Why is New Zealand’s new prime minister exciting conservatives?
Luxon called for vaccine passports, ‘warrantless search powers’
Yudi Sherman, Frontline Doctors, October 18, 2023
Conservatives around the globe are celebrating New Zealand’s Saturday election which saw the Right-wing National Party oust the country’s long-serving Labour Party from power.
The Labour Party is led by Chris Hipkins, who has served as New Zealand’s prime minister since January. Hipkins assumed the prime ministership after the resignation of Jacinda Ardern, who had led the Labour Party and the country since 2017.
Ardern presided over the country during the COVID-19 pandemic with Hipkins as her health minister. Together they implemented harsh lockdowns and vaccine mandates, promising to slowly return “freedoms” to Kiwis only upon vaccination. Ardern admittedly tried to split the country into two social classes of vaccinated and unvaccinated. Nevertheless, last month Hipkins denied there ever being vaccine mandates during the pandemic.
New Zealanders also recall Ardern’s reaction to the 2019 mass shooting in Christchurch in which she implemented heavy gun restrictions.
But as many around the world — including Elon Musk — congratulate the National Party and its leader, Christopher Luxon, reports suggest congratulations are premature.
Luxon, a former executive at Air New Zealand and Unilever, also strongly supports vaccinations, particularly for children. One of the policies Luxon plans to implement is to raise physicians’ incentives for child vaccinations. Doctors who increase vaccination rates among children will receive $10 per enrolled patient.
The former executive also has little tolerance for those who refuse vaccinations. In 2021 Luxon railed against “the team of the ten per cent who refuse to be vaccinated holding everyone else back” and even urged the Labour Party to issue vaccine passports.
“How is it fair that small pockets of the country can hold everyone else to ransom?” he said, referring to the unvaccinated.
Last year Luxon also called for stricter anti-gun measures after a night of several gang-related shootings in Auckland. One of the measures Luxon proposed was for the government to “have firearm prohibition orders with warrantless search powers to go after illegal guns – because illegal guns are what’s the challenge here.”
While Luxon “absolutely” supports New Zealanders who are gender-disoriented, he has also said he supports free speech. When asked whether he supports men being allowed to use women’s bathrooms, Luxon pointedly avoided the question.
It is unknown, however, whether Luxon’s positions are known to Right-leaning personalities like Elon Musk.
“Congratulations and thank goodness!” Musk replied to Luxon’s victory tweet on X.