Leggett to juggle job and campaign
Nick Leggett knows he has a busy winter ahead.
The Porirua mayor last week confirmed his intention of running for the Wellington mayoralty, where he expects a tough race against incumbent Celia Wade-Brown and other highprofile candidates.
He said his upcoming campaign would not mean any lessening of his commitment to Porirua in coming months.
‘‘Until the new [Porirua] council is sworn in, I’m the mayor of this city and will carry out my job as I was before,’’ he said.
‘‘People will not see any less of me.
‘‘You do have a traditional winding down towards the end of a term, but there is still work to do. Everything is very manageable.’’
Leggett said his campaign team for the Wellington mayoralty bid had come together ‘‘organically’’.
He said offers of support had come from several quarters, and his team was a combination of people he knew and new advisers.
His decision to run in Wellington wasn’t made on a whim, he said.
‘‘I didn’t wake up one day and decide to run. People were talking to me about it and after a while you become sensitive to what people are saying about a topic like this.
‘‘I made the decision to step down in Porirua first. That was a separate step to running in Wellington.
‘‘The capital needs better direction and closer work with central government.’’
What about losing and having no job at all, especially with wife Emily expecting a baby in July?
‘‘It’s a fair question. First, I want to see this work [in Porirua] through until October because I like to see a job through. That, the campaign and my family are my priorities.
‘‘If I don’t win in Wellington, I’ll be looking for a job. Politicians should know they can’t rely on being elected. If I lose, I can cope with it, but you have to be prepared to be bold sometimes.’’
Leggett is challenging one of his main rivals, Northern ward councillor and deputy mayor Justin Lester, to run solely for the top job.
‘‘Running in a ward is not something I considered. I say that if you’re serious about being mayor, just run for the mayoralty.’’
Nick Leggett says his decision to make a bid for the Wellington mayoralty wasn’t made on a whim.