Otago Daily Times

Dunedin MP Woodhouse climbs rankings

- Mike.houlahan@odt.co.nz

‘‘I’m a very happy person at the moment,’’ Mrs Dean said.

‘‘As assistant speaker you are a servant of the House and so it has a different focus to being a portfolio spokespers­on.

‘‘I have chaired a couple of select committees, it was an environmen­t I enjoyed, this opportunit­y came up and I like a challenge.’’

New Southland MP Joseph Mooney was named treaty negotiatio­ns spokesman, and given associate roles in defence and tourism.

‘‘With both Queenstown and Te Anau here, tourism is a big part of my electorate and I’m really looking forward to contributi­ng something useful in that portfolio,’’ he said.

A former army reservist, defence was a role he had a personal connection with, he said.

He also had a longterm interest in treaty settlement­s, Mr Mooney said.

Invercargi­ll MP and former SIT chief executive Penny Simmonds was, unsurprisi­ngly, named spokeswoma­n for tertiary education.

Ms Simmonds also was given associate roles in agricultur­e and disability issues.

She could not be contacted for comment yesterday.

Former finance spokesman Paul Goldsmith plunged down the party ranks to 12th and was named education spokesman.

Former leader Simon Bridges was ranked seventh and given justice and three other portfolios.

The man who was briefly leader after Mr Bridges, Todd Muller, dropped to 19th and was named trade and internal affairs spokesman.

On Tuesday, Shane Reti was confirmed as Ms Collins deputy.

Ms Collins said she had deliberate­ly not ranked the party’s new MPs, and they all started as equals in National’s caucus.

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