Blunder a case of second-term-itis?

TRACY WATKINS
Last updated 17:01 24/07/2014

Relevant offers

Opinion

Vernon Small: Government walking tightrope on iwi water debate Nothing to write home about - and no surplus either - in Key's pre-Budget speech Joe Bennett: Beatings and teachings can't change a child's nature National walking into water fight within Duncan Garner: It's time to junk the junkets - and send the Speaker packing Tracy Watkins: Defence of MP perks can't be justified Editorial: MPs' trip should be all business Tax threshold indexation sounds like a good idea - but beware the chewing gum tax Have wife, will travel: The perks of being a Kiwi MP Opinion: Playing the terror card a powerful election ploy

OPINION: Is Gerry Brownlee's blunder in bypassing airport security confirmation that National has succumbed to second term-itis?

That's how long it takes for Government's to believe they are bullet proof and ministers to develop a sense of entitlement.

Brownlee was genuinely contrite this afternoon and with good reason. He must have skated very close to losing his job.

If anyone else had tried to board a plane without going through the aviation security screening process it would have sparked a full-scale alert.

By Brownlee's own admission, it is considered such a significant breach that airline officials would normally require the entire plane to disembark and go through the boarding process again.

Brownlee says he was in a hurry. So are most people these days - government ministers are nothing special in that respect. And as an excuse it seems pretty lame, given that whether he was in a hurry or not should have made no difference to what time the plane took off.

Brownlee deserves full marks for offering the prime minister his resignation.

But the incident seems like a classic case of  "don't you know who I am" disease - even the offer to resign and subsequent confession seems to have sparked by someone dobbing Brownlee into a major media organisation.

It is no excuse that an aviation security official waved Brownlee through. When put on the spot by a senior government minister and his bevy of officials most low level officials would do the same. Brownlee should never have put that official in such a positionin the first place.

It would be deeply unjust if the official concerned faced disciplinary action when Brownlee himself has been let off with a warning by his own boss, Prime Minister John Key.

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content