Jake Bezzant scandal: Jacinda Ardern pledges to look at online harm laws as ex-girlfriend describes 'humiliation'

National is dealing with its second resignation this week - this time one of its election candidates.

Jake Bezzant has resigned from the party after explosive allegations emerged that he had been posing as his ex-girlfriend sending inappropriate messages.

National leader Judith Collins is refusing to address the scandal, but Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is pledging to look into our harmful digital communications laws to see if they can be tightened so there are consequences for these sorts of actions.  

Bezzant was hyped as a future star of the National Party but behind closed doors his ex-partner says she was going through hell.

"The effects it had on my mental health and my life were absolutely debilitating," she told Newshub. "I felt so humiliated and embarrassed."

Tarryn and Bezzant were in a long term relationship. This week she released a podcast with explosive allegations.

"He used to impersonate me online," she said in the podcast

She says she didn't release the podcast out of spite but out of desperation. 

"I kind of felt like I was just at my wits' end and I had tried to go the police, I had tried to deal with it initially behind closed doors altogether."

Tarryn says police didn't act because the law didn't let them.

"The law just hasn't caught up with the likes of technology."

Ardern is promising to look into it.

"I'm interested in why that would be the case and just understanding a little bit more about whether or not we do have gaps in our legislation," she said on Wednesday. 

Bezzant did not answer Newshub's calls, but sent a text saying: "Personal relationship break ups sometimes get messy and there are two sides to every story.

"There is more than just her and I involved so I am not going to discuss it."

He went on to say he was not going to put himself forward for candidacy and is no longer a member of the National Party. 

Collins was at Parliament on Wednesday but refused to do any interviews after the Bezzant allegations came to light. She left it to her caucus to clean up the mess. 

"It would be fair to say everyone's pretty disappointed by what's happened," said National MP Chris Bishop. 

"It's pretty unfortunate what's happened and he's no longer part of the party," added National MP Barbara Kuriger. 

National MP Nicola Willis said it's a chance for the party to start fresh. 

"I think there is an opportunity for us to run the ruler over our selection process."

It's the third day of scandal for the National Party. Long-serving MP Nick Smith resigned on Monday after Collins told him a story was about to break about a verbal altercation he had with a staffer. 

But sources close to the party have told Newshub that Dr Smith's replacement is problematic too - that Harete Hipango had cycled through staff in the last term. 

Newshub asked Hipango if it was correct that the irreconcilable differences clause was triggered by two of her staffers in the last term.

"That's news to me and those are employment related issues from the past, so it's not to be re-litigated now, and in fact it didn't go as far as litigation as such," she said. 

The sources told Newshub "they are replacing one bully with another bully".

Hipango's response: "Oh really? That's interesting, that's news to me. My response is that I'm surprised by that and I'm not a bully."

A bully would not be what National needs right now.