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Pollwatch: Reid Research, 27/05/2018

Written By: - Date published: 8:32 pm, May 27th, 2018 - 88 comments
Categories: greens, labour, national, nz first, polls - Tags: , , , , , , ,

Those of you watching TV3 or scouring the web for news recently may have caught a pretty interesting poll.

The most likely result from this poll: Greens 7, Labour 56, National 57, ACT 1.In some respects, it doesn’t say anything too dramatically different than February’s Colmar Brunton poll, except it says it worse for National and New Zealand first, both. While results for minor parties aren’t yet publicly available, that looks to be roughly where most of the change has been- there’s a 3% or so lift that probably went to some combination of TOP, the Māori Party, and/or the Conservatives since last poll, where the highest of the three was registering at 1, meaning we would probably expect a similar result for at least one of them to New Zealand First.

In others, the fact that National continues to stall relative to its performance both in the election and in polls earlier in the year is clearly worrying the Opposition. Case in point, they’re spinning like crazy:

In terms of probabilities, even with NZF polling so low that statistically they’re guaranteed to be out of the picture, (more on that in a bit) National is barely gaining traction from that large boost to their fortunes gifted to them by the party threshold.

I ran my usual 2,000-simulation run based on this poll, and they only manage to get a 13.3% chance of winning if a general election returned similar results to this poll. That’s pretty negligible as chances go, especially with the fact we’re 2.5 years out from the next expected general election with no sign of an appetite to bring it forward just yet.

There is a marginally small chance here the Greens will be under threshold, of 8.4%. You’ll note this is lower than the chance of a national government- the balance of cases are where Labour and the Greens score 60 seats, but ACT wins Epsom without winning a list seat and thus breaks the tie in National’s favour. (That 0.5% of results with a tied Parliament are where National win 60 seats but ACT loses Epsom- I do include a 5% chance of that happening since being surprised by the Māori Party dropping out of Parliament this election)

Also worth noting:

There is zero chance, despite what Newshub implies, that the Greens will even look at today’s National Party as a valid coalition partner. You would need 75% of Green delegates at our AGM to agree to even consider a coalition deal from them, and the perception that we could do so tends to hurt us in polling. Implying such a deal would even be considered is pretty mischievious. Let’s note there was a strong reaction here as well:


And finally, should we really count New Zealand First out on 2.4%? Well, while I’m not necessarily assuming they’ll get back, (they polled better than this prior to 2011 and managed to fall out of Parliament) I will note that this is in line with trends under the Clark government: NZF tends to poll very poorly when it’s actually in power, but one measure to look at is the volatility of their polling- if it’s consistent within a narrow range under the threshold, that might indicate they’re genuinely there. If it’s volatile, like it was in 2008 polling, even when it’s under the threshold, combine that with their tendency to get a big pre-election boost and they may be coming back. NZF polled 2.5-4.5% throughout 2008, but managed a surprise 5.7% result on election night after 3 years in government and their Party Leader being charged with a crime. CORRECTION: Apparently I should be a bit more cautious about writing while I’m sick- I read off the 2005 results for NZ First by accident instead of the 2008 results, where they actually slipped under threshold and polling was roughly right about them, so we should be a bit more skeptical of their ability to rebound. In ’99 they also lost more than half their support after entering govt, which might suggest the lower polling here is real, assuming the volatility between the two different polls for NZF calms down. I don’t think we should assume Winston is actually out for sure just yet. What should really be worrying NZF is that they’re back to their old, low polling while in government trend and this is with Winston hanging on in Parliament. They’ve got to be doing succession planning for what happens next given his age, and the prospect of a party relying on his bluster to come from behind in the last minute getting back with any of their other MPs in charge, even Shane Jones, doesn’t really seem as likely. NZF will be hoping they can deliver wins that win back those voters lost to other small parties and to Labour over the course of this term in government, and that this is just their usual volatile in-government polling, for a party that does best in opposition.

Naturally, this should also revive debate about whether it’s appropriate to revisit the Electoral Comission’s recommendation to lower the threshold to 4%- ironically, New Zealand First seems to be the barrier to their own salvation here, as Labour has publicly endorsed the recommendation previously, and the Greens have written policy stating they want further electoral reform, but it should be due to non-partisan recommendations from the Electoral Comission, like this one. Maybe New Zealand First will have a quiet rethink of their position in the time until the next election?

Also worth briefly acknowledging is Judith Collins’ appearance in Preferred Prime Minister. To some extent this is not surprising as media have already been openly speculating she might be the alternative to a flagging leadership performance from Simon Bridges. She’s getting about the same as Winston Peters is- 4%, to Bridges’ 9%, which is still pretty low for a new National Party leader, when they normally tend to enjoy a bit of a bump with their transition press, and do better in this poll due to the comparatively larger media presence of National. While this doesn’t necessarily mean a spill is inevitable, it’s not a good look. We could probably tell more with a proper approval rating for Bridges, of course, as even Trump can manage 28% in one of those, and it’s likely a fair amount more of his party then just 9%/44% think he’s doing some degree of okay.

