Today in Politics: Wednesday, February 5

Last updated 05:00 05/02/2014

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Politics

Below the Beltway: The week in politics Jo Moir: The Maori King has nailed his colours to the mast by shunning Labour Key washes hands of soap 'joke' but has he learned his lesson? PM on prison rape joke: 'It's nothing to do with me' Another minor National bill drawn from ballot amid Opposition complaints Alice Wylie: The nonagenarian with a lifetime of political tales to tell Nick Smith is 'Milllion-dollar Minister' as average Auckland house passes $1m mark Mayoral hopeful Paula Southgate says Hamilton needs a Housing Accord Overhauling New Zealand journalism Businesses on both sides of Easter Sunday trading law coin

Guided tours lead in Year of the Horse

To celebrate the Chinese New Year, visitors can take a tour of Parliament with a guide who speaks fluent Mandarin. About 60,000 people a year take the guided tour, with up to 14 tours a day during the peak summer months. Parliamentary Service general manager David Stevenson said he hoped the Mandarin tours, which run daily at 1.30pm until February 12, would improve the experience of Chinese visitors.

Poll: Electoral deals unpopular with voters

Voters do not like the kind of electoral deals in which National indicates what  support parties they should vote for  to get them  into Parliament. Mr Key has indicated in the past that National supporters in Ohariu and Epsom should vote for United Future or ACT. But a 3News/Reid Research poll found 54 per cent of voters opposed the deals, although almost half of National voters  (49 per cent) backed them.

Caucus meet  a roaring success for Mallard

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Labour has outdone National with a two-day caucus meeting in Papakura, finishing yesterday. But the event was not without any fun. Hutt South MP Trevor Mallard tweeted a photo of himself riding shotgun in former leader David Shearer’s white 1957 MGA, adding later that it ‘‘sounds like a Spitfire’’. Mr Shearer has owned the car since the early 1990s.

Key: Longevity at the top can seem fleeting

Time flies when you’re having fun. John Key told Newstalk ZB yesterday that, if National were was to win the election this year, his intention was would be  to remain as prime minister until 2017. Asked if he planned to stay on to fight for a fourth term, Mr Key was coy, but said if you had ntehe was asked in 2008 whether he planned to be PM in 2017, he would have said it seemed a ‘‘long time’’. But ‘‘when you’re there, it goes really quickly’’.

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- The Dominion Post

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