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Will the last remaining National MP please turn off the lights

Written By: - Date published: 1:35 pm, February 11th, 2020 - 58 comments
Categories: national, Nicky Wagner, same old national - Tags: ,

Three more National Party MPs have announced their pending retirement from politics.

David Carter was not a surprise.  He has been list only and it was easy for him to go. 

Nicky Wagner was also not a surprise.  Her heart has not been in it for a while.

But Sarah Dowie was something of a surprise particularly given she had been selected as the Invercargill candidate last September.  Her expressed reasons are family reasons.

This brings to 13 the number of National MPs standing down this election [or who have stood down since the last election].  A cynic would think that this is a vote of confidence in the current leadership.

58 comments on “Will the last remaining National MP please turn off the lights ”

  1. Tiger Mountain 1

    Parting is such sweet sorrow…you will be sorely missed…Simon deeply values your contribution…nah, it is sod off time really.

  2. alwyn 2

    Perhaps you would care to list the 13 you claim are standing down at the next election?

    I can think of 7 but I certainly can't get up to your claimed number. Are you confusing that with the number of billion dollars that Robbo is planning to borrow as net Government Bond issues in 2020, 2021 and 2022?

    • Incognito 2.1

      Are you confusing that with the number of billion dollars that Robbo is planning to borrow as net Government Bond issues in 2020, 2021 and 2022?

      Are you confusing commenting on and addressing the topic with diversion trolling?

      • alwyn 2.1.1

        Ok. I'll cut it in half.

        Who are the 13 National MPs who are going to stand down at the next election?

        • mickysavage 2.1.1.1

          I was relying on the Herald article which says "Wagner, Carter and Dowie are the 11th, 12th and 13th National MPs to announce they will be stepping away from politics since the party lost power in 2017." Looks like they mean those that have stood down since the last election as well. The list includes:

          Dowie

          Wagner

          Carter

          Adams

          Scott

          English

          Joyce

          Coleman

          Korako

          Finlayson

          Barry

          I am not sure who the other two are.

          I will amend the post.

          • alwyn 2.1.1.1.1

            Thank you. It is a rather different story of course. I was tempted to post a comment that says.

            "Former Labour Party Leaders Despair!

            No fewer than 9 former Labour Party Leaders have resigned from Parliament. They clearly had no faith in the future of the party they represented for so long".

            That comment would be quite true of course although perhaps a few die-hard members of the left might think it just a trifle misleading.

            The others to make up the 13 would be, I assume Nathan Guy and Jamie Lee Ross, although he doesn't seem to be planning to quit. I certainly can't think of anyone else.

            [I see you persisted with your diversion trolling, creating a false equivalence, and alleging that former party leaders left because they had no faith in the future of the party. No problem! Take two days off, because you are worth it – Incognito]

          • Matiri 2.1.1.1.2

            Nathan Guy is also standing down.

          • mac1 2.1.1.1.3

            Possibly the two in question are Tolley and Bennett who are retiring from an electorate to be list only.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Candidates_in_the_2020_New_Zealand_general_election_by_electorate

        • observer 2.1.1.2

          I think 13 is the number of National MPs who were elected at the last election, so it includes those who have already stood down like Finlayson, Joyce, etc.

          So not 13 current MPs, that is true. Still a significant loss of experience since they were in government, and so far only Luxon looks like a strong replacement in the 2020 caucus.

  3. Enough is Enough 3

    Renewal is a good thing in any organisation.

    They are probably 3 -6 years away from being a government again so getting fresh blood and in the caucus at this stage of the cycle is a good way to distance themselves from any criticism of being the same as a previous government.

    • observer 3.1

      I agree that renewal is good. But National appear to be doing more and more what the left are often (fairly) accused of – picking candidates who have lived politics but little else.

      Palmerston North and Port Hills spring to mind.

      • Enough is Enough 3.1.1

        Their Upper Harbour and Botany candidates are certainly not career politicians.

      • alwyn 3.1.2

        I certainly would agree about Palmerston North, although the CV for Ms Chu seems quite spectacular for someone her age.

        I don't really think that the pure Career Politicians are a good thing for the Country. There are far to many of them who know nothing else except Student Politics, a job in an MP or Minister's Office and then a seat in the House. Nothing else at all behind them. I can't think of any of that ilk who have really done well by New Zealand as opposed to themselves.

        • Robert Guyton 3.1.2.1

          Well, Todd Barclay sure looked like a winner when he burst on the scene…

          Both he and Sarah Dowie, Good Southern Stock, flew a bit too close to the sun…

      • mac1 3.1.3

        Can anyone characterise the trend in which political direction National seems to be moving with regard to the political views of their new candidates? Is National going to the centre or to the right? With Bridges' eschewing any truck with the centrist NZFirst after the 2020 election, is National going to the right to pull in that conservative and religious support and try to create its one party government FPP-style vision?

        Not so much perhaps as putting out the lights but changing the wattage, the focus and the colour spectrum of the bulbs.

