Jacinda Ardern expected to cruise to victory, as New Zealand braces for a historic election
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND: New Zealand’s young progressive Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is projected to comfortably win her second term in office, with polls giving her a significant double-digit lead over her electoral rival in the center-right National Party.
Polls suggest that Ardern’s Labour Party, and their likely coalition partner in the left-wing Green Party, should cruise to victory – with a likelihood of becoming the first party in the country’s history to secure enough seats (61) to form a majority government without the need of a coalition partner.
The main opposition National Party trails significantly behind Labour (by as much as 15%), with polls projecting 32% of the seats for the conservative center-right party, despite the tough-talking conservative leader Judith Collins attempting to poke holes in governance under Ardern’s administration.
Ardern earned admiration both domestically and internationally for not only being the youngest female Prime Minister in history, but also for her handling of last year’s white supremacist attack at Christchurch, and in tackling the spread of the coronavirus – to which the country has officially contained the second wave.
New Zealand heads to the polls on October 17, with advanced voting starting last week on Saturday.