88 comments on “Pollwatch: Reid Research, 27/05/2018”

  1. james 1

    In your last poll watch post you had National at 1.3% chance of winning the next election. This time its 13.3%.

    I will be happy when I see the greens under 5% and staying there – Some will disagree, but hey, each to their own.

    As usual – great commentary on the poll results – thanks for the effort and time that it must take.

    • Matthew Whitehead 1.1

      Yes, I’m sure all National supporters are cheering on the possibility of eliminating parties that are perfectly healthy for our democracy and national rhetoric simply because they don’t like them. It’s not like neo-nazis in AfD are cheering on and want to steal policy from the immigration consensus between basically every other party or anything. *cue eyeroll*

      As noted in the post, most of that gain is due to the small-but-unlikely chance of the Greens also falling below threshold- NZF falling below threshold on its own doesn’t do very much for them, and this is before I’ve even factored in any lower likelihood of ACT winning Epsom due to them no longer having a deal, as ACT was critical to all of the wins where the Greens were over threshold still. It’s no longer practically impossible, but it’s also not yet worth talking about in serious terms, so don’t get too excited. It takes about 7.1% polling to eliminate the chance of going under threshold entirely, yet most parties that poll over 5% consistently manage to squeak in, and several that don’t have also made it regardless.

      • chris73 1.1.1

        “Yes, I’m sure all National supporters are cheering on the possibility of eliminating parties that are perfectly healthy for our democracy and national rhetoric simply because they don’t like them.”

        So like how the average left voter feels about Act then I guess

        • james

          I was just thinking the same thing about ACT.

          And all on here who celebrated the demise of the Maori party also.

        • Hanswurst

          The difference being that Act is really just a stalking horse for National policy. It would be possible to have a right-wing party that was more than that, but ACT isn’t it.

        • Matthew Whitehead

          The only issue of any significance where ACT has crossed the floor from National on in three years has been euthanasia. If you don’t consider them a client party of National you’re basically not paying attention.

      • alwyn 1.1.2

        You say, about the Green Party
        “small-but-unlikely chance of the Greens also falling below threshold”.
        Did you consider the fact that the Green Party routinely fails to get a vote in the General Election that is like their polling numbers in the late polls of the campaign?

        As an admittedly crude evaluation of this I took the average of all polls taken in the last month before an election and compared it to the Green vote in the actual election for each election since 2002. The numbers came from Wiki.
        The ratio of actual vote to late polls average varied from a low of 0.77 to a high of 0.97 with an overall average across all elections of 0.89.

        If you assume this would happen in an election compared to this poll the Green vote would be corrected to a number of 5.08%.
        That is very close to the cut-off threshold and I think that there is a much larger chance of the Greens missing out than you suggest. This would be if you simulated elections with a Green Party mid-vote of 5.08% instead of the 5.7% I assume you have used.
        Do you have an opinion on this?

        • Matthew Whitehead

          I think the thing is that there is a certain risk of performative or sincere but hypothetical answers to polling, and the Greens get some people who say they’d want to vote for us but don’t end up doing it. (unfortunately a lot of the groups the Greens are strongest with are less motivated to actually get out to polls, eg. younger voters, than average. There’s probably also the odd person who gets pulled back to mothership by the Labour party, too.)

          The divergence within the margin of error basically covers this phenomenon. When we’re polling around 5%, it doesn’t occur as much as it does it higher percentages, fortunately, and you will note that we outfoxed polls suggesting our demise this election, likely due to very hard last-minute work and a certain amount of tactical voting.

          • alwyn

            “we outfoxed polls suggesting our demise this election”.
            Yes indeed.
            With a month to go I was personally convinced that the Green party were gone. If you look at the polls in the second half of August the 3 of them had Greens at an average of about 5.1%. The final 3 polls, in the last week or so before polling day averaged something like 7.4%.
            In the end they got 6.3%, dropping to significantly less than their late polling number but still above the 5% threshold.
            I never thought it would happen. I suppose I was a bit like the Dewey campaign in 1948 who thought, a bit too far ahead of the election, that they were going to beat Truman, and that further polling, and serious campaigning were unnecessary.

  2. Exkiwiforces 2

    A very interesting snapshot Matthew, short of find it funny that members and supporters of the “No Mates Party” say we are a head on the polls suck you Labour. But they still can’t be able be to form Government on those numbers so who’s laughing now, so talk about a self inflicted upper- cut or sucking chest wound from the “No Mates Party”.

    • james 2.1

      “so who’s laughing now”

      Im guessing Judith.

      Labour have nothing to laugh at.

      • Nordy 2.1.1

        Except of course National – just like everybody else.

        • james

          National on 45.1% – hilarious. I can see why you are laughing.

        • Robert Guyton

          Nordy – nice swipe! National look like chumps right now and are behaving like over-sugared brats at someone else birthday party.

          • mac1

            “over-sugared brats”- nice description of the Nats. Someone else bakes the cake and they take the icing.

