Search

 

Cablegate: Labour has Dominated the Stage, but Not the Polls

VZCZCXRO4036
RR RUEHDT RUEHPB
DE RUEHWL #0138 1130102
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 220102Z APR 08
FM AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5195
INFO RUEHNZ/AMCONSUL AUCKLAND 1654
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 5159
RUEHDN/AMCONSUL SYDNEY 0663
RHHMUNA/CDR USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RUCNARF/ASEAN REGIONAL FORUM COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS WELLINGTON 000138

SIPDIS

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

STATE FOR STATE FOR EAP/ANP
PACOM FOR J01E/J2/J233/J5/SJFHQ

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL KDEM NZ
SUBJECT: LABOUR HAS DOMINATED THE STAGE, BUT NOT THE POLLS

1. (SBU) For the past month, Labour has dominated the stage and the
headlines in New Zealand: talk of prospective tax cuts; a refusal to
authorize sale of Auckland Airport shared to a Canadian investor;
the Beijing signing of the FTA; and then the Party Congress. After
all of that the One News-Colmar Brunton poll (New Zealand's most
prominent) did not make for pleasant reading at Labour Party HQ. It
showed that National (54% - up four points) had edged further ahead
of Labour which remained steady at 35%. National's leader, John Key
maintained his comfortable margin over Prime Minister Helen Clark as
the nation's preferred leader 35% to 29% respectively.

2. (SBU) The explanation may lie in a vortex of negativity that has
afflicted Labour since PM Clark signed the FTA with China - first
there were calls not to sign because of the Tibet protests, and then
Foreign Minister Winston Peters refused to accept that the landmark
deal was foreign policy and said he would not support this effort of
Labour trade policy. The party Congress, which focused on
organizing the party for the upcoming election, the following
weekend proved to be a PR disaster. Media coverage of the Labour
Party Congress was dominated by protests outside the venue,
accusations of a furtive planned circumvention of campaign spending
rules endorsed by Labour's beleaguered President Mike Williams, and
a derisive political song parody delivered by Labour MPs mocking
Key, all of which turned off viewers and cast a pall over Labour.

3. (SBU) At first it appeared that Labour could take solace in a 3
News-TNS poll because it showed that not only had National lost 3
points lower not to 48%, but Labour gained 3 points up now to 38%.
Labour could have taken further comfort from the poll's finding that
Clark's gained 4 points in personal voting to bring her to 32%,
whereas Key dropped 6 points to 29%. However, we have learned that
the 3 News-TNS poll was conducted before the controversial Labour
Party Congress, which may explain its more favorable results.

4. (SBU) Comment. Many media pundits have been increasingly critical
of National and John Key for letting Labour dominate the agenda, but
National may be wondering whether it would not be smarter to allow
Labour to continue defeating itself. End Comment.

Keegan

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO: