Ardern in hospital, Peters acting Prime Minister

Winston Peters is now acting Prime Minister.

Jacinda Ardern has gone into hospital so all going will will have her baby today or possibly tomorrow. A night time admission suggests natural labour has begun. I wish Ardern, her baby and her partner Gayford well.

The PM and party leaders don’t usually attend Parliament on Thursdays,. It will be interesting to see whether Peters is there – there is likely to be some sort of mention, depending on when the baby arrives.

There will be a question time (Oral Questions) today.

I am sure media will make a lot of announcements in the meantime.

RNZ: Winston Peters is in charge: His duties explained

The Prime Minister’s Office is on the ninth floor of the Beehive, where her staff will remain. Mr Peters is currently on the seventh floor and that’s where he and his staff will stay during the six weeks, working in close contact with the PMO.

She however will not be completely removing herself from the role, and will continue to receive all Cabinet papers and Cabinet committee papers, which means she can keep an eye on everything getting signed off at the highest level.

Ms Ardern wrote formally to Mr Peters last month outlining her expectations of their respective roles.

In the event of something of “significant political, strategic or public interest, or national security”, Ms Ardern would be consulted and involved in major decisions that might be needed.

Mr Peters will run the “day to day” business of the government, that includes the prime minister’s media and public engagements, chairing Cabinet and fronting Parliament’s question time.

He will be limited by decisions made by the Labour dominated Cabinet and then of course Parliament, which has to vote for any matter requiring legislative change.

Under these arrangements he will not have the ability to make any significant decision not already on the government’s agenda – if something urgent or significant comes up Ms Ardern will have some involvement.

The Cabinet Manual deals with the responsibilities of an acting Prime Minister in two short paragraphs:

“If the Prime Minister is unavailable or unable to exercise the statutory or constitutional functions and powers of the office, the deputy prime minister can, if necessary, exercise those powers and functions.

“As acting prime minister, the deputy prime minister may exercise other prime ministerial functions and powers, in consultation (where appropriate and practicable) with the prime minister.”

Peters is also Minister of Foreign Affairs. If he is out of the country Labour’s deputy leader Kelvin Davis will become acting Prime Minister.

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43 Comments

  1. I don’t think the birth will be actually covered live.

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  June 21, 2018

      Uncovered live then?

      Reply
    • Gezza

       /  June 21, 2018

      Full marks & big ups to Paula.

      Reply
    • Gezza

       /  June 21, 2018

      No news yet but I’m getting very nervous. 😕

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  June 21, 2018

        Huh? Our first took 30 hours. You need stamina for these things.

        Reply
        • Blazer

           /  June 21, 2018

          you must be…stoic…

          Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  June 21, 2018

            We were young and resilient – but it was tough. Second took 30 minutes.

            I still remember a sour old ward sister giving me a dirty look when I snuggled up on the bed with my wife. I ignored her pointedly.

            Reply
    • Gezza

       /  June 21, 2018

      I see Mikey Hosking manages to make himself a total tit & arse about it in the Herald today.

      Reply
      • MaureenW

         /  June 21, 2018

        Just as well she has her driving licence – imagine the hoo-hah, will she/won’t she?
        Hope it goes well, as I would for anyone, but other than that, who cares?

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  June 21, 2018

          I am only interested in the effect that it may have on the running of the country. But I fear that we are going to be hearing ad nauseam about Little Karl/a . Watch for film of Ms Ardern thinking that she’s the Duchess of Cambridge and expecting everyone to be as fascinated as she is about every detail.

          I have a suspicion that she will be carried by everyone else as she learns what being a new mother really entails.

          Reply
          • sorethumb

             /  June 21, 2018

            Little Helen-Clarke Adren.

            Reply
          • sorethumb

             /  June 21, 2018

            That’s how I see it. Are women’s issues the big deal today that feminists think they are?

            Reply
            • Kitty Catkin

               /  June 21, 2018

              They are made to seem so, and I often find it very patronising ! Don’t get me started on women claiming to ’empower’ women !!!

    • Traveller

       /  June 21, 2018

      Imagine if at the beginning instead of a stand up Presser outside their home we’d have had a written press statement that had included the sentiment that her pregnancy be considered a normal life event and theyd requested privacy. I for one, would have had some respect for them. A perfectly natural life event has turned into a circus, the process has been cynically politicised – both manipulative and manipulated.

      I wish the happy couple very well and hope they welcome a healthy little boy or girl. For the child’s sake, let’s hope Ardern and Gayford reconsider their enthusiasm for oversharing and curb their inclination to monetise and politicise their precious wee baby.

      Reply
      • Blazer

         /  June 21, 2018

        you reek of insincerity.
        Look at how you applaud Rees-Mogg and his disgraceful politicising of his wee…children.

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  June 21, 2018

          That’ll be the day, Traveller.

          Few people think that Little Karl/a’s timing was sheer chance.

          Reply
        • Traveller

           /  June 21, 2018

          Ad Hominem

          Yawn

          Reply
    • Gezza

       /  June 21, 2018

      BREAKING: 1ewes.

      ITS A GIRL! 👏🏼 💥🌺 👸🏻 💐

      Reply
    • Gezza

       /  June 21, 2018

      Reply
  2. David

     /  June 21, 2018

    Get on with it so all the nonsense is over by the time I get back. I see Christchurch is suffering some global warming.

    Reply
    • NOEL

       /  June 21, 2018

      Aw come on we have to put up with it everyime a Royal drops one.

      Reply
    • Blazer

       /  June 21, 2018

      you can contribute to that when you get …back David.

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  June 21, 2018

        This is hardly in the same league as a royal baby.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  June 21, 2018

          Depends where the Royal sprog is in the line of succession. If they’re beyond No 3 they’re just another well-off poop machine.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  June 21, 2018

            Even so…they are of greater interest than this one.

            I do wonder if people in general are as fascinated as the press is frenetically trying to make out !

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  June 21, 2018

              It looks as though there are some foreign press reporters in the PM Baby Watch Press Room on the 5th Floor of Auckland Hospital.

            • Gezza

               /  June 21, 2018

              And I must admit I’m more interested in our PM’s baby than in some pommy royal kid. I imagine this child won’t get a name with a ‘t’ in it that can be misprounced as a ‘d’. Hope not, anyway. Poor Jacinda’s gone through her whole life not knowing the difference in pronunciation between t & d.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  June 21, 2018

              I must confess to not being able to feel much enthusiasm for hearing that one of the little princes or princesses has done something completely ordinary and seeing a photo of them doing it.

              As so much of the 3 news was devoted to someone standing outside the hospital telling us that nothing had happened, I hate to think what it will be like when it makes its appearance.

              I do think that Jacinda has no idea of how tiring it will be, and that her idea that she will be still involved to the extent quoted while she’s on leave is a dream.

              The news is really padded non-news.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  June 21, 2018

              Right on cue, a fawning headline about Princess Charlotte…..

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  June 21, 2018

              Is her real name Jacinta ?

            • Gezza

               /  June 21, 2018

              No, I think it really is Charlotte.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  June 21, 2018

              Oh, the wit !!!

  3. Zedd

     /  June 21, 2018

    kia kaha Jacinda 🙂

    Reply
  4. sorethumb

     /  June 21, 2018

    I imagine Golriz is miffed that she wasn’t acting PM?

    Reply
  5. Patzcuaro

     /  June 21, 2018

    At least Clarke will get a good night’s sleep night.

    Reply

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