          • Puckish Rogue

            Agreed, we need someone to keep them in line, someone firm yet fair, dominant but not domineering, with a motherly touch but no ones soft touch, someone that gives 110% for their party but doesn’t neglect their electorate, someone intelligent but still with the common touch

            I just can’t think who…


          • Bewildered

            Confirmation bias is strong here today

      • Exkiwiforces 2.1.2

        I can’t wait for crusher to become the leader and then Jo Public will see how corrupt she is and I think there is local council missing it’s air- agitation system from its sewerage farm because she’s bloody good at spreading shit all over the place as well.

        I will H/T her for Twitford for using a mobile once they called doors, bloody muppet.

        Actually I wouldn’t be crowing to much old boy as there is a rumour doing the rounds that NZ maybe booted from 5eyes because of it lose and fast attitude/ lax and laziness towards Chinese influence in the NZ economy and also within the last NZ Government. From what I’m hearing atm NZ can’t be trusted with Trumps golfs clubs let alone anything else atm.

        Here’s looking at you Crusher, with your “No Mates Party” and along with your Chinese mates selling out NZ!

        • Draco T Bastard

          Actually I wouldn’t be crowing to much old boy as there is a rumour doing the rounds that NZ maybe booted from 5eyes because of it lose and fast attitude/ lax and laziness towards Chinese influence in the NZ economy and also within the last NZ Government. From what I’m hearing atm NZ can’t be trusted with Trumps golfs clubs let alone anything else atm.

          That wouldn’t surprise me especially given the fact that National has a Chinese spy in as an MP.

          • saveNZ

            Plus could NZ be number 17?


            Plus alll we need is a few more biological crisises such as Mycoplasma bovis, myrtle rust, PSA, wiping out billions of exports and becoming a bonanza opportunity of cheap buying, which funny enough many of the biological pathogens seem to be appearing on our shores only in the last 10 years… and with all the losses overseas with Chinese and South American farm ‘partnerships’, OZ and Singapore owning our commercial real estate, and now our government and councils giving/selling cheap water rights, prime land to ‘solve the housing crisis’ and getting in the hock for all the infrastructure so that Pita Pit type multinational franchises, commercial and development companies can house more low wage workers, low wage food type businesses and wealthy satellite families. Oh don’t forget the billion dollar sports stadiums and the America’s cup to pay for!

            So US might be a basket case and I don’t believe in 5 eyes, but they have a point that NZ is becoming a liability with it’s government decision making and potentially becoming controlled by debt book diplomacy.

        • Matthew Whitehead

          Since Trump’s win I’m a lot less optimistic about what it means for New Zealand if she gets to lead the National Party. It might shatter the National Party in two if their liberals grow a spine again, something I regard as being healthy in the long term, but it also might radicalize authoritarian centrists who actually want a moronic candidate that Just Wants To Be Tough/aka. Is A “Strong Leader.” (see: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/05/23/opinion/international-world/centrists-democracy.html)

          Worst case is that she somehow pulls NZF away from Labour, but I honestly am not sure that works because they’re actually in a lot less competition with Labour for votes than they would be with a Collins-style National Party.

        • james

          “Actually I wouldn’t be crowing to much old boy as there is a rumour doing the rounds that NZ maybe booted from 5eyes because of it lose and fast attitude/ lax and laziness towards Chinese influence in the NZ economy and also within the last NZ Government. From what I’m hearing atm NZ can’t be trusted with Trumps golfs clubs let alone anything else atm.

          Here’s looking at you Crusher, with your “No Mates Party” and along with your Chinese mates selling out NZ!”

          Perhaps you should read a little.

          here is the headline for you “China’s communists fund Jacinda Ardern’s Labour Party”


          • One Anonymous Bloke

            For a more balanced view I suggest you have a listen to Peter Mattis’ interview on Morning Report today.

            • james

              “For a more balanced view I suggest you listen to somebody who I agree with” FIFY.

              Geesh – you must be channelling Ed this morning.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Peter Mattis is the ex-CIA guy whose Congressional testimony forms the basis of The Herald’s story.

                You were saying?

          • Exkiwiforces

            But did you read the link inside the NZ Herald btw? A few Security and Intelligent blogs which I’m a member of have gone nuts over the fact that NZ maybe boot from 5 Eyes due the dealings of the “No Mates Party” which is cause over 95% of the recent issues/ dealings with China in the last 9yrs not the Col of Labour/ Greens and NZF.

            You want the truth? You can’t handle the truth because it leads all the way back to National Government and not the Labour Col.

            • james

              Of course I read it – thats how I know you are either having trouble understanding it or are blinded by hatred of national.

              But all good.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                …anything on China that was briefed to Bill English was briefed to Mr. Yang Jian…

                Excerpt from Peter Mattis’ testimony to congress. Is he “blinded by hatred of National”?

                • Wayne

                  But it would never happen like that.
                  No Prime Minister I have known (from either Labour or National) would ever give a full intelligence briefing to a backbench MP.
                  So Mattis is plain wrong.
                  Bill English in common with other PMs would have just given commonly understood information, not sensitive intelligence.

