As the new secret recording adds yet another element to the Jami-Lee Ross, National Party saga, 1 NEWS political reporter Benedict Collins looks at the specific timing of it and what damage it could do.
Collins said the timing of the latest tape release was significant.
"On Monday morning Simon Bridges does his weekly rounds with the media, so what's he talking about this week? He's talking all about National and their problems and the Jami-Lee Ross scandal and having to defend the way he dealt it again rather than holding the Government to account.
"Last week we saw the National Party ask some really valid questions around the way the Immigration Minister had handled the residency to the Czech drug smuggler-kick boxer," Collins said.
"Monday morning, [Simon Bridges] is back to having to front up and talk about Jami-Lee Ross, their former MP who has gone rogue."
In the clip, Mr Ross can be heard talking to National's leader and deputy leader about taking personal leave at the start of October.
Both Mr Bridges and Ms Bennett offer Mr Ross "the lightest possible way out" and promise not to reveal the nature of his alleged wrongdoing.
Appearing on Breakfast this morning, Mr Bridges categorically rejected prioritising his MP and the party’s reputation over the group of women who made the allegations of inappropriate behaviour against Mr Ross.
Mr Bridges said the 20-minute conversation occurred about a week after they had initially met with Mr Ross and outlined the allegations of inappropriate behaviour against him.