Todd Barclay made decision to resign after listening to himself on dictaphone

Barclay says hearing himself “say things” was the “final straw.”

Barclay says hearing himself “say things” was the “final straw.”

Embattled National MP Todd Barclay resigned yesterday over allegations that he had maliciously recorded one of his staffers, Glenys Dickson.

The scandal also landed the Prime Minister, Bill English, in hot water, over conflicting statements he gave about his recollection of the incident, and his failure to do anything about it prior to it becoming public.

As a result, Barclay was under heavy pressure to resign, but he initially indicated he would not, saying he felt he was still “the best candidate to represent Clutha-Southland.”

But Barclay now says he changed his mind about that after listening to a secret recording he made of himself on a dictaphone.

“I did not come off very well [in that recording],” he told media this morning. “I don’t normally listen to myself or any of the things that come out of my mouth, but after discovering a secret recording I had covertly made of myself, I realised that I really am some sort of fuckwit.”

“I apologise for not seeing this earlier,” he added.

Barclay said he had this notion further confirmed after listening to covert dictaphone recordings he’d made of the Prime Minister, who also described him as a “slimy little prick” and blamed him for “everything.”

“The recordings I made of the Prime Minister in a private conversation with his wife further corroborated my hypothesis that I am some sort of fuckwit,” he said. “It was solely on the basis of these recordings – particularly the one of myself – that I made my decision to resign yesterday.”

Today, in the halls of Parliament, Bill English fronted media with three dictaphones taped to his shoes and one taped to his back.

“I think what Todd has said has made a lot of sense to me, and it reflects, largely, what I’ve been telling him for some time,” he said. “What I told the police was very simple, and frankly, very straightforward. I said ‘look, Todd is some kind of – I mean, I don’t like to use these words – but Todd is at least some variety of fuckwit’ and, really, generally speaking, I’d say I left it at that.”

When Newshub political editor Patrick Gower pointed out to English that he had at least four dictaphones taped to his person, he sighed and began removing them.

“Oh god,” said English. “How long have these been here?”

In a related story, United Future leader Peter Dunne is growing frustrated that no one is listening to him, despite leaving hundreds of dictaphones with his voice on them lying around in public.