National and Labour have worked together to arrange for the early exit of John Key and David Cunliffe from Parliament. They are both leaving just close enough to the election to avoid automatic by-elections, and with both leaving at about the same time the vote balance in parliament won’t be upset.
Too bad for their electorates that will be left unrepresented until after the election. Neither electorate has a current list MP standing so that leave no one to step in for them.
Former Prime Minister John Key will quit Parliament on April 14 after delivering his farewell speech next week.
The timing will allow Parliament to avoid a by-election in his Helensville seat, which can be left vacant if he leaves within six months of the September 23 general election.
Meanwhile Labour’s David Cunliffe has also announced he is leaving early, with a final day of April 23 – ensuring the relative strengths of the Government and Opposition are preserved.
It is becoming more common for MPs and also for local body politicians to leave mid-term at their own convenience rather than fulfil their full term commitment.
Key will give his valedictory speech on March 22 and his resignation will take take effect on April 14.
Cunliffe’s valedictory speech will be on April 11 and his resignation will take effect on April 23.