        • Anne 3.1.3.1

          …is National going to the right to pull in that conservative and religious support and try to create its one party government FPP-style vision?

          Imo yes.

          I'm also curious to see what happens over the latest accusations levelled at Jamie Lee Ross. Something is a bit smelly there. If we are to see a byelection take place before the General Election then matters will have to come to a head very soon.

          By March 19th the six month stand down period kicks in. By that I mean there are no byelections.

          Perhaps they are just dirtying the water for him to ensure he goes down in a heap come September.

  4. Robert Guyton 4

    Sarah? Sarah Dowie, the darling of Invercargill??

    What went wrong???

    • aj 4.1

      Everything, Robert. Everything. devil

    • Michael 4.2

      Jami-Lee Ross was what went wrong for Dowie (although he wasn't the first, just the worst, of her extra-marital dalliances).

      • Incognito 4.2.1

        Dowie cited family reasons and her children and I take her word for it and respect that. Maybe we could leave the dirt of her personal life out of it given that The Standard is not one of the gutter tabloids or blogs, yes?

        • Michael 4.2.1.1

          Of course you take her word for it, even though its boilerplate for use in countless instances where people's personal misconduct results in them stepping down from office. There is no doubt, whatsoever, that the J L-R affair had a significant, and negative, effect on Dowie's relationship with her constituents and Party members. You might like to think that female Nats can never behave vilely but in the real world it's a different story. This page is supposed to discuss politics – and politics is an ugly, brutal power struggle. Sugar coating that fact does no favours for the political left either.

          • Incognito 4.2.1.1.1

            What I think of female Nats is irrelevant because their personal lives are none of my business. I also distinguish having an ill-fated affair from personal misconduct as a politician.

            This page is supposed to discuss politics …

            That was my point exactly; why pile on the dirt of Dowie’s personal life? Why is asking this question “sugar coating”? You seem to be arguing that “the political left” needs to go for personal attacks on political opponents. If this is the case, I disagree for the simple reason that it is no longer “discussing politics”.

        • Pete George 4.2.1.2

          That's what's been reported.

          Dowie is currently the MP for Invercargill, but she said she had opted not to seek re-election for family reasons.

          "I went to Parliament when Christabel was four and Hunter was two.

          "What has become clear is that my children are at a pivotal age and I wish to be 100 percent present to share in their successes," she said.

          https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/409260/national-party-to-lose-three-more-mps-before-elections

          Obviously she contributed to significant problems for herself, but putting her kids first now seems quite understandable.

          • Muttonbird 4.2.1.2.1

            I don't know how old Dowie's children are now but I do sympathise with her on that statement because there does come a point when you realise your kids need you on point.

            Having said that, if she saw a positive future path in politics she would take her kids along with her rather than retire.

            It's an admission that she has no future in politics and that will be in no small part because of her actions. They would always have followed her if she remained in the spotlight.

            Surprised it took her so long to realise that.

  5. "Will the last remaining National MP please turn off the lights"

    On second thoughts, leave the lights on and the door open – the cleaners will be in soon to remove the stink.

  6. Ad 6

    With the boundary re-draw, does this put Invercargill in play for Labour's Liz Craig?

    • Robert Guyton 6.1

      Liz'll fly in now.

    • Phil 6.2

      Invercargill is proposed to pick up two chunks of turf from deep-blue Clutha Southland and an estimated 4,500 voters. In the last four elections, the National candidate has won by roughly 6,500 votes. With a new face as the National candidate, maybe that gets Craig a bit closer, but it seems really unlikely the seat would change hands.

      • Michael 6.2.1

        Agree. Liz Craig is not a strong performer. Nice but ineffectual. If the Nats removed Dowie to make way for a Peter Goodfellow-approved right-winger, I think they'll increase their majority (and Party Vote) in Invercargill this year. Labour isn't serious about courting either Party or Electorate Vote in the Deep South.

        • Robert Guyton 6.2.1.1

          " a Peter Goodfellow-approved right-winger"

          like…Sarah and or Todd…?

          • Michael 6.2.1.1.1

            Wouldn't put either in that category. Barclay was a spoiled, over-privileged brat whose father's money and clout got him the seat (neither were enough to keep him there when his manifest unfitness for office surfaced). In Dowie's case, she's a bit of a princess too (not as much as Barclay) but I did hear grumblings among Nats that she wasn't far enough to the right for them (she practiced environmental law, even representing DOC, which is hated among farmers and provincial property developers). Anyway, they're both history now.

            [Fixed error in user handle]

            • Robert Guyton 6.2.1.1.1.1

              Perhaps Hamish Walker will stand in both Clutha/Southland and Invercargill; he's terribly earnest!

              • Graeme

                Hamish will wake up one day and realise that he should have been a Labour MP, after spending so much of his time jumping up and down about the unfortunate effects of the National Party's policies. But hey, anything to get your mug in the paper….

            • Anne 6.2.1.1.1.2

              … I did hear grumblings among Nats that she wasn't far enough to the right for them (she practiced environmental law, even representing DOC, …

              You mean she believed in Climate Change? She goes up (slightly) in my estimation if that is true. 🙂

              • Robert Guyton

                Nah. None of them are allowed to.