                  • dukeofurl

                    Essentially thats correct of course.

                    However there is good evidence Col Dr Jian was briefed on various items when Key went to China and took him along !!

                    Yang played an unusually prominent role for a backbench MP when accompanying former Prime Minister John Key on formal visits to China in 2013 and 2016.

                    In the more recent trip Yang is pictured seated at the top table – alongside Key and the Ministers for trade and primary industries – in meetings at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People opposite a Chinese delegation including Xi Jinping, the powerful General Secretary of the Communist Party of China.

                    In the earlier trip Yang boasted in a video blog of being in attendance when Key met Chinese premier Li Keqiang. “I was there, and I witnessed the meting. Very, very exciting,” Yang said.

                    Diplomatic sources raised concerns about the level of involvement Yang had in these high-level meetings, as well as likely access to the formal briefing document prepared for John Key ahead of the trip outlining New Zealand and China’s position on likely topics of discussion.


              • Exkiwiforces

                If you have read it, then you would’ve seen this?

                “With respect to the reactions, in New Zealand, both the last prime minister, Bill English, and Jacinda Ardern, have denied that there’s a problem at all, and although the current prime minister has said that the attempts to intimidate and to steal materials from scholar Anne- Marie Brady will be investigated, that’s a far cry from any sort of productive action when you have people who have lied on immigration forms that are now sitting as members of parliament.”

                And this-

                “HEARING CO-CHAIR TALENT: Mr. Mattis, you
                said that you noted that New Zealand is part of the Five Eyes arrangement, and you, I think you said in your oral testimony that the United States should consider that on an ongoing basis, and I think the suggestion here is that there is some risk that they may have been compromised to the point that perhaps we shouldn’t continue that arrangement.
                Am I reading you correctly that that’s an option we ought to take into account, and how high would you assess the risk?

                MR. MATTIS: The answer is yes, that’s precisely what I was implying, that it should be considered on an ongoing basis, and the way some of what was described to me is that, yes, some of these individuals had not, don’t have direct access to the product of NZSIS or the Ministry of Defense, but because they were close to the prime minister, in the case of Bill English, that anything on China that was briefed to Bill English was briefed to Mr. Yang Jian, and therefore it may not be sort of official day-to-day access, but in terms of the conversations, the briefings, it was entirely present within the system.
                And I think because it has gotten very close to the political core, one of the major, one of the major fundraisers for Jacinda Ardern’s party has United Front links, that you have to say this is close enough to the central political core of the New Zealand system that we have to think about whether or not they take action and what kinds of action, what do they do to reduce the risk, because especially once, once it involves members of parliament, it requires the prime minister to make a decision themselves of whether or not there’s an investigation of them.”

                I’ve cut the Taiwan question out, but funding issue is the same that is happening in Oz atm with both major parties getting out up in it and it now appears the same thing is happening in NZ as well. But my fellow colleagues and myself are saying the rot started with the last Government with Crusher, Key, Bill, now the funding issues of the Labour Campaign and we think with a bit of digging we should find links to Chinese funding links to National.”

                Note- Access to a couple Security and Intelligence Blogs is via invitation as they require full disclosure of past and current political activities after your professional background has been vetted. To say the least with current and expat NZ ‘s we quite shock at what happened under National and are closely the watching Col with it dealings with China.

          • Draco T Bastard

            He also said National followed the law on political donations and had seen no sign of improper influence.

            “New Zealand has strong international relations and robust processes in place to ensure our political processes are completely independent of any other country.”

            Well, that’s obviously untrue as we have a Chinese spy in the National caucus.

            Massey University’s Professor Rouben Azizian said it would be naive for New Zealanders to believe an expanding power like China would be satisfied simply with trade.

            “On the other extreme, we shouldn’t become a toy for America’s ‘Great Game’ in China.”

            This is also self-obviously true.

            There’s three points that that article highlights:
            1. Foreign ownership of NZ land, businesses and homes. People who have ownership here are going to get influence. Thus it is proper to ban foreign ownership.
            2. Foreign money in our politics. This needs to be banned outright. No money for our political system should come from outside NZ. That includes stopping it coiming from NZ citizens living outside of NZ.
            3. The fact that we allow permanent residents to vote. This should be stopped ASAP. Only NZ citizens should be allowed to vote. 3a) Should we consider banning dual citizenship as well?

            • alwyn

              You propose that
              “Well, that’s obviously untrue as we have a Chinese spy in the National caucus”.

              It probably won’t be news to you but you should be aware that there are 3 Chinese spies in the Labour Caucus and 1 in each of the Green and New Zealand First ones. There is also a Russian spy in each of them.

              I could tell you who they are but protocol among the Intelligence Community is such that I would then have to follow the practice explained in “The Hound of the Baskervilles” by Conan Doyle.
              “Oh, Mr. Holmes, I would love to tell you, but then, of course, I’d have to kill you. ”
              Sorry about that.

