The hand over planned by John Key and Bill English months ago now appears complete.
The bullying, standover and threats have worked and now Simon Bridges is withdrawing from the race.
Simon Bridges is expected to withdraw from the contest to be National’s deputy leader today – handing it to Paula Bennett.
Bennett had public declarations of support from 23 MPs last night to Bridges’ 10 – and was understood to have enough private support to get her over the 30 votes needed in National’s caucus of 59.
The caucus was due to vote on it on Monday, but unless there is a last minute entry at that caucus meeting it appears set to be a pro forma appointment. Read more »