National leader Simon Bridges is defending one of his MP's comments on abortion, saying while "it's not something I would say", people have a right to voice their opinion.
National list MP Alfred Ngaro is under fire for sharing a Facebook post, describing abortion as being a travesty of justice and an unholy holocaust in our nation.
The post comes amidst talk Ngaro is planning on leaving National to set up a Christian Party.
Simon Bridges told Mike Hosking abortion is an emotive topic and MPs are allowed to have strong views on it.
"The truth is abortion is a conscious issue, MPs are allowed to say what they think and I don't think we should be saying to people they can't have strong, albeit emotive, views on issues like this."
According to the Abortion Supervisory Committee's 2018 report, there were 13,285 abortions in 2017 – up roughly 500 on the year prior.
But the number of abortions has been decreasing over the years and has dropped from 18,300 in 2007.
In recent weeks, the controversy surrounding the abortion debate has been heightened, after law makers in the US state of Alabama passed very restrictive abortion laws.