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Nat Vote: And the Loser Is ….

Written By: - Date published: 11:50 am, May 22nd, 2020 - 197 comments
Categories: capitalism, class war, conservatives, death with dignity, Deep stuff, democratic participation, Dirty Politics, doofus of the week, election 2020, national, Parliament, political alternatives, Politics, same old national, Simon Bridges, todd muller, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: , ,

 

The race to be the person blamed for National’s coming electoral thrashing is nearing a close.

The job of temporary leader of the Tories until Christopher Luxon takes over is a vital part of NZ’s democratic processes. Probably.

Simon Bridges has the significant advantage of being well known. Sadly, that’s also a significant disadvantage. NZ has seen a lot of Simon and it doesn’t like what it’s seen one little bit.

His opponent, OK Boomer, appears to be a bland white man in a suit.

There are also two candidates for deputy, Paula Benefit and Nikki Kaye.

Remarkably, that’s an even duller contest.

 

Updates when the grey smoke goes up the Tory chimney. If I wake up in time.

Update:  Newshub is saying Muller has prevailed …

Update: Paula Bennett has been chucked as well. Worth remembering that she was their campaign manager.

197 comments on “Nat Vote: And the Loser Is …. ”

  1. Cinny 1

    What I find interesting is, a quarter of the nat MP's are not seeking re-election, so have nothing to lose when casting their vote.

  2. Sacha 2

    My question about the publishing date answered..

  3. Byd0nz 3

    Who cares who leads the John Key facist

    Party. Yawn

    • weka 3.1

      always appreciate a bit of poetry at times like this.

    • Chris 3.2

      We should care because if Muller is able to get the numbers up Labour may be guaranteed another three years instead of six. And if it increases Labour's need for a coalition partner?

      TPK says Muller "appears to be a bland white man in a suit." So what? And what does that mean? If he lifts his party out of a landslide loss his job will be done and there will be consequences for the left.

      • observer 3.2.1

        We care, and pretending we don't is like a teenager saying "see if I care!" and stomping off. Protesting too much.

        • Chris 3.2.1.1

          All of this gloating is so hollow when the boot's so easily on the other foot, especially when the prevailing perception is that the nats will be better at sorting the economy out.

      • Michael Blaxall 3.2.2

        So is James Shaw and why does it matter what your skin colour is

        • weka 3.2.2.1

          The difference is that Shaw is in a party that tries to ensure diversity that reflects the electorate. National don't.

          Skin colour matters when one is brown in a country with far too much tolerance for racism.

          • df 3.2.2.1.1

            "Tries" to ensure. Show the result. Great intentions and words won't help those of us struggling. We need to deliver tangible results for people.

  4. Cinny 4

    Results are in…. muller is now leader of the nat's

    Deputy count is happening right now.

  5. KJT 5

    Their tanking has little to do with Bridges. The public has had an opportunity to see what politicians are really about, without the spin filter of right wing media. National's lack of depth and competence has become obvious.

    • Stunned Mullet 5.1

      National's lack of depth and competence has become obvious.

      I think that's been quite obvious for a while now and it mirrors the lack of depth and competence on the government benches.

      We comparing the current crop of MPs at the senior levels with those during the Clarke and Key governments I find the current lot left wanting. .

    • df 5.2

      It's all about Bridges. We'll see that soon. Write it down.

  6. Chris 6

    "The Nation holds its breath as the dullest political leadership race in a generation snores to a close. Who will win by losing? Who will lose by winning? Who cares?"

    I think many on the left will care and if they don't they should. If Muller can prevent a landslide then that's definitely something to care about.

  7. His opponent, OK Boomer…

    I'd forgotten that one! That is totally going to be the name I use for him from now on.

  8. …appears to be a bland white man in a suit.

    That's just the surface appearance. When you look deeper, it turns out he's a Bay of Plenty-based Christian conservative – what a compelling contrast he'd make to Simon Bridges, a… er… Bay of Plenty-based Christian conservative….

    • AB 8.1

      But is he just John the Baptist to the Messiah Luxon?

    • patricia 8.2

      Yes still the same conservative religious mind set from the Bay of Plenty. Some of the lost support will return, because of the change, and women will feel more inclined to vote for Nikky perhaps.

      Todd has to be strategic, as he hardly has a profile or charisma. Nikky also has a lack of sparkle to overcome.

      They will be given air time of course

      • Jilly Bee 8.2.1

        I really prefer to have an agnostic such as Helen Clark, John Key or Jacinda Ardern (a fairly recent convert) as leader of a political party – and I say that as a (bit of a struggling) Christian – the overt fundamental beliefs no longer resonate with the majority of the population at large. The latest census has put paid to that – my Christian friends (who include several clergy) have no truck with what the fundamental rump of the National Party are eschewing in any way. The new leader of the National Party won't be resonating or connecting with me at all.

