World News – AU – New Zealanders to vote for more than next PM And it could reshape the country’s future


New Zealanders today vote on whether to give Jacinda Ardern another term as the country’s Prime Minister

They are also being asked to participate in two referendums that could potentially make New Zealand one of the most progressive nations in the world

The first question New Zealanders ask is whether the recreational use of cannabis should become legal

Second referendum will ask the public if people with a terminal illness should have the right to end their own life

No If more than 50% of New Zealanders vote yes, recreational cannabis would not become legal immediately

After the election, the new government would present a bill to the New Zealand parliament to legalize marijuana

« This process would allow the public to share their thoughts and ideas on how the law might work, » the New Zealand government says on its website

But assuming the bill passes, that would mean anyone over the age of 20 could buy up to 14 grams of cannabis at a licensed cannabis store

An excise tax would be applied to commercial marijuana and health warnings would appear on the packaging

But she refused to take a position on recreational cannabis use and was shy when asked if she had ever smoked cannabis

« I feel like, because we are having a government referendum here, it is my job to make sure that the public has confidence in the information that is provided and that we are going to deliver the result », she declared

« I have often said that there are very strong arguments from both sides Personally, I have never wanted to see people criminalized for using cannabis, but I have also always been concerned that young people access it »

If the vote is in favor, Ms Ardern would accept the will of the people and propose the bill But whether this passes may depend on the outcome of the election and whether she can form a full government

And if another party were to be elected, its position is quite clear Opposition Leader Judith Collins is against

« I have said very clearly that I am voting for the End of Life Choice referendum and that I am voting against the one on cannabis, » she said

After voting on recreational cannabis, New Zealanders will be asked to decide on assisted dying

End-of-life choice law has already been passed by New Zealand parliament A « yes » vote in the referendum will therefore mean that assisted dying will be available in 12 months.

In this case, anyone over the age of 18 with a terminal illness that may leave them less than six months can apply for ‘assisted dying’

The patient’s doctor or nurse will give them medicine « to end their suffering by causing death », according to the New Zealand government

Assisted dying would not be an option for a person with a mental illness, a physical handicap or a person who claims to be too old to continue The law includes more than 45 guarantees to respect

According to Jessica Young, a researcher at the University of Otago, whose research explored the perspectives of terminally ill New Zealanders who would consider choosing assisted dying if it was available to them, a big part of the debate around this issue focused on palliative care is enough to relieve all suffering

« However, the Palliative Care Australia report concluded that 5% of people suffer terribly at the end of life »

The proposal to provide assistance in dying already enjoys broad political support after Parliament’s adoption in 2019

Ms Young said some commentators have suggested that Parliament should have made the decision for the country instead of going to the referendum as they had the opportunity to read and consider the evidence

« Easy to understand information has been sent by the government and campaigns like Yes for Compassion are aimed at educating the public, but there is a lot to think about with the cannabis referendum and the general election, » she said. told me

« New Zealand has been debating this issue intensively in Parliament since 2017 so that people are well aware of the issue »

Under Ms. Ardern’s leadership, New Zealand has certainly started to build a reputation as a liberal country

At one point, The New York Times described the Prime Minister as « the progressive antithesis of right-wing strongmen like Trump, [Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor] Orban and [Indian Prime Minister Narendra] Modi »

According to Massey University politics professor Richard Shaw, this was also reflected by the general electoral public

« … The political center seems to be shifting to the left In the last four polls, support for the Labor Party and the Greens has risen to around 62%, » he wrote for The Conversation

« When nearly two out of three voters in a naturally conservative country support the center-left, something happens »

This service may include material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN and the BBC World Service which is copyrighted and may not be reproduced

AEST = Australian Eastern Standard Time, which is 10 hours ahead of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time)

Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand General Election 2020, Judith Collins

World News – AU – New Zealanders to vote for more than the next PM And it could reshape the future from the country


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