New deputy predicted for NZ First

There has never been any doubt who will lead NZ First while Winston Peters remains an MP, but the deputy spot is less secure. In 2015 Ron Mark got the numbers to oust Tracey Martin, but it looks like the knives are out for Mark, with the position up for a caucus vote next week.

Martin and Shane Jones appear to be too busy to consider going for it, so it looks like the way is open to Fletcher Tabuteau to take on some more responsibility.

Stuff: NZ First deputy leader Ron Mark looks set to be rolled at caucus on Tuesday

They say what goes around comes around and in Ron Mark’s case he’ll be hoping that’s not the case.

Mark rose to be NZ First’s deputy leader in 2015 after he challenged Tracey Martin and got enough support in the caucus to roll her.

But the party’s deputy leadership is up for grabs again on Tuesday and it’s understood the job is NZ First MP Fletcher Tabuteau’s – if he wants it.

Tabuteau was fourth on the NZ First list last election, behind Peters, Mark and Martin (Jones was 8th).

Mark need not worry about Martin, whose popularity amongst colleagues exceeds his, as it’s understood she’s not interested in the job due to her heavy ministerial workload.

NZ First new-comer but old-timer in terms of political experience, Shane Jones, has long been touted to take over the leadership from Winston Peters if he ever decided to throw it all in and head to Whananaki to retire.

But he’s not interested in the job either – he says he’s got one billion trees to plant and a $1 billion regional economic fund to spend, which would keep him far too busy for anything else.

So it looks like a contest between Mark and Tabuteau, if Mark doesn’t read the writing on the wall and say he’s too busy being a minister.

While he (Jones) says it’s not a “priority” for him to be deputy leader and in the short term he has a “hell of a role” he possibly also doesn’t see the deputy job as any sort of assumed stepping stone to the leadership.

 

6 Comments

  1. But something doesn’t feel quite right – the vibe is wrong. There isn’t an uprising in the air.

    The MPs are being insincere and their answers aren’t convincing.

    I’ve seen an angry, threatened Ron Mark before, but not this week. This week, he’s smiling and his eyes are glistening.

    Winston Peters isn’t flustered. He’s saying the vote will be “a picture of serenity and tranquility”.

    Martin gave a cheery “now that would be telling” when asked if she’s standing, but without an ounce of revenge or satisfaction in her tone that would suggest Mark is on the way out.

  2. Trevors_elbow

     /  February 22, 2018

    does NZFirst have a Deputy Leader? Is that the role that brings Winnie his cuppa each morning?

  3. David

     /  February 22, 2018

    Might as well pass their time doing something, nothing else going on.

  1. New deputy predicted for NZ First — Your NZ – NZ Conservative Coalition