                I thought this was funny;

                "we have a bucket list as long as your arm," Ms Barry said in a statement."

                I've always imagined a bucket filled with individual slips of paper, each one with a wish written on it.

              • veutoviper

                Dowie is currently Nat spokesperson on Conservation and is on the Enviroment Select Committee (and was Deputy Chair under the previous Nat Govt). She has a Member's Bill currently before the House on shark cage diving which seeks to regulate this currently unregulated activity to improve the safety of both divers and the sharks . A small thing but I hope it passes before she leaves as otherwise it will probably disappear into the ether.

                https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarah_Dowie

                Anne, I’ve posted on the eulogies yesterday in the House to Mike Moore with links on OM 12 Feb. If you did not see Ron Mark’s speech, do! Link is in my comment, Thought of you when I watched it live yesterday because of his impressive memories of Mike and the Labour Party back in the early 1990s.

                • Anne

                  Thanks Veutoviper. Enjoyed it.

                  I wasn't in politics at that time. I had a long break from the party and didn't return until the early 2000s. My recollection of Mike Moore was in the 1970s and early 1980s. He was a brash but likable young man who was never short of verbal contributions at meetings and functions. There was no way anyone could miss his presence.

        • Robert Guyton 6.2.1.2

          Liz Craig's not the only contender for the Invercargill seat: Cherie Chapman's been nominated as well and she's no shrinking violet. She and Mark Pattersen have worked well together on the RioTinto dross issue, so there's now an encouraging tension in the South.

          • Graeme 6.2.1.2.1

            I wonder where Mark Patterson will stand, he'd be close to being in the new South Dunedin electorate?

            Even standing in C/S, channeling this sort of rural sentiment could see some interesting things happening. Farmers and rural people have put a lot of effort into improving the environment and managing their mess, initially because they had to, but now because they see the point, often with a passion. And they are getting rather irate with local authorities and other industries that aren't doing as much as they are. Kicking Tiwai around the hustings will make the southern electorates interesting.

  7. Gt 7

    Also Nathan Guy, Otaki being replaced by a Top Gun air force staffer.

  8. Robert Guyton 8

    I predict…Suzane Prentice!

  9. mosa 9

    " David was one of the most competent and fair speakers we've had at Parliament "

    Too quote the Tui billboards " YEAH RIGHT "

    Carter was appalling as a speaker and can't compete with some of the greats like Smith , Wilson and Hunt.

    His time as speaker was a dark stain on democracy and the unbridled power of the Key National government that faced no real legality of parliament during 2008 – 2017.

    He laughed away any opposition too the actions of Key- English government and their henchman and their illegal actions.

    hOW MANY TIMES DID KEY MISLEAD PARLIMENT !!!

  10. Chris T 10

    Didn't think it was that unusual for a bit of an exodus in the first term after being turfed out of govt.

    Admittedly 13 is pretty high, but then nat MPs are probably more likely to have business connections to get cushy jobs off of as an alternative. (No actual proof of this. Just an assumption)

    • Muttonbird 10.1

      Also an indication that National Party MPs are not in it for the people, but in it for themselves.

      When they don't get their way they give up.

      • Chris T 10.1.1

        Pushing it to say that when Carter has been an MP for 26 years and Wagner 15

        A lot in opposition, which kind of brings your theory into severe question

        But whatever gets you through you day.

        And Dowie was just shagging the nutso, so knew she was onto a loser

        • Muttonbird 10.1.1.1

          From 2008-2016 Carter's only job was to protect John Key. It must have pained him to do so but what a great job he did.

          • Chris T 10.1.1.1.1

            Arguably with the possible exception of Lockwood Smith, who seemed to have cross party approval that seems to be the speakers job given Mallard's antics.

            They are always going to be biased.

            Personally always thought the job should be independently selected of a non MP myself.

            Ex judge or something

      • Chris T 10.1.2

        Let's put it this way.

        Compare Winston to Carter.

        When Winston gets turfed at the end of the year and resigns are you going to say he wasn't in it for the people?

        (Admittedly a bad example as he never has been)

  11. JustMe 11

    In the above photo it seriously does look like Simon Bridges is playing pocket billiards as that is probably the ONLY thing he has left to play with.

    His so-called credibility is down the gurgler. Every time he speaks he comes across as equivalent to a Village Idiot. No-one can really take him seriously because he just doesn't have it to be a leader of anything eg the Girl Guides.

    They are coming across as a plastic fantastic party but looking at the worldwide damage of plastic even their deputy leader is looking like a Madam Tussaud waxwork.

    No amount of grinning for the camera will ever improve National because they are too fake and only out for what they can get for themselves. and their ego-trips

    Give it time and will there be photo opportunities of Simon Bridges eagerly shaking hands with multi-millionaire Chinese in return for political donations. And will he be wearing a face mask whilst associated and mixing with such wealth??!! I doubt it.

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