The National Party says it has nothing to do with a large advertisement in this morning’s newspapers which seemingly promotes Air New Zealand CEO Christopher Luxon to have a position in the party at the next election.
The half-page ad – which uses the hashtags #National2020 and #Luxon2020 – has an authorisation statement from S Brooks of Christchurch.
The advertisements have caught the eye of the Electoral Commission - it will be taking a closer look at whether they fit the rules around election advertising.
The Commission told 1 NEWS it will be looking further into the ads next week to see if they comply with requirements around authorisation and promoter statements.
But, the National Party said the ad has "nothing to do with us".
The ad, in blue, plays on Dick Frizzell’s well-known 1997 artwork Mickey to Tiki, but features former leader Sir John Key’s face transforming into Christopher Luxon’s.
Christopher Luxon announced in the last week he was leaving the national carrier in September.
There has been ongoing speculation about whether he will make a run in politics.
In the statement announcing his departure, Mr Luxon said he wanted to think more about how he could use his skills "whether that be in corporate life, politics or a not for profit".
He later told TVNZ’s Breakfast he identifies with the National Party, but is not a party member.
"Despite what you read, there's no deal, there's no master plan that's in place," he said.
National Party leader Simon Bridges, who had less support as preferred Prime Minister than Judith Collins in the last 1 NEWS Colmar Brunton Poll, has said National would welcome Mr Luxon with open arms.
The address carried by the advertisement’s authorisation statement is an office building in central Christchurch.
Air New Zealand told 1 NEWS Christopher Luxon hadn’t seen the advertisements before being asked for comment, and he "has no knowledge of how it came about."