Warning: This article discusses suicide.
OPINION: At this rate will there be anyone left on The National Party's backbench?
The roll call of shame continues; first Hamish Walker, now a bloke called Andrew Falloon - who when you cut through all the spin, ducking, weaving and excuses, this is what we are left with.
It's alleged Falloon got drunk and sent an unwanted, unsolicited pornographic image to a 19-year-old university student. Her parents alerted the Prime Minister's office to this on Friday - and it was passed to Judith Collins.
Oh dear, how embarrassing, and what woeful judgement.
But reading Falloon's statement, you would be forgiven for thinking he was the victim in all this. What does he say?
Firstly, there is no specific mention whatsoever about what he did - just that he's made a "number of mistakes". That immediately wakes up even the laziest of story deprived hacks lounging around the Parliamentary press gallery.
Falloon basically alludes to mental health issues - he talks about losing three friends to suicide over the past 20 years and one friend just recently - which he says brought back unresolved grief.
He's apologised to those who have been affected. We all make mistakes and apologise. But what's he done?
He goes on to say he needs to maintain his health and wellbeing - yes, don't we all. It's called spin and waffle.
Judith Collins followed up his statement by saying Falloon is suffering from significant mental health issues and his privacy and that of his family must be respected.
Sure - but hiding the truth behind the wall of mental health excuses seems far too convenient for a man who draws a salary paid for by taxpayers.
I'm sure he wants to protect his privacy now but if he was so vulnerable, why did National select him to go into this brutal arena and where was the ongoing support and concern for him while he was there?
Falloon will not return to Parliament and if his mental health is genuinely as fragile as suggested, then I hope he is receiving the necessary care that he needs.
Duncan Garner is host of The AM Show.
Where to find help and support:
- Shine (domestic violence) - 0508 744 633
- Women's Refuge - 0800 733 843 (0800 REFUGE)
- Need to Talk? - Call or text 1737
- What's Up - 0800 WHATS UP (0800 942 8787)
- Lifeline - 0800 543 354 or (09) 5222 999 within Auckland
- Youthline - 0800 376 633, text 234, email firstname.lastname@example.org or online chat
- Samaritans - 0800 726 666
- Depression Helpline - 0800 111 757
- Suicide Crisis Helpline - 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO)
- Shakti Community Council - 0800 742 584