Ardern not keen on being likened to Trump

Jacinda Ardern’s rise in New Zealand keeps getting international attention.

Wall Street Journal: Immigration Politics Turns Upside Down in New Zealand Election Campaign

Center-left party’s plan to cut immigration helps narrow the gap with conservative government

A tightening election race in this U.S. ally has its roots in anxiety over immigration and the rise of a leader who wasn’t even her party’s first choice when campaigning began more than a month ago.

New Zealand voters will go to the polls on Sept. 23 to decide whether Bill English’s National party should remain in government after nearly nine years or be replaced by the opposition Labour Party headed by Jacinda Ardern, a 37-year-old former president of the International Union of Socialist Youth.

Ardern may not be keen on that being pointed out so prominently.

Ms. Ardern’s rapid ascent owes much to tapping into growing unease about affordability, particularly among young voters, and feeding off a global backlash over immigration.

I think this overstates how much of a part immigration is playing in Ardern’s rise and  Labour’s resurgence. Winston Peters keeps playing the anti-immigration card and he and NZ First are slipping in the polls.

Ms. Ardern wants to cut the annual net migration figure by up to 30,000 people a year to help more New Zealanders find work and own homes, as well as to take the pressure off infrastructure—especially in the commercial capital Auckland, which is often clogged with traffic.

No mention of Donald Trump but in a tweet promoting the article:

NZH followed that up: Jacinda Ardern takes offence at being compared to Donald Trump

Labour leader Jacinda Ardern says she takes offence at being compared to Donald Trump by The Wall Street Journal.

The publication made the comparison in a tweet promoting an article about Labour’s rise in polling under Ardern’s leadership.

Asked about the tweet today, Ardern said she proudly stood behind Labour’s policy to double the refugee quota.

Ardern is adept at diverting from the point.

She did not delve into Labour’s immigration policy which the party estimates would reduce net migration by 20-30,000 a year. That policy was announced by former leader Andrew Little but Ardern has not changed it.

“Our policy has remained the same for the last several months. I have made no change to that policy. Yes, we have infrastructure issues in Auckland and we know we need to address those – we need to build more houses.

“We wouldn’t be having this conversation if there had been proper planning upfront by the current Government.

“That’s another reason I absolutely refute the statement that was made there. And everyone who I think has been watching this campaign will know that what was said there was absolutely false. And, frankly, offensive.”

The Trump comparison was made by a journalist who was reporting from “quite a distance from the campaign”, Ardern said.

Trumps targeting of some groups of immigrants and the measures he is taking, including building a wall between the US and Mexico, is some distance from Labour’s immigration reduction policy.

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9 Comments

  1. Gezza

     /  September 7, 2017

    Ludicrous comparison from a dumb yank journo who quite possibly thinks we’re Tasmania or somewhere in Europe.

    Reply
    • PDB

       /  September 7, 2017

      I don’t know G? Both Ardern and Trump did absolutely nothing in politics before they became respective leaders of their parties?

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  September 7, 2017

        It’s not bad. It’s up there. 👍🏼

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  September 7, 2017

          Jacinda Pollyardern has been an MP.

          Nobody I know can understand how people could elect a leader who’s never been anything at all in politics.

          Reply
          • PDB

             /  September 7, 2017

            I’ll preempt Blazer mentioning John Key here Kitty………though Key had much prior economic experience in the business world and held the finance spokesman role for National before being made PM.

            Reply
            • Kitty Catkin

               /  September 8, 2017

              Exactly. He didn’t go from nothing to being PM, although Blazer will probably say that I said that he did, or that he did, or that…..It is probably impossible that anyone with no political experience could be PM here (or in most countries) and I am appalled that Trump, who has none, is president.

  2. It’s no secret as to how they’ve earned the ‘Fake News’ epitaph.
    That applies to all ‘news’ media

    Reply
  3. Patzcuaro

     /  September 7, 2017

    Well it could have been worse, Ardern would have been likened to Kim Jung Un.

    Reply

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