Prime Minister charms future voter
Prime Minister John Key, on the Christchurch East by-election campaign trial, charmed the audience at his first engagement today.
The only problem was most of them were at least 17 and a-half-years too young to vote.
He spent nearly an hour meeting with mothers and their babies at the Parklands Plunket centre.
While there, he asked to hold at least five different children and happily posed for photographs.
Most behaved for the country's leader although there were the occasional curious looks from some while tears from another forced Key to quickly hand the child back to his mother sitting next to him.
As Key stood, talking to mothers and their children seated on couches, one baby in particular seemed captivated by the Prime Minister, staring lovingly up at the father-of-two as he chatted.
With Key's history as a financial businessman before he took the reins of political power, it was fitting the child's surname was Money - twelve-week-old Ben Money who seemed quite at ease, sitting on Key's knee as he continued talking to his mother, Lynette.
The local Plunket group may have also benefited from its guests with National's by-election candidate, Matthew Doocey, threatening to enrol his pregnant wife, Viktoria, as a future Plunket volunteer.
The couple are expecting their first child next March.
The Plunket visit was one of three engagements Key attended in the eastern suburbs.
He also visited the New Brighton Surf Lifesaving Club - one of four clubs in the city to today get a share of $95,000 from the Canterbury earthquake Appeal Trust for temporary repairs and storage of surf live-saving equipment and boats.
Key also met with member of the Youth Alive Trust which has plans to develop its New Brighton facilities before he spoke at a meeting of New Brighton business owners about plans to revitalise the coastal settlement.