It’s hard to see a rational explanation for Judith Collins’ sudden media explosion.

Her weekend interview on “Q&A” surprised some of her colleagues because of the risk that it might draw attention away from the Prime Minister’s keynote speech at the northern regional conference of the National Party.

Though she had a role on one of three simultaneous panels discussing “safer communities” with Sam Lotu-Iiga and Shane Reti she was kept well away from the limelight of the keynote addresses. 

Instead it was Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett who starred there. 

The Prime Minister seemed unenthusiastic about her return to Cabinet when questioned about the possibility on Monday at his post Cabinet Press Conference. 

“I said when Mr Justice Chisholm’s report came out that that potentially cleared the pathway back (to Cabinet) for her,” he said.

“There’s no reason why she couldn’t come back. If a vacancy presented itself.

“She would have to be considered along with other contenders and there are other contenders so we’d need to consider all of that.”

Her problem is that she has some powerful opponents in Mr Key’s inner circle — Gerry Brownlee and Bill English would be unlikely to welcome her back for a start.

Her critics regard her ostentatious ambition as a reason not to indulge her.


But, they also don’t want to see her become an outcast with a license to attack the Government either personally or through her close links with Cameron Slater.

Her media onslaught over the past week is exactly what worries them.