The extreme right-wing conspiracy theorist and anti-vaxer who was outed in Nicky Hagar’s “Dirty Politics”, Cameron “Whaleoil” Slater, has resurrected himself and is now promoting a campaign for his sometime-associate, Simon Lusk, to disrupt National’s candidate selection for the Tukituki electorate.
What is odd about the campaign is that there is only one candidate for the selection meeting, which is scheduled to take place next Sunday afternoon.
His motives are thus unclear.
Recently there have been frequent claims by him on Twitter alleging that a scandal was about to break over an un-named National candidate selection.
Slater claims the scandal will involve allegations of bullying by the candidate.
Yesterday he tweeted: “Yesterday the @NZNationalParty President proposed that the victim and the bully get together in a room and reconcile. That’s like asking a victim of rape to reconcile with their rapist. Anyway, it is a bit hard as the victim is currently in hospital as a result of the bullying.”
POLITIK has been told by two reliable National Party sources that the selection he is talking about is for the Hawkes Bay Tukituki electorate, which also happens to be the electorate in which Lusk lives.
The sources have both stressed that there was no foundation for Slater’s claims.
Tukituki is currently held with a relatively narrow 1590 majority by Labour’s Anna Lorck, but historically it has voted National for both the candidate and party vote.
The sole candidate for the National selection is Catherine Wedd, a former TVNZ reporter and public relations executive for the Johnny Bostock apple empire.
The party’s candidate for the Napier electorate in the 2020 election, David Elliott, is said to have expressed some interest in the nomination but ultimately has not been nominated for it,
Thus, to get the nomination Wedd simply needs the endorsement of 51 per cent of delegates at the selection meeting on Sunday.
POLITIK has been told Lusk is hoping to stop that majority with his campaign and thus force the party to re-open nominations.
Lusk has a record of planting stories on Slater’s “Whaleoil” blog as he did during the last election campaign when he was linked to Winston Peters and NZ First.
However, this time, Slater has not run stories on the blog but instead tweeted them. He has 10,700 Twitter followers.
Former NZ First MP Clayton Mitchell told the High Court last year during the serious fraud office case over party donation that Lusk was an advisor to the party and a fundraiser.
People close to NZ First say that Lusk and NZ First Leader Winston Peters have maintained that relationship and that Lusk’s hands may be seen in some of Peters’ recent statements, particularly those relating to people contesting vaccine mandates.
Peters defended the rights of the family who last November defended an application by the health services for a Court injunction for their child to undergo heart surgery using transfused blood that might have come from a vaccinated person.
During the Key Government, Lusk also attempted to set up a business advising people seeking National Party nominations, reportedly charging a candidate $10,000 for his services.
Though he has been a constant thorn in National’s side, the party has refused to sever its ties with him.