27 Jun 2014

Labour playing both sides - Key

6:50 pm on 27 June 2014

The Labour Party is trying to play both sides of the field by allowing two of its MPs to vote in support of the logging of fallen trees on conservation land, Prime Minister John Key says.

John Key said people will consider Labour barking mad for voting to leave timber to rot.

John Key said people will consider Labour barking mad for voting to leave timber to rot. Photo: PHOTO NZ

Legislation allowing the harvest of native trees felled by the April cyclone on the West Coast passed 65 to 51 under urgency on Thursday night.

Labour's West Coast Tasman MP Damien O'Connor and Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene supported the bill while their party opposed it.

Prime Minister John Key said Labour has tried to appease the Greens by voting against the bill, while trying to preserve the other MPs' credentials on the West Coast.

Mr Key said he thinks people will consider Labour barking mad for voting to leave the timber to rot on the ground.