It's up to caucus whether Todd Muller stays - Judith Collins
The National Party leader Judith Collins says it is up to her caucus whether her predecessor Todd Muller remains in Parliament for another two years.Muller announced last week he is retiring from politics, citing his health and family.It has since emerged he was pressured to leave after being dobbed in for anonymously badmouthing a colleague to the media.Collins spoke to Susie Ferguson.
Todd Muller needs to go. I can’t believe he’s planning to stick around until the next election. What’s the point in that? If you’re quitting, then quit immediately. He’s doing taxpayers a disservice by sucking up $170K a year for another two and a half years in a job he’s already decided he doesn’t really like.And he’s doing his party a disservice. As if he hasn’t done enough damage to that party with his terrible coup last year, he’s now hogging space the Nationals could use.They desperately need to start injecting talent into that caucus so they look like a government in waiting, and that two and a half years would go a long way to helping the next MP in that electorate get started learning the ropes.Of course, the trouble is Muller would force a by-election if he left early, and the state they’re in, National can’t feel completely certain they’d win that.Especially after all the nonsense with Jake bezant pretending to be his ex so he could have cybersex with men, and the Nick Smith stitch up. And now Harete Hipango ringing up thousands of dollars worth of furniture on the taxpayer.There’s a good chance voters just give the National a walloping in that seat to teach them a lesson, even it if it’s a blue safe seat and has been for 70 years.On the other hand, if they had a good candidate and ran good lines about the government cancelling the road upgrade in the Tauranga region between Te Puna and Omokoroa so they could pay for the Auckland cycle bridge, and getting the angry ute owning farmers out, maybe they’d be in with a chance.It’s a risk they’d take, but I can’t help but wonder if taking that risk is better than having Todd Muller sulk around the corridors reminding voters he doesn’t really want to be there and just intensifying the sense of failure around the National Party
The Huddle: More drama for National after Harete Hipango claims and Todd Muller's resignation
Heather du Plessis-Allan Drive
National MP Todd Muller's resignation announcement followed a late-night caucus meeting in which Muller admitted he was one of several unnamed MPs criticising returning MP Harete Hipango in a media article.Muller has confirmed to the Herald that he admitted at that caucus meeting to making a comment that was quoted in the media."I did not leak. I made a comment to a journalist that was subsequently quoted. Yesterday I admitted to that and apologised for this."He would not comment further on whether that was a factor in his resignation, or whether National leader Judith Collins had demanded he resign.Collins is understood to be furious about Muller's admission.One source said Muller was threatened with a move to suspend him from caucus if he did not announce his resignation.The next morning Muller announced he would resign at the next election, saying it was a "difficult decision" but he had "decided that I need to prioritise my health and family and move on to the next chapter of my life."Other sources told the Herald Muller had explained he had spoken to the journalist in question, but said he was not expecting to be quoted on it, and had apologised.The article in question is understood to be a Newsroom piece which included a number of critical comments about Hipango from unnamed MPs. None of the other MPs outed themselves.The late-night caucus meeting at which Muller made his admission is believed to have been prompted by a NZ Herald article, published this morning, about allegations of inappropriate spending by Hipango which Parliamentary Service required her to pay back.Collins has since confirmed Hipango had to repay Parliamentary Service for some items of furniture, but has said it was a matter of "coding errors" by a staffer in the billing.Collins has been approached for comment.When Collins was asked after Muller's announcement if she was sad to see Muller resign, she replied that she accepted his decision and supported it."I think it shouldn't come as much of a surprise to people."Muller stood down as leader of the National Party in July after 53 days leading the party.He has been open about his struggle with anxiety and mental health during that period.Muller is expected to have portfolios taken from him when he returns from five weeks' leave to help his wife Michelle recover from a serious medical procedure.text by Claire Trevett, NZ Herald
Ep 4. National MP Todd Muller’s mental health journey
Taking over the National Party leadership was meant to be Todd Muller’s dream job, but instead, it thrust him into a season of intense anxiety and crippling panic attacks. In this episode, he candidly shares his mental health story, including everything he’s learned about recognising the symptoms and staying well.
National's Trade spokesperson comments on the fragility of world trade supply links, why globalisation is important to NZ, why he doesn't own more than one house and why families are so important in supporting mental health sufferers.
National's trade spokesman was instrumental in drafting the Zero Carbon Act, we get his thoughts on draft emissions targets released yesterday by the Climate Change Commission and how they will affect farming and the primary sector.
Taxpayer Talk: Runners and Riders – Who will take over from Todd Muller?
Taxpayer Talk - podcast by the New Zealand Taxpayers' Union
Taxpayers’ Union’s Jordan Williams, and Neil Miller, sit down with political commentator and Stuff columnist Damian Grant discuss the runners and riders of the sudden National Party leadership race.Support the show (http://www.taxpayers.org.nz/donate)
MPs in Depth: Reform priorities, time in the private sector and long-held political aspirations — Todd Muller MP
Taxpayer Talk - podcast by the New Zealand Taxpayers' Union
The Taxpayers' Union sat down with Todd Muller for a podcast interview just a few days before he announced his leadership bid. He described himself as "broadly socially conservative, and from an economic perspective reasonably liberal", and discussed his upbringing, career, and the political challenges of bridging the urban-rural divide.Support the show (http://www.taxpayers.org.nz/donate)