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The Backroom of Politics

The Backroom of Politics

By Gerry Brownlee
The Backroom of Politics is an insight into the discussion that leads to policy-making in New Zealand, hosted by Hon Gerry Brownlee MP.

Authorised by Hon Gerry Brownlee, Parliament Buildings, Wellington.
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Housing with Nicola Willis

The Backroom of Politics

Co-governance with Hon Willie Jackson and Hon Shane Jones
Co-Governance it’s a hot button issue and today I’m sitting down with Hon Willie Jackson, a strong proponent, and Hon Shane Jones who is not so enthusiastic, whatever way you look at it co-governance will be an issue in 2023.
August 17, 2022
Canterbury Water
Today we're discussing the Central Plains Water Scheme - A very large irrigation system, which is an important part of NZ Infrastructure that is making a difference.  Barbara Kuriger and Nicola Grigg joins Gerry to discuss with a number of guests.
June 15, 2022
China and the Pacific with Josie Pagani and Mike Yardley
I sit down with Josie Pagani, political commentator and former director of the Council for International Development, and Mike Yardley, broadcaster and columnist, to discuss China's proposed multilateral agreements in the Pacific, New Zealand's response, and how we can better engage with the region. 
June 03, 2022
How to Stop Blowing Smoke, with Golriz Ghahraman and Martyn Bradbury
In the first episode of the 2022 season, I sit down with some of our most popular returning guests, Green MP Golriz Ghahraman and fellow podcaster Martyn "Bomber" Bradbury, to discuss emissions reduction, polls and tax cuts, all in the context of "leftie optimism" and "right-wing fatalism". 
May 31, 2022
2021 Political Wrap-Up with Dr Bryce Edwards and The Daily Blog
Our final The Backroom of Politics episode for 2021 is a collaboration with The Working Group podcast, hosted by The Daily Blog. Myself and Dr Bryce Edwards join host Martyn Bradbury to discuss the good, the bad and the ugly of New Zealand politics this year, and make our predictions for 2022.  Check out The Daily Blog at the links below:  And The Working Group podcast:
December 16, 2021
Hospitality with Nikki Rogers and Marty Fuller
In this episode, I sit down with Nikki Rogers, Regional Manager for Central South Island at Hospitality New Zealand, and Marty Fuller, longtime Christchurch hospitality figure and proprietor of the Elmwood Trading Company. We discuss the changes our hospitality sector has and will need to make in response to the changing Covid-19 environment in New Zealand.  For more information on Hospitality New Zealand's work, head to their website: Keep up to date with Marty and the Elmwood Trading Company on their Facebook: 
November 26, 2021
Groundswell with Laurie Patterson
This week I sit down with Laurie Patterson, co-founder of the Groundswell movement, to discuss what's driving the movement, and what change our farming communities want to see in their relationship with the Government.  
November 22, 2021
Auckland and Covid-19 with Leo Molloy
In this episode I sit down with entrepreneur and publican Leo Molloy to discuss the effects of repeated Auckland lockdowns on the city's hospitality sector, his vision for Auckland and mayoral candidacy, and our shared West Coast and Irish heritages. 
November 12, 2021
Three Waters Reform with Bruce Smith and Sam MacDonald
In this episode, I sit down with Mayor of Westland Bruce Smith, and Christchurch City Councillor Sam MacDonald, to discuss the Three Waters Reform: the issue the reforms are trying to address, why they're so controversial, and how they will affect local communities.  
October 28, 2021
Hate Speech with Simon Bridges
In this episode, I sit down the Simon Bridges, National Party Spokesperson for Justice, on the Government's proposed legislative changes to certain "hate speech" provisions. We discuss the ambiguity around defining hate speech and the implications of these changes. 
October 21, 2021
Covid-19 and Vaccinations with Hamish Campbell
In this episode, I'm joined by molecular biologist Dr Hamish Campbell, to talk all things vaccination- how vaccines work, why you should get vaccinated, and what high vaccination rates mean for our communities. 
October 14, 2021
Three Waters Reform with Gary Moore
