New National MP Christopher Luxon would be the “smart choice” for the party’s new leader, 1News political editor Jessica Mutch McKay says.
Her comments come after the former leader, Judith Collins, was ousted on Thursday following a dramatic 15 hours.
Late on Wednesday night Collins released a statement informing the press Simon Bridges, also a former leader of the party, was being demoted following a complaint around a serious misconduct allegation.
Bridges revealed on Thursday it related to an inappropriate comment he made in front of fellow National MP Jacqui Dean in 2017, which had been dealt with in-house at the time.
But interim National Party leader Dr Shane Reti believes its caucus will be selecting the next prime minister on Tuesday.
Mutch McKay told Q+A’s Jack Tame on Sunday there’d be a lot of ringing around and BBQs this weekend to firm up a new leader and deputy ahead of Tuesday.
She said “the two big names” are Bridges, giving him another shot at leadership, and Luxon, a new MP after leaving his former career as Air New Zealand chief executive.
"The smart choice, I think, would be Christopher Luxon - that means you're not talking about leadership and he's got two years up until the election."
“Some people may say, ‘nope, lets put Bridges in, give him another crack and that will buy him some more time for Christopher Luxon to get a few more runs under his belt before becoming leader’.
“At the moment it’s a little bit close to call but I think the race is on really.”