“..He was unable to deny suggesting how the $50,000 donation might be made anonymously – so he pleaded no memory of the subject.
The best that can be said for him – which is all John Key can say – is that the law was not broken.
The letter of the law might not have been broken, its spirit certainly was.
Mr Banks was a Cabinet minister long before he was Auckland’s mayor.
Like all ministers he was called honourable.
They carry that title to tell the public, and remind themselves, that a high degree of honesty is expected of them.
Mr Banks has often given the impression he values that esteem and considers he deserves it.
Were he to resign now, Act would lose its sole remaining toe-hold in Parliament but that seems inevitable anyway.
Whether they get the chance soon, or at the next general election, Epsom voters will make their own assessment of his character in the light of his last mayoral electoral declaration.
It has been nearly a week since the police issued their findings.
Mr Banks seems to have decided he can brazen it out.
Perhaps he thinks it will be forgotten in the two years and three months remaining of this parliamentary term.
If so, he underestimates the harm he has done to himself…”
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