Apparently the ACT Party is having an identity crisis. My take is that its crisis is much broader than identity alone, however ACT leader and sole MP David Seymour says they are looking at a possible name change.
In an interview on Radio NZ on 15 June he said he did not want to give anything away about the new name, but he did mention various options were being considered, like Liberal Party or something more radical like Reason Party.
Well, he actually has already given a fair bit away on this topic.
On the 8th of October 2017 he registered the domain names, liberalparty.org.nz and liberalparty.co.nz. He has not registered domain names involving Reform Party or Reason Party, and those domain names remain available.
I think it is fairly clear that a decision has been made, at least by ACT's leader, that the name will be changed to Liberal Party. This is actually not a new issue for the Party. Many years ago when it held some relevance in Parliament a former President of the Party proposed changing its name to the Liberal Party. It did not go down well with the party that at that time was an uncomfortable mix of conservatives and libertarian personalities (the current leader being in the latter group). The compromise was to run "The Liberal Party" as a by-line under the ACT logo, until that was dropped a short time later.
The question is whether changing the name will change the public's perception of the Party. Changing the name of a dead horse from Jake to Jack, does not bring the horse back to life.
Frank Newman is a political and financial commentator.