New Zealand Parliament Buildings, Wellington, New Zealand.
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Editor’s Note: Here below is a list of the main issues currently under discussion in New Zealand and links to media coverage.

Today’s content

National Party
Tim Watkin (Pundit): Todd Muller: National’s new Dad who forgot to build the cot
Andrea Vance (Stuff): Could middle-of-the road Muller come out a winner?
Martin van Beynen (Stuff): Todd Muller’s first week not a complete disaster
Bryce Edwards (Guardian): Todd Muller’s beige persona might not be a bad thing in the battle against Jacinda Ardern
Audrey Young (Herald): National deputy Nikki Kaye learning to let the leader lead (paywalled)
Brent Edwards (NBR): Fact or Fiction? Todd Muller not helped by leaks (paywalled)
Gordon Campbell: On the Twitter wars, and the Muller muddles
Luke Mulpass (Stuff): How Muller-mentum is breathing fresh life into NZ First
Damian Grant (Stuff): Todd Muller confirms himself as a middle manager promoted several rungs above his level of competence
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): The 3 myths National Party supporters must tell themselves
Mike Williams (Herald): Is National’s new leader Todd Muller out of his depth? (paywalled)
Newstalk ZB: Was Todd Muller’s first week as National leader bad?
John Roughan (Herald): Will Todd Muller find his feet soon? (paywalled)
Steve Braunias (Herald): The secret diary of … The Muller Gang (paywalled)
Ben Kepes (Herald): Todd Muller lacks identity with small business (paywalled)
Anna Whyte (1News): ‘A couple of burns along the way’ – Todd Muller describes his first week as National leader
1News: Inside Parliament: Trial by fire for National leader Todd Muller during a chaotic and comical caucus run (video)
Dan Satherley (Newshub): ‘Absolute trainwreck’: MPs react to Todd Muller’s first week as National leader
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Phil Smith (RNZ): Muller v Bridges: The tactics of Question Time 
Collette Devlin (Stuff): National Party leadership takes new approach as Opposition during Question Time

National Party –  white front bench, MAGA hat
Jack Tame (Newstalk ZB): Todd Muller’s MAGA hat exposes our selective outrage
Mary Breheny (Spinoff): The tailwind of privilege
Jehan Casinader (BusinessDesk): Why the diversity debate really matters
Dan Sathrely (Newshub Nation): All-white front bench ‘doesn’t matter’ – National MP Amy Adams
Te Rina Triponel (Māori TV): Expert slams National MP’s comments after claims of feeling demonised
Martyn Bradbury (Waatea News): National’s passive racism highlighted in Muller reshuffle

Armed police
Tim McKinnel (E-Tangata): Arms and Race
Conor Whitten Newshub): Revealed: Armed police mainly used for traffic stops, not serious crime
RNZ: Checkpoint: Documents reveal serious lack of consultation before police armed response teams launched
1News: Green MP weighs into racism debate saying Māori and Pasifika victims are unfairly targeted by NZ police
Jessica Tyson (Māori TV): Sir Kim Workman calls for halt to Police armed response teams
Jessica Tyson (Māori TV): NZ Police Armed Response Teams could create same issues as US – Justice Facilitator
Siena Yates (Herald): George Floyd’s death is a warning as to why we shouldn’t arm our police (paywalled)
Liz Beddoe (Re-Imagining Social Work in Aotearoa): Say “No!” to armed response teams
Herald: ‘We see what happens in countries like America’: New Zealanders have their say on armed police
1News: New Police Commissioner says he’s ‘fundamentally committed’ to keeping officers unarmed
Bess Manson (Stuff): National Portrait: Andrew Coster – Top Cop
Newstalk ZB: Mike Bush: A life absorbing career with the Police

