Is Collins bluffing?
Wednesday 4 Apr 2012 5:24 p.m.
By Political Editor Duncan Garner
A promise by Justice Minister Judith Collins to take legal action against two Labour MPs for alleged defamation still has not eventuated, with the MPs now wondering if she is bluffing.
But Judith Collins replied to that today by upping the stakes.
Everyone wants to know one thing from Ms Collins these days: when will she take Andrew Little and Trevor Mallard to court, as promised?
“Well that's for me to know… these things will happen in good time,” she says.
Labour suspects she is bluffing.
“It's very hard to tell because she has that unusually thick smile,” says Mr Mallard.
To which Ms Collins replies: “I've been here 10 years - have you ever seen me bluff? No."
Mr Mallard and Mr Little face the defamation action over claims Ms Collins or her office leaked sensitive ACC information.
Prime Minister John Key supports Ms Collins defending herself - although he is unlikely to want a messy and lengthy court case.
“I understand she feels strongly... I understand that,” he says.
Mr Mallard is now hinting he has got something implicating Mr Key's office in the ACC leaks.
“It would be good to see John Key's communications with the right-wing bloggers,” says Mr Mallard.
And Ms Collins certainly was not short on confidence facing questions on the matter today.
“Well Mr Speaker, obviously I am right on this matter,” she says. “Mr Speaker, this is all too easy,” Ms Collins shouted, laughing.
Her performance left Labour MPs scratching their heads.
“In the house today she was acting slightly weird quite frankly,” says Mr Mallard.
The auditor general has today announced a fresh inquiry into what went on at ACC - which means there are now four separate inquiries.
The privacy commissioner, the police and ACC are all holding their own investigations as the pressure mounts on Ms Collins to actually take Mr Little and Mr Mallard to court.