Thursday, December 6, 2018


Polls are but a snapshot of yesterday's thinking and need to be treated with caution remembering always that the election is 21 months away and seven days in politics is a long time.

Nevertheless the final TV1 poll for 2018 made for interesting reading and, for what it is worth, here are my thoughts ...

National will be buoyed/relieved and will enter the holiday season with bragging rights.   It has regained its position as the largest preferred Party and is now polling ahead of where it was at the election.   It seems the JLR affair has had minimal impact and, if anything, has strengthened Bridges' hand although clearly he has yet to achieve cut-through with the electorate.

Labour won't loose much sleep over the poll after-all, they're in government and government is where the action is.    They too are ahead of where they were on at the election although having shed a couple of percentage points from their high.    Clearly though some of the gloss is wearing off ... that comes with the territory of being in government.   The Sroubek affair will not have helped.

For me the real interest is what's happening with the minor parties.

The Greens are now flirting with the moe having dropped 2 percentage points.    I had always assumed their bedrock support was in 6-7% range but that had never been tested with them actually in government.   I suspect the reasons for the drop are threefold ... #1  minor parties in a coalition government tend to come off second best ... #2  Labour will have poached some of their soft support and #3  their drift to the hard left, orchestrated by co-leader Marama Davidson, will have alienated some of their moderate supporters.    There is a chance, albeit a small one (70-30) the next election could see the Greens out of Parliament.

Winston First are now back under the threshold and the question is will we see a repeat of 2011.   Some of the patience of 'his' true believers will be starting to wear thin with their capitulation on the Maori seats issue; the meek acceptance of the destruction of our oil and gas industry; 'his' unnecessary involvement with the Sroubek affair and now the government's likely signing up to the Compact on Migration at odds with their anti-immigration stance.   It seems their sole election strategy is to try and buy the Northland seat with taxpayer money ... unlikely to succeed ... Northland will take the money and say thank you very much but we haven't forgotten 'your' axing of the Wellsford to Whangarei highway and, by the the way, Jones is the wrong candidate with zip mana. You can never underestimate WRP but I would hazard a guess that right now and, on the balance of probabilities,  NZ First is destined for the garbage-bin of history come 2020.

ACT ... Yeah right.

All others ... see above.

It is certainly within the realms of possibility that post 2020 we could see Parliament comprising just two parties.   A FPP result in a MMP environment.   Now that would be interesting.


Adolf Fiinkensein said...

And wouldn't that be a blessed relief?

Unknown said...

It would mean that it took the slow-witted NZ electorate 26 years to come to its senses.

Anonymous said...

Onthese numbers:
- it could be the Greens and NZ1st fail to make it in 2020.
- that means National could make it on their own.
- However more likely is Act would become very important for a Nat led coalition. More so than in the past.


David said...

Polls are the bane of modern politics. Governments watch them with an eagle eye, rather than concerning themselves with good policy.

In Oz we have seen this give rise to the shouty AM radio voices, like Alan Jones, to whom Prime Ministers bow in obeisance, yet no more than 2% of Aussies listen to Jones rant each day.

We need a return to Whitmanesque politicians, the crash through or crash style, where good policy was far more important than Newspoll ratings.

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Aaaah yes. Oh for some good policy.

Like nationalizing the oil and gas industry? Like selling Australia's foreign policy to Iraq in return for a loan to finance said nationalization and, as an aside, pay off the ALP's election debt and fund its campaign for the next election? Like ignoring the murder by Indonesia of five Australian journalists in East Timor?

But of course, back then David, you were still in nappies.

The Veteran said...

David ... to a degree I endorse your comments. Read again the first para of my post.
Given all that and acknowledging the reality of MMP and I look for trends and particularly third Party trends.

Max Ritchie said...

For Whitman read Whitlam? Not too sure about the good policy if so----------