George Floyd murder, Black Lives Matter protests
Kethaki Masilamani (Newshub): Auckland Black Lives Matter protesters call for Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to condemn George Floyd’s death
Kereama Wright (Māori TV): Marama Davidson on Black Lives Matter (video)
Eleanor Ainge Roy (Guardian): Thousands in New Zealand protest against George Floyd killing
Stuff: In pictures: Anti-racism demonstrations in Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington
George Block, Lee Kenny, Brad Flahive, Denise Piper (Stuff): Thousands of Kiwis peacefully protest against racism
RNZ: Recap: Thousands march in Auckland, hundreds gather in Wellington for Black Lives Matter
Herald: New Zealand protests live: Kiwis join cry against George Floyd killing
Stuff: ‘If you stay silent, you’re being violent’ – Wellington protest at killing of African American George Floyd
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Wellington protesters hold vigil for George Floyd as riots erupt across US
Grant Miller (ODT): Hundreds show their support for US protests
Matt Burrows and Emma Stanford (Newshub): ‘That same white supremacy exists in NZ’: Auckland George Floyd protest organisers urge Kiwis to march with them
1News: ‘There is racism here and something needs to be done about it’, say NZ Black Lives Matter protestors
1News: Police dispel rumours after armed officers spotted near Black Lives Matter protest
Stuff: Taika Waititi under fire for Black Lives Matter comments
Vita Molyneux (Stuff): Taika Waititi brutally criticised for ‘policing’ black people’s anger as riots continue across US
1News: Lorde speaks out against ‘white silence’ in email to followers after attending Auckland protest
Herald: George Floyd death: New Zealand Anti-Rodeo Coalition criticised for ‘I can’t breathe’ posts

Black Lives Matter protests breach NZ’s Covid-19 restrictions
1News: Dr Siouxsie Wiles ‘absolutely gutted’ to see Black Lives Matter protesters not take Covid-19 precautions
Newshub: Dr Siouxsie Wiles wants Kiwi Black Lives Matter protesters to enter 14-day self-isolation
Jake McKee Cagney and Michael Neilson (Newstalk ZB/Herald): Winston Peters says New Zealand Black Lives Matter protest organisers should be prosecuted
Jo Moir (RNZ): Winston Peters Peters: If protests condoned ‘why are we not at level 1?’
1News: Winston Peters joins ACT leader in criticising Black Lives Matter protests in light of Covid-19 restrictions
Brad Flahive (Stuff): Protests a mockery of Covid-19 restrictions – Act leader David Seymour
Derek Cheng (Herald): Act’s David Seymour: Protest makes a mockery of level 2 rules
1News: ACT leader says Black Lives Matter protests ‘a slap in the face’ for covid compliant businesses
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): David Seymour says Black Lives Matter protest ‘a slap in the face’ for businesses closed in lockdown

Move to Level 1
Derek Cheng (Herald): Top expert dismisses calls to move to alert level 1 as ‘ignorant’
Newstalk ZB: Dr Simon Thornley: ‘We should be at level 1 by now’
Derek Cheng (Herald): The case for Jacinda Ardern to move to alert level 1 next week (paywalled)
Fran O’Sullivan (Herald): Enough is enough — let’s get back to business (paywalled)
RNZ: Cabinet to consider alert level 1 move on 8 June
Dan Satherley (Newshub Nation): National wants to move to alert level 1 ‘now’
Mark Longley and Dan Satherley (Newshub): Government should tell Kiwis now what alert level 1 will look like – Todd Muller

Border restrictions, public health measures
Juliet Gerrard and Rachel Chiaroni-Clarke (Herald): NZ’s chief scientist – when can we re-open our borders?
Michael Morrah (Newshub): New Zealand should create travel bubble with Pacific before Australia – health expert
Derek Cheng (Herald): Revealed – Health Ministry’s giant step backwards in contact-tracing (paywalled)
1News: Ten thousand Kiwi businesses register for Government’s COVID-Tracer app
Janine Starks (Stuff): Better Covid-19 tracing needed to save our economy
Charlotte Cook (RNZ): Many Covid-19 testing centres closing down
1News: Ministry of Health not recommending face masks despite dozens of other countries doing so
Bruce Munro (ODT): Face masks use U-turn by WHO on way
RNZ: Survey suggests Kiwis are being blasé

Election, week in politics, parliament
Alex Braae (Spinoff): Here’s how much public money each party will get for the election
David Farrar: Broadcasting Allocations
David Fisher (Herald): This (gum)boot was made for walking – but instead it is a political fundraiser in the nation’s wealthiest electorate
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): So what happens next? Curveballs and dark horses in the NZ 2020 election
Dale Husband (E-Tangata): Debbie Ngarewa-Packer: Taking on the world from Pātea
Audrey Young (Herald): Labour picks lawyers for Manurewa and Mana – National picks farmer in Wairarapa
Rahul Bhattarai (Stuff): Labour Party picks tradie to tackle National stronghold Kaikōura
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Peter Wilson (RNZ): A week of upsets for both sides of political divide
Newstalk ZB: Mark the Week: Todd Muller’s MAGA hat is not a story
Herald: Former Opposition leaders explain why the leader of the Opposition is the hardest job in politics (paywalled)
Steven Cowan: The extremism of centrism

