Jacinda Ardern’s all-time favourite election?
Well, Obama’s 2008 victory will always feel special. But closer to home? It would have to be 2005, when the contest between race-baiting National leader Don Brash and two-term Labour prime minister Helen Clark went down to the wire.
Ardern, then a 25-year-old staffer for Clark, was beside herself as early results seemed to show Brash had denied Clark her third term.
“I remember my dad calling me and saying, ‘Don’t worry, you’ll be able to find another job’ – because he could hear how upset I was. And I remember saying in this broken voice, ‘It’s not about my job. What about all the people who’ll have to pay market rents in their state houses?'”
The interesting thing with this recollection is that as far as I recall that was not National policy in 2005. So Jacinda was upset over a non existent policy!
The job in Blair’s Cabinet Office was in 2006, shortly before he handed over the UK prime-ministership to Gordon Brown.
So is Blair one of Ardern’s chums too? Because as activist John Minto has pointed out, Blair took Britain into George W Bush’s catastrophic Iraq war on a lie, and many consider him a war criminal. How did working for Blair jibe with Ardern’s enthusiasm for peace and justice and so on?
Actually, says Ardern, she never met Blair in person at that time – ” the Cabinet Office is massive”. But the issue of whether she was bothered about working for a war criminal? “That’s a fair question”.
It isn’t a fair question. Blair is not a war criminal. Shoddy journalism to report an opinion of John Minto’s as fact.
She had very low expectations, so when the job offer came, “I was absolutely gutted. I felt this real dilemma, which was absolutely about Blair.”
She still took the job though.
So Jacinda is no Blairite.