Wrap the week: Chris Hipkins edge over the PM, Shane Jones’ plea for clemency

Claire Trevett looks at some of the highlights of the wash up after the election as MPs wait for the final count.

Bragging Rights:

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has made history by securing the first one-party majority under MMP – but her MP Chris Hipkins has one-upped her more locally.

Hipkins’ majority in the Remutaka electorate was 17,237 – higher than Ardern’s Mt Albert majority of 16,577. Hipkins first told the NZ Herald not to point it out to Ardern, but later admitted he may have mentioned it to her “once or twice”.

That means quite a few times.

Nobody likes a show off, and it is probably safe to say Ardern will not hesitate to rub it in if she overtakes him in the final count on Friday.

Lambast in haste, repent at leisure:

Former NZ First MP Shane Jones now faces having to find himself a new job after an election drubbing.

He may find that harder than some others given his constant nose-punches at corporates from Air NZ to Spark and Fonterra.

He put in something of a plea for forgiveness in an interview with the Weekend Herald:

“To the extent people took offence at the various attacks and forays, that is just politics. If anyone is nursing grievances against me … release yourself from that burden.”

Quote of the week:

“From my point of view I hope it’s me – but it may not be. It’s not up to me:” Judith Collins on who will be leading the National Party in 2023.

Put your MP in, put your MP out, put your MP in and shake it all about:

National Party MP Maureen Pugh seems to be caught in a never-ending dance of the hokey tokey, so often has she gotten in to Parliament and then out and then in again.

The election night result has yet again put Pugh as the last MP in Parliament on the list for National, waiting for the final count to see if she stays there.

It is the third time she has found herself in this predicament. In 2014 she was in until the final count cast her out.

In 2017, she was again in but then out before returning in 2018 after Bill English resigned.

Her prospects of bucking her trend seem dim, given there is little likelihood of a sudden surge for National in the special votes.

As well as the potential to lose more seats on the special votes, Pugh could be tipped out if one of the electorate MPs above her on the list ends up being tipped out of that seat and takes alist place instead – such as Whangarei’s Shane Reti.

Labour hits 2014 target:

Back in its dark soul-searching days in Opposition in 2011-2014, there was much brouhaha about Labour’s decision to implement a target of having 50 per cent women MPs by 2017.

It didn’t get there – after the 2017 election, 45 per cent were women.

This time it has gone over: in it’s mega-caucus, 55 per cent are women. It will possibly be a relief to hopeful male candidates, who may well have felt they were at a disadvantage for selection.

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