Coronavirus: Political commentator calls for election date change amid pandemic

A political commentator believes the 2020 general election should be delayed in favour of working out how New Zealanders will rebuild their lives after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Josie Pagani says "it would be a good thing" if the September 19 election date was moved to a later month since Kiwis need to not only cast their party and electorate votes, but there are two referenda that will be voted on at the same time too.

"In my view, I think we need a delay. Even if it delays until November, even mid-December, it would be a good thing," she said during an interview on Rebuilding Paradise with Paul Henry.

But she's hesitant to move the election date to early 2020.

"It's a perception thing. I think there's so much of our democratic checks and balances that have been put on hold through this whole process - and for good reason - but governments are very quick to take away democratic powers and give themselves more powers, they're a bit slow to bring them back. I wouldn't want to delay it any longer than it has to be."

Pagani also says the Government needs to have a post-pandemic plan and New Zealanders should be a part of that.

"They should have a plan. But not just 'they', that's the whole point, we all need to be part of that.

"We like experts, but we still don't want to be told how to live our lives. We do actually want to be part of finding solutions."

She says people are starting to get impatient now the daily case numbers are at a consistently low level.

"We know we're not getting sick, not too many of us are dying, so yes, now we're getting antsy about what happens next and I think that's the key thing. The election must be about the future, not gratitude for the fact that we're not getting too sick."

Watch her full interview with Paul Henry above.