Louisa Wall list deal
Audrey Young (Herald): Why Labour gave Louisa Wall a managed exit from Manurewa (paywalled)
1News: Louisa Wall has list seat deal after bowing out of Labour’s Manurewa candidate race
RNZ: Labour Party MP Louisa Wall withdraws her nomination for Manurewa
Herald: Labour’s Louisa Wall pulls out of Manurewa selection, opts for party list
Dan Satherley (Newshub): Louisa Wall quits Manurewa electorate battle, will only stand on Labour list

Wage subsidy
RNZ: Government backtracks on wage subsidy audit data, moves to weekly reporting
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Grant Robertson says there will be ‘zero tolerance’ for businesses abusing the wage subsidy
Paul Mitchell (Stuff): Food distributor Bidfood investigated for breach of wage subsidy terms
Anna Whyte (1News); Almost $11 billion handed out in wage subsidies, $83 million returned
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): Wage subsidy about to run out, businesses ask: Now what?
Herald: Interactive: The companies where 14,000 NZ jobs have been lost

Welfare
Chris Trotter: The Limits Of Kindness
Bronson Perich (Māori TV): Govt helping new unemployed due to upcoming Elections – Sue Bradford
Louise Humpage (Newsroom): In our welfare system, it’s ‘us or them’
Mike Treen (Daily Blog): The Covid income support payment is all lost for any sort of employment – that is nuts
Brandon Johnstone (International Socialists): Welfare and the deserving poor
Terry Baucher (Interest): The Week in Tax: Extra relief for the newly unemployed & are redundancy payments overtaxed?
Victoria Kaihe (E-Tangata): Dealing with WINZ — ‘dehumanising and demoralising’
Simon Shepherd (Newshub Nation): Salvation Army expects need for their services to increase for years (video)

Immigration, migrant workers
Liam Dann (Herald): NZ faces big choice on immigration – are we ready? (paywalled)
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): The NZ political realities of immigration post pandemic
1News: Advocates press for migrants to access emergency benefits as unemployment levels soar
John McKenzie (1News): Seasonal workers face icy winter trapped in Otago due to Covid-19
Gill Bonnett (RNZ): Immigration category’s planned return scuttled by Covid-19
Corazon Miller (Newshub): Refugees’ grief as pandemic tears family apart

Economy
Liam Dann (Herald): Australia will recover faster than NZ – we should hope it does (paywalled)
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): New Zealand’s big bill for ‘lockdown we didn’t need’
Jenny Ruth (BusinessDesk): Reserve Bank predicts largest GDP fall in 160 years
1News: NZ could return to normality faster than other countries, but it’s still far off – economist
Priscilla Dickinson (Newshub): Economic recovery will take 12 to 18 months, require ‘swift hard decisions’ – bank report
Matt Burrows (Newshub): Government is ‘fluffing around’ on economy while New Zealanders ‘lose jobs at a rate of knots’ – National’s Paul Goldsmith
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1News: Many New Zealanders forced to re-think spending habits because Covid-19 downturn, survey finds
Dave Armstrong (Stuff): Working from home has benefits, but Wellington’s CBD needs its workers back
Anna Whyte (1News): PM encourages Kiwis to visit retailers, museums during long weekend to support economy
RNZ: Consumers slightly more confident this month

Business, employment
Dan Satherley (Newshub): National calls for return of 90-day trials, despite Treasury report saying they don’t work
Zoe George (Stuff): Economists divided on Muller’s job policy for SMEs
Zane Small (Newshub): Grant Robertson ‘prepared to consider’ National leader Todd Muller’s proposal to incentivise hiring
1News: National appealing Government to fast-track proposal to pay businesses hiring new staff up to $100k
Herald: Todd Muller wants JobStart policy in place ‘within weeks’, seeks meeting with Finance Minister
Thomas Manch (Stuff): National’s first policy after leadership coup: $10k for businesses that hire a worker
Hamish Rutherford (Herald): New National leader Todd Muller announces first policy – $10k for businesses to hire staff
RNZ: National promises up to $100,000 for businesses hiring more staff
Anna Whyte (1News): National promises up to $100,000 for businesses that hire 10 new staff
Stuff: Grant Robertson says commercial rent help negotiations ongoing
RNZ: Tower plans to cut 108 jobs despite HY profit rise

