The Conservative Party is back… with a late endorsement for Trump?

The Conservative Party, founded by millionaire Auckland-based businessman Colin Craig has made a surprise return to the New Zealand political-sphere, issuing a foray of new newsletters, updates and press releases. All the new pieces are penned by Simon Gutschlag, a member of the governing board of the party that has assumed the leadership since Colin Craig’s exit in 2015.

The party has remained leaderless and almost penniless since Craig’s ousting following the party’s 2014 general election performance which saw it fall short of the required 5% margin to enter parliament.

The party has issued a press release following the election of Donald Trump to the United States presidency, which is perhaps misleadingly titled “TRUMP FOR PRESIDENT”.

“The Conservative Party of New Zealand congratulates Donald Trump as President elect of the USA.” Gutschlag writes, going on to clarify the party does not support “all the views” held by Trump.

However, he then goes on to write “[T]his campaign has shown that the average US citizen wants to be heard and is tired of corruption and progressive liberalism. The Conservative voice of the United States has spoken!”.

Make of that what you will. He continues;

“We believe New Zealanders want to be heard as well, and not just at elections. As with Brexit, the US election has shown once again that the Press is biased and out of touch with reality”.

Gutschlag then reaffirms the party’s widely criticised 2014 policy evidently still in place.

The Conservatives’ positive comments on Trump follow populist counterparts New Zealand First proclaiming the Trump triumph as “a revolution”. The party has also updated its mantra to “New Zealand’s common sense party”, desperately similar to New Zealand First’s “It’s common sense”.

– Bennett Morgan, Capital HardTalk

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