Colourful crop of new MPs heading for Parliament

By Hayden Donnell

New MPs entering Parliament include (clockwise from top left) Brendan Horan, Maggie Barry, Andrew Little and Denise Roche. Photos / supplied
New MPs entering Parliament include (clockwise from top left) Brendan Horan, Maggie Barry, Andrew Little and Denise Roche. Photos / supplied

A singing TV weatherman-turned-entertainer and a former mayor famous for urinating on a tree are among a colourful crop of new MPs set to enter parliament.

Twenty-five new MPs from across the political spectrum were elected in Saturday night's general election.

Six of them come from Winston Peters-led New Zealand First, which surprised many commentators by winning 6.8 per cent of the vote.

Its candidates include former North Shore Mayor Andrew Williams, whose time in local government was marred by controversy.

He faced widespread criticism when he was seen urinating against a tree, then driving home, after a night out at a North Shore bar in 2010.

Prime Minister John Key also accused Mr Williams of sending him obnoxious and abusive late night text messages during the Auckland "super city" reforms.

In 2008, Williams reportedly lashed out at an ambulance officer who treated him after he collapsed during a function at Devonport Naval base in August 2008.

His wife claimed he was suffering from "Chinese lurgy" after a trip to Korea and China.

Former TV weatherman and entertainer Brendan Horan is also in Parliament, thanks to his place at number six on the New Zealand First list.

His website (www.brendanhoran.co.nz) says Mr Horan had a past life as a male swimsuit model, before "bringing sunshine to New Zealand" homes as a TVNZ weather presenter.

In recent years, he has acted as a for-hire singer, releasing a single called "New Year, New You" in 2008.

"Frequently referred to as 'Mr Sunshine' or 'Mr Personality', Brendan's handsome and cheerful disposition enamored the New Zealand public and set a great many feminine hearts a flutter," his website says.

The Green Party's historic election night success also sees it bring at least six new MPs to parliament.

Eugenie Sage was a member of Environment Canterbury from April 2007 until the Government sacked its entire collection of elected officials in 2010, claiming they were dysfunctional.

Number 12-ranked Holly Walker had beginnings as the daughter of a solo mum living in a council flat in the Hutt Valley before going on to win a Rhodes scholarship and study at Oxford University.

The party also hopes 14-ranked Mojo Mathers, who would be New Zealand's first deaf MP, will make parliament once special votes are counted.

National's new candidates include former TV gardener and radio host Maggie Barry, who romped home in her safe North Shore seat.

Paul Goldsmith, who lost to Act's only MP John Banks in Epsom, made it to parliament thanks to his placement at 39 on the National list.

Among the new Labour MPs are Andrew Little, a former party president and union leader, who suffered a heavy loss to National's Jonathan Young in the New Plymouth electorate.

The defeat may have hampered Mr Little's rumoured ambitions to lead the Labour Party.

New MPs

National Party:
Scott Simpson
Maggie Barry
Mike Sabin
Ian McKelvie
Mark Mitchell
Jian Yang
Alfred Ngaro
Paul Goldsmith
Simon O'Connor

Labour Party:
Andrew Little
David Clark
Megan Woods
Rino Tirikatene.

Green Party:
Eugenie Sage
Jan Logie
Steffan Browning
Denise Roche
Holly Walker
Julie Anne Genter

New Zealand First
Tracey Martin
Andrew Williams
Richard Prosser
Brendan Horan
Denis O'Rourke
Asenati Taylor

- HERALD ONLINE

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