      • Matthew Whitehead 2.1.3

        Collins is polling at 3.5%, and people have known she’s gunning for leader since before Key departed. She’s unlikely to have much more luck even if she does spill Simon. I am informed that is a similar rate to her vote in National’s caucus, where she managed to pull in just one other MP.

        As I’ve noted before, preferred PM is basically a junk name-recognition poll that is very unfair to the Leader of the Opposition- moreso to Labour leaders than to National ones given that National raises more funds than it can spend during the election campaign and thus can afford to boost their leader even in Opposition, but it is still an unfair poll to Bridges even after that is considered. It is highly likely in reality that Bridges has at least a 30% approval rating. (that isn’t me being generous, it’s me saying I think he’s probably more popular than Trump, lol. Anything significantly below 40% is considered pretty disastrous overseas, so that would still be Political Death Throes territory- unfortunately all we can do is guess!) It’s also unreliable in tracking how a new PM is doing because Labour PMs don’t tend to get a realistic rating until they’re already in government, so we can’t track approval raises and declines against their time in opposition.

        The last time we had a realistic comparative approval rating at any sort was the last Roy Morgan, which does an overall goverment confidence rating, which IIRC was up three points from the National Government? Of course that was pretty early days, so hopefully they break their hiatus(?) soon so we know what’s going on.

        • Exkiwiforces

          I was thinking along the same lines as you, that having Crusher as the leader of the No Mates Party may cause them split down the Neo Con Lib and the more Liberal lines with some of the regional/ rural vote going to NZF, which furthers dilutes the No Mates Party vote.

          • bwaghorn

            Na I don’t think they would split . What makes the right strong is only a couple of things are important to them (money and power) so in general they have far more in common than the left. And that is why they run such a tight ship

            • Exkiwiforces

              But didn’t some of the regional/rural vote from the last election go over to NZF and could it do the same once Jonesy get Regional Development going and they start seeing the benefits? There by reducing the “No Mates Party” Party vote or even winning of those seats in the next election? As NZF remains me of good stayer in Melbourne Cup that was coming last and winning at the end by half length.

  3. Sanctuary 3

    Surely the main lesson to be learned from this poll is how hopelessly polarised New Zealand is and has been since forever.

    Recent utterances of the reactionary middle class – be it Mark Richardson’s pitiless, unreflective selfishness or the emboldened racism of one Simon Clark of Devonport – should inform us that 45% of the country literally don’t give a shit about the poor, equality, race relations or the state of the public health system. 45% of New Zealanders have not progressed beyond the politics of colonisation, at ill at ease settler class that want to wall themselves off on the North Shore or in a gated community in Queenstown and engage in that particularly soulless, exploitative provincial form of Smallville grasping materialism they consider their birthright.

    The biggest problem for the left is that it’s political wing, since the destruction of the working class as a political force, is largely made up of liberal bourgeoisie drawn from the same middle class as their reactionary opponents. This “left” has a craven desire for it’s policies to be at least tolerated by the reactionaries they share their summer BBQs with at the bach. They seek political appeasement from the fundamentally unappeasable in the myth that consensus driven political reform is the only sort of reform that “sticks”.

    Actually, history should tell us that in this country, an irreducible 40-45% of the population is truculently reactionary. In it’s first election in 1938 40% of New Zealanders voted for National – despite the stunning successes of the Savage government – and nothing has changed much since, except that the left has lost it’s taste for a fight and gone all mushy for the trappings of consumption.

    The left needs to get into it’s head that the secret to “sticky” policies isn’t to be found in appeasing a smug and self-righteous middle class. It is in getting 61 seats and keeping it that way for a decade or more. Then National’s 45% can go fuck themselves, for all I care.

    • Hanswurst 3.1


      • greywarshark 3.1.1

        I am afraid that you are right sanctuary. Actually, history should tell us that in this country, an irreducible 40-45% of the population is truculently reactionary. (Though as Matthew W says National actually represents about 35% of NZ voters.) This happens because we have passed on through families the 19th century thinking of our colonial past. To change, modernise and enlighten us we needed more than home education, but to be taught about thinking, and understanding ourselves, our country and the systems used to run our society, our politics, our philosophies, and prepare us for the advanced society we supposed we would be.

        Our education system has mainly been vocational with some higher educational aspirations, and a bit of Latin and modern languages to show that we have Culture. And the regular Rhodes Scholar etc to carry on the Rutherford tradition that we are big thinkers among the best. But that is just sending a champion out into the world while the rest of us get on with tilling the soil and being clerks to those who have achieved wealth through alcohol, land, adapting new technology like ships carrying frozen lamb to Britain, milking machines enabling expansion to larger herds of cows. A few have sparked new and successful ventures, kiwifruit, venison etc but in our moves to change to more than agricultural-based along narrow, historical lines, which would provide a base for employment of most in the country, we have given away the opportunities for a mess of pottage.

