Jacinda Ardern and her archenemy & # 39; The Crusher & # 39; cast their votes early to avoid crowds on election day – with the opposition's confidence that the prime minister will step down
- Two weeks before October 17th, election day in New Zealand, the heads of state and government are voting ahead of time
- Cannabis, euthanasia referendums will be decided in the same poll
- Opposition leader Judith & # 39; Crusher & # 39; Collins will cast her vote at Auckland Church on Sunday
- Christian & # 39; feminist & # 39; compared to Margaret Thatcher says she will overthrow PM Jacinda
- Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's work is still considered a strong favorite to win
Opposition leader Judith Collins has followed Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's lead and voted early in the New Zealand elections to vote in Auckland on Sunday.
Ms. Collins said she voted before election day, October 17th, because "it will be a bit of a circus that day".
Unusually, Ms. Collins stopped for a public prayer on the way to the polling station.
Opposition leader Judith & # 39; Crusher & # 39; Collins prays before casting her vote at St. Thomas Tamaki Church in Auckland on Sunday. She has refused to politicize her Anglican faith
Ms. Collins imagined she would cast her vote on Sunday. She will run against incumbent Labor Minister Jacinda Ardern in the upcoming New Zealand election
Center-right party leader Ms. Collins invited the media to watch her vote on Sunday to select St Thomas Tamaki's Church in the Kohimarama suburb of Auckland.
Upon arrival, she met the priest in charge, Reverend Bob Driver, and prayed in the hall before walking down the corridor to cast her ballots with partner David Wong-Tung.
She denied politicizing her belief or using her prayer as a stunt.
“I didn't ask people to come in. But I didn't mean to make a fuss … I don't want to keep you from going to church, ”she said, refusing to reveal what or who she was praying for.
"It's between me and God," she said.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern cast her vote at a polling station in Auckland on Saturday. The polls opened on the Saturday before the October 17th general election
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at the polling station on Saturday
The 61-year-old said she was a practicing Anglican who "sometimes" goes to church on Sundays but prays every day.
Jane Patterson, Political Editor for Radio NZ, described Ms. Collins as "increasing evidence of being a Christian" in the campaign.
In last week's debate among Heads of State and Government, Ms. Collins described herself as a "Christian and a feminist".
Prime Minister Ardern is known to be an agnostic after abandoning her Mormon faith in her twenties when she discovered that the church's conservative religious beliefs clashed with her personal support for homosexual rights.
Ms. Collins was delighted to reveal who she had voted for, cast her electoral and party vote for National, and voted against the referendum on legalizing cannabis but in favor of the euthanasia poll.
Ms. Ardern's work is a strong favorite for the return, but Ms. Collins said she was increasingly confident about getting the 40-year-old out of office.
"I'm very, very confident about the momentum that is going in the right direction," she said.
"I go to great lengths to spend every moment I'm awake making sure we have a better government than we are right now."