Jacinda Ardern has been leader of the Labour Party for barely a day, but already she has had an impact on Bay of Plenty support for the party.
Local Labour candidates Jan Tinetti and Angela Warren-Clark both told SunLive their phones had been ringing hot since the news broke yesterday.
Jan, who is standing in Tauranga, calls it an ‘exciting change'.
“Jacinda and Kelvin will bring new energy and vision to the campaign. I've had a number of phone calls and texts from people saying this will breathe life into the campaign again, and they'll be voting Labour now.”
She says they had new volunteers turn up yesterday to join the local Labour campaign, as well as people they hadn't contacted wanting to donate.
Jacinda's relative youth – she's only just turned 37 – might also work in her favour, attracting elusive younger voters turned off by politicians who remind them of their parents, or grandparents.
“My 21-year-old son phoned me last night and said he'd spoken to around 10 of his mates who weren't interested in voting, who are now saying they will be,” says Jan.
Bay of Plenty candidate Angela says she was surprised at how fast the leadership change happened, but always suspected Jacinda would once day lead the party.
“She is a principled, kind, and passionate woman, as well as being very clever. She has the vision to drive us forward and win this election.”
She says the leadership team is now a true reflection of the country, with a female leader and Maori deputy.
“Politics is a hard place to be, and when we look at the patriarchy and the systems we as women operate and live within, this is a win for us. It's also a win for Maori. Having Maori children and a Maori husband myself, it's a win for our family and others.”
Both Jan and Angela express admiration for Andrew Little, who resigned rather than face a bitter battle with caucus to retain the leadership in the face of falling poll numbers.
“I was sad for Andrew, because he's an amazing person,” says Jan. “I think he had a lot to offer and his integrity is amazingly high. But we kind of knew it was coming after what's happened in the last few days.”
Angela agrees. “He is a good man. I'm incredibly sad for him, and I want acknowledge all the work he's done over the years. He is tremendous.”
Bay of Plenty National MP Todd Muller says Labour has now gone through five different leaders since National came into government.
"The rot in the Labour Party runs deep, and won't be changed with a new face at the top seven weeks out from an election.
"At the end of the day this isn't about personalities, it's about policies and vision.
"National has a cohesive and competent team that is delivering real results for the Bay. We won't be distracted by side shows and will be focusing on the task at hand – growing the party vote locally by talking to our plan for the next three years."