        We don’t understand how democracy works, why it should be regarded as better than other forms of politics. We don’t understand economics and ex Governor of the Reserve Bank disagrees with the mighty governor of the bank of Britain. We don’t learn how to manage ourselves, when sharing is right, how making a fair input into the country is right, the difference between private debt on an individual basis and a country-wide statistic compared to government debt. When we do try meeting and working out a new way, the meeting will be dominated by one or two speakers. The facts don’t get faced, or when they are, the outcome ignores them. Our whole system is so scrappy that we lurch from crisis to crisis. People are not used to a participatory form of government, have not received an education teaching how to research and marshall facts, how to get an overview of a problem, how to consider and compare systems, how to follow directions for good outcomes, how to critique and make changes to improve systems in practical ways. How to problem solve and commit ourselves to making a system work, not wait for others to make decisions and end up relying on the kindness of others.

        We can be sold a revolutionary economic system and other systems for government services by a country that makes good films and has the sort of money we admire. We charge through with projects that are similar to what other bigger countries are doing, despite them being obviously impractical and unwise. We will do anything for money really, either sell our grandmothers to assist profit of retirement home businesses, or not fund their care if we so wish so that their needs get ignored and they have no choice as to how they live and when they die.

        A few people, a small percentage, put time into thinking how things could and should be both practically and ideally and working with others to effect structural change. What passes for consideration for people and conditions is often sentimental and emotional, that bypasses the real cause of the problem or deprivation and absolves the giver from anything other than a one-minute attention span of thinking about the real issues affecting people, our whole country and then the world.

    • Exkiwiforces 3.2

      Sanctuary, you are so correct and especially with your last sentence.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.3

      45% of the country

      Wrong. How many times does it have to be pointed out that the National Party’s share of registered voters does not equal the same percentage of the population as a whole?

    • Matthew Whitehead 3.4

      I don’t disagree. Labour’s broadly centrist strategy isn’t working to deliver policy wins, and instead is wasting the opportunity to repair damage done by National and implement policies that will make them popular in their own right.

      That said, I’m with OAB: 45% of voters is not the same thing as 45% of the country. Even controlling for enrolled non-voters, National represents about 35.5% of the electorate. We don’t know what those non-voters are after and why they’re not voting ofc, so it’s a little tricky to rely on them, but let’s never forget that even a “landslide vote” for a particular party is unlikely to represent more than a plurality of enrolled voters.

    • bwaghorn 3.5

      45% don’t give a shit is a bit high I reckon . As some are just uningaged tribal Nat voters or and some are just sucked in by the nats ability to get them to believe they are actually good at running a country .

  4. Incognito 4

    Both Paula B and Simeon B tweeted about the short-lived budget honeymoon; another meme in the making? Nah, it’s the same old, same old from National’s lacklustre opposition bench. Maybe stage another walkout that will lift the polls …

    Newshub is playing along nicely from the script too or are they just doing their job …

  5. patricia bremner 5

    Labour have increased their support, and with mates are chugging along. Next poll will have budget realities which will help. Many Nats are bitter, I’m currently seeing that close at hand. I’m with some entitled rellies and hearing all about it.!! Can’t choose family!!

    • cleangreen 5.1

      The daily Blog; “Children’s Commissioner Judge Andrew Becroft calls for a fairer, egalitarian New Zealand” Frank Macskasy,

      Yes yes yes please.

      Labour needs now to step up and fulfil their promise;

      QUOTE “Be a kinder, gentler caring inclusive Government that will give everyone a voice and be heard”. – Jacinda Ardern; candidate as leader the Labour party – ‘Speech in Auckland Town Hall September 2017.’

  6. Puckish Rogue 6

    National increased their support more, NZFirst are well below the 5% threshold and the Greens dropped and are getting a bit too close to that threshold then they’d like

    And Jude entered the leadership debate on quite a healthy number as well so all good 🙂

    • Matthew Whitehead 6.1

      It depends where you set the bar. Recently, yes, National have gained a little more than Labour. If you go back to the election, Labour have had meteoric gains since then- you’ll note national’s trick: They’ve taken the start date for themselves at the election, and Labour at the budget, lol. The gain since the last RR poll is so small on both sides as to be effectively stalled- they’ve hardly benefitted from NZ First’s anemic polling here, suggesting at least half of these are core NZ First voters that are dropping off.

      Entering preferred PM almost literally means nothing. I imagine if people started floating Amy Adams as potentially rolling Bridges she’d get the same sort of bump. It’s not good news for Simon Bridges, but mainly because he’s stalled- if he had bumped up his support significantly since last time, Collins’ entry would be a non-story.

      • james 6.1.1

        “Labour have had meteoric gains since then”

        yes – but all at the expense of its collation partners.

        • cleangreen

          Spin spin spin.

        • Robert Guyton

          Labour’s meteoric rise has been most damaging to…National, who now perch, like demented parrots, on the Opposition benches, screeching.

