Charles Chauvel has to wait a few more months before he becomes an MP, as Helen Clark has very sensibly extended Jim Sutton’s term as a Minister until the end of the Doha Round in May.
He makes it very clear in the article he will leave Parliament once he is no longer a Minister, which will see Charles Chauvel enter on the Labour list.
The trade negotiations role is an unusual one for a Minister. Matthew Hooton (who has worked for one) made the point on National Radio on Tuesday that it is one of the few portfolios where you literally do what it says. The Education Minister doesn’t teach, the Police Minister doesn’t police, but the Trade Negotiations Minister does negotiate trade deals. And as Hooton said, the only way you get good at that it with experience, and personal contacts built up. Hence dumping Sutton was always a bad move.