    • RosieLee 8.3

      Scaaaaaaary..

      Scary!

  9. lprent 9

    Ok, so Todd Who? won.

    • Chris 9.1

      He won't be todd who if he keeps a whole bunch of nats in Parliament and puts Labour back to needing a coalition partner.

    • rod 9.2

      So are we going to find out who voted for who, or is it non transparent and secret ?

      • NZJester 9.2.1

        I'm sure if you watch who gets the front benches and who ends up in the back you will be able to tell who voted for him and who didn't. Also when he is walking down the hallways there will likely be a possy of those that voted for him trying to elicit favors so you can get a better picture.

        I'm using the slang term Possy rather than the proper spelling of Posse as the definition for slang spelling of the word fits them better.

  10. RedBaronCV 10

    The stuff photo didn't show social distancing going into the room

  11. Cinny 11

    Deputy Leader….. is now nikki kaye.

    Will simon and paula seek re-election?

    See ya later paula!!! hahaha

  12. mickysavage 12

    The news was leaked … National's caucus cannot be a happy right place right now.

  13. Ffloyd 13

    Even better news. Bennett has gone.

  14. RedBaronCV 14

    Paula has gone …… Be still my beating heart – champagne for lunch.

    Just hearing Tovea's opinion – leaders of a whole new look National party.

    Really? Unless the rest of the caucus have had a personality transplant – it's just a new smiley face on the front of the bus but the same dodgy old crowd riding inside.

  15. Treetop 15

    See how Muller performs, then I will have something to compare him to Bridges with. Same with Kaye and Bennett.

    • McFlock 15.1

      the funny thing is that I have no idea what the dude is like. At all. They chose a blank slate.

      This might help them, but it makes the net couple of weeks so critical for him. A flub in that timeframe will be difficult to come back from.

  16. roy cartland 16

    Let the puns begin…

    Si-o-nara? Simon doesn't say? Funny, I can't even remember his last name now…

  17. AB 17

    I'd pick a quick 8% bounce for the Nats (to 37-38%) on this change. Nat voters will on the whole be more comfortable with this pair because they just look and sound more like the party members and supporters. Muller will sound like a fairly coherent reasonable guy whose CV plays into the myth of Nat economic competence. Kaye as we know combines liberal attitudes on matters of identity with a more hard-line economic ideology.

    • lprent 17.1

      It'd be highly unusual for a post leadership bounce to be that high.

      More like 5-6% innthe honeymoon. Problem for Todd Who? is that no-one knows who in the hell he is. That makes it hard to get a large bounce.

      He also hasn't been in the spotlight with the media sighting on him before. It will be hard. I suspect that he isn't a natural dealing with it like Jacinda proved to be.

      In a lot of ways they almost needed to revise the leadership positions.

      But I guess that Todd Who is better to clawing back the National base – outside of the kiwiblog idiots..

    • observer 17.2

      I agree. There aren't many public polls these days so it could be a while before we see one. But it will change the narrative, which is National's first goal.

      On the plus side, it should put an end to the kind of premature triumphalism that some here have fallen into. National's best chance of winning is Labour (or "left") voters thinking the election is already won.

      It certainly isn't.

      • Obtrectator 17.2.1

        "There aren't many public polls these days … "

        Could be remembering wrong, but my impression was that they were a lot more frequent when Labour wasn't doing very well.

        " … the kind of premature triumphalism that some here have fallen into … "

        YES! To be avoided at all costs. All it would take would be a spike in the Nats' poll results plus even worse news than expected on the economic front (and maybe a flub by some minister or other), and the other lot could easily sneak back in.

    • Gabby 17.3

      Look, Munter's going to bang on about family. Look, he's got a vision and a plan, look, not sure what it is yet. Look, he ran businesses not into the ground so he ought to be managing the country. Look.

  18. Barfly 18

    Bennett is list only now isn't she?….be so sad if she was too low on the list to get back in wouldn't it devil

    • Muttonbird 18.1

      With any luck, Toddy is going to make sure she's a looong way down.

      He won't though.

      She'll probably turn up Minister for Social Development in 2029 and will take out her frustrations on beneficiaries.

      • Chris 18.1.1

        Even if she's low on the list she'll still take the punt. She won't want to walk away. She loves the limelight too much. Being in opposition will be good enough for her. She'll also be thinking that her time still might come. I hope she stays. The weaker the nats are the better.

    • Nick 18.2

      That would be an excellent outcome for such a horrible woman.

