New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appeared on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert today, with the Texas School shooting dominating their interview.
An 18-year-old gunman opened fire at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas on Tuesday (Wednesday NZ time), killing at least 19 primary school-aged children and two adults.
Colbert asked what US politicians were doing to protect “children from the criminally insane amount of guns” in the US.
“I’ll tell you someone who did something about it, the New Zealanders,” Colbert said during the interview with Ardern, referring the gun laws passed that included a gun buyback in the wake of the March 15 Christchurch mosque shootings in 2019.
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Ardern said she looked at events like the shooting, not as a politician, but “as a mother”. She said while New Zealanders legitimately used guns for uses such as pest control, “you don’t need a military-style semi-automatic to do that”.
This was met with loud applause
She also acknowledged that New Zealand’s gun reforms had not been perfect.
Ardern appeared in a pink pant suit by Kiwi designer Juliette Hogan for her fourth appearance on the show.
The pair shared lighthearted banter during the segment, and Ardern extended Colbert an invitation to her upcoming wedding to partner Clarke Gayford.
While no date has been announced, she said it would be some time after direct flights from Auckland to New York begin in September.
She wrote the Late Show host an invitation on a ripped out page of an airline magazine.
It is not the first invitation the PM has extended to Colbert. During her appearance on the show in September, 2019, she suggested the show visit NZ, promising to pick the host up from the airport.
A production gaffe on tonight’s episode prompted Colbert to apologise during Wednesday’s filming – credits to the show referred to the prime minister as “Ambassador Jacinda Ardern”.
“She’s the Prime Minister,” he confirmed.
The pair also spoke about daughter Neve’s little briefcase and a Mother’s Day card posted on Arden’s Instagram referring to “fishy kisses”, which she refused to demonstrate.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern talks about Neve’s briefcase on the Stephen Colbert Show.
The PM did her best to sell New Zealand as an aspirational, clean, green and sustainable and climate-friendly place for Americans to visit.
“Come back and make us whole again, you’d be so welcome,” Ardern said, speaking about the border reopening for tourists.
“Everybody go down, you are not going to regret it, it’s the most beautiful place on the planet,” Colbert said.
The episode will air in New Zealand on Prime at 11pm on Wednesday, May 25.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism