16 Aug 2012

Bennett's behaviour worse than 3-year-old: Speaker

6:29 pm on 16 August 2012

Parliament's Speaker Lockwood Smith has given the social development minister a severe telling off as she tried to answer questions on poverty on Thursday afternoon.

Paula Bennett faced criticism from Labour MPs over her record on reducing poverty, and her behaviour did not impress Dr Smith.

Labour's social development spokesperson, Jacinda Ardern, began by asking Ms Bennett why she did not see setting a poverty line as a priority.

After a number of responses from Ms Bennett that skirted around questions, New Zealand First leader Winston Peters raised a series of points of order.

And finally Lockwood Smith had had enough.

But during his rejection of Mr Peters's point of order, Ms Bennett interrupted, prompting Dr Smith to tell her she was behaving worse than a three-year-old child.