Paula Bennett says she was "hit pretty hard" after being rolled on Friday as National Party deputy leader, but it's a part of politics and she is moving on.

And she has laughed at the suggestion that finance spokesman Paul Goldsmith is an example of Māori representation on the party's front bench.

"Paul? Okay. Right ... The new leadership team have chosen their top team and they're the ones who are answerable to it ... I get to do a 'no comment'. It's kinda fun."

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Bennett spoke publicly for the first time this morning since the emergency caucus meeting on Friday where Todd Muller and Nikki Kaye replaced Simon Bridges and Bennett as the party's leader and deputy leader.

In the reshuffle announced yesterday, Bennett remains on the front bench in the 13th position and has the shadow portfolios of drug reform and women.

On her way to this morning's caucus meeting, Bennett said she had drawn a line under the whole episode and the caucus could unite for the election.

"I got hit pretty hard on Friday, and honestly I can put a line under it and move on into what is a bigger purpose, and far more important than an individual.

"I reckon all these guys [the National caucus] can."

Asked if she felt she had been respected throughout the process, she said: "It is what it is and it's politics."

Bennett was formally the campaign chair, and though she will remain part of the campaigning team, her position has been given to Gerry Brownlee.

"Not at all," Bennett said when asked if she had decided to step down as campaign chair.


Was she disappointed to lose the role?

"I love campaigning and had so much of the organisation done ... but you also roll with the punches around here, and I've rolled and got back up.

"Friday was a pretty brutal day. I took Saturday off, and then I went back to work on Sunday. I'm just getting on with it.

"I'm totally backing this team 100 per cent, and I've got a role to play and I want to do it."

She said she still wanted to be in Parliament after the election.

"Yeah! I'm in. I love it and I have got something to offer. There's till a bit of a stroppy Maori westie here who will keep doing her thing.


"It does humble you to remember the things you kind of love about being a politician and that is about people. The opportunity to get out there, spend more time with them ... represent them, to be a bit feisty and a bit fierce is still well and truly in me.

"I'm looking forward to it."

She defended Muller and his Make America Great Again cap that is in his office - though Muller has backtracked and decided to keep the cap in its box rather than on display in his new office.

Bennett said it was "all a bit of a storm in a teacup".

"It all looked a bit ridiculous to me. We all have a bit of fun with political memorabilia around here and I think that's perfectly acceptable."

She said it will be interesting to see how Muller goes against Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern in his first Question Time as National leader this afternoon.


"He hasn't been under the real heat and pressure in the House like it is for a leader, but I reckon he'll stand up to it and he'll bring his own slant to it.

"He's one of the smartest guys I know, so I'm sure he'll be fine."