Freshwater reforms, environment, conservation
Mike Joy (The Conversation): New Zealand government ignores expert advice in its plan to improve water quality in rivers and lakes
Adam Canning (Herald): Clean river promises have been swept away (paywalled)
Eric Crampton (Stuff): Water is too precious to be so cheap
1News: Farmers, environmentalists both find fault with Government’s new water reforms
RNZ: Water reforms fall well short – iwi
RNZ: Warnings on freshwater rules were heard – Taranaki politician
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Stuff Editorial: Jobs or the environment – will the Govt have to choose?
Blair Voorend (Hawkes Bay Today):Petition could take wind out of Hawke’s Bay electricity farm’s sails (paywalled)
1News: Government invests $15.7 million to make West Coast forests predator-free
RNZ: The Detail: The health of our coastal waters is in peril
Jamie Morton (Herald): Why a changing climate matters to New Zealand’s blue whale population
Andrew Dickens (Newstalk ZB): Marine life is dying, time to stop fishing
Annabelle Tukia (Newshub): Christchurch recycling plant bombarded with post-lockdown contaminated material

Local government
Bernard Orsman (Herald):Auckland Council proposes savage cuts in response to a $550m budget hole
Todd Niall (Stuff): Auckland Council budget: Cuts to jobs, transport, climate action and events
Todd Niall (Stuff): Auckland Council budget: Road safety cuts could see 10 more deaths this year
1News: Auckland City services to be cut after revenue drop
Steve Forbes: ‘A budget that hurts’ – South Auckland hit hard in city’s post-Covid-19 emergency budget
Dominic Harris (Press): Water charges in pipeline to help plug Covid-19 hole in Christchurch budget
Marty Sharpe (Stuff): Vote to erect Endeavour replicas in Gisborne without iwi consultation stuns councillor
Te Aniwa Hurihanganui (RNZ): Iwi consultation not sought for permanent Endeavour replicas in Gisborne
Tina Law (Press): Plan to restart using toxic weedkiller in Christchurch labelled ‘short-sighted’
Mike Yardley (Press): Christchurch’s revised draft annual plan is a fizzer

Housing
1News: Wellington KiwiBuild project beset by delays accused of misleading first home buyers
Newstalk ZB: Housing Minister defends Kiwibuild after series of setbacks
Anne Gibson (Herald): Covid 19 coronavirus changes Ngāti Whātua plans: first commercial residential subdivision rising (paywalled)
1News: Neil Finn donates proceeds of new song to help Auckland City Mission build new centre
Isaac Davison (Herald): Neil Finn and Stevie Nicks write song for Auckland’s homeless
Michael Moore-Jones (Newsroom): Building it up just to tear it down
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): House sellers bullish about asking prices – is the confidence misplaced?

Cannabis referendum
Joel MacManus (Stuff): Former PM, police investigator, among Kiwis backing cannabis legalisation campaign
Nicholas Jones (Herald): Helen Clark urges Kiwis to vote ‘yes’ on legalising personal use of drug

Gender lens for budget, funding for organisations that support women
Jason Walls (Herald): Women’s Minister Julie Anne Genter’s proposal for gender lenses on budget denied by Treasury (paywalled)
Vera Alves (Herald): Treasury’s decision against a gender lens must be reversed  (paywalled)
Derek Cheng (Herald): $1 million Govt fund for supporting women
Stuff: New million-dollar fund for women announced
Lana Andelane (Newshub): Government opens $1m fund to support post-COVID recovery of women’s organisations

Foreign affairs and trade
Richard Harman (Politik): Trumping the US; China could join the CPTPP
Thomas Manch (Stuff): New Zealand missing in Five Eyes condemnation of Beijing over Hong Kong security law
Rebecca Howard (BusinessDesk): NZ didn’t join ‘Five Eyes’ in statement on Hong Kong

Education
Lee Kenny (Stuff): Almost half of Lincoln University’s students from overseas, report says
1News: Charter flights under consideration for international students returning to Wellington
John Lewis (ODT): Lockdown casts long shadow
Mariné Lourens (Stuff): The students surviving a pandemic thousands of kilometres from home
Vaughan Elder (ODT): ‘Critic’ decision came from vice-chancellor

Primary industries
Thomas Coughlan (Stuff): Insults fly in Shane Jones forestry ‘cronyism’ spat
Gavin Evans (BusinessDesk): Crunch coming for forestry policy (paywalled)
1News: Pork farmers narrowly avoid culling thousands of pigs as lockdown cuts supply chains
Sahiban Hyde (Hawkes Bay Today): ‘Farmers are feeling hard done by’: National kickstarts campaign for the provincial vote
Tom Kitchin (RNZ): Hawke’s Bay $1m drought funding ‘doesn’t go very far’ – Rural Advisory Group
1News: Thousands of farmers on the move for annual Gypsy Day

