Colin James’ poll of polls:
After this week’s stream of polls, including TV1’s poll published on the evening of September 5, National is back in the box seat with 50.2% on the latest four-poll average.
(Explainer: The POLL of POLLS is an arithmetical average of the four most recent major polls since mid-June from among: TV1 Colmar Brunton, TV3 Reid Research, Fairfax Media-Ipsos, NZ Herald DigiPoll, Roy Morgan New Zealand and UMR Research, which is not published.*)
Labour plunged to a new four-poll average of 25.0%, its lowest since at least 2008 and probably since the mid-1990s.
The Greens slipped to 12.0% as a high rating in a Morgan poll dropped out of the average.
National’s lead over Labour and the Greens combined climbed to 13.2%.
The two winners from the dirty politics furore, New Zealand First and the Conservatives, were at 5.6% and 3.3% respectively. Internet Mana was 2.2% and the Maori party was 0.9%. ACT was 0.3% and United Future 0.2%, levels at which David Seymour’s and Peter Dunne’s seats, if they win them would be “overhangs” and push the number of seats in Parliament to 122.
National’s high rating is unlikely to translate into that level of support from voters and it will almost certainly need some coalition partners.
. . . National Party campaign chairman Steven Joyce said the party’s popularity following publication of the Dirty Politics book showed a disconnect between what the public and media focus on.
Mr Joyce told Radio New Zealand’s Morning Report programme that despite strong polling, National was not assuming it would govern alone. National was not expecting the kind of result shown in the polls on election day, and having partnerships with several parties created a stronger more stable Government.
“If you just say you need a particular party to get over the line then obviously that particular party has a lot more leverage over the larger party.
“What we’ve shown in 2008 and 2011 if you have options then you can form good strong stable relationships and nobody gets too carried away.” . .
The stronger National’s vote is the more options it will have and the less it can be held hostage to minor players.
Labour is so weak it will be in a very poor bargaining position which would enable potential coalition partners to extract far more concessions in exchange for their support.
Its support could keep dropping if people decide it won’t be able to lead the next government or would have to give away too much to the wee players to enable it to govern .