Ex-National MP Jami-lee Ross has been compared to an Islamic State jihadi terrorist for his explosive actions which indicate he wants to take the party down with him.
Political commentators Bryce Edwards and Josie Pagani appeared on Three's The Project to give their takes on the tumultuous events of Monday and Tuesday, which saw Mr Ross expelled from caucus, resign as an MP and accuse leader Simon Bridges of electoral fraud.
"There's nothing unusual about an MP going rogue," Ms Pagani explained.
"What's unusual about this is the extent to which Jami-Lee Ross has not only lit a fire, but appears to have lit himself on fire and is now running around on fire, going 'that guy over there started the fire'.
"It's like there's an ISIS cell in the National Party and Jihadi Jami hasn't read the plan and he's gone too soon. I've never seen anything quite like it."
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Mr Edwards said the saga, which began in August with the leak of Mr Bridges' expenses, will only mean negative things for New Zealand.
"I think everyone loses out of this, especially the public and politics, because this will drive down people's trust in politics. What we've seen here is not any great drama over political differences, but just over personal ambitions.
"The public will be quite rightly looking at this and thinking, these politicians are out of control. It's egos out of control.
"Politics is venal after you look at this. It doesn't seem like these people are talking about changing the world or thinking about other people, they're just thinking about themselves."
Both agreed National would still win the by-election, but differed on whether Mr Bridges would still be around to lead the party into the 2020 election. Mr Edwards said he probably would, while Ms Pagani was a firm no - but offered a couple of alternatives.
"Either Judith Collins as an absolute wrecker and game-changer, or someone like Mark Mitchell who's a strong straight-shooter, ex-cop, he might appeal too."
Mr Ross said he'll be going to the police tomorrow with evidence of Mr Bridges' alleged corruption, including recordings of a private conversation.
When asked if there'll be anything that might incriminate Mr Bridges on the tapes, Mr Edwards was reluctant to comment.
"They will be dodgy, but it's very easy for politicians to throw around the word 'corrupt' at their opponents and the laws are very complicated, so it's too early to say."
Ms Pagani also steered clear of making any concrete claims before all the facts are known.
"It's not illegal to have received a donation of $100,000, it could be illegal if it hasn't been counted properly. It could be a problem or it might not be a problem."
What she was clear about is that the saga has everyone's attention.
"I'm not going to watch Married At First Sight now, this is far more entertaining."