Conservative Party list 'balanced'

STACEY KIRK
Last updated 17:12 22/08/2014

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The Conservative Party has released the top five candidates on its list. 

Leader Colin Craig, Epsom candidate Christine Rankin and hard-line law and order spokesman Garth McVicar round out the top three respectively.

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Lawyer Melissa Perkin sits at number four and the party's Mangere candidate Edward Saafi is number five. 

Perkin is a new addition to the party's membership. She is the executive director of the New Zealand Bar Association and an author for Thompson Reuters, according to her biography.

Perkin will be standing in the North Shore electorate  

Craig is set to make an official announcement this evening, but told Fairfax Media the list reflected the strength of the party.

"I think the feeling of everyone involved in the process is that this top five list is a pretty high-powered list.

"I think it passes muster on so many levels. Obviously there's the question of 'what are the track records of these people' and can you look at them as people who have been successful and made a contribution - that is overwhelmingly yes."

Craig said the list also satisfied a "certain balance requirement".

"We're the party that stands more Pacific Island candidates than any other party, it would have been strange if we didn't have a Pacific Island candidate in the top five for example.

"Also we've got a couple of younger faces, a couple of older faces, a farmer a businessman, and academic, a lawyer and an ex-public servant. I think that's a pretty good cross section of vocations."

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