'The left don't own social good' - Dr Shane Reti explains why he's a Nat

Source: 1News

National's health spokesperson and newly appointed deputy leader Dr Shane Reti says the "left don't own social good" when questioned over why he's a Nat.

Reti told TVNZ1's Breakfast it was an "absolute privilege to have the trust and support of your colleagues and the direction of the party" in taking on the deputy leader role.

He was elected into the position unopposed yesterday after Gerry Brownlee stepped down from the role last week.

Reti was arguably the party's best performer during the past few dismal months, enjoying a meteoric rise in public support in part prompted by his measured critiques - and at times even praise - of the Government's Covid-19 response.

His approach was a sharp contrast to the more obviously oppositional tone of much of National's campaign in general.

So why National?

Reti said it was one of the two top questions he's asked when door knocking - the other asking him why he doesn't go back to being a doctor?

"The left don't own social good and so I'm a Nat because for a long time I've believed in principles that are inherent with the National Party, principles of equality of opportunity. That's why I'm a Nat, because I believe in the principles."

When asked about his different approach to being in Opposition, Reti said "I'll give attribution as long as the day is long to good work".

"Our job here is that fine balance to critique but then also to come with solutions and collaborate and that's the sort of composure I like to have.

"Yes, it may well be that we need to bring more of our deep thinking towards the answers rather than just point out the holes. Come forward with the depth of talent we've got and prosecute more of the solutions and then let the Government talk it down.

"If it's a good idea it's a good idea in anyone's hands."