Luxon shakes up National’s line-up

National Party leader and Botany MP Christopher Luxon, right, has promoted Pakuranga MP Simeon Brown, left, and made him the party’s transport spokesman. Times file photo Wayne Martin

Botany MP and new National Party leader Christopher Luxon has announced a reshuffle of his MPs’ portfolios and parliamentary rankings.

He says the new party list represents a “fresh, energised alternative government ready to deliver for Kiwis in 2023”.

As part of the changes Luxon is taking on the national security and intelligence portfolio and has given up his previous portfolios of land information; local government; and research, science and manufacturing.

He was also associate spokesperson for transport.

Luxon has promoted Pakuranga MP Simeon Brown, who moves up the list rankings from 20th to ninth and takes on the transport and public service portfolios.

Brown’s previous portfolios of police and Serious Fraud Office have gone to Whangaparaoa MP Mark Mitchell, a former police officer.

“The line-up I’m announcing today is based on merit and matches people to their strengths and skill sets,” Luxon says.

“My Shadow Cabinet leverages the wealth of talent and depth of real-world experience across the National caucus team.

“I have deliberately selected a Shadow Cabinet of 20 members to match the Government’s Cabinet.

“I’m confident that when you put any of National’s Shadow Ministers against their Labour counterparts, you’ll see National’s MPs have the deep experience, the political skills, the work ethic and the intellectual grunt to come out on top every time.”

Luxon says his parliamentary team will be a “Government-in-waiting”.

It will “relentlessly hold this spin-heavy and PR-driven Government to account, and focus on proposing detailed, constructive and intellectually rigorous solutions”, he says.

“New Zealanders deserve so much more than they’re currently getting from Labour.

“They deserve more than a government of rhetoric.

“The National Government I lead will be a government of action.

“We are the ambitious, future-focused alternate that New Zealand needs.

“From now, our singular priority every day will be working hard to earn Kiwis’ trust and confidence so we can get to the Beehive in 2023 and deliver for them.”

Luxon has retained Wellington-based List MP Chris Bishop as National’s spokesperson for Covid-19 Response and given him back the Shadow Leader of the House role, which former National Party leader Judith Collins had previously stripped him of.

Luxon has demoted Collins to a list ranking of 19th and appointed her the party’s spokesperson for research, science, innovation and technology.