NZ Election 2020: Lack of sympathy from National MPs for Judith Collins over perceived disloyalty

Newshub can reveal a lack of sympathy from National MPs for leader Judith Collins stems from perceived disloyalty from her. 

Once again National MPs are leaking to Newshub saying there's a communication breakdown between the leadership and the caucus. 

The caucus apparently hasn't seen internal polling for over a month now - nearly two. But Collins says her polls are looking good. 

"We're doing very well, thank you," she said in Dunedin on Thursday. 

"Actually, caucus matters are a matter for caucus," Collins said, when asked why her caucus colleagues aren't being shown internal polls.

"I suggest that if anyone has a problem in caucus, they should contact me, not you."

National MPs have told Newshub there's a lack of sympathy for Collins because of the perception she was disloyal. 

Collins says she's "never asked anyone for sympathy". 

Newshub can reveal it stems back to April last year when Collins had a standoff with about half a dozen caucus colleagues who confronted her for failing to express support for then-leader Simon Bridges. 

"I support the leader," Collins said at the time, when repeatedly asked by Newshub to specifically say she supported Simon Bridges. 

Newshub asked Collins if she knew why her caucus is leaking against her. 

"I haven't seen anything myself," she said. "I can't imagine why."

Collins is really pushing for a return to traditional campaigning, a push to get her talking points across, but she's clearly low energy - this is a battle.

She sees things very differently.

"You know what? It's great," she said of her personal momentum. "I'm just a high energy person. Yeah, definitely no low energy with me."

Collins is a smart, consummate politician but she's off her game - slightly awkward, making small uncharacteristic mistakes.

The National leader bailed on a cheese roll photo op at a local Mosgiel cafe and her first campaign stop ran far shorter than planned. 

She's down but not out - it doesn't tend to take Collins long to rediscover her mojo and take off.