Meh. National has race-baited over water rights to win back some of its wavering lower-middle class Pakeha support. It’s won some of that support back. For now. The thing about turning tides is that not every wave, or even every set of waves for some time, reaches less far up the beach than the one lowest before. Within each cycle there are dips and spikes due to events. Doesn’t change the cycle.
That said, while there’s a voter cycle, it’s not driven by anything as dependable and independent as gravity. Labour’s got to go out there and deserve those swing votes every single day. It’s been too easy to look at the last six months, see Labour rising with no apparent effort and say ‘if these trends continue’.
Key’s race-baiting proves he won’t go down easy. He’ll fight for that crucial 5% with every dirty trick in the book. These polls will be a wake up call to Labour.
They’ll win with the Greens in 2014 but the lesson is nothing good comes free.