    • patricia 18.3

      I'll drink to that!!

    • She might have to go back on the benefit, you reckon? I wonder if she’ll get that Training Incentive Allowance.

  19. RedLogix 19

    This is good for NZ politics. Bridges disqualified himself from any senior role with that pathetic 'Budget Leak' stunt, which only demonstrated, extraordinarily for a lawyer, that he could not be trusted with confidential documents. He's never done anything to redeem himself since, and all the grown ups in the room knew he had to go.

    Muller on the other hand looks like he's done the loyal party thing and stepped up to take the hit of an unwinnable election. He'll get credit for that, and will either survive or thrive in the role. He's done himself no harm yet.

    Nikki Kay is the only MP they have who is capable of taking on Ardern. Watch this space.

    • ianmac 19.1

      "Nikki Kay is the only MP they have who is capable of taking on Ardern."

      The only time I have seen Nikki in action was when she was asking her questions in the House. She seemed diffident, and unable to adjust her question to suit the previous answer. And looking puzzled when asked by the Speaker to ask her question properly. So I thought as a front person she looked very pale against Jacinda.

      • Muttonbird 19.1.1

        She appears to suffer from the same issue Bridges does – too wound up and unable to relax.

      • RedLogix 19.1.2

        I agree Ardern is a lot more authentic and accomplished at this point in time. She's grown into the role remarkably well.

        But so could Kay, which is why I find picking her as Deputy is the mildly interesting aspect to this. They may as well give her a shot, they have little else to lose.

    • Obtrectator 19.2

      I don't agree that the election is "unwinnable" by the Nats.

      • RedLogix 19.2.1

        Fair point, Labour would be stupid to be complacent about it. But from the polling position as of yesterday it looked a tough call for National, and certainly Judith Collins (plus any number of other more senior Nat MP's) decided it wasn't worth the candle.

  20. Robert Guyton 20

    "The few MPs who did publicly back a team this morning are Maggie Barry for Todd Muller (although she said Todd Barclay) "

  21. Red Blooded One 21

    How frightening for Labour, National have now elected a Farming Conservative christian as leader, because those groups have been really swinging behind that stupid little burqa wearing girl, Cindy, the Pretty Communist, in the last three years. /sarc

    • Drowsy M. Kram 21.1

      This morning on RNZ:

      He [former National Party MP for Tauranga Bob Clarkson] said if Bridges or Muller got the same amount of publicity as "the communist leader" Jacinda Ardern, they too would be just as "popular".
      https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/417251/weighing-the-odds-simon-bridges-v-todd-muller

      Bob left out "pretty" laugh Labour's safe while National party supporters continue to harbour an irrational hatred of PM Ardern – fortunately some Nats don't get that, yet.

      • Peter 21.1.1

        When I heard Clarkson's 'communist' jibe I thought it was unfair to have dragged him out of whichever ward he was in.

      • Gabby 21.1.2

        He was let away with it too, I assume on the grounds of incipient dementia.

  22. Muttonbird 22

    Farrar watch:

    David has posted commiserations for Simon Bridges. Full of 'media's fault' resentment, 'nearly there' praise and 'if only it wasn't for Covid 19' delusion.

    Can't help think David doesn't get it either.

    • Treetop 22.1

      What will the relationship be like with Muller and Farrar?

      Muller strikes me as being unassuming and plays his cards close to his chest. Also that he has a plan up his sleeve.

      • Anne 22.1.1

        Oh he has a plan alright. He was out clocking up the kilometres big time over the lockdown period. Likely on a charm offensive in preparation for the leadership challenge which was obviously planned some time ago. Just waiting for the public pollsters to verify their internal polling?

        Everything National does is predetermined.

    • James B 22.2

      Ummm.. Mutton Brain.. you need some glasses, or you need to take off your eye patch, go have another read you vile person… sigh but its just your way…your comments are always really aweful…

      [Tempted to bin this abusive comment. However as it makes its author look particularly unhinged, I’ll just leave it as is. TRP]

  23. Incognito 23

    I love the photo of that farmer looking up at the sky and pondering CC. Maybe it is time to switch party vote because National sure ain’t doing it for CC.

  24. observer 24

    Muller will hold press conference at 2.15.

    I'll believe he might be a different kind of Nat leader if he …

    1) Provides the vote numbers. This happens in almost every party in every democracy. Join this century, National.

    2) Acknowledges PM without patronising, begrudging. A straight "Thank you" would boost his prospects overnight. National voters are saying it, so he should too.

    3) Doesn't do the weasel words about the guy he overthrew. There's a reason you wanted him out, and it's not because "Simon did a fantastic job yadda yadda …".

    We'll see shortly.

