Something else that few have factored in when considering this race is the next two men coming in on the list have no great love for National. Aaron Gilmore and Paul Quinn were given the bum’s rush, and my sources tell me they both blame Steven Joyce. Neither are certain of coming back in, as both have good jobs and know they will be shafted again at list ranking.
Since being out of parliament they have both been treated with disrespect or contempt by National, and they are both feeling quite unloved. Neither needs to be an MP, but by the same token neither is known to turn down the offer of a scrap so they might come back in seeking utu.
If Lockwood retires before the vote for speaker both these men may well back Tau for speaker just to let Joyce know he shouldn’t take their vote for granted.
The only scenario that seems likely for them to return to parliament after the next election is if there are massive resignations from people placed higher up the list, so it would not be a surprise if either man did not play the team game, realising it was in his own best interests to tank the government. A defeated National will see many list MPs leave parliament voluntarily rather than spend three years in opposition.