Former Prime Minister Bill English leaves Parliament today. Before he does, the National Party will decide on his successor to be leader of the Party and Leader of the Opposition.
Who will that successor be? A quick look at the five candidates:
Mrs Adams, M.P. for Selwyn was a lawyer before she stood for National in the deep blue Canterbury electorate. Seen by many as competent and ambitious, Mrs Adams may lack the support of the conservative wing of National.
Mr Bridges, M.P. for Tauranga, was Minister for Transport, Minister for Energy and Resources at various times under the previous Government. Whilst ambitious and showing potential as a front row Member of Parliament, Mr Bridges tendency to get frustrated in debates may turn people against him.
JUDITH “CRUSHER” COLLINS
Ms Collins earned the “Crusher” nickname from promoting the crushing of so-called boy racer vehicles confiscated by Police. A darling of the conservative wing of National, she has long had a solid interest in law and order, which came art a price when she was forced to resign over fallout from the Oravida scandal.
A man who once shot at insurgents in Iraq as a security contractor, Mr Mitchell has seen his share of pressure. However the public distrust over things related to Iraq will plague him especially since he will not say much about it. His time as Minister for Defence was sold but not spectacular.
A strategy man who was the “power behind the throne” of former Prime Ministers Bill English and John Key, Mr Joyce was also the Treasurer for Mr English. His steady hand is a potential double edged sword. On one hand it has a proven record. On the other it was the hand that led to Mr English not getting the covted fourth term for National.