    • observer 24.1

      He didn't do those things. Not surprising.

      But he handled the press well, without antagonism. With Bridges you always felt he was spoiling for a bit of verbals. Miller has a lighter touch and that will go down better with the voters.

  25. Macro 25

    Typical National. Only concerned about their political future. Now if they had really been concerned about the future of the country, Simon and Paula would still be there demonstrating the true heart of the party.

    • Treetop 25.1

      I think the true heart of the party has been demonstrated today. If a few jobs can be saved in the National caucus the blood letting would have been worth it to a few of them who get back.

  26. Philg 26

    And the loser is …

    Same old ..

    The PUBLIC of NZ …

    and those folk waiting for 10 bridges …

    • left_forward 26.1

      Good point Philg, what about Northland's Bridges now?

      Our last hope has gone – nobody cares anymore!

  27. Fireblade 27

    Winston Peters always said that Simon would never be Prime Minister. He was correct.

    Will Todd Muller rule out a coalition with Winston?

    • Muttonbird 27.1

      This will be interesting. You can be sure Winston is quite capable of switching sides without a care. He'll just claim handbrake status on National rather than Labour.

      The Nats will not want to be giving NZF any concessions though so will Winston begin to undermine the Prime Minister in the next three months?

      • df 27.1.1

        Concessions…so innocent and polite. They aren't concessions. They are the price paid for power.

    • observer 27.2

      " Will Todd Muller rule out a coalition with Winston?"

      He was asked to in the press conference – many times. He refused to.

      On the news tonight, that will be a headline. Maybe not the one he wanted.

  28. woodart 28

    how much money will todd who bring to the party? can see beijing office being annoyed that the paper bags of cash wernt rewarded.

  29. Andre 29

    So now Simon gets to join Jim McLay as the only members of the rarefied club of "National's leaders that got rolled before ever getting to fight a general election".

  30. Cinny 30

    paul goldsmith is looking particularly uncomfortable at the presser, JS.

    Edit… he’s just been re-assured he’s safe.

    muller proudly speaks of being a catholic…

  31. mac1 31

    Same old stigmatising stereotyping.

    Talking of familial disputes, Muller referred to "my wife and I's two red-head daughters".

    Redheads are stroppy, huh?

    He will have not got my daughter's vote with that crack!

    • Brigid 31.1

      " I's two red-head daughters"

      Hilarious

      What a completely ignorant tosser.

      • In Vino 31.1.1

        This is the distressing thing: no matter what the (fictitious?) vaunted qualifications of national leaders. they all seem semi-articulate, and mangle the English language. Bridges was supposedly a highly qualified lawyer. Bill English was supposedly an English Major graduate. Key was good at smarmy.

        Even if Jacinda affects a maybe slightly strong Kiwi accent – or maybe not – she is the only speaker I find easy to listen to with consistent, fluent coherence since David Lange.

        Todd's "my wife and I's two red-head daughters" does not augur well. Somebody needs to inform him that we say, "I spy with my little eye," not, "I spy with I's little eye."

        I was dreading having to listen to Simon's mangled English for a whole campaign. Just to lower my blood pressure, I hope that Todd can do better. If not, Jacinda will run rings around him even more easily than I want her to.

        • gsays 31.1.1.1

          I must be getting a touch of the curmudgeons… I do wish the PM would pronounce the 't's in community and immunity.

  32. "I expect to be prime minister after the election"

    I expect you not to be party leader within a month after it.

    • observer 32.1

      That was the weakest part of his speech. It reinforces the perception that the voters are seen as just an unfortunate obstacle to National holding power, as is their rightful place.

      Needs to work on faking humility.

    • Incognito 32.2

      I see, he’s in it for the long haul.

  33. Muttonbird 33

    (Muller) says he has a lot of business experience but that is not what "drives him."

    He says what drives him is "community."

    Great. He'll be putting a stop to property speculation and AirBnb then…

    • In Vino 33.1

      Community?? Does he not understand that 'Community' is closely related to that dreadful word, 'Communist' ??

      I suspect he has that hopeless gap that right-wingers have developed when it comes to linking an economy to the more important, over-riding society as a whole. They like to pretend that the economy is paramount, and that society will never be right until they have been able to perfect their economy. (By which time all wealth and resources will have been pillaged away by the greedy.)

    • Treetop 33.2

      Does Muller mean business community?

      And not

      Everyone community?

  34. Anker 34

    Ok just listened to Todd talking and I have to admit he’s good

    glad Bennett has gone. Nasty piece of work. I think it’s game on

    • Muttonbird 34.1

      He was good but a little dismissive at times I thought. Won't take long for him to lose his rag with reporters.

