National MP in hot water over spoof ad targeting Labour politician

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Fri, 12 Feb 2021, 12:55PM

National MP in hot water over spoof ad targeting Labour politician

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Fri, 12 Feb 2021, 12:55PM

A senior National Party MP is in hot water over a spoof ad using footage of a new Labour politician's speech about dietary supplements.

National's Shadow leader of the House Chris Bishop authorised a social media video which made fun of a speech made by new Labour MP Anna Lorck.

Bishop has now been referred to the privileges committee by Speaker Trevor Mallard.

The National MP will have to explain himself to the privileges committee – a group which acts as Parliament's rule keepers and can dish out punishments.

Bishop confirmed to the Herald that Mallard had referred him to the committee.

According to Parliament's rules, mis-editing parliamentary TV video for political ads is not allowed.

Speaking to reporters in Auckland this morning, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said she believes that was why the video was taken down by National.

Mallard's office has been approached for comment.

The video was mocking a speech given by new Labour MP Anna Lorck earlier this week.
In it, Lorck celebrated supplements, giving repeated shout outs to Berocca.

"It's the Beroccas in the morning and the magnesium at night - and don't forget about the collagen. How's the hair looking ladies?

"Labour - another five years, well I'll give you six or seven or nine years to keep us going on this side of the house."

In a now-removed National Party social media video, National edited the footage from Parliament TV to make it look like a Berocca infomercial.

This is not the first time this week that Bishop and Mallard have clashed.

On Tuesday, the National MP attempted to move a motion of no confidence against Mallard – but there was opposition to the motion and it was not debated.

Lorck, the new Tukituki MP, has defended an impassioned speech on supplements in Parliament that has provoked equal parts mirth and confusion on social media, saying she was simply "keeping it real".

Parliament on Wednesday night debated the Food (Continuation of Dietary Supplements Regulations) Amendment Bill, a bill that would extend the expiry date of the Dietary Supplements Regulations 1985 by five years - from March 1, 2021, to March 1, 2026.

Lorck zealously spoke to the House about the need for its continuation, drawing on her own life experiences.

Talking about her great-grandad Norm Hewitt, who turned 101 in September 2020, the Hawke's Bay-based Labour MP claimed he took three supplements – deer velvet, bee pollen and garlic.

"Grandad Norm has less wrinkles than me," she said in the speech. "It's these sorts of things that kept my great-grandad alive and thriving."

Later in the speech, Lorck said while talking to a local business owner, they stated that all politicians should take magnesium and Berocca.

"I can tell you that there's a few people in here that need a bit of Berocca," she said.

"It's the Beroccas in the morning and the magnesium at night - and don't forget about the collagen. How's the hair looking ladies?"

Lorck, who unseated National's Lawrence Yule by a majority of 1590 votes at last year's election, said the speech was her "light-hearted contribution" to the debate.

"I read the room and there was plenty of banter," she said. "I'm full of passion, energy and drive and I aim to always bring that to debates and keeping it real is who I am."

The new MP highlighted the importance of the bill later in her speech, stating: "What would happen if we stopped this bill right now? Poor grandad Norm, he would be very confused. You wouldn't do that to him, would you? How could you do that to my grandad Norm."

Lorck said she has also received a number of positive comments from other MPs in regards to the speech.

"I was given five minutes to speak, so I used it," she said when asked if she was using the speech as a tactic to stall for time for others.

"Over the time I continue as a local MP, I will speak on lots of bills – some will be a lot more serious, but I hope that I can always be relatable."