        • Matthew Whitehead

          No, it’s a bit early to say that in terms of the long-run trend. The Greens are about where they were at the election, and NZ First are bobbing up and down. What Labour appears to have done is either directly or indirectly absorbed a large part of the vote not represented in Parliament- only their recent rise since the last poll can really be attributed to eating NZ First’s support.

          National’s slow rise recently could arguably be attributed to eating ACT’s party vote too, although they may have taken some votes off the Conservatives as well. So to the extent that the phenomenon you’re referring to is happening, it’s happening on both sides.

      • Puckish Rogue 6.1.2

        Ok so heres the election results vs last poll


        National 44.45% v 45.1%
        Labour 36.89% v 42.6%
        Greens 6.27% v 5.7%
        NZFirst 7.20% v 2.4%

        I’m glad NZFirst is heading south, if I had to choose between National/NZfirst or Labour/Greens I’d choose Labour/Greens

        However the Greens still haven’t bounced back from their MT debacle and are heading the wrong and if Labour swallow a bit more of the Green vote then things could get veeery interesting

        • Matthew Whitehead

          Honestly the continued mediocre polling for the Greens compared to our time in opposition is likely more reflective of the difference of being in opposition with a dysfunctional Labour Party and a professional-looking Green one, to being in government after having suffered our own drama. MT may to some extent still be in the public’s mind as a reason not to vote Green, but the feedback the party has been getting has all been on other topics, so those who are worried about that aren’t really talking to us anymore. Most likely what this represents is the extent to which a popular Labour leader has made it difficult to retain our soft support.

          It’s also a bit difficult to compare a party that was at genuine risk of being under threshold before the election to their election result- there is a lot of tactical voting that goes on at that 4%ish point where people think you’re close enough to bump over, so I’d be cautious of a naïve comparison to election results there.

          NZF probably didn’t have the same factors in play, so you’re likely safe to note their 4.8% drop in terms of an absense of strategic party voting, although again, I’d be cautious in their case because of the volatility in their recent poll results. RR has had them low, but CB has had them over-threshold. I’d wait to see where they settle down: as always, polls are more valuable as a trend than as a snapshot.

          • Puckish Rogue

            I’ve found the Greens interesting in that a lot of their votes appear (I may be wrong) appear to come from the more affluent suburbs

            • Matthew Whitehead

              There may be some correlation, sure, but I think it’s pretty indirect. The factor you’re probably looking at is that some of those affluent suburbs are more likely to be liberal than other areas, and urban liberals love the Greens. 😉

              There’s a lot of policy to like for people who are less affluent in the Green platform, it just tends to be stuff the media doesn’t find “sexy” enough to cover, or doesn’t fit with their narrative about the party, so we’re not doing as well in reaching out to people who we’d like to have on our side in that regard. It’s also probably a symptom of the party slowly trying to rectify the fact that it started off very white, lol, so we’re still trying to get inroads into areas where more people of colour live, and to get them to actively participate in the party and help develop policy and campaigns that speak more directly to them.

              • Puckish Rogue

                So the Greens are basically seen as a middle class urban party but they looking to be stronger in more working class areas?

                • Matthew Whitehead

                  They already are strong there in policy, and always have been, it’s a question of matching that ambition to people actually realising we believe in those things too, and in many cases we want stronger action on it than Labour does, and believing we actually care about their communities and will fight for them.

        • saveNZ

          @PR – Thanks for the stats. Very interesting.

          NZ First as soon as they supported TPPA they were gonna lose a lot of votes – and the immigration promises have not been followed through.

          Greens do not seem to know that many people supporting them are liberal and home owners so constant focus on beneficiaries and renters while worthwhile, is not looking at the bigger picture such as how immigration is effecting the shortages, therefore they are looking like taking an ideological position rather than practical one.

          How sustainable is it, for the state to sell state land to build more and more houses giving the profits to private development interests (in particular if they plan to sell them off to individuals rather than rent them to the poorer folks) and increase benefits when we still have 60,000 + migrants net coming in from last year, and god knows how many work permits and their needs to be more hospital and schools built to prevent overcrowding.. Things ain’t looking too rosy in various sectors that are just Ponzi schemes. The government needs to grow the jobs, diversify and have the infrastructure in place and the Greens need to highlight more of their policy such as not allowing the sale of assets overseas for example and TPPA which although might be Green policy is not the ones they regularly are in the news for in the same way they are for sound bytes on housing or beneficiaries.

          Then look at why Maori are now not the 2nd largest demographic in NZ and what the long term trend might be, especially if they lose the ability to have Maori electoral seats.

          Green appear to be making things worse by obsessing about bits in the middle and not at the top end and some of the policy might be inadvertently making the poor poorer, and they will have to pay the biggest share of the costs (housing, low wages and shortages in health/education) of how Natz have structured this country via free trade, companies and trusts and corruption and immigration as a means to get more right leaning votes!

          Yes the Greens are not the problem and were right about many things, but they are not necessarily shouting some of their more appealing messages to the liberal homeowners, from the rooftops either.

