on Sunday, we learned that EQC was advertising for National, with a double-page spread in the Sunday Star-Times which talked about what a great job the government had made of the hugely contentious Christchurch rebuild. And in Tuesday night's Press leader's debate, John Key let slip collusion with a business advertiser as well:
During The Press leaders debate on Tuesday, Key referred to an upcoming advertising supplement in The Press to rebut a question from editor Joanna Norris about progress on the rebuild stalling.Fairfax is now looking at whether the ad in question is an election advertisement, and whether publishing it would put them on the wrong side of the Electoral Act. Meanwhile, it makes you wonder who else is advertising for National, and effectively helping them circumvent the election spending cap.
"Your newspaper, either this week or probably now next week, is going to deliver in the newspaper a very big supplement, that's going to sell I'm sure extremely well, which points out there are two hundred buildings in the CBD alone that are basically completed."
Key was referring to an advertising promotion by commercial real estate firm Colliers which is due to run in The Press before the election.
His knowledge of the advertising campaign has raised questions about whether it would advantage National in the lead up to the election.