Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


The Letter

The Letter

The Haps

National surges ahead of Labour. Winston faces defeat in Tauranga and in the country. Rodney's ahead in Epsom. ACT's polling is rising. Will the Greens make it? Spirallng fuel prices must affect the economy.

Nats campaign winning

National is out-campaigning Labour. Brash is looking more Prime Ministerial and Clark more shrill. It was her luggage that delayed the plane. Cullen looked stressed in the finance debate. National's bigger than expected tax plan is winning. While the media repeated Labour's line that National's one law for all was not new as a government policy it is new. As Orewa showed the policy is very popular.

Tracking polls

Labour's own tracking polls show they are in trouble. Commentators focus on National's lack of coalition allies but it may be Labour that is friendless. NZ First on the current trend will be out of parliament. On election day the Greens have never hit their average polling. In 2002 the Greens dropped from polling 8.1%, receiving 7% on election day. The Maori party is campaigning badly and its support is falling.

ACT is rising

In every MMP election a third party has come from nowhere in the last two weeks. In 1996 it was ACT who two weeks out was averaging 2.5% and got 6.1%. In 1999 the Greens two weeks out were 2.6% and got 5.2% and last election the worm turners rose from less than 1% to break the threshold. This election it looks as if ACT is the surprise. Rodney is going to win Epsom and that knowledge has caused ACT's support to rise.


An independent poll has Rodney Hide on 31%, Richard Worth on 30%, Stuart Nash (L) on 12%, others 2% and don't know 25%. Brash has sent a signal. National by putting Worth at number 16 on the party list, (he was number 44 in 1999 and 25 in 2002) has guaranteed his re-election to parliament allowing National voters to support Rodney. Clark twice last week said Labour voters should support Worth. The Letter while canvassing in Remuera Road on Saturday found one NZ First supporter, one wavering Worth supporter and the rest said "We've worked out how to vote."

Lost his mojo

The issue this election is not immigration but migration. Peters has always won a significant vote from Maori. However, this election the contest is between the Labour and the Maori parties. Winston has always been a spender and a major issue this election is tax cuts. Even the Police Association does not support his pledge to double Police numbers. His refusal to say whom he will support is losing him votes. At 4.6% if he says either Labour or National he is further below the threshold. If he says he wont support either he is no longer kingmaker and looks irrelevant.

Turn Out the key

What polls cannot tell is whether those polled will vote. Turn out in previous elections has been the centre right's advantage. ACT voters are the most likely to vote, (they waste nothing hence their concern over whether ACT would be a wasted vote). Green voters are the least likely to vote. 80 year olds nearly all vote, just 50% of 18 year olds vote. Labour governments are traditionally defeated because their base fails to vote. Voter turn out in all the old democracies is falling.

Centre Right will turn out

1996 saw a massive 88.28% turn out as people tried out MMP. In 1999 the Labour vote turned out and National voters stayed home. In 2002 Labour's vote fell but National's fell further. The total turn out was 76.78%. In the Ilam seat voter turn out in 1996 was 91.15%, in 2002 79.06%. This election the voter turn out will increase in the Maori seats helping Labour, but there are few Maori voters. Brash has motivated his base and the centre right will turn out in massive numbers in the general seats. The proportionality of parties is determined by the NZ wide list vote. We predict that in Labour's heartland, seats like Mangere, the voter turn out will continue to fall. (It was just 70.89% last election). In seats like Epsom where the turn out was 79.06% we expect it to be near 90%. Over the whole country an increase in turn out of centre right voters translates into big numbers. It has indirect effects. The third parties on the left who get split Labour voters have fewer votes to split. Last election National's poor turn out affected ACT's vote so the election day vote was below the pre-election opinion poll support. All pollsters adjust the poll figures they announce to try to allow for the turn out factor but it is just a guess. If the turn out on the right is much higher then all the polls have been under stating the right's support and over stating the left's vote. We think the turn out could turn out the Greens.

A real possibility

The Greens and NZ First, no MPs. United Future and the Progressives one MP each. Rodney wins Epsom and brings with him a number of MPs, (A Herald Digipoll at the weekend had ACT at 3%). The Maori party wins just 3 seats. National wins around 45%. The election would then be decided on whether ACT wins more seats than the Maori party!

Economic Growth

Oil at $100 a barrel will slow the world economy. Ironically growth in the deep south of America will boom as insurance and Federal money pours in to rebuild. It is the rest of the world that will feel the economic shock of Hurricane Katrina especially countries like NZ. Both of the old parties' policies are predicated on a world economy that is already very different.

Online Auction

Support ACT's online fundraising. Bid for items such as a ride in the Aquada Amphibious car , t-shirts, accommodation in NZ, Fiji and more. Go to

Our poll

Last week we asked "Will Rodney win Epsom?" 81% said yes. Let's test your skills further with two questions. "Will Peters win Tauranga?and Will NZ First pass the 5% threshold?" You picked the trend in Epsom can you do it again? Vote at poll.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Cyclone Gita: Metservice Forecasts Gita To Impact New Zealand - Be Prepared

Cyclone Gita is expected to approach New Zealand from the northwest early next week. There remains some uncertainty with regards to the speed and track of Gita, but the passage of this system across New Zealand on Tuesday and Wednesday is likely to bring a period of highly impactful severe weather.

People should be aware of the potential for coastal inundation, especially where high waves,low atmospheric pressure and strong onshore winds come together ... More>>




Commerce, Etc: Thicker Bright Line For Real Estate

Revenue Minister Stuart Nash has confirmed the bright-line test on residential property sales will be extended from two years to five years in legislation currently making its way through Parliament.More>>


Prison Inspections: Reports on Manawatu and Paremoremo Released

The Office of the Inspectorate today released reports into Manawatu Prison and Auckland Prison (Paremoremo), the first two resulting from a programme of inspections of New Zealand prisons. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Leadership Contest

National needs a new leader able to: (a) compete with, undermine and defeat a currently popular and politically adept Prime Minister; (b) define whether National now sees itself as being a traditional conservative party or a modern neo-liberal one; (c) devise a strategy that addresses National’s chronic lack of a viable coalition partner More>>


Whistle Blowers: Government To Review Law On Protection

Work has begun on a review of the Protected Disclosures Act 2000, Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins said today. More>>


Christchurch: PM Launches 100% Electric Car Share Offering

The Southern Hemisphere’s biggest deployment of pure battery electric cars and largest pure EV car sharing model was officially launched in Christchurch today by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. More>>


Carer Pay Equity: Mental Health And Addiction Workers To Be Included

Dr Clark met yesterday with unions and employers to confirm the Government has agreed to negotiate an agreement to extend the Care and Support Pay Equity Settlement to mental health and addiction support workers. More>>


Hybrid Plan: America’s Cup Village Proposal Released

The proposal incorporates elements of the Wynyard Basin option, agreed by the council in December and publicly notified last month, and the Wynyard Point variant explored by the Government. More>>


Sallies' State of the Nation: Poorest Left Behind in Economic Boom

This year’s report shows that for many New Zealanders incomes have hardly moved, welfare needs have increased and rents are rising faster than incomes. This comes despite more jobs being created and GDP rising... More>>





Featured InfoPages