I sit down with Gary Moore, former Labour mayor of Christchurch, for a robust discussion on the Government's proposed Three Waters Reforms, which would see the management of drinking, storm and waste water removed from local authorities and handed to four new regional entities. 
October 07, 2021
Housing with Nicola Willis
I sit down with National's Housing Spokesperson, Nicola Willis, to discuss what's driving New Zealand's housing crisis, how it's impacting those trying to get into the market, and the possible solutions. 
September 30, 2021
Social Entrepreneurship and Refugee Settlement with Elisha Watson
I'm joined by Elisha Watson, social entrepreneur and founder of Nisa, a Wellington-based manufacturer and retailer of ethically and sustainably produced clothing, with a mission to provide employment opportunities to people (especially women) from refugee and migrant backgrounds. We discuss the challenges facing refugees and migrants in finding employment in New Zealand, and what can be done to better enable these communities to feel welcome and supported.  For more information on Nisa and Elisha's mission, head to their website:, or their social media:
September 23, 2021
Covid-19 with Sir Ian Taylor
With Auckland in Level 4 and the rest of New Zealand in Level 2, New Zealanders continue our successful battle against Covid-19 surrounded by questions about moving forward. In this episode, I'm joined by leading innovator, businessman and founder of Animation Research Limited, Sir Ian Taylor, about where to from here.
September 16, 2021
Housing with Leonie Freeman
In this episode I'm joined by Leonie Freeman, Chief Executive of Property Council New Zealand, to discuss the Council's mission, the legislative, supply and demand issues driving the housing crisis, and how we might solve it.  For more information on the Council, head to:  To learn more about Leonie's philanthropic and independent initiative to solve Auckland's housing crisis, visit: 
September 09, 2021
Covid-19 with Chris Bishop
In this episode, I sit down with National's Covid-19 Response Spokesperson, Chris Bishop, to discuss the current lockdown, vaccine rollout, and ways New Zealand can improve its Covid-19 response.
September 02, 2021
Trade with Tim Groser, Charles Finny and Nicola Grigg
In this episode, I sit down with Former Minister of Trade Tim Groser, Saunders Unsworth trade expert Charles Finny, and National's spokesperson for Trade Nicola Grigg, to discuss all things trade. 
August 26, 2021
Housing with Kathryn Marshall
In this episode, I sit down with Kathryn Marshall, General Manager of Williams Corporation, to discuss the bureaucracy slowing down housing construction and suggestions on improving the system- all from the perspective of a company in the trenches. 
August 12, 2021
Housing with Brad Olsen
I sit down with Brad Olsen, Principal Economist and Director at Infometrics and leading economic commentator, to discuss New Zealand's housing crisis. 
August 05, 2021
Magnitsky Laws with Bill Browder
In this episode I sit down with Bill Browder, the financier and political activist behind the global movement of 'Magnitsky laws', which began in the United States. We discuss Bill's remarkable story as the victim of corruption in Russia, his involvement in passing these laws in the US and globally, and why New Zealand should join other nations in adding targeted sanctions to our diplomatic toolkit. 
July 28, 2021
Climate Change with Erica Stanford and Stuart Smith
I'm joined in this episode by fellow National MPs Erica Stanford and Stuart Smith, to discuss National's climate change approach, in response to my previous episodes with Golriz Ghahraman and Dr Rod Carr. 
July 22, 2021
Climate Change with Dr Rod Carr
I'm joined in this episode by Dr Rod Carr, Chair of the Climate Change Commission. We sit down to discuss the Commission's role, and how we can practically achieve New Zealand's climate targets. 
July 15, 2021
Climate Change with Golriz Ghahraman
In this episode, I sit down with Green MP Golriz Ghahraman. We discuss the National and Green Party approaches to climate change, and how New Zealand can achieve its climate goals.  
July 08, 2021
Welcome to The Backroom of Politics
The Backroom of Politics is an insight into the discussions that lead to policy-making in New Zealand, hosted by Hon Gerry Brownlee MP. 
July 08, 2021