NZ PM Jacinda Ardern praises midwife as she adjusts to motherhood

Finally some useful advice for Jacinda and Clarke’s baby from a real baby

New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern will spend a second night in hospital with her "very alert and hungry" newborn daughter who Twitter wags have dubbed the "prime miniature".

On Friday, Ardern posted a picture from Auckland Hospital of herself, the baby and her midwife. "Thank you so much for your best wishes and your kindness".

It is the first child for the prime minister and her 40-year-old partner, a television fishing personality who will become a stay-at-home dad when Ardern returns to work after six weeks' maternity leave.

Ardern's deputy Winston Peters is now acting prime minister, although she will continue to be consulted on significant issues.

Her pregnancy announcement prompted a national conversation about working mothers, and an worldwide reckoning about the rarity of pregnant women in the world's corridors of power.

New Zealand must be so very, very proud of the wee one that's entered its village. The daughter this week congratulated Ardern on social media, noting that Ardern's baby was born on Benazir Bhutto's birthday.

"It is a woman's decision about when they choose to have children and it should not predetermine whether or not they are given a job or have job opportunities", she said then.

"There is no easygoing "mommy track" for heads of state", The Times wrote in 1990 about Bhutto's uphill political battle. Bhutto, who would have turned 65, was assassinated in 2007.

Ardern on Thursday became just the second elected world leader to give birth while holding office.

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All this while facing a barrage of sexist comments, inappropriate questions about the timing of the baby's conception and continued media scrutiny. Tammy Duckworth of IL, whose pregnancy this year prompted Congress to change its rules about allowing babies and breast-feeding in the chamber.

Ardern's Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull told ABC Radio he was "really thrilled", while New Zealand opposition leader Simon Bridges offered congratulations. "Aotearoa, New Zealand, what a year!" it began.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's newborn baby is already making use of gifts that her mother received from family and the public.

Ardern's partner Clarke Gayford spent Thursday night with Ardern at the hospital.

"I'm dying to see it, and hold her, and just see what she's like", Laurell Ardern said.

"This is a sign of our maturity as a country and its acceptance that combining career and family is a choice which women are free to make", Clark wrote in an email.

"But this is news that Jacinda wanted to share with New Zealand, and for it to be part of New Zealand, and I think her and Clarke have managed to do just that".

Clark, who left office in 2008, added that Gayford should be celebrated as "a modern man, who is happy to be the full time parent of a young child".



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