ajobbins: Cutting into the front of the screening queue wouldn't have been hard for him, and screening takes literally 30 seconds or less. I doubt 30 seconds would make the difference. If gate staff were willing to let him in a side door, I am sure they would also have been willing to hold the plane another 30 seconds.
Imagine the stink if a politician cut in front of the regular people. In NZ, this would be front page news for a week! They should just allow specifically vetted people to go through the crew (or otherwise designated VIP) check in lanes. Again much cheaper than doing what should already be done, which is to have our PM and his leadership people have use of a plane.