Simon Bridges: Let's wait and see over Christopher Luxon

Author
Newstalk ZB ,
Publish Date
Thu, 20 Jun 2019, 2:00PM
Air New Zealand chief executive Christopher Luxon is leaving the airline in September and has hinted at a future in politics with the National Party. (Photo / Greg Bowker)

Simon Bridges: Let's wait and see over Christopher Luxon

Author
Newstalk ZB ,
Publish Date
Thu, 20 Jun 2019, 2:00PM

National leader Simon Bridges is brushing off suggestions that Christopher Luxon is coming for his job.

The Air New Zealand CEO announced last night he is stepping down from his role after seven years in the job.

Almost immediately, Luxon was linked to a move into politics, as has been rumoured for many years.

"Politics is something I am interested in," he told Mike Hosking this morning.

Whether that means a move to National, Bridges is not biting just yet.

"I haven't talked with him, let's wait and see what happens," he told Jamie Mackay. 

He says that National is the "natural home" for talent, and the interest shows that National has a chance in the next election. 

"Whether it's Chris Luxon, whether it's others, I'll make sure we're brimming with talent going into the next election."

Bridges would not confirm or deny if Luxon would move into the Botany seat, which is held by former National MP Jami-Lee Ross.

Luxon is the chair of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's business advisory council, and Ardern said today she was happy for him to remain there until he stepped down from Air NZ in late September.

"I think it's appropriate he stays in the business advisory council role for that period ... Once he departs, we'll find a replacement at that time."

She had no concerns about whether Luxon might run for the National Party in the future.

"Obviously he has a role still to fulfill at Air NZ and I imagine his mind will rightly be on that through to September."

She said Luxon called her yesterday to give her notice about the announcement of his resignation, but they mainly discussed the advisory council.

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