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Statistics Data release – new North Island seat proposed

Written By: - Date published: 11:27 am, October 7th, 2013 - 16 comments
Categories: election 2014, electoral commission - Tags:

The census night population data result has now been released.  There will be one new electorate in the North Island, the number of South Island seats is set by law at 16 and the number of Maori electorates will remain at 7.  Overall the population increased by 214,000 but faster growth in the North Island has resulted in the extra seat.

Now begins the difficult job of positioning the seat and the changes will be felt mostly in Auckland, particularly in the seats of New Lynn and Maungakiekie.  Both seats occupy pinch points in the istmus and the change of boundaries is particularly pronounced there.

Auckland Central, Epsom, Mt Albert and Tamaki are likely to contract and New Lynn may lose the Titirangi to Whatipu strip to Waitakere.

Further south Papakura is likely to contract and shed some of its rural area.  Judith Collins majority would be threatened if this was the case.  It is also likely that Manurewa will be affected.

Overall the reshuffling will be pronounced and Auckland MPs will all keenly await the draft boundary changes.

UPDATE:  A closer look at the figures suggests that the new seat can be squeezed into the Auckland region from between Rodney to the North and Hunua to the South.  Auckland Central will contract rather dramatically as it is 10,675 over quota.  Hunua and Helensville will also have to contract in size so there could be a new Istmus seat.

16 comments on “Statistics Data release – new North Island seat proposed ”

  1. Tamati 1

    It will be interesting to see if the Greens really push for a seat this election. Obviously it’s the party vote that counts, but having a strong local member could help them really push up their vote into the 30s and even 40s in the electorate they hold. A new electorate in Auckland’s inner suburbs could be a viable target, it all depends where the lines are drawn.

    • Naturesong 1.1

      ” .. it all depends where the lines are drawn”

      Thankfully with MMP any gerrymandering gets offset by the party vote.

      Reducing the temptation to corrupt the process of drawing up electorate bountries is one of the main advantages of MMP that doesn’t get mentioned often.

      That said, I’m sure the National party sees this as an opportunity and is hard at work figuring out how to subvert democracy.

      The Greens party list process is robust and produced excellent MP’s (apart from one MP who seems to suffer from foot ‘n mouth) for the current term so getting an electoral seat would be icing.

      • Tamati 1.1.1

        Gerrymandering is an awful practise. Just look at the congressional boundaries of Texas or Pennsylvania if you want to see an example. It is arguably the root cause of the current hyper-partisanism in the US right now.

        I think however the Greens could actually move to being a more mainstream party and really cement themselves as a party of governance if they could pick up an electorate or two. Being a local member enables an MP to interact with a community in ways a list MP can’t.

  2. Mondograss 2

    With Helensville, East Coast Bays and Rodney all being well over quota you’d have to go odds on for an Upper Harbour seat I think. Shove Helensville over to the western side of the harbour and run the new seat between SH1 and upper harbour from Bayview up into Rodney. That takes in a good chunk of Glenfield which would be fairly winnable, and all of Albany, which wouldn’t be.

  3. finbar 3

    You would think that the new seat will be within the most densely populated area,and that would be Auckland.There was also mention of cutting back on list members,how many im not sure.

    What the Labour strategists should be doing now, is getting their provincial candidates more involved with the local issues effecting their communities, along with Labours vision for the future to raise their profile, rather than laying back waiting for the six weeks hustings run.For it is within the provinces, that the winning will take place.

    • QoT 3.1

      There was also mention of cutting back on list members,how many im not sure.

      If we get one more electorate seat, we lose one list seat so the total (ignoring any overhang) is always 120.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        Yep, totally crazy that. The number of list seats need to go up at the same time as electorate seats.

  4. Tracey 4

    Has south island pop dropped. I know this is a politicial no-no but why not just drop one from there if it has.

  5. Has south island pop dropped. I know this is a politicial no-no but why not just drop one from there if it has.

    No – it just hasn’t grown as quickly as the North Island population has.

    As for why not drop an electorate from the South Island … because the Electoral Act says that there must be 16 (in a section that requires a 75% majority in Parliament to change). That fixed number is then the pivot that the overall calculation of electorate seats turns on.

    • ScottGN 5.1

      I was wondering how the increase of an electorate seat and corresponding decrease of a list seat impacts proportionality in the parliament? At what point does the Electoral Commission stop swapping list seats for electorate seats and instead recommends an overall increase of seats in the parliament to accommodate a growing population?

      • In its review of MMP, the Electoral Commission recommended imposing a maximum 60:40 split between electorate and list seats (i.e. if Parliament remains at 120, a 72:48 split in seats). This got rejected, along with everything else it recommended.

        The Government’s Constitutional Review is looking at the overall size of Parliament. I think the chances of it recommending an increase in MPs is precisely zero.

  6. amirite 6

    Maurice Williamson has been quick to diss the Auckland Unitary Plan because the statistics show that the population growth in Auckland this year was lower than expected. As usual the Nats are only looking at short-time goals, when it”s been predicted that the population of Auckland will grow by another million by 2030.
    A bit like saying that because the last year’s winter was particularly cold, there’s no AGW.

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