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Colin Craig denies rumours he’ll be replaced with a wooden spoon

Colin Craig is upbeat in his conversations with media, despite speculation that his party is seeking to replace him with a blunter instrument.

Colin Craig is upbeat in his conversations with media, despite speculation that his party is seeking to replace him with a blunter instrument.

Conservative Party leader Colin Craig is being forced to deny rumours this week that senior members of his party are plotting to replace him with a household wooden spoon.

The speculation comes as a survey of party members and affiliates found that a “large majority” had a more favourable opinion of wooden spoons (92%) than of Craig (73%).

But Craig says the outcome of the survey was “not surprising” and that it would be “silly” to read anything into it.

“Oh, really, come on,” he laughed, when asked about the rumours by RadioLIVE political editor Jessica Williams. “Let’s just be honest here. If you ask people, you know, what do you have a more favourable opinion of: the kiwi or John Key?

“People are obviously going to say the kiwi, but that hardly means they aren’t supportive of John Key as Prime Minister.”

“The fact of the matter is, the wooden spoon is really, effectively, the symbol of our whole movement,” he said. “You’d expect it to have an approval rating at least that high.”

But internal rumblings within the party suggest that more may be at play, with former candidate Larry Baldock – who had once advocated for a lead pipe as leader – being suspended for “disciplinary reasons.”

Craig refused to comment on the exact reason Baldock had been suspended.

Anonymous sources close to the Conservatives have suggested that talk about the wooden spoon as leader may be premature, and that there are “plenty of other blunt instruments” being looked at.

“The wooden spoon is the obvious one, yes,” said one anonymous Conservative Party President. “But people I’m talking to are looking at a variety of options, including obviously the lead pipe, but also a walking stick, a cricket bat, or even a hammer.”

If there were a leadership contest, she said, it would likely come down to “who can leave the longest bruise.”