      • In Vino 34.1.1

        But he is not left wing… may he not get quite an easy ride from our vigilant savages of the media?

  35. I'd prefer Todd Blackadder. I hope that Todd Muller is nothing like Todd Barclay or (God forbid) Todd Bentley.

  36. ianmac 36

    Yes. He can handle the Press and answer their questions quite well. Stolid. But nothing yet on the actual vision other than saying the Government is too weak and incompetent to handle the post Covid 19 recovery.

    Interesting to see the support crew surrounding him at the lectern. Only Nicki could be regarded as liberal at all. The rest Conservative and status quo types. Be interesting to see what they propose to be judged fresh and innovative.

  37. WeTheBleeple 37

    There's a photo circulating of Muller with a sideboard holding a few of his caps – one is red – USA, another red – MAGA…. but I can't post a photo here. I'm sure another subscriber will find it and bring it to the blogs attention.

  38. Peter 38

    Handy handle he's got.

    I'll look on the news tonight to see the street interviews. I'll be waiting for someone on being asked "Who is the National Party leader?" says …. "That Muller fulla."

    If he turns out to be as boring as he's been portrayed his speeches are likely to be called 'Mullerbies.'

  39. Adrian 39

    I've listened to some losing post match speakers in rugby clubs across the country and even from those who didn't pay much attention in school, none have been so appalling as bad as Bridges cliché ridden, bumbling, pathetic effort after the loss, and I have never heard a captain say the other side was only a winner because his team had made them play better.

  40. Anker 40

    Blow just wrote a big piece that didn’t save! Never mind..

    rather than Todd who should be Todd Trump supporter

  41. rod 41

    Evidently, Todd loves American politics and went to states to help Trump get elected, read it somewhere, so there ya go.surprise

  42. Anker 42

    Omg. If he did try and get Trump elected that needs to come out. I am scared now.

    think his points “ I care about your economy”. And I was the one who worked with Shaw on the climate change bill easily disputed

    • RedBaronCV 42.1

      A trump believer – that is unusual and scary for the country. Hope the news media fill out the details in the interviews. Once that gets around I can see any bounce being pretty limited. And I bet Winston will be onto it to marginalise Nact voters and drive them his way.

      Plus trying to pretend he's James Shaw's best climate change friend.

      I’m gunna miss Si – a useful and entertaining idiot

    • Wayne 42.2

      James Shaw won't be able to dispute the Todd worked with him. Because he knows it is true. Todd got National across the line to support the Carbon Zero Bill. Shaw made a few concessions to make that possible. Shaw knew that a Bill like that needed broad support. Being a Bill that has to last decades, it needs to be able to survive changes of governments.

      Same as my 90 day Bill. The reason why it was 90 days and not 180 days or 1 year is that I knew it needed to be moderate enough to survive changes of government. And basically it has.

      New Zealand won’t care he has a MAGA hat. It is just the fluff of politics

      • Dennis Frank 42.2.1

        BFD commentators seem rather hostile to the outcome (were hostile to the prior Nat leadership team too): "They are nothing but blue.green socialists."

        All gonna vote for Disco Dave, apparently, though the bugger has gone & got the '70s retro look cut off, dammit. Same with Bishop, whose mullet had considerable flair.

      • Brigid 42.2.2

        Your 90 day bill is an abomination.

        • Wayne 42.2.2.1

          You might think that, but it remain the law of the land, albeit now limited to SME's. It is the most moderate act of its type in the developed world.

      • anker 42.2.3

        Hi Wayne, MAGA hat is a little bit of a distortion on your behalf. It was TRumps campaign slogan and Trumps supporters wore this hat. ……I have heard but I don't know if its true that Muller worked on the Trump campaign.

        The hat displayed in a prominent position says it all. I have a Jacinda Ardern tee shirt. You have to be a real supporter to have and display the paraphenalia. I think NZders need to know whether or not Muller worked to get Trump elected and he needs to be confronted on the hat…….

        His endorsement of Trump suggests a very different picture that "I care about your economy"…………

        The majority of NZders do not support Trump and given his shocking performance "leading" the US response to Covid they would feel very bothered by someone who supports/supported Trump . It shows very poor judgement and speaks volumes about where Muller's true political heart lies.

        • RedBaronCV 42.2.3.1

          +1

        • Wayne 42.2.3.2

          He won't have worked on the Trump campaign, given that at the time he was an MP. But it is normal for National MP's to be invited by the Republican Party to visit their campaign operation. It happens every Presidential election. Much like the Dems do for Labour.

          Usually the MP's who go are the up and comers. The hat shows that he is in the band of up and comers, not that he is a Trump fan. I have Bush Cheney Buttons, but I was never a fan.

