New Zealand First leader Winston Peters relaunched his election campaign at a brewery but instead of taking a swig, he took a swipe at his Government partners.
Peters skipped the last day of Parliament today to officially lift the pause button on his electioneering at Brewtown in Upper Hutt.
He wrapped up the morning visit by saying the Auckland outbreak of Covid-19 was because Labour ministers were in charge of the key areas of the response.
"We could have done better on Covid-19. That's a fact. If we could compare ourselves with Taiwan, we haven't done as well as we could have done. We let our guard down.
"Too many things fell through the traps, or the holes so to speak, that were deliberately left there by the bureaucracy ... The fact of the matter is that the Labour ministers are the only ones in charge of all that."
"I'm pointing the blame, but we'll never get anywhere if everyone thinks we've done the best job in the world. We haven't done as well as we could have done."
Peters said there were mistakes made and "it's better to own up to them" - though he sits around the Cabinet table and is in Zoom meetings with Labour ministers when many of the important decisions are made. He will be in a Cabinet meeting on Friday morning.
He said if NZ First MPs were in charge, they would have brought in the military much sooner.
"Don't keep on gilding the lily and saying everyone's fine when it wasn't going fine.
"The testing wasn't going on, the surveillance wasn't going on, the oversight and scrutiny that should have been done by the military was not happening. And masks were not used."
In fact, Peters has implemented a "no mask, no ride" policy on his NZ First campaign bus - but it apparently doesn't apply to the party's leader or deputy leader Fletcher Tabuteau who climbed aboard with their faces uncovered.
But the pair did make the effort to scan CovidTracer QR codes.
Tabuteau logged into every business and Peters at least opened his app at the first venue, but didn't appear to actually scan in.
The pair relaunched their campaign at Brewtown, built in an old Dunlop factory in Upper Hutt, after electioneering was put on ice last month when New Zealand went up alert levels to contain the resurgence of Covid-19.
The "craft beer theme park" is nearing completion and will be home to a go-kart track, 10 pin bowling, an ice rink, several bars, a whisky distillery, breweries, a Sunday school and a tattoo parlour.
After being given the rundown of Panhead's specialty craft brews, Peters admitted he wasn't much of a beer drinker himself as it was too heavy for someone with a sedentary job.
Though he said was partial to a very occasional bottle of Asahi.
Peters, also Deputy Prime Minister, said he'd much rather get back to campaigning than be at Parliament for its last day before re-adjourning.
"It's a waste of time. Unless you're going to use Parliament properly, it's a theoretical waste of time."
The NZ First bus will be heading across Cook Strait and on to Nelson today before making its way all the way down to Bluff.
"The main message is the provinces seriously matter. If you want to make sure Wellington pays attention to the provinces, there's one party to vote for and that party's New Zealand First.
"We've got the track record, we've been doing it for years and particularly in the last three year."