more than $90,000, now there are 27, with 11 earning more than $120,000 a year.

Teasing the Conservatives

The Conservative Party's Colin Craig and Christine Rankin are holding a morning tea to thank volunteers for the efforts they've put in on behalf of the party.

We wonder whether the invitation was also extended to Prime Minister John Key.

Sharing one of his famous "cuppas" on the campaign trail has become synonymous with National's endorsement of a minor party, and helped give ACT a leg-up in Epsom in recent years.

Respects for the fresh prince

MPs yesterday congratulated the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on the birth of their boy. On Parliament's first day back after a two-week break, Mr Key filed a motion to welcome George Alexander Louis, born on July 22.

"I have no doubt that he will grow into a fine young man," he said.

Labour leader David Shearer, Green Party MP Kennedy Graham, Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell and ACT leader John Banks also paid their respects.

Hacked off at the knees

Hackers who attacked National Party-linked websites in protest against the GCSB Bill have had no thanks from spied-on internet mogul Kim Dotcom.

The group uploaded a video on YouTube in which they claimed they acted because Mr Key refused to listen to protests over the legislation.

But Dotcom tweeted yesterday: "Dear Anonymous NZ, hacking National Party websites is just giving John Key a new excuse to pass the GCSB Bill. Please stop it."


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- Fairfax Media

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