        • Sacha 42.2.3.3

          You have to be a real supporter to have and display the paraphenalia.

          Or a politics nerd will do.

      • Anne 42.2.4

        Having a MAGA hat might be "fluff" Wayne but it is what lies behind it that is concerning.

        It suggests a man of questionable judgement who is blind and deaf to the obnoxiousness of “President Trump” and the damage he is doing to his own country as well as the rest of the western world at the least. I'm sure he would say that he doesn't agree with everything Trump does and says, but why display his MAGA cap as if its some kind of prized possession.

        • Obtrectator 42.2.4.1

          Has everyone forgotten already that MAGA has been given a local meaning? Think back a few weeks to that reactionary bloke in Marlborough who was seen sporting one on TV.

      • Grafton Gully 42.2.5

        I care because our future lies closer to home. USA has historically taken more from NZ than their people have returned – occupied during WW2 with a premium on wages paid to their own, Pacific nuclear testing, Viet Nam war, erosive opposition to our main trading partner. The Pasifika, Chinese and Indian people, our Phillipinos and other less numerous have given and give far more than the people who wear MAGA hats. The CZB is fine but where is the action to bring living wage employment to those who need it ? And by the way, no part of politics is fluff in my book. How much "fluff" did you condone in government.

  43. Tricledrown 43

    Bennett gone as well great day in NZ politics.

    • Fireblade 43.1

      Paula Benefit will bounce back. I'm sure WINZ will find her a nice truck stop waitressing job somewhere.

      • Jum 43.1.1

        Sorry Fireblade, the taxpayer will be paying her parliamentary benefit and her plane expenses and, and, and.

  44. Dennis Frank 44

    Hey the Wallace numpty who does the late afternoon RNZ slot said something interesting for a change. He told the audience Muller had said he didn't want to be oppositional. Great stance for the Leader of the Opposition eh?

    With such lateral thinking coming from such a conservative bloke there's hope for this country yet. Now I will watch to see if he's true to his word. If he does actually exhibit a more constructive style of leadership I may bump him up from 5 to 6.5 (Bridges was 2.5).

    • Tiger Mountain 44.1

      Well Mr Muller has tried the passive aggressive wedge tactic already on news hub–praising the PM and dissing the rest of the Labour crew as not up to it.

    • observer 44.2

      He doesn't want to be oppositional?

      So National MPs will delete their social media accounts? No more endorsing of Katie Hopkins, Trump supporters, alt-right websites, calling the PM a dictator, a part-time PM, and so on?

      Of course he won't be "true to his word". He'd have to sack half his caucus.

      • Descendant Of Smith 44.2.1

        Well at 29% and dropping he could see the National Party as a future coalition partner.

        That would be aspirational.

    • Incognito 44.3

      Muller said this:

      I'm not interested in Opposition for Opposition's sake. We're all tired of that kind of politics.

  45. bwaghorn 46

    And the loser is?

    Probably both of them just 4 months apart

  46. pat 47

    don't be too cocky…Muller is indeed very good…in fact its hard to believe Bridges ever got the job in the first place…however I doubt he can turn it around in 3-4 months given the positive impact Jacinda Ardern has made.

    • observer 47.1

      Agreed. Bridges was a bumbling bonus for the government. It was fun while it lasted but it's over now.

      In 5 elections (2005-17) National won 3 and came very close in the other 2. They will do whatever it takes to win power, fight as dirty as they can get away with and anybody who thinks that Jacinda was EVER going to be allowed an easy re-election is a damn fool.

      • pat 47.1.1

        He's good BECAUSE he won't fight dirty…hes a distinct move away from the Key sponsored dirty politics whereas Bridges with Bennet were not

        • observer 47.1.1.1

          I think it'll be the old combo – high road (leader, visible) and low road (black ops, not visible). Bridges liked doing the dirty fighting himself. That's what turned voters off.

          Some of Muller's lines today were straight out of Key 2006, when he was the affable replacement for bad old Brash.

          Matthew Hooten is Muller's new adviser, appointed today. Enough said.

          • Ad 47.1.1.1.1

            Hooten is an excellent choice and will be formidable against the Ardern office.

            Hooten is our keenest political observer right now because of the number and breadth of operations he’s run – including this one. As an operator, he wins by pressing his fingers right into the joints of the opponent and grinding deep into the gristle and sinew until they tap out.

            I for one hope Hooten gets to complete his Phd in politics though. It will be worth a read.

            I don't think Labour really get how brittle they are, with just one high performing leader. Ardern better not tire. And we better have a successor being groomed now or we will end we were in 1999.

