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Three choices for National

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Masterton farmer Mike Butterick. PHOTOS/FILE

A 50 Shades of Green member, a popular cafe manager, and a primary school principal are ready to be the National Party candidate and Wairarapa MP.

The three hopefuls came through the party’s headquarters vetting process and the branch interviews on Thursday, the Times-Age understands.

They are preparing to convince Wairarapa National Party members that they are the person to keep the Wairarapa seat blue in the September 19 general election.

Their campaign to become the National Party candidate has started.

Their first presentation to members is less than a week away in Waipukurau.

A month after incumbent Alastair Scott announced he wouldn’t stand again, farmer Mike Butterick declared he would stand for nomination.

Butterick was until recently the Wairarapa spokesman for the farmer’s movement 50 Shades of Green.

After many months of talk around the town that Monique Kloeg would run for the nomination, the Times-Age can confirm she is one of the three for the party to choose from.

Ten O’Clock Cookie Company’s Monique Kloeg.

Keeping his cards close to his chest [but rumoured to be interested] was brother of the party leader and principal of Solway Primary School, Mark Bridges.

Bridges took over leadership of the school just over two years ago.

He has been campaigning for a roundabout at the Ngaumutawa Rd, State Highway 2 intersection to improve road safety for children at his school.

The three candidate hopefuls are prohibited from engaging with media during their pitch for selection.

The party did not make public the names of the nominees to the Times-Age.

Party chairman David Holmes is to run the four selection meetings for National Party members only.

At the conclusion of the final meeting at Copthorne Solway Park on March 29, members will vote for their preferred person to represent them at the general election.

The party’s regional chairman and a party national executive committee representative from Auckland would be present.

Solway Primary School principal Mark Bridges.

Holmes said to be eligible to vote at this meeting, the members must have been in the party for six months before the first meeting.

The Wairarapa seat is traditionally blue, dating back to the late 1800s. But the competition has been close at times.

Georgina Beyer won the seat for Labour in 1999 and again 2002. She stood down after her second term.

National has held the seat with a large majority for five terms since then, but in the 2017 election their majority was halved, going down to just under 3000 votes.

Wairarapa Labour Party candidate, and now list MP Kieran McAnulty ate into the National party majority and NZ First’s Ron Mark took a chunk too.


  1. If you did a little research you would know about Jack Williams and Reg Borman.

    Take a little more care please!
    John Mudgway

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