'A desperate, disgraceful smear': Bishop defends lobbying for Covid pair's exemption

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Thu, 18 Jun 2020, 4:00PM
Chris Bishop. (Photo / NZ Herald)

'A desperate, disgraceful smear': Bishop defends lobbying for Covid pair's exemption

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Thu, 18 Jun 2020, 4:00PM

National's Chris Bishop says he had no idea two women he advocated for - were the same two fellow MP Michael Woodhouse identified in the House.

It's been revealed Bishop lobbied for the compassionate early release of the women - who then tested positive for COVID-19.

Bishop says he forwarded an email from the pair to the Health Ministry - obviously on the basis testing would occur and rules would be followed.

He has told Newstalk ZB he was doing the bread and butter job of a elected MP.

"This is one of many cases I've dealt with over the last weeks and months, asking for assistance or asking for cases to be looked at for everything from compassionate consideration to essential businesses."

He says any criticism is unfounded.

"It's quite obviously a desperate attempt to distract away from their own mismanagement of the border, a A smear of an MP doing their job, and frankly I think it's pretty disgraceful." 

Todd Muller is also defending his MP. He told Simon Barnett and Phil Gifford he's just been told about it - but he's comfortable with Bishop's actions.

"When you arrive in the country and be tested, and secondly, you are tested before you hop in the car and go to the funeral, and neither of those things happened, and that's not a function of Chris Bishop's advocacy." 

- with text by Aaron Dahmen

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