Christopher Luxon's National Party caucus reshuffle: The winners and losers

The inner sanctum of the National Party no longer features Judith Collins. 

Newly-elected National leader Christopher Luxon announced his starting lineup on Monday, with fresh faces all over the front bench. 

And the former leader has been relegated to number 19 - about as close to the backbench as she can get.

Christmas came early for Luxon this year. The new National leader channelled his favourite politician, former US President Barack Obama, ahead of his first week going head-to-head with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.  

"I'm just fired up, ready to go."

The new gig is going well.

"I'm loving it, absolutely loving it," Luxon said. 

First up in Luxon's new-look National Party portfolio reshuffle was the National leader himself - he's kept his workload low, only taking on national security and intelligence - less of a workload than Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. 

"My focus is on rebuilding the National Party and making it as strong as it can be," Luxon said. 

That's a monster renovation job, so on policy, the new deputy leader Nicola Willis will do the heavy lifting. She's holding onto her housing portfolio and picking up social investment - the brainchild of former Prime Minister Sir Bill English. 

"I love hard work," said Willis. 

Coming in at number three with finance and infrastructure is leadership rival Simon Bridges. Luxon denies it's a case of keeping your friends close and your enemies closer. 

"No, what this is about is fundamentally saying we want a refreshed, talented, hard-working, performance-driven team."

One potential enemy has been shunted to the bottom of the scrapheap - Collins has just scraped into the shadow Cabinet at number 19.

"Yes, yes I think so," Luxon said, when asked if giving her number 19 was showing the former leader the respect she deserves. 

Collins gets research, science, innovation and technology to keep her occupied. 

"Judith has a lot of great skills, she's a very experienced person, she's got a lot to offer us, and I can tell you Judith is very satisfied with that and I am too."

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has sympathy for Luxon's situation. 

"I can't imagine it's easy to manage a caucus where you've got three past leaders in it. That can't be an easy job."

The final former leader in the caucus, Todd Muller, was exiled out of caucus by Collins. He has confirmed to Newshub he's unresigning, now intending to stand for Bay of Plenty at the 2023 election. 

"He's excited to be back and we're pleased to have him back," Luxon said. 

Fresh faces round out the front bench. Chris Bishop keeps COVID-19 and is ranked number four. Erica Stanford, a standout on immigration, picks up education and leapfrogs 18 spots to number seven. Matt Doocey maintains his mental health gig but brings it to the fore at number eight - up 12 spots. Simeon Brown takes on transport and rockets up 10 spots to number nine.  

"That's a different team, that's a different lineup, that looks fresh, new and different and highly capable," said Luxon. 

Down the ranks, the biggest losers are Michael Woodhouse and Andrew Bayley - the former finance friends have plummeted to the end of the shadow Cabinet ranks. Also, Todd McClay was number six but is now not even ranked in the top 20. 

The policy platform is in for an overhaul too. 

"I don't think it's a matter of we turn the page and start from a blank piece. I actually think we've got some good material to work with," said Luxon. 

"I'll take this summer to reflect on exactly how we want to take our policy development forward."