26 Nov 2021

National Party board president Peter Goodfellow needs to resign - David Carter

From Morning Report, 6:46 am on 26 November 2021

Former National Party MP David Carter wants to see party president Peter Goodfellow resign from his role after yesterday's leadership debacle.

National MPs will elect the party's fifth leader in four years next Tuesday, after a vote of no confidence went against Judith Collins on Thursday.

The implosion comes after a late Wednesday night press release from Collins, where she accused MP and former leader Simon Bridges of " serious misconduct" at a party event in Premier House five years ago.

Bridges said this was "truly desperate stuff" from Collins who would go to any length to hold on to her leadership.

She was forced to step down after her caucus issued a motion of no confidence in her.

Carter, who resigned from his role on the board in August after unsuccessfully challenging Goodfellow for the role of president, told Morning Report the board was too involved in the breakdown.

Collins said in her press release she had the "unanimous support" from the board for demoting Bridges, later that day the board said in a release it had agreed to look into the matter but had not decided on any other actions to be taken.

"He shouldn't have been involved with the board in yesterday's mess, they shouldn't have been speaking with Judith Collins about portfolio lineups and demoting Simon Bridges the night before, the board needs to function on its role and stop playing politics."

Carter said Goodfellow's resignation is "long overdue" and blamed him for Nationals poor performance in 2020.

"He's an incompetent chairman of the board. I was there on the board for nine months. I couldn't stand it any longer once they reelected him as the president. He's overseen two election failures."

As for who should take over from Collins, Carter said it would be a battle between Bridges and first-term MP Christopher Luxon. Mark Mitchell has also suggested a tilt at the leadership, but Carter was not sure he would have the support.

Whatever happens he would have preferred the matter sorted out this week rather than next.

"Now they've got everybody chattering about it for the next three or four days.

Whilst I agree that the retirement or the firing of Judith was sudden, there's been rumors of leadership change going on now for weeks. I would have thought caucus was in the position to have a decent discussion yesterday, unite behind one person and get on with it.

"Listen, I'm not part of caucus, they didn't do it that way, so now they're going to hopefully, sort a bit more out over the weekend and announce a leader on Tuesday and get on with the job."