web analytics

How not to campaign in an MMP environment

Written By: - Date published: 8:34 am, October 13th, 2020 - 30 comments
Categories: Andrew Little, david cunliffe, election 2020, jacinda ardern, national - Tags: , , ,

The 2014 election campaign still burns in my memory.  The Labour Party was clearly divided, unity and discipline was lacking and the electorate could sense it.

Things were that bad we had Labour list MPs not campaigning for the party vote.  Clearly they thought that their own personal abilities and talents would mean that the electorate would refuse to go along with the tide of public opinion and buck the trend and re elect someone they had previously voted out.  Unfortunately for them they were wrong.

Cosgrove was the 6th ranked Labour MP at the time.

There were other examples.  Some MPs in safe seats were campaigning only for the electorate vote and the Party vote billboards did not see the light of day.

The result was almost inevitable.  Labour received 25% of the party vote although interestingly 35% of the electorate vote.

National ran the perfect MMP election campaign.  Every billboard had John Key on it.  Result wise they received 47% of the party vote and 47% of the electorate vote.  Their discipline was impressive.

It is no secret that after the election Labour was in a poor state.  Thanks to Andrew Little’s determined leadership discipline and unity improved markedly.  And thanks to Jacinda Ardern’s inspired leadership things have kicked on since then.

Fast forward to now and the boot is clearly on the other foot.

National’s advertising is fragmented and when you look at the efforts of National candidates in marginal seats you can see there is no coordination.  And they are focussing on their own electorate campaign and not on the party vote campaign.

Denise Lee’s advertisement above is an example.  This effort from Dan Bidois below also fails the two ticks test although it does at least mention National.

And this billboard is frankly bizarre.  For the MP of Pakuranga to double down and be seeking electorate votes is unbelievable.  Pakuranga in particular is the sort of seat where the only thing you do is harvest party votes.

To add to the sense of a complete lack of discipline Alfred Ngaro has been at it again.

I blogged earlier about his insane attacks on Phil Twyford alleging that Twyford wanted to legalise all drugs and allow full term abortions.

Ngaro’s Facebook post was deleted and Judith Collins made soothing noises.  But Ngaro has now doubled down on what he said.

From Steve Braunias in the Herald:

A seemingly chastened Ngaro deleted the post. It was a small, unsavoury episode, no big deal, and for Ngaro and National at least it had the virtue of passing quickly – except it hasn’t. I called Ngaro on Sunday and he doubled down. He said he only deleted the post because trolls had attacked his wife, and accused her of being behind it.

As for his accusations against Twyford, he said, “I stand by those comments. I do not resile from them … I’m not about to apologise for speaking up.”

I said, “But your comments about Phil Twyford would appear to be total lies.”

He said, “Phil Twyford might want to check the record.”

I said, “What are you talking about?”

He said, “Have a look at the Family First website.”

Anyone relying on Family First for information need to have a reality check.

Braunias also highlights Ngaro’s completely unchristian approach to the poor.  When asked about clothing allowances for residents in a retirement home clearly suffering from poverty he said this:

“We need to stop thinking about services and start thinking about outcomes,” he blathered. I got in his face afterwards and said, “They’re poor. They need clothes. What are you going to do about it?” He said, “It’s not about fixing the problem.”

I wish to go on record and declare this is the worst thing I have ever heard any politician say out loud.

If I was National’s campaign manager right now I would be throwing a huge tantrum and lecturing every sitting MP on the importance of the party vote.  Every ad should be aiming either exclusively for the party vote or in marginal seats for two ticks.  Candidate only ads are a waste of time and actually are harmful to the campaign.  Every time a candidate gets an electorate vote but loses a party vote the party goes backwards.  It is a sign that National’s central control is completely lacking that this sort of advertising is happening.

This is like 2014 but in reverse and far worse.  At least in 2014 there was no surge of leaks against the leader during the campaign.

However, this is MMP and anything is possible.  Make sure that you and your whanau and friends get out and vote for their favourite progressive party.  Otherwise on Sunday morning you may wake up to Judith Collins being your Prime Minister.

30 comments on “How not to campaign in an MMP environment ”

  1. Te Aro Resident 1

    Looks like Simeon is already preparing for the 2023 Election by featuring National's next leader on his billboard.

    • Wensleydale 1.1

      I can't look at Simeon Brown without thinking, "Does his mother know where he is?"

      Also, Alfred Ngaro is a muppet. This is documented fact.

  2. Ovid 2

    If I was National’s campaign manager right now I would be throwing a huge tantrum

    We’ve already seen Gerry lose his temper at the media. He’s not handling this well.

    Is it bad that I’m taking such pleasure in seeing National self-destruct like this? I guess the unintended consequence is Act polling higher and I loathe them even more, but I can’t help myself.

    • Wensleydale 2.1

      I'd like to see Gerry crash and burn, and have to resort to looking for jobs teaching woodwork, only for schools around the country to say, "Yeah… nah. We don't ordinarily accept dodgy conspiracy peddlers with anger management issues." We probably shouldn't take pleasure in the misfortunes or others (be kind, and all that), but if anyone has it coming, it's the National Party. I'll be honest. I want to see them implode on Saturday. If that makes me a terrible person, so be it.