Transport
Derek Cheng (Herald): No cost blowouts over Auckland light rail, says bidder NZ Infra
1News: Northland rail work begins as part of $200 million overhaul
Meriana Johnsen (RNZ): Kaikōura Highway set to be finished this year

Media
Brian Easton (Pundit): Whither The Media?
Brian Gaynor (BusinessDesk): Stuff – Deal of the century or has Boucher caught a falling knife? (paywalled)
Duncan Greive (Spinoff): The NBR owner just sold his mansion to live in a motorhome

Arts funding
RNZ: Arts sector funding boost lacks a plan – academic
Anusha Bradley and Tom Kitchin (RNZ): Artists and musicians mostly ‘thrilled’ by new govt funding for arts
Zane Small (Newshub): Jacinda Ardern launches artist jobseeker support package based on Helen Clark-era policy
RNZ: Government launches $175m arts and music recovery package
Melanie Carroll (Stuff): Global campaign throws a lifeline for NZ screen production

Infrastructure
RNZ: 3MM: Brad Olsen on building pipes, not pipe dreams
Troy Brockbank, Elle Archer, Sifa Pole and Sina Cotter Tait (Spinoff): Building equity into the infrastructure-led recovery for Māori and Pasifika

Repatriation
Irra Lee (1News): Kiwis stranded in southern India feel ‘left out’ of repatriation flights
1News: Samoans stuck in NZ after borders closed return home today on repatriation flights

Queen’s Birthday honours
1News: Queen’s Birthday Honours 2020 – the full list
RNZ: Human rights advocate hopes Covid-19 can bring lasting change in NZ
Jonathan Mitchell (RNZ): World’s first openly transgender MP ‘humbled’ by Queen’s Birthday Honour
Katarina Williams (Stuff): From ‘one queen to another’ – Georgina Beyer recognised in Queen’s Birthday Honours
Amelia Wade (Herald): Queen’s Birthday Honours: Georgina Beyer, a trailblazer for the rainbow community
1News: ‘Trailblazing’ transgender politician Georgina Beyer recognised in Queen’s Birthday honours
1News: Former Police Commissioner recognised in Queen’s Birthday Honours

Health
Jo Spratt (Spinoff):Why New Zealand must join the global call for a people’s vaccine
Liu Chen (RNZ): Asians reluctant to seek help for mental health reach out during pandemic
Lane Nicholas (Herald):Pensioner who survived savage beating in Freemans Bay now battling health system (paywalled)
1News: Increase in maternal deaths at Auckland Hospital prompts investigation
Mark Quinlivan (Newshub): Auckland City Hospital launches review after four mothers die – three since alert level 3
D’Angelo Martin (Māori TV): More effort needed to support Māori communities in becoming smokefree
RNZ: Mount Parihaka declared smoke and vape free
Charlotte Jones: Hard line on smoking, but vaping escapes Kawerau council ban

Other
Claire Breen and Alexander Gillespie (The Conversation): The coronavirus crisis shows why New Zealand urgently needs a commissioner for older people
Alison Mau (Stuff): Kiwis were kind in lockdown – but not to essential workers
Toby Manhire: Covid-19 checkpoints show the way for the role of iwi in the recovery – Meng Foon and Paul Hunt
Steve Elers (Stuff): Self-determination not government reliance is the path for Māori
Jo Cribb (Stuff): Where was female representation on pandemic committee?
Rob Stock (Stuff): Pension plans: Politicians and policy wonks propose changes to NZ Super
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): Why don’t credit card rates fall when home loan rates do?
Teuila Fuatai (Herald): Getting to the bottom of cafe racism row (paywalled)
Mike White (Stuff): Defence lawyers — saints or scum?
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): Banks and council on board with bail-out to see Wellington Airport to recovery
1News: Iwi to remove gates blocking entrance to Cape Reinga today
Māori TV: Te Rerenga Wairua reopens for the ‘living’
1News: Jobs won back at Auckland nonprofit organisation thanks to Kiwis’ generosity
RNZ: Race relations commissioner speaks out over student’s blackface selfie
1News: One Billion Trees initiative boosted by $10 million
1News: Libraries get $58.8 million Government funding boost over four years
Anna Loren (Stuff): John Stringer hit with costs after losing defamation lawsuit against Colin Craig
Benn Bathgate (Stuff): Whakaari remembered: Prime Minister reveals ‘one story did stand out’
Zane Small (Newshub): National MPs say law change lets Government scrutinise ‘every foreign financial transaction’
Patrick Thomsen (E-Tangata): We’re part of New Zealand’s Pacific story

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