Cactus Kate wants to stand for Act

Act has confirmed that Cathy Odgers, a Hong Kong-based corporate taxt lawyer best-known for her acerbic Cactus Kate blog, is seeking to stand for the party.

Ms Odgers, who flew home last night after a month-long visit, told NBR that she had thrown her name into the hat, but that decisions won't be made for a while yet.

The news coincided with Act MP Heather Roy's decision to leave parliament at the election.

Ms Odgers strongly supports the party, but as "Cactus Kate" has not been shy of taking pot shots at those she sees as its weaker members (sample posts: "Earth to ACT - Throw Calvert Overboard!!! Please Dear God shut this woman up!!!" ...: "[John] Banks is just awful. He makes you want to consider voting Len Brown .... his political philosophy isn't even close to Act's.").

"Whether she will stand or not is yet to be determined," Act president Chris Simmons told NZPA.

"But she has put her name forward. Anybody can put their name forward, as with any party to be a candidate, then the party needs to determine whether Cathy stands in a seat or as a list candidate."

The party list would be completed within two months.

Mrs Roy, 47, confirmed her retirement in her weekly newsletter. She will leave at the November 26 election after nine years in Parliament, during which time she rose to be deputy leader of her party and a minister before being dumped from the posts by her party last August. The move was led by then ACT leader Rodney Hide -- who has since been rolled by former National leader Don Brash.

"The big low point was last year when I was dumped. And pretty unceremoniously," Mrs Roy told media yesterday.

"In politics they say it's not being stabbed from the back you have to worry about, it's being stabbed from the front. It was pretty torrid and tough. But it is politics."

The time was right to leave now and, while it would have been the easy option last August, she was too worried about the state of the party.

She planned to spend more time with her husband, Duncan, and five children aged 15-23, and said she bore little animosity towards Mr Hide.

"You just have to move on with life."

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