      • Sacha 2.1.1

        He will be gravy-training those company directorships from grateful party supporters to retirement.

      • NZJester 2.1.2

        If someone was stupid enough to put him in charge of a wood working class I would be amazed if 100% of the students made it to the end of the day with all their fingers still attached.

        But instead he is more likely to be given a job sitting behind a desk in a business bullying the hard working staff under him that do all the actual work and taking all the credit for said hard work while doing nothing but seat warming. (So no change from what he is doing at the moment).

  3. Ad 3

    This is exactly why 2020 is massaging away some of my 2014 scar tissue.

    Irrespective of the outcome, the campaign and the unity just feels godd.

  4. Chris 4

    Your advice to the nats is of course common sense, but I wouldn't give them an ounce of advice in the hope they're too stupid to cotton on to even the bleedin' obvious. Fuck 'em.

    • mickysavage 4.1

      There will no doubt be a post election analysis to work out if these were decisions made in panic or calculated.

  5. Uncle Scrim 5

    If I recall, in 2014 National won the party vote in every general electorate except four in west and south Auckland but Labour candidates won 27 electorates (21 general + 6 Maori), so only got 5 list MPs in. I don't expect Labour will achieve anything like that but that one poll in Northland showed it's likely Labour will win the party vote in many seats where Nat MPs are returned.

  6. Anne 6

    This is like 2014 but in reverse and far worse. At least in 2014 there was no surge of leaks against the leader during the campaign.

    And therein lies the key difference between left of centre politicians and and right of centre politicians. The left have principles of loyalty regardless of the circumstances while the right disregard such sentiments as being inconsequential.

    It never ceases to amaze me how these right wing disciples of Christianity will lie and cheat, spread misinformation, make slanderous claims for personal gain and believe they are entitled to do it cos well… God is on their side?

    • Stuart Munro 6.1

      They've been in decline for a generation.

      The moral low point was probably their doing to death of Alan Hubbard, they may not have actually killed him, but they wrecked his company and looted it without a shred of judicial oversight. All the current Gnat insiders went along with it.

      What passed for intellect decamped with Finlayson.

      They're not worth saving, but it would be better for NZ if they could scare up a rational opposition.

    • greywarshark 6.2

      Christianity has been brought (bought) low when it is used as a brand or like a trademark for virtue-signalling.

    • roblogic 6.3

      The right wing of Christianity exists to legitimise warmongers, money-changers, and false prophets/ conspiracy-pedlars preying on the faithful

  7. Patricia Bremner 7

    Their campaign is in tatters Micky, my National relatives say many in Rotorua are voting Labour… to keep the Greens out, and "Jacinda has done well"

    No mention of Judith at all, it appeared she is not even worth a comment.

    This feels so different to all other elections. I have a bottle of bubbly ready and the nibbles… I will be watching certain Green candidates results and certain bellwether seats.

    People are engaged and this vote should give a real tangible mandate.

    • Gristle 7.1

      My approach to electioneering has been to argue with normal National voters that it's a Labour government is almost guaranteed. So they should vote Labour to moderate the Green impact.

      And then, argue with normal Labour voters that they should vote Green to ensure Labour does not abandon social and environmental goals.

      My success so far is to have moved 2 National voters from Act to Labour, and 3 Labour to Green.

      (And don't try any of your subtle arguments on me as I have already voted.)

    • Chris 7.2

      Perhaps younger voters and those overseas might knock the result higher than what the polls are saying right now.

  8. Brendan 8

    Nat voter here

    Simply put the Nats are not doing well. And when things don't go well you see their character exposed. Some will blossom, others will explode.

    Any way it looks as if team red is in a strong position for a good result this election.

  9. RedBaronCV 9

    Now if the more ethical centrist Nats used the meltdown to try and ankle tap some of the less savoury say Ngaro and remove them, then that would be impressive.

  10. PaddyOT 10

    How not to campaign in a country with high obesity stats and make a judgement about one's own lack of personal responsibilty.

    Casting shame as an election tactic.

    Thomas Coughlan comments, who is with Judith Collins in Waikanae today

    " Back to that interesting exchange on obesity and personal responsibility between Judith Collins and a reporter.

    Reporter: What do you mean when you say it's time to stop blaming the system for obesity, and people need to start taking personal responsibility?

    Collins: Exactly what I said.

    Reporter: Do you think it's epidemic?

    Collins: No, it's not catching.

    Reporter: What do you make of calls in the wake of your comments to make discrimination based on weight illegal.

    Collins: Look, many of us can do better on this. I'll tell you what, take some personal responsibility.

    Reporter: And some have called your comments heartless. Your response?

    Collins: Do you know what is heartless? Is actually thinking that someone else can cure these issues. We can all take personal responsibility, and we all have to own up to our little weaknesses on these matters.

