Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and partner Clarke Gayford with Gayford's nieces at Parliament after a swearing-in ceremony in October (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)

The PM is preggers: Jacinda Ardern and Clarke Gayford to have baby in June

Jacinda Ardern has announced via social media that she is hapu, and will be become a parent wwith partner Clarke Gayford in five months.

“Clarke and I are really excited that in June our team will expand from two to three,” the prime minister has announced on social media. The announcement comes three months to the day since Winston Peters delivered his press conference announcing NZ First would coalesce with Labour, making Ardern prime minister, though in a press release Ardern says “We first knew of my pregnancy on the 13th of October” – in the latter stages of coalition negotiations – but as many couples do in the early stages, we kept it to ourselves.

In a message on Instagram, Ardern writes:

And we thought 2017 was a big year! Clarke and I are really excited that in June our team will expand from two to three, and that we’ll be joining the many parents out there who wear two hats. I’ll be Prime Minister AND a mum, and Clarke will be “first man of fishing” and stay at home dad. I think it’s fair to say that this will be a wee one that a village will raise, but we couldn’t be more excited. I know there will be lots of questions, and we’ll answer all of them (I can assure you we have a plan all ready to go!) But for now, bring on 2018.

The image posted by Jacinda Ardern on Instagram

A press release from her office meanwhile reads:

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her partner, Clarke Gayford, have today announced that they are expecting their first child in June.

“We’re both really happy. We wanted a family but weren’t sure it would happen for us, which has made this news unexpected but exciting.

“Yesterday I met with Deputy Prime Minister, Winston Peters, to share the news and to ask him to take on the role of Acting Prime Minister for a period of six weeks after our baby is born.

“As is the case when I am overseas, Mr Peters will act as Prime Minister, working with my office while staying in touch with me. I fully intend to be contactable and available throughout the six week period when needed.

“Mr Peters and I have a great relationship, and I know that together we’ll make this period work. I will make arrangements for appropriate Ministers to act in my other portfolios over the six weeks I am away from Parliament.

“At the end of my leave I will resume all Prime Ministerial duties.

“Clarke and I are privileged to be in the position where Clarke can stay home to be our primary caregiver. Knowing that so many parents juggle the care of their new babies, we consider ourselves to be very lucky.

“We consider ourselves lucky for another reason. Clarke and I have always been clear we wanted to be parents but had been told we would need help for that to happen. That’s made this news a fantastic surprise.

“We first knew of my pregnancy on the 13th of October, but as many couples do in the early stages, we kept it to ourselves.

“From a personal perspective, I am so looking forward to my new role as a parent. But I am equally focused on my job and responsibilities as Prime Minister. 

“While 2018 will be the year I become a mum, it will also be a year that the Government finishes our 100 day plan, and starts pursuing all of the priorities that will build a better New Zealand. I look forward to leading that work, and having a slightly expanded family join me on that journey.”

On Twitter, National leader Bill English wrote, “Congratulations to @jacindaardern and @NZClarke. Mary and I wish them all the best for their impending arrival.”

Former prime minister Helen Clark added her congratulations, saying: “Wishing @jacindaardern & @NZClarke all the best as they expect their 1st child in June: a super busy year coming up & much to look forward to. Every #woman should have the choice of combining family & career.”

In an interview on Radio NZ, Dame Jenny Shipley – New Zealand’s first woman prime minister – has said that Ardern was not obliged to have mentioned her pregnancy in any coalition discussions. It should “not make a blind bit of difference”, she said. “I just say to the trolls, be very careful where you go.”


The Spinoff has gone all in on #Jacindababywatch. Our Parents editor Emily Writes has offered her heartfelt congratulations:

“Know that as you travel you’re not alone. The mamas are here and we won’t let anyone give you any shit. We are also – for better or worse (I promise we try not to but it’s literally somehow impossible) – advice givers. We want to share what worked and what didn’t. Tune it out and know that when you call for support and advice there will be a stampede. Let your heart fill with people who want the best for you.” [link]

And we’ve shared exclusive results of our investigation into just what the future Clacinda or Jark will look like. If our analysis is correct, and we’ve no reason to think it isn’t, the new first baby will look something like this:

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