Ohariu Belmont Poll Result
27 May 2002
United Future leader, Hon Peter Dunne, has announced the result of an independent opinion poll on the race for the Ohariu Belmont seat.
Mr Dunne, who has been confirmed as the United Future candidate for the seat he has held for the last 18 years, says the poll result makes a joke of National's claims that the seat is "a ripe fruit waiting to be plucked", and Labour's ambitions to turn Wellington into a "sea of red" by winning it.
The poll of 400 Ohariu Belmont voters was carried out by UMR Insight just over a week ago, and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.9%
It shows that in the race for the electorate vote 55% of voters support Mr Dunne; 24% support the Labour candidate, and 11% support the National candidate.
The poll also shows that 73% of Ohariu Belmont voters approve of Mr Dunne's performance as their MP, with 11% disapproving.
Mr Dunne has strong majority support across all age, gender, and income groups in the electorate, with those earning under $30,000 a year just as likely to support him as those earning above $70,000.
A similar poll carried out by UMR Insight for the Evening Post in June 1999 showed an almost identical result to the latest poll with 55% support for Mr Dunne; 20% support for the Labour candidate and 15% support for a National candidate, if one were to contest the seat.
At the 1999 election, Mr Dunne received 57% of the electorate votes, and Labour 22%, a majority of 12,557 for Mr Dunne.
Mr Dunne has welcomed the poll, which he describes as both an endorsement of his style and a strong incentive for the campaign ahead.
"It is clear we will retain Ohariu Belmont this year, which means every party vote will now count towards getting more United Future MPs in Parliament to provide the sensible balance the next government will need," he says.