            • RedBaronCV 47.1.1.1.1.1

              I stumbled across a Redditt thread on a Hooten article in the NZHerald on Winston & China. Sheesh – large number of comments on Hooten and they were not polite. The best/ most polite of them wanted to know whether he had been paid and if so how much? The others were far less polite – is it possible that he will deal with the offshore funding aspects of the Nats? It's time for some better electorate funding rules -Labour would be a fool not to pass them.

          • pat 47.1.1.1.2

            Agree about Hooton but not sure they'll go down that road will Muller….they'll press Labour for detail and attack the inevitable weak points…Nationals plan will have weak points as well but they will be glossed over because they'll favour business (as usual) and labour doesn't get benefit of the doubt or support of the business community in general….suspect Labour will seek to avoid too much detail as long as they can …and National will press the point as hard as they can.

            In that respect nothing has changed , just a better practitioner in Muller.

  47. Corey Humm 48

    That speech was weird. He said economy like a dozen times in two minutes, then started talking about the economy of your rugby league team, the economy of your netball court and all this small town idealist crap. Does national think it needs to strengthen it's rural vote instead of the Urban vote? Bring it on lol. He's a non entity. They needed to get rid of Simon and they need to massively reshuffle some roles but will be interesting to see if there's disunity moving forward from different factions if people get demoted or looked over for jobs they were promised.

    Nationals gonna get a hiding this election, and this is no diss but if we have a huge caucus after election day moving forward I hope labour does some major reshuffles in cabinet, there's a lot of talent in Labours back bench from the class of 2017 who deserve leadership roles in the party since they are the future of the party. That's not a diss at anyone more that whenever it is we end up back in opposition it'd be good to have as many former ministers as possible but I just genuinely don’t see a lot of the current front bench sticking around for another period of opposition and I feel like we struggled to hit the ground running a bit this term due to a lack of experience in our team, Gradually of course but I’d genuinely like somewhat of a shake up next term.

    • pat 48.1

      Not so weird….thats where they will attack Labour…..the lack of an outlined economic strategy…thats not to say they don't have one (or at least the general theme) but they have yet to present it.

  48. Fireblade 49

    Thanks for the memories.

    Simon Bridges Eminem tribute

  49. coge 50

    I in no way endorse this appointment. Although I sense after the lengthy lockdown, and the unspoken trauma that brought to many, there is a desire for change. A fresh start, to put it all behind them. A natural and very human reaction. A preference for new faces, may well be part of that.

    • anker 50.1

      Coge the last two polls out would completely refute your claim that people want change. They want more of Labour and Jacinda

      A new report out today saying the vast majority of people did well in lockdown.

      Far less trauma from lockdown than the US and UK where people are going back to work when the virus is still spreading

  50. David Mac 51

    When KFC cut staff by 50% households have to rally to pay the rent.

    When Air NZ cut staff by 50% banks get homeowners handing back the keys.

    I think Muller is right to get stuck into an economic focus. I can't see how we can avoid a fast approaching money maelstrom. I don't think the guy has much of a PM chance but I think he might be barking up the right tree.

    Planting seeds of hope for the strife I see on the horizon.

    • McFlock 51.1

      Most parties have a money focus.

      One of the first thing the government did with this thing was throw $5bill to keep jobs going while everyone was still crapping themselves about getting sick.

      However, when nats talk about the economy they tend to focus on GDP and the sharemarket, rather than actualy jobs directly.

      • David Mac 51.1.1

        Yes, I agree McFlock. It's the challenge that will turn swing voters scarlet. Having handled the health challenge with aplomb, the fresh test will be managing the $.

        I agree with you because I think most of us would prefer to be teaching young people to build houses over propping up eg: Fletchers. Those huge companies get so heavy with people that don't know how a hammer works. The pointy end, the bit that actually makes the money.

        • David Mac 51.1.1.1

          GOVERNMENT OFFERS BUILDING APPRENTICESHIPS TO JOBLESS FLETCHER EXECUTIVES

      • peterlepaysan 51.1.2

        Exactly , people do not matter. Only money and greed.

        People do not matter.

        Economists, roger douglas, richard prebble, mike moore, prostituted to the almighty shareholders.

      • peterlepaysan 51.1.3

        Covid -19, climate change, capitalism are not separate entities.

        Greed and capitalism together have wrecked this planet.

        I weep for th fenerations who will arrive.

      • Hokidokivodka 51.1.4

        Remember what Peter Fraser said 'they walked to the polls to vote us in, they drove to the polls to vote us out'

    • aj 51.2

      Let's be real about what will happen in the next 120 days. As the impact of economic decline hits New Zealanders more directly, National won't waste ANY opportunity to pile in and paint labour as poor economic managers. And the usual culprits in the media and in big business will be leading the charge and on the lookout to amplify every concern and hard done-by story they can find. National will not be planting seeds of hope, they will be sowing as much distrust as they possibly can and by whatever means. Anyone who thinks Muller means the end of Dirty Politics is dreaming.

