Prime Minister Helen Clark says she is not ruling anything out in the ongoing controversy surrounding her suspended Foreign Minister Winston Peters.
She confirmed, however, in a statement at Auckland Airport this morning that she will not sack him today.
Helen Clark said last night's privileges hearing provided "no basis for her to remove Mr Peters' ministerial warrant today".
She said she was "not ruling anything in or out" and also commented that Mr Peters' "belligerent attitude' may have put him in the position he finds himself in.
She earlier said advice from Labour MPs on the committee was that key issues remained unresolved in the face of conflicting evidence from billionaire Owen Glenn and Mr Peters about a $100,000 donation.
The Prime Minister said Mr Peters still deserved due process.
"Mr Peters' often belligerent behaviour throughout this whole affair makes him a difficult person to insist on due process for. Yet any reasonable person, putting aside any bias they may have towards Mr Peters would agree that it was fair to do so," she said.
Helen Clark was due to speak to reporters at Auckland Airport later.
Mr Peters made it clear he will not go down without a fight.
The New Zealand First leader is still denying he sought a donation from billionaire Mr Glenn for his legal bill in 2005 arising from the Tauranga electoral petition but conceded that he spoke to Mr Glenn by phone on a critical date in question.
Appearing before Parliament's privileges committee, Mr Peters disputed Mr Glenn's evidence of what that call was about.
And he said the Monaco-based billionaire had been coached by Geoff Harley, a lawyer who appeared for Fay Richwhite at the Winebox inquiry.
"It's not the first time my memory has been challenged by a wealthy businessman," Mr Peters said.
"I have spent my whole political life to preserve New Zealand for New Zealanders. This is an attempt to undo the people's will, bring down a government, then govern alone. My enemies and an elite media have surely proven that."
Prime Minister Helen Clark had been ready to sack Mr Peters as a minister today if Deputy Prime Minister Michael Cullen, who is on the privileges committee, recommended it.
Dr Cullen and other Labour colleagues were less supportive of him last night than they have been at other hearings.
The committee adjourned and resolved to meet again next Tuesday.
It has called for further evidence from Mr Peters' lawyer, Brian Henry, who says he solicited the Glenn donation.
It is more than likely that the committee has asked to see phone records of Mr Henry and Mr Peters for the critical day and time in question, December 14, 2005.
Mr Glenn's damning evidence on Tuesday was a phone record and a linked email, and an affidavit from Matamata horse trainer Paul Moroney that he heard Mr Peters thank Mr Glenn.
The record was of a call Mr Glenn made to Mr Peters on December 14, 2005, in which the businessman says he agreed to the MP's earlier request to fund the Tauranga electoral petition.
Seven minutes after the call, which ended at 1.32 pm, Brian Henry sent an email to Mr Glenn saying, "Further to your discussion with my client at 1.30 NZ time I provide my bank details ... "
Mr Peters last night could not account for the link between the two. He did not believe he had spoken to Mr Glenn at 1.30 pm.
And to explain the Henry email, he suggested it was possible Mr Glenn, during their conversation about other matters, had asked for Mr Henry's contact details.
Mr Peters said he could not recall discussing money with Mr Glenn then.
He believed the billionaire mentioned being interested in a roving ambassador's role with focus on trade, "in a similar position to [former PM] Mike Moore".
Mr Peters also said that to the best of his knowledge Mr Glenn also wanted a diplomatic passport to help get quickly through airports and facilitate his travel.
"Mr Glenn did mention, I recall, that he was interested in a consular role in Monaco and I remember I told him we had no such office in Monaco."
Mr Peters also denied Mr Glenn's claim that in a call to him on February 16 this year, he (the minister) spoke encouragingly about his getting the job of honorary consul in Monaco and urged him to write a letter to him about it. Mr Glenn did that on May 8.
Mr Peters said that none of Mr Glenn's evidence about a lunch at the Karaka horse sales where he supposedly thanked Mr Glenn for the donation was "remotely reliable". There was a bigger party at lunch and he had not sat next to him.
Mr Glenn said that he asked if the money had arrived okay and that Mr Peters replied it had and thanked him. He also said the minister had requested that the donation be kept confidential.
But Mr Peters said that if he had asked for and received the money, he would have thanked Mr Glenn earlier.
Mr Peters regularly attacked Mr Glenn's evidence as lacking details, but at times had difficulty with details himself.
In his written evidence, the minister said Mr Glenn mentioned in the December 14 conversation that he wanted to have a similar position to Mike Moore's. But questioned later, Mr Peters said Mr Glenn had sought a role like former Cabinet minister Jim Sutton's - "because Jim had a sort of a roving trade post as I understood at the time".
Mr Sutton, however, did not leave Parliament to take up that role until the middle of 2006, which was several months after the phone conversation.
Later in Mr Peters' evidence, he was asked if he had told Brian Henry that Mr Glenn wanted his bank details.
Mr Peters first said he told his lawyer about Mr Glenn's "extraordinary" questions about the roving ambassador role. But almost immediately after, Mr Peters said he couldn't remember the conversation at all.
Act leader Rodney Hide said last night that Mr Glenn's evidence had been "concrete with reinforced steel versus Winston's, which was bullshit on stilts".
Parliament went into urgency last night to get Labour legislation through the House, in case a sacking led to instability.
- additional reporting: Paula Oliver, Patrick Gower and NZPA