US President-elect Joe Biden got on the blower to New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and unlike his predecessor, he appears to be completely in awe of her. Same, tbh.
During the 20-minute phone convo, the two congratulated each other on their recent election wins – Ardern won a second term back in October, while the US election was called for Biden earlier this month, although Trump does seem to be dragging out the process as much as possible.
“The president-elect also praised the prime minister’s extraordinary leadership after the 2019 Christchurch massacre, on COVID-19, and as a working mother and role model,” a spokesperson for the Biden-Harris transition team said in a statement.
The man’s not wrong.
The two also discussed the usual stuff that leaders chat about, which seems pretty generic and perhaps even uninspired, but whatever.
“[Biden] noted that he looks forward to working closely with [Ardern] on common challenges, including containing COVID-19; tackling climate change; reinforcing multilateralism; strengthening democracy, and maintaining a secure and prosperous Indo-Pacific region,” the statement from Biden’s transition team read.
After the call, Ardern said she put an offer on the table to share any of the insights learned from overseeing what is perhaps the most effective coronavirus response in the world.
“I offered to him and his team access to New Zealand health officials in order to share their experience on things we’ve learnt on our COVID-19 journey,” Ardern told reporters in New Zealand.
However, she also noted that New Zealand did have the natural advantage of being a remote archipelago, and that it’s unlikely the US could simply adopt a NZ style lockdown overnight now that the US has recorded over 12 million cases, with that number expected to rise sharply heading into the holiday season.
“No one country’s experience has been linear or has been perfect,” Ardern added, in what is the most diplomatic humblebrag ever.
However when asked if the two brought up Trump at all, Ardern said they instead looked to the future, which… I mean… fair. Everyone’s sick of that shit by now.
Ardern’s chitchat with Biden follows our own PM Scott Morrison‘s talk with the President-elect over a week ago. You can read about what when down in that convo here.