National Party leader Simon Bridges will leave his MPs waiting for a reshuffle for a bit longer as he jets off to Australia for a leadership forum and possible meeting with Australia's Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
It was Bridges' first full day as leader yesterday and he said he was yet to start the process of talking to MPs about what roles they would have under his leadership.
He has promised a reshuffle within the next fortnight, but his first day was taken up with media interviews. He will go to Australia on Friday for the Australia-New Zealand Leadership Forum.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will be in Sydney at the same time, taking part in a seminar alongside Turnbull and meeting Turnbull for the annual transtasman leaders' meeting.
He said the trip would allow him to take the pulse of the Australian business community. "There's also the possibility of meeting up with Malcolm Turnbull."
He had met Turnbull – a fan of former National leaders John Key and Bill English - in Queenstown for last year's transtasman leaders' meetings.
Bridges hoped to start discussions with his MPs about his reshuffle today before he left. It will also be Bill English's valedictory.
He would not meet with all of the 55 MPs in person saying his deputy Paula Bennett would likely deal with many of the more junior members.
"But certainly I will want to, on the more significant ones, have meetings with the MPs."
He would not say which MPs might be in line for a promotion but has promised strong roles for the four other leadership contenders. He would not promise all would be on the front bench. "They are some of our strongest performers in caucus and you can expect them to have strong roles."
Finance is likely to be sought after – Steven Joyce said he would be interested in keeping the portfolio but it was up to Bridges to decide.
Collins and Adams are also interested in Finance.
Bridges said the reshuffle would not be radical, but there would be change. "It will ensure there is experience and heft but you will also see new talent."
He had not heard of any MPs who were likely to resign soon and did not believe it would be a consequence of the reshuffle.
He said the fact some MPs had not supported him in the leadership contest would be "entirely irrelevant" in his decision making.
"What's important is people are promoted and receive their places on merit."
Bridges said one of his first priorities was letting New Zealanders get to know him better. The Herald yesterday put some readers' questions to him in a live video, including what hair product he used.
Bridges said he had not used any product for a while, but prior to that bought whatever was on sale at the supermarket.
He said "no" when asked if it was ever all right for a politician to lie to the public and said he had never knowingly lied. He said the punishment should reflect the scale of the lie and the position of the politician.
One of his former work colleagues also dobbed him in for doing Elvis impersonations at after work drinks and singing Delilah, and Bridges admitted Tom Jones was his go-to for karaoke.
Although he did not support the gay marriage bill, Bridges said he would be more than happy to attend the Gay Pride Festival.