By Kate Chapman of NZPA
Wellington, June 10 NZPA - Watching porn movies in hotels and paying for them with taxpayers money was foolish and unwise but he is no sex addict, Labour list MP Shane Jones says.
Ministerial credit card statements for 2007 and 2008 show Mr Jones used his ministerial account almost as a personal account, purchasing personal flights, meals, petrol, clothing and even two mouthguards from Rebel Sport.
He paid back about $5000 in 2008 but said he would cough up more if further discrepancies were found.
He also used his ministerial credit card to pay for almost 20 porn movies in hotels he stayed at while on ministerial business, he has also repaid those.
Although the money has been paid back it should not have been used in the first place, Mr Jones said.
Today he said he had "obviously lost the plot" but he was not a sex fiend.
"It's a day of shame for Shane," he told reporters.
"In actual fact I'm not a sex fiend or a sex addict etc but the reality's there I watched blue movies, I'm not going to deny it.
"I've obviously got to watch BBC more."
Mr Jones said he was no longer watching porn movies.
"During that period of time when I was a minister I was on the road a great deal...I'm a red-blooded robust dude."
Mr Jones said he was "far too lose" with his use of the ministerial card and also watching porn movies was "not a good look".
He said someone in his ministerial office would check things and tell him he owed money and it was "not kosher". He said he did not see, or ignored, any warnings that may have been given.
"I didn't keep a very tight level of control over my paper work, there's one thing that I'm probably guilty of, I run around more with a machete etc, and didn't guard my back."
He told his wife this morning but said he was dealing with the court of public opinion now and would deal with the domestic court at home.
"Not surprisingly this has injured her, she's enraged and, you know, I've got a very formidable mother, she won't be happy."
Mr Jones and his wife have seven children.
"My family's a pretty bloody strong institution."
He was not considering resigning, he said.
He had talked to Labour leader Phil Goff, who is in China, and would front up in caucus next week.
"Naturally, Phil is understandably very cross," Mr Jones said.
Speculation he could be a future leader of the Labour Party was driven by others but this scandal had damaged his credibility and did not reflect well on his judgement, habits or status, he said.
He had dug himself a hole which "may very well prove to be his grave".
Mr Jones said he had embarrassed himself, his family and party colleagues with his "inexcusable" spending on porn, particularly after having cultivated himself as a "robust politician".
The Labour Party existed beyond one single politician and would not be fatally wounded by his actions.
Labour Party deputy leader Annette King said she and Mr Goff agreed Mr Jones' expenditure was outside the rules and unacceptable.
She didn't think Mr Jones should resign, but redeeming himself would take a lot of hard work.
She was reluctant to get into a debate about the nature of the movies in question, but said the unacceptable spending was the issue.
"I'm certainly not going to be telling you what to do in the privacy of your own home, but it's not acceptable to put such movies on a credit card and it wasn't allowed within the ministerial handbook."
Prime Minister John Key said Mr Jones' expenses were a matter for Mr Goff and the Labour Party.
"However, Mr Goff was highly critical of Phil Heatley, who was subsequently cleared by the Auditor-General, so this is a chance for Mr Goff to show how he applies those same standards to his own MPs."
Mr Jones has also been criticised for chartering a plane from Auckland to Tauranga and back so he could make it to speaking engagements after commercial flights were cancelled.
He has also been questioned over a bill for seven breakfasts and several nights' accommodation in a resort in Mangonui were he lives.
In October 2008, Mr Jones' office was warned that they were three months behind in providing receipts and auditors expected they should provide the receipts to "avoid any embarrassment for you minister".