Up­ston to lead again

South Waikato News - - FRONT PAGE - By VIV POS­SELT

SUN­DAY morn­ing saw a vic­to­ri­ous Louise Up­ston do­ing what she nor­mally does - bounc­ing sev­eral balls with her usual high lev­els of en­ergy.

Up­ston, the re-elected Taupo MP and se­nior gov­ern­ment whip, fol­lowed a 7.45am visit to her of­fice to email the new Na­tional MPs, with a visit to Kara­piro School to at­tend her daugh­ter’s fi­nal year netball prize­giv­ing.

Then it was back home to un­pack elec­tion­eer­ing boxes and pre­pare for an af­ter­noon party she was host­ing for around 50 South Waikato and Cam­bridge vol­un­teers who had helped with the cam­paign.

"There’s no rest­ing up go­ing on here, " she laughed.

By Sun­day lunchtime, Up­ston had se­cured a majority of 13,783 votes.

While there was much re­lief at her own - and the party’s - solid vic­tory, Up­ston did ad­mit to a few nerves on Satur­day night.

"I went into it think­ing it was go­ing to be very tight. I was as sur­prised as ev­ery­one else when those num­bers came through.’’

Some of that doubt was gen­er­ated by her con­cerns she had not been able to put in the hours on the ground that she might have oth­er­wise.

Up­ston was ap­pointed a ju­nior whip im­me­di­ately after the 2011 elec­tion, and was soon pro­moted to the se­nior role. It has meant send­ing less time in her com­mu­ni­ties.

"That was chal­leng­ing, but the num­bers didn’t re­flect that. Over­all, it is very af­firm­ing."

She al­luded to sev­eral cam­paign stand­outs. One was the re­sponse from a pris­oner un­der­go­ing hor­ti­cul­tural train­ing through a gov­ern­ment part­ner­ship pro­gramme - his child was also in­volved in plant­ing a gar­den at school.

"He was adamant that I pass on his thanks to John Key for pro­vid­ing those op­por­tu­ni­ties."

Provisional re­sults from Satur­day saw Na­tional get 48.1 per­cent of the party vote, which trans­lates to 61 seats in Par­lia­ment - enough to gov­ern alone. It is the first time un­der the cur­rent MMP sys­tem this has been the case.

Mean­while Maori vot­ers showed faith in Labour with the los­ing party claw­ing back five of six Maori seats in­clud­ing Te Tai Hauauru. New comer Adrian Ru­rawhe picked up Ta­maki Makau­rau and Te Tai Hauauru.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.