Good thanks, buddy, how are you?
Simon Bridges: Good, buddy, good. What have you been up to? Anything exciting?
Ross: Just been meeting with a few people this afternoon. Malcolm Alexander, your good friend…and Stephen Selwood.
Bridges: Yeah, they're both my mates. They've never really done me any favours but that's the way it goes…*inaudible*
Hey you know at Paul Goldsmith's function you saw those two Chinese guys, Zhang Yikun and Colin? You had dinner at their home?
Ross: They talked to you about a hundred thousand dollar donation…
Ross: That is now in.
Ross: What would you like done with it? It's currently sitting in a Botany electorate account.
Bridges: Yeah that's good, I'd need to…I'd say, by the way, on that, just before we get to that. I promised them that we would have dinner at my place, that you should come. I mean, we might as well make a bit of fun of it. The only thing that would be good is if they brought the wine because they've got better wine…
Bridges: When I move into my new house so that's probably…we've got to sell ours. It could be earlier but it's probably around September so we should make good on that because otherwise I've lied to them, because I've said it a couple of times now. We should definitely do that.
Look, I just think we want it for...the advertisements and the like...we want it for the things that we're going to need to do over the next year or so, sort of outside of the- not outside of the party but...like I say we want to do some more attack ads…say we want to do another regional fuel one, say we want to do an industrial relations one. We just want to keep doing those things, right?
Bridges: So look, I'll tell you what. I had cancelled it because I'm at a Chinese function and I'm going to be bloody tired. We could meet this evening briefly. We could talk about this.
Ross: Oh okay…If you want. But we've all accepted that you've got stuff on, I'm not calling about that.
Bridges: The money's fine sitting there in the Botany account. I don't know what your arrangement is with Goodfellow or not, that's all. I need to talk to him. I'm actually seeing him tonight, I wonder if I should.
Ross: I don't think we can.
Bridges: I should wait and get the right words.
Ross: I don't think we can raise tens of thousands and completely keep him out of the loop.
Bridges: No, no we can't.
Ross: Maybe if you're just honest with him about it.
Bridges: I think that's right. I'll raise it with him but we should probably just think it through. I mean, it can be in the Party but I do just want to make sure we've got that money to do those things. Don't you think?
Ross: Donations can only be raised two ways: Party donation or candidate donation.
Party donation has a different disclosure which is fine, and the way they've done it meets the disclosure requirements...it meets the requirements where it's under the particular disclosure level because they're a big association and there's multiple people and multiple people make donations, so that's all fine. But if it was a candidate donation that'd be different. So making them party donations is the way to do it. Legally though if they're party donations they're kind of under Greg's name as the party secretary.
Bridges: We need to tell them, I get that. I get that. I'm going to tell him…I think he'll accept it I just need to explain to him what it is I want it for. Unless I get him to…leave it with me. I might talk to McClay as well; see what he's got up his sleeve. Because Peter is going to be with me at this meeting in Wellington, is all. If I then brought him after that…good work though man, that's a lot of money.
Ross: Yeah they're good people. Now there's no catch or anything to it. You may recall at the dinner they did discuss candidacy, and another Chinese candidate.
Bridges: Two MPs, yeah.
Ross: Colin Zhang? The younger one, he's put his name in for Candidates' College and so I assume he'll get through and we'll make some decisions as a Party further down the track as to what we want to do with candidates.
Bridges: I mean, it's like all these things, it's bloody hard. You've only got so much space. Depends where we're polling, you know? All that sort of thing…two Chinese would be nice, but would it be one Chinese or one Filipino? What do we do?
Ross: Two Chinese would be more valuable than two Indians, I have to say.
Bridges: Which is what we've got at the moment, right? Your problem there is you end up in a s***fight because you've got a list MP – you've got two list MPs – it's a pretty mercenary cull – sitting MPs, all that s***. Then you've got the issue of, you could end up getting rinsed with list MPs and bringing in some of those new ones, and if you do that you're just filling up your lists even further. You've got to sort of look after…I mean I reckon there's two or three of our MPs, not talking about our obvious ones like Finlayson or Carter, the rest you just want to go. Like Maureen Pugh is f***ing useless.
Ross: Yeah, I know. Carter, Finlayson, Nicky Wagner – they don't really need to hang around.
Bridges: Yeah but then…we don't want them to go this year though.
Ross: Oh, no.
Bridges: We don't want them all to go, we want to do it well and we want to think it all through. Look that's really good, look thanks for that, I'll consider when I have a *inaudible* and send you a text in the next half hour if we're going to.