25 May 2015

ACT rejects idea of recruiting Williamson

6:46 pm on 25 May 2015

The ACT Party says it rejected an approach from its former leader Don Brash to have the National MP Maurice Williamson join the party.

National Party MP Maurice Williamson.

National Party MP Maurice Williamson. Photo: NZ GOVERNMENT

In its weekly newsletter ACT wrote that its board unanimously rejected the idea, also labelling Dr Brash as ''hapless''.

ACT Party leader David Seymour said Don Brash approached the party's president John Thompson with the suggestion.

He said Mr Thompson called him immediately after the meeting and the board had a discussion and unanimously rejected Mr Williamson.

Mr Seymour said ACT wanted to give people positive reasons to vote for it, not offer some sort of political amalgam.

"We're trying to build ACT as ACT with positive reasons for people to vote for us, I don't think that's been going to badly of late, I think if we indulge in this kind of waka-jumping political game then we'd turn the voters off again."

Epsom electorate MP David Seymour

Epsom electorate MP David Seymour Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

Don Brash

Don Brash Photo: ACT Party

David Seymour said ACT's president called Mr Williamson, but the call was not returned.

Prime Minister John Key said Mr Williamson had told him via text message that he was not interested in leaving National and joining the ACT Party.

He said Mr Williamson said that he did not make any approach, and Mr Key believed him.

"Look I mean if he had wanted to go to the ACT Party he has had lots of opportunities over the years and he's never chosen to want to do that, he's very happy being the National MP for Pakuranga and that's how he wants to stay.

Mr Key said Mr Williamson was "a bit grizzly" with ACT over the matter.

An excerpt from ACT's regular bulletin Free Press regarding Mr Williamson joining the party


ACT's Board has unanimously rejected an approach by the hapless Don Brash (no joking, this is too good for us to have made up) for Williamson to join ACT's caucus. "My own party don't want me no more" is not an attractive pitch. For similar reasons, what poor country would accept him as ambassador?