The latest Roy Morgan poll has Labour+Greens neck and neck with National again on 45.5%. The trend is quite clear just looking at the Roy Morgan graphs. National is going down, Labour+Greens is going up. And when you look at the key levels that the two sides have to achieve, the change since the election is dramatic.
For 3 years from the beginning of 2009 to the end of 2011, National went below 48% – the percentage needed to govern alone – only twice (the first two polls). It averaged 52% over those 3 years. In 2012, National has managed to get above 48% only twice our of 13 polls and is averaging 46%.
Labour+Greens, on the other hand averaged 40% last term and polled above 43% (the amount needed to govern with another possible partner like NZF) only once. This term, they are averaging 44% and have only gone under 43% only 3 times. The Greens are the big success story, they had averaged 8% last term, only getting over 12% for the first time in the final poll. Now, they’re averaging 13% and have gone below 12% only once.
And, yes, that does mean Labour’s average is slightly down this term compared to last, but it is at least up on the disaster of the second half of 2011, and the trend is pretty clear – in fact, the Greens’ growth has stalled in the last three months while Labour’s has kept on going.
The other Roy Morgan metric that will have National’s spin doctors sweating is the right direction/wrong direction number. With a score of 100 meaning the same percentage of people approve of the direction the government is leading the country in as don’t, the current scores are still positive but much much less so than 3 years ago, or even 6 months ago. A full 10% of the population has flipped from ‘right direction’ to ‘wrong direction’ so far this year, which closely tracks the 10% shift from the right parties to thee left parties.
I guess they got tired of waiting for the brighter future.