  51. swordfish 52

    Tauranga MP toppled by MP for Tauranga Suburbs.

    • David Mac 52.1

      Bay of Plenty

      • swordfish 52.1.1

        Twas my point, David. After significant boundary changes over recent decades, the Bay of Plenty seat is (to all intents & purposes) Tauranga Suburbs.

        Voters in Papamoa, Welcome Bay, Ohauiti, southern end of Mt Maunganui comprise vast majority of electorate.

        The City’s punching above its weight … first Peters, then Bridges, now Muller. It’s all getting a little incestuous.

        • David Mac 52.1.1.1

          Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty is a beautiful part of NZ, so much water about and it's own bespoke sunny climate. It needs a promotion…The Bay of Too Much.

  52. adam 53

    Beijing will be happy they got their man.

  53. Ad 54

    Todd Muller has all to play for at 2023, because he can build on networks of power no one in the next Labour-led government has now or will have.

    Because he has been neck deep in Fonterra as Group Director Corporate Affairs, he will be able to properly unify the efforts of our largest private business with government and government policy. That is an MFAT-MBIE marriage made in heaven.

    As General Manager at Apata Ltd and at Zespri he has deep knowledge of exporting, export packaging and logistics, as well as our exposure to key Asian export markets. It also means he knows the NZTE networks really well.

    His master's degree in politics and history, as well as his research background for the Jim Bolger government, means he understands both our machinery of government and its consequences.

    As a previous Waikato University Councillor he understands the interests of universities, and understands our research institutions generally by being on the board of HortResearch – which is where all the new strands of Kiwifruit have been developed.

    More broadly he is expert in New Zealand agribusiness. Which for the next few years is where a lot of our wealth is going to come from.

    You have to go a long, long way down the Cabinet list before you find business experience other than running little welfare trusts or advocacy groups. Even less if NZFirst dies.

    Now, it's not as if there's too many votes in the agricultural sector for Labour or business generally for this government. Or wealthy people full stop.

    But it will be much harder for a Labour-led government to form a plan for the economy that pulls us out of this hole when Todd Muller proposes a different plan. Which won't matter in this coming election at all. They will lose.

    But it will matter by 2023.

    • David Mac 54.1

      Geez, I thought I was blowing the guy's trumpet.

      Have the CCP given you money or are you Roman Catholic?

      Are you still a leftie?

      This guy is wired like all of them. He places $ before people.

      $ are important but people have to come first. That's why we're all digging Jacinda & Co.

      • weka 54.1.1

        Ad is naming things the left needs to understand. It's not trumpet blowing unless that trumpet is a warning.

        Lots of people are grateful for how Labour handled covid, but I can totally see them shifting back to National in 2023 once the recession is biting. If people have to come first for NZ, how do you explain the past 30 years? There's an opportunity here for the left to build on what has happened in the past few months, that sense of working together and being a good country, probably shift the Overton Window too. But it will be work, not something we can just assume will stay because of these few short months.

        • David Mac 54.1.1.1

          Yep, ok. I read back over the comment after reading yours.

          When I put my Sun Tzu hat on, 'know your enemy'. Ad's posts often sit better on a second reading. Ha, I like your comments Ad, they make me think more than I want to.

          I'm reluctant to acknowledge the fragility you point to but can't ignore it. We invested a large amount of effort into looking at the future of work in NZ. I don't think it's unreasonable to expect that we have prepared well. Our investment into looking at the future of work in NZ should be very timely. Hopefully it will be.

          • Incognito 54.1.1.1.1

            Ha, I like your comments Ad, they make me think more than I want to.

            QFT

            I'm reluctant to acknowledge the fragility you point to but can't ignore it.

            QFT

          • weka 54.1.1.1.2

            Do you mean the Future of Work project from before the last election? How do you see that serving NZ now?

  54. David Mac 55

    The Nats tickled along a stimulated economy by addressing labour shortages by bringing in people that were prepared to relinquish their passports and work 80 hours a week for $5 an hour. There is a shortage of Kiwis for jobs like that. It needed to be addressed.

    Hey presto! A housing shortage.

    I'm guilty, how my local superb Indian restaurant can supply me with a dine in feast for $22 I don't know….well I sort of do know. I'm part of the problem.

  55. JPWood 56

    As a devout Catholic, Muller is off to an auspicious start by being elected on the Feast of Saint Rita (patron saint of impossible dreams).

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