Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Bill English
was unsurprisingly the top-ranked southern MP in the
Transtasman's eighth annual roll call on how MPs performed in
He is the MP for Clutha-Southland.
But Mr English, despite getting good comments from the
Transtasman editorial team, slipped one point to 7.5 in 2012
from 8.5 last year.
As Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minster, Mr English had
supplied the ballast to complement the effervescent Prime
Minister John Key in the coalition, supplying the
intellectual grunt for policies across the spectrum from
welfare reform to housing affordability, Transtasman said.
"He's kept the party on-message in the House. Away from the
limelight, English deserves credit for encouraging a more
flexible, free-thinking and results-oriented public service."
The Better Public Services initiative was feared as "slash
and burn". Instead, Mr English had used fiscal pressure to
pursue intelligent improvements in the value of the public
Chief whip Michael Woodhouse, a list MP from Dunedin, is
rated the second-highest National Party MP in the South with
six points, rising from five last year.
Transtasman said Mr Woodhouse had a case to make for
promotion, something Mr Key indicated at a function in
Dunedin earlier this year. Mr Woodhouse is seen as a student
of standing orders and did well in the House against the
likes of Labour MP Trevor Mallard.
Community and Voluntary Sector Minister Jo Goodhew's
(Rangitata) ranking is unchanged at five points. She had not
made many gaffes in her portfolios which were not the most
testing. Critics said not enough had been done to tackle the
pay gender gap but she did not have the levers to make much
of a difference.
Invercargill MP Eric Roy rose one point to five this year.
Described as an affable bloke, Mr Roy had carried out his
deputy speaker role with care, competence and diligence. Most
likely, Mr Roy was in his last term and would go out with the
quiet grace and dignity he had displayed throughout his
Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean rose one point to four. Mrs Dean
worked hard in her electorate, chaired the law and order
committee and was a good speaker in
Parliament. She would be hoping for promotion but there could
be better candidates.
Green Party co-leader and Dunedin-based list MP Metiria Turei
was unchanged on six points. Mrs Turei was said to have equal
distaste for National and Labour, which might make a
coalition negotiation tough. But she was ambitious and
believed there was plenty of money to solve New Zealand's
Dunedin North MP David Clark was seen as one of the more
impressive of the new intake of Labour MPs at the last
election. He earned five points.
"He annoys the hell out of Revenue Minister Peter Dunne,
which is a good sign."
Dr Clark had the good fortune to have two of his member's
Bills drawn out of the ballot and one of them through its
first reading when the Government lost a vote. He was
Dunedin South MP Clare Curran went up 1.5 points to 4.5. She
was described as trying to be Parliament's top geek. Ms
Curran got very earnest and intense on issues which most
people found dull as ditch water. She received extra points
for visibility and indefatigability.