We had our triennial general election last month, and voters delivered a clear rejection of left-wing policies.

With that came a crushing and humiliating defeat of the Labour Party, led until her resignation by Jacinda Adern.

Swept to power by a populist wave promised to bring “transformational” polices to our nation, and re-elected by Covid-induced fear and the dysfunction of the main opposition party, we had six years of promises, little delivery, an explosion of government debt, and a growing racial and social divide.

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About the author

David Clark
Farmer Focus writer
David Clark runs a 463ha fully irrigated mixed farm with his wife Jayne at Valetta, on the Canterbury Plains of New Zealand’s south island. He grows 400ha of cereals, pulses, forage and vegetable seed crops, runs 1,000 Romney breeding ewes and finishes 8,000 lambs annually.

From a primary sector point of view, we have seen policy and legislation developed in the silos of Wellington politics, and bureaucracy driven by ideological agendas without industry consultation.

The result has been unworkable, unachievable and impractical legislation that would torpedo the agricultural sector in this country.

The six years, in my view, would be best described in farming terms as “all hat and no cattle”.

Our National Party, which seemingly has become slightly right of centre, has gained 48 seats in what will be a 123 centre Parliament, and is led by prime minister elect Christopher Luxon.

They had an exceptionally strong result in the electorate seats, which make up half our parliament, with list seats delivering the remainder on a proportional of vote basis.

The Act Party, who run a market-led agenda and propose many economic reforms, gained 11 seats. This party are traditionally the coalition partner of National, and complement the more centrist views.

As National and Act fall short of a majority, they will require support from NZ First, who gained eight seats. They are led by the 40-year veteran of NZ politics, Winston Peters.

They proudly run a Nationalist policy agenda and as a Maori man himself, Peters is arguably very well placed to heal the racial divides facing our country.

Now that the electorate has entrusted the responsibility of leadership on these parties and individuals, the challenge is now theirs to deliver on expectations.

I am very optimistic. I believe we have elected exactly the government that we so desperately need, to get our nation back on track to a prosperous future for all.