          A lot of beneficiaries focus is on survival and worrying about politics just doesn’t come into it. Having so many 20 something yo as MP’s on $150k plus benefits with seemingly little work experience, is not relatable to either beneficiaries or students experience or even the majority of the public, as nice those people might be.

          Then giving the Natz their questions???? When they gave each MP ‘things to be in charge of.’ Better to have some big issues of the week/month and all of the Greens be champions of that and support each other.

    • Robert Guyton 6.2

      There are two people in New Zealand who regularly, publicly proclaim their adoration for Judith Collins: Slater and Rogue; has anyone ever seen those “two” together in the same room?
      (Makes me feel queasy ).

      • Puckish Rogue 6.2.1

        People are now starting to feel safe enough that they can feel they can come out of the closet and support Jude

        • Robert Guyton

          A closet? Jude has only 4 supporters? You, Slater and two others…must be a little close fetid in there at times…

      • Matthew Whitehead 6.2.2

        I’m pretty sure PR isn’t Cam Slater.

  7. Enough is Enough 7

    Its a strange poll to be honest.

    NZ First has lost half its support from the election. That is very understandable as the conservative side that was scared of the Greens are probably upset with the direction that the Party is now going.

    Labour and National are not really moving. This confuses me as after 7 months the sky hasn’t fallen, so I thought National’s soft support would have moved to the government. Their scaremongering is hollow and our national problems are beginning to get fixed by the government.

    In any case, there is next to no chance of them forming a government on these numbers so happy days.

    • Puckish Rogue 7.1

      Sure and if an election was being held next month I’d agree with you but theres over 2 years to go which is a heckofa long time to go and to make predictions which may, or may not come to pass 🙂

    • Matthew Whitehead 7.2

      I expect what’s happened is that Labour has been drawing off some of that soft support, but National’s been continuing to get some of its “home to mothership” phenomenon going, and now the two are struggling over their usual battleground of middle NZ.

      It’s definitely interesting that National haven’t collapsed immediately, however I think a lot of this is that they’ve put up a brave face of being united and Just As Competentish As They Were In Government, but it’s beginning to slip as we see the knives coming out- both for Labour and for themselves- and one of the key metrics the public tends to vote on is how coherent a party looks as a team, and Labour right now is looking pretty alright, while National is on the verge of falling apart. As with seeing where NZ First stabilises, I’d give it time.

      • Puckish Rogue 7.2.1

        I am getting a tad…frustrated with Nationals policy of attacking every single thing Labour does, didn’t work for Labour and it won’t work for National

        I’d like to see National target a couple of areas and go for those, every question time should see a variation of the question “how many kiwibuild houses have been built” for example

        • Matthew Whitehead

          Yes, I agree that would be a more sensible strategy, however you won’t see it under either Bridges (who can’t control his caucus) or Collins. (who wouldn’t want to even if she could) Adams might be competent enough to pull National together into some sort of cohesive strategy rather than blustering rage at their entitlement being upset, but we won’t know unless there’s a spill, so… *shrug.*

  8. saveNZ 8

    When NZ First stopped putting NZ First, they might become a casualty.

    aka when NZ First sold out with TPPA and have gone quiet on immigration (debt book diplomacy?) and seem more interested in giving wealthier plant owners more freebies in the provinces than those who are struggling business owners or workers or retiree’s, and the logs get the rail way trains while Kiwis passengers are left out, I can see why NZ First has become irrelevant.

    The whole point was that they were harder than Labour and National on these issues!

    • Matthew Whitehead 8.1

      NZF honestly has everything it could reasonably ask for on Immigration. Labour basically agrees with it, and as I said earlier in the thread, we have an actual Neo Nazi party in Germany who want to steal their immigration policy, and the US republicans can’t get a policy like ours even though they want it, (they call it a “points system”) because it’s considered too discriminatory to fly.

  9. Cinny 9

    I doubt whether simon will retain leadership for the 2020 election, but then, who else do they have to choose from apart from the polarising judith?

    Will they be able to even reach double figures in the preferred PM poll by then?

    Northcote will be interesting.

    • saveNZ 9.1

      Simon Bridges is just a stand in, until they find someone better.

    • Matthew Whitehead 9.2

      I doubt it, but they’ll be happy they’re hanging on to that 45-ish% of the vote regardless of leader traction, and will just do what they can to try and trash NZF and the Greens.

  10. Grantoc 10

    Whats interesting about this poll and other recent polls is the divergence between the leader’s poll rating and their respective party’s rating.

    Typically in polls if the leaders poll rating is high, then that party’s poll rating also goes up. Similarly the other way – when the leaders rating goes down, so does the parties. This hasn’t happened in recent polls.

    For this reason Bridges leadership is probably not under threat; whereas could Arden’s be if Labour’s party vote doesn’t lift? Probably not; but stranger things have happened.

    • Matthew Whitehead 10.1

      Labour’s vote has lifted tremendously under Ardern, they’re probably all treating her like she walks on water right now, lol, as there are clear indications in how the Government reacted after the election that Labour had expected to lose, but were holding out hope of hanging in with the help of NZF.

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