National continues to have a "strong team" with a "very experienced leader", Don Brash says, despite a recent string of high-profile resignations.
It's been a chaotic few weeks for The National Party. One backbench MP quit after leaking private COVID-19 patient data to the media, now-former leader Todd Muller stepped down suddenly, former Ministers Nikki Kaye and Amy Adams announced their retirement and another electorate MP resigned after being accused of sending inappropriate images to young women.
The party is also heading into the September 19 election with other experienced former Ministers - like Paula Bennett, Anne Tolley, Nathan Guy, David Carter, and Maggie Barry - deciding not to return.
Despite the turmoil, Brash, a former National Party leader, is heralding the experience the party continues to have.
"They've got a number of very experienced MPs there as well. Clearly, the leadership team, Judith Collins and Gerry Brownlee are both very experienced. Gerry Brownlee was, in fact, my deputy when I was in Parliament. Judith Collins entered Parliament at the same time as I did," Brash said.
"A lot of the people on the frontbench are very good indeed. Simon Bridges is there, Paul Goldsmith is there, Shane Reti and so on.
"People further back, like Parmjeet Parmar, for example, in the science area, are a very strong group in total. I don't think they've got anything to worry about at all on that score."
Brash said Collins leads a strong team into the election.
"The National Party has got a very strong team going into the election - Judith, unlike almost any of the other candidates who were looking for leadership, has experience in both Opposition and in Government. That qualifies her as a very experienced leader. She has held what, eight or nine different portfolios in her time."
Brash told Newshub the unrest and recent scandals may affect some voters' view of the party, but said the current National Party isn't lacking members with previous ministerial experience.
"Todd McClay, Simon Bridges, Judith herself, Gerry Brownlee. There are a lot of experienced ministerial people in that caucus," said Brash.
He also doesn't believe that the departure of Andrew Falloon this week on account of allegations of indecent communications with young women will hurt National's ability to get a new candidate in Falloon's former electorate of Rangitata.
"It is a very National Party-leaning electorate. There will be a whole bunch of people, I have got no doubt, clamouring to get a nomination there. If you win that seat, you are there for a considerable period.
"The National Party has never had difficulty getting candidates for the safe National seats and they won't have any difficulty now."
At the 2017 election, Falloon won the vote with 52.8 percent of the vote compared to Labour's Jo Luxton on 36.1 percent.
Collins told media on Tuesday that she would be informing her Caucus that they "need to come and see me if there is anything they need to disclose, straight away".
"As to resignations, we can never guarantee that somebody won't have a family situation or health situation. I have no problem with the resignations of people such as Amy Adams or Nikki Kaye. They are entirely expected in the circumstances and they have our absolute sincerest best wishes."
Kaye and Adams - both Muller loyalists - announced their exits after the former leader suddenly announced his resignation last Tuesday morning. They insist it had nothing to do with Collins being elected leader.