James Shaw shrugs off leadership challenge, Chlöe Swarbrick features in preferred Prime Minister rankings

Greens co-leader James Shaw has shrugged off a challenge for his job by a little-known Dunedin activist.

But it's co-leader Marama Davidson who may need to look over her shoulder with the latest Newshub-Reid Research poll putting Chlöe Swarbrick into the preferred Prime Minister rankings.

There was plant-based kai for lunch at the Greens AGM, but tucking into the Opposition was also on the menu.

"The ghost of Don Brash is haunting the National Party," Davidson told attendees. 

Shaw gave her a standing ovation, but also had to stand for his job.

Activist James Cockle said he was running for the party's co-leadership because he felt "the party's moved too far to the centre".

"I'm running to pull it back to the left."

Shaw was unphased about the James-off. He didn't even bother to clean out his Parliamentary office just in case.

"I'm quietly confident but it is up to the members."

Members were also confident though, even keeping Shaw on Sunday's agenda.

"I think we'll be sticking with the status quo," said one person.

They did - Shaw received 116 votes for the male co-leadership, to Cockle's four. 

There's also some support for Greens MP Chlöe Swarbrick as a future co-leader.

"I think she's a fabulous MP and a fabulous future leader. I think she's got it written all over her," one told Newshub. 

"Why do you need one male and one woman when you could probably have two women?" said another. 

"She's a fabulous person, she's possibly going to be Prime Minister one day," added a third.

It's not such an unpopular opinion. Swarbrick is gaining traction in our Newshub-Reid Research poll, making headway in the preferred Prime Minister rankings, with 1.8 percent of voters wanting her to be Prime Minister. 

She beats both her two co-leaders scores combined. Shaw was on 0.8 percent and Marama Davidson on 0.5 percent.

But she's still a long way off the top job - remember Jacinda Ardern's on 45.5 percent.

Swarbrick told Newshub she doesn't see herself as either co-leader or Prime Minister. 

"I've said it many times before, you just don't join the Greens because you have any designs on being Prime Minister," she said. 

Maybe not, but that won't stop Greens members - or some of the public - designing it for her.