First seat for farmer Tim van de Molen

Tim van de Molen, centre, celebrates winning the Waikato electorate with family and friends on election night.
Ruby Nyika / Stuff

Tim van de Molen, centre, celebrates winning the Waikato electorate with family and friends on election night.

It's been an exhausting campaign.

But first time National candidate for Waikato Tim van de Molen was all smiles on election night after winning the Waikato seat with ease over Labour candidate Brooke Loader.  

It wasn't a surprise win - Waikato is traditionally a blue seat - but it's still a happy one for the new politician. 

Tim van de Molen says he is more than up to the challenges ahead of him.
TOM LEE/STUFF

Tim van de Molen says he is more than up to the challenges ahead of him.

"I am absolutely delighted to be a member of Parliament," van de Molen, 2013 young farmer of the year, said. "As a first time candidate there's a lot to get your head around." 

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"It's a pretty humbling moment."  

Door knocking was tricky throughout the campaign in the largely rural region: it's a two and a half hour drive from one end to the other. 

"It's a very strong rural area and it's very broad geographically but also in terms of the diversity between those communities." 

During his first term van de Molen is determined to push broadband in rural areas and the proposed Waikato Medical school to train rural GPs. 

"There's a huge growth opportunity when you look at our location and potential to continue to grow the economy locally and strengthen those communities within our rural towns."

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Van der Molen has worked in farming, banking, the army, tourism and for St John ambulance and is confident he will bring diversity to the position.

The 34 year old took over from National's Lindsay Tisch who entered parliament in 1999 and announced his retirement in 2016. 

"I was still at Matamata college when he was elected. It has been a long time between MPs.

There's a lot to learn in the upcoming months, van de Molen said. 

"But I love a challenge." 

"That's the great thing with politics, the job is never done. It'll keep me on my toes."  

He expects the arrival of a second child with his wife Hilary over the next couple of weeks. 

"That will add another challenge into the mix of course." 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 - Stuff

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