    Reporter: Do you think obesity is a weakness?

    Collins: Yes certainly. It's the one that many of us do. We actually entirely have to take personal responsibility. Do not blame systems for personal choices.

    Another reporter said that would seem to be somewhat divergent from the medical science. A lot of research had been done on the issue in past decade, which would challenge that view.

    Trump Collins: I bet I've read more than you have on it."

  11. John 11

    Even in Whangarei its "Vote Reti" in his media adverts. Not asking for party vote at all. They must be shit scared this time around. Caucus meetings in a phone box for the Nats, hopefully, post Oct 17th. Loving it.

  12. ScottGN 12

    Had a bit of a run in with a woman I know tangentially. I’d said the PM was my local MP and I was looking forward to voting for her. “What’s she ever done?” the woman spat at me. I replied that, right now, she seemed to be pretty much single-handedly destroying the National Party and I was happy with that.

  13. Hunter Thompson II 13

    At least the Natz' disastrous 2020 campaign will be useful to students of politics and their university lecturers. Someone will probably write a book about it.

    It is also entertaining, in a weird and twisted way.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Project protects jobs and nature
    A Waitomo-based Jobs for Nature project will keep up to ten people employed in the village as the tourism sector recovers post Covid-19 Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. “This $500,000 project will save ten local jobs by deploying workers from Discover Waitomo into nature-based jobs. They will be undertaking local ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Minister Shaw speaks with U.S. Presidential Envoy John Kerry
    Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw spoke yesterday with President Biden’s Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry. “I was delighted to have the opportunity to speak with Mr. Kerry this morning about the urgency with which our governments must confront the climate emergency. I am grateful to him and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes three diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Hon Nanaia Mahuta today announced three diplomatic appointments: Alana Hudson as Ambassador to Poland John Riley as Consul-General to Hong Kong Stephen Wong as Consul-General to Shanghai   Poland “New Zealand’s relationship with Poland is built on enduring personal, economic and historical connections. Poland is also an important ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Major redevelopment of Wainuiomata High School underway
    Work begins today at Wainuiomata High School to ensure buildings and teaching spaces are fit for purpose, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. The Minister joined principal Janette Melrose and board chair Lynda Koia to kick off demolition for the project, which is worth close to $40 million, as the site ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • New expert group appointed to advise Government on Oranga Tamariki
    A skilled and experienced group of people have been named as the newly established Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board by Children’s Minister Kelvin Davis today. The Board will provide independent advice and assurance to the Minister for Children across three key areas of Oranga Tamariki: relationships with families, whānau, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • COVID-19 vaccine slated for possible approval next week
    The green light for New Zealand’s first COVID-19 vaccine could be granted in just over a week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said today. “We’re making swift progress towards vaccinating New Zealanders against the virus, but we’re also absolutely committed to ensuring the vaccines are safe and effective,” Jacinda Ardern said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New ACC Board members announced.
    The Minister for ACC is pleased to announce the appointment of three new members to join the Board of ACC on 1 February 2021. “All three bring diverse skills and experience to provide strong governance oversight to lead the direction of ACC” said Hon Carmel Sepuloni. Bella Takiari-Brame from Hamilton ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Economic boost for Southland marae
    The Government is investing $9 million to upgrade a significant community facility in Invercargill, creating economic stimulus and jobs, Infrastructure Minister Grant Robertson and Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene have announced.  The grant for Waihōpai Rūnaka Inc to make improvements to Murihiku Marae comes from the $3 billion set ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Celebrating the Entry Into Force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
    [Opening comments, welcome and thank you to Auckland University etc] It is a great pleasure to be here this afternoon to celebrate such an historic occasion - the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This is a moment many feared would never come, but ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Supporting disabled people to stay connected
    The Government is providing $3 million in one-off seed funding to help disabled people around New Zealand stay connected and access support in their communities, Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni announced today. The funding will allow disability service providers to develop digital and community-based solutions over the next two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Voluntary saliva testing offered to quarantine workers from Monday
    Border workers in quarantine facilities will be offered voluntary daily COVID-19 saliva tests in addition to their regular weekly testing, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. This additional option will be rolled out at the Jet Park Quarantine facility in Auckland starting on Monday 25 January, and then to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Next steps in firearms buy-back
    The next steps in the Government’s ambitious firearms reform programme to include a three-month buy-back have been announced by Police Minister Poto Williams today.  “The last buy-back and amnesty was unprecedented for New Zealand and was successful in collecting 60,297 firearms, modifying a further 5,630 firearms, and collecting 299,837 prohibited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature projects target iconic ecosystems
    Upscaling work already underway to restore two iconic ecosystems will deliver jobs and a lasting legacy, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says.  “The Jobs for Nature programme provides $1.25 billion over four years to offer employment opportunities for people whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 recession. “Two new projects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Public Housing Plan announced
    The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government is committed to continuing its public house build programme at pace and scale. The extra 8,000 homes – 6000 public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates President Joe Biden on his inauguration
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter to both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago