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National, Labour Hit As Greens Rise In Latest RM Poll

National, Labour Hit As Greens Rise In Latest RM Poll

National and Labour have both taken a hit in the latest Roy Morgan poll, with the Greens the greatest beneficiary though the Conservative Party appears to be on the rise as well.

National were down 3 points to 45%, while Labour shed 1.5 points to 26%. The Greens surged 4.5 points to 16% as some voters are move from the two major parties.

The poll taken between August 18 and August 31 covers the ongoing fallout from the “Dirty Politics” book, the near saturation media coverage of it and then the drip feeding of hacked communications from blogger Cameron Slater’s computer. This all culminated in the resignation of Justice Minister Judith Collins on August 30 at the tail end of the polling period.

National’s support at 45%, compares to the Labour/Greens combination of 42%, up 3% overall. The Greens at 16% are at their highest since April 2012 in the Roy Morgan Poll.

Support for John Key’s clearest partners has fallen slightly overall with the Maori Party 0.5% (down 0.5), ACT (1%, up 0.5) and United Future 0% (down 0.5). This leaves those parties reliant on electorate seats and an increase in voter share to get more MPs.

Potential ‘king-makers’ NZ First looks set to return to Parliament with 6% (down 0.5), while the Internet-Mana Party alliance has declined to 1% (down 1.5) making it more likely they will have to win an electorate seat to enter Parliament.

Support for the Conservative Party has climbed to 3.5% (up 2.5 points and the highest ever recorded in the Roy Morgan Poll) and support for Independent/ Others is 1% (unchanged).

Michelle Levine of Roy Morgan said the drift to minor parties was not necessarily a usual pattern.

“We don’t see this as a typical phenomenon – in fact it is often the direct opposite. Minor parties often benefit from a level of ‘protest’ support and tend to lose this support as the election draws nearer and electors start to concentrate on the obvious differences between the major parties who will actually lead a Government and exercise power.

“Even in New Zealand, where the voting system does tend to give more voice to a vote for a minor party than in many other countries, National secured 47.3% of the vote at the 2011 NZ Election – the highest level of support for any party under the current MMP system. In the last four New Zealand elections the successful party has secured over 40% support.”

If this poll translated into an Election Day result it would appear difficult for National to form a Government without the support of NZ First. Likewise the Labour/Greens combination is getting close to a position where they could potentially offer NZ First a second option to decide the make-up of the next Government.

This is getting closer to National’s worst case scenario outlined in “National’s Worst Case Scenario At Stage One?

Levine said there were still many events to unfold including more debates and possibly more scandals thrown at National, which may have an impact.

“In particular a negative performance in a debate can damage a leader and lead to a bad outcome. A good performance and a good outcome from a debate simply shores up the existing support for a leader. In terms of scandals – it really is all in the timing which is why Kim Dotcom’s revelations in election week could prove vital.”

Electors were asked: “If a New Zealand Election were held today which party would receive your party vote?” This latest New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll on voting intention was conducted by telephone – both landline and mobile telephone, with a NZ wide cross-section of 762 electors from August 18-31, 2014. Of all electors surveyed 3.5% (down 3%) didn’t name a party.

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