- Date published:
7:38 am, April 9th, 2020 - 120 comments
Categories: election 2020, elections, jacinda ardern, labour, MMP, national, paula bennett, politicans, same old national, uncategorized - Tags:
It cannot be much fun being a National Party MP right now. The Prime Minister is receiving international acclaim for her handling of the Covid-19 pandemic. She has acted decisively and quickly and there is a cautious optimism that New Zealand may be able to stamp the disease out, as opposed to slow down its spread. If she succeeds, and it is by no means certain, she will be right up there with Micky Savage in terms of public adulation.
Meanwhile National’s leader is responding to the crisis by choosing to drive between Tauranga and Wellington to take part in Zoom conferences. His claim that it was because of Tauranga’s poor internet has been met with derision. If Wellington was the place to be he should have set up there, just as the Prime Minister has.
There are rumours of a UMR poll that has National at 35%. That could mean a loss of 14 seats. It can’t be much fun being in National’s caucus right now. It runs the risk of electorate MPs changing tack and going for the electorate vote only as everyone scrambles for not enough life boats. I have seen this happen before. It is not pretty.
So National must be preying for a delay in the election in the hope their fortunes change. And in a sign of particular weakness it is now publicly talking about delaying the election.
National’s deputy leader and campaign chair Paula Bennett said the government and opposition needed to discuss in the weeks ahead whether 19 September was a realistic date.
“I must say that even in the last couple of days I’ve just been wondering just how ready would the public be for a September 19 election and is it fair to them and fair to our whole democracy system to be asking them to go through that,” she said.
Bennett said she wanted serious time and thought given to any alternative voting methods.
“I do think there’s other ways of people actually voting but as I say I do think being engaged in an election and making sure they have the right information is something that has to be thought through really carefully.”
Having said this I accept there are issues and the matter will have to be considered seriously. But I can’t help but think that National’s publicly raising the issue is directly related to some pretty dire polling it is currently getting.