The coalition lifeline that National will need if it's to have a chance at the next election looks set to come in the form of a Christian party led by one of its own, former Cabinet Minister Alfred Ngaro.

Talk within the party's been rife for weeks now with Ngaro's plan being well received and with the possibility of National standing aside, possibly in the Botany seat, where it has the strongest party vote by far.

The seat's currently held by rebel independent MP Jami-Lee Ross who himself can't take credit for the party vote. It was entrenched when the electorate came on to the political map in 2008 when it was won by Pansy Wong who, like the ignominious departure of Ross, also left in a blaze of publicity in 2011 over the misuse of Parliamentary travel expenses.

There's a lot of Christian money in the electorate. It has a good number of Pacific Island churches in Otara to the west, a sizeable, conservative, Christian South African community and a significant number of Koreans and Taiwanese Christians.

Advertisement

There is also a strong Catholic presence with schools like Our Lady Star of the Sea School and Sancta Maria College.

Ngaro, in his third term, would slip comfortably into the electorate which saw National commanding more than 20,000 party votes at the last election, well ahead of Labour with less than half that number.

A father of four in his early 50s, he was the first MP of Cook Islands descent and began his working life as a self-employed electrician before studying for a theology degree and becoming a pastor.

National would have to agree to giving up the safe seat, like it's done with Act in Epsom, and it would have to agree to allow Ngaro to stay on in Parliament, representing his new party rather than invoking the waka jumping legislation which is highly unlikely anyway.

Ngaro wasn't returning calls last night but has confirmed privately he's exploring the possibility. The party's leadership is aware of it, realising that it will need an ally if it's to have any chance of coming close to knocking the Labour, New Zealand First, Greens coalition off its perch.

Family First's Bob McCoskrie has shared a podium with Ngaro on a number of occasions, as recently as this week. He says there's definitely a gap in the choice facing the voter wanting to cast their ballot for a morally conservative party.

McCoskrie says the coalition Government in office is pushing a number of controversial issues, like liberalising abortion, marijuana, gender ideology in schools, euthanasia and Jacinda Ardern's condemnation of Israel Folau which he says doesn't sit well with the Pacific community.

As for National standing aside in Botany, he says the choice for the voters there is clear.

Advertisement

"If they can understand the bigger picture, and understand if they want a centre right government they may need to hold their noses and vote for a candidate who they normally wouldn't vote for. They will vote because they know that the party that candidate represents will go into coalition with National and get them across the line."

If Ngaro managed to pull it off and win in Botany and scraped up 3 per cent of the party vote he could expect another three seats in Parliament. In the first MMP election the Christian Coalition got 4.6 per cent of the vote and in 2014 Colin Craig's Conservatives got just on 4 per cent before it crashed and burned on the eve of the ballot after his press secretary Rachel McGregor resigned.

McCoskrie says there's definitely a constituency out there looking for a party that Ngaro could represent and National certainly needs a lifeline.