National loses 2 more MPs


The final election results bring more bad news for National:

National has two fewer seats and Labour and the Māori Party each have one more:

  • The number of seats in Parliament will be 120.
  • The Labour Party has 65 seats compared with 64 on election night.
  • The National Party has 33 seats compared with 35 on election night.
  • The Māori Party has 2 seats compared with 1 on election night.
  • ACT New Zealand and the Green Party remain unchanged with 10 seats each.

Electorate vote – main points

Three electorate results have changed since election night:

    • Labour Party candidate Priyanca Radhakrishnan has won Maungakiekie with a majority of 635 votes over National Party candidate Denise Lee.
    • Labour Party candidate Willow-Jean Prime has won Northland with a majority of 163 votes over National Party candidate Matt King.
    • Labour Party candidate Emily Henderson has won Whangārei with a majority of 431 votes over National Party candidate Shane Reti.
    • All other electorate candidates leading on election night have been confirmed as winning their seats.

The low party vote for National didn’t surprise me.

This was always going to be the election that Covid-19 stole and National worsened its prospects by self-sabotage. A caucus that shoots itself in the foot, stabs itself in the back and trips over its own tongue isn’t going to gain voter support.

But the loss of so many electorates, especially the provincial and rural ones, both surprises and saddens me. Generally good MPs will  be able to stand firm even if the tide swings against their party.

I am pleased that Shane Reti has a high enough place on the list to retain a seat in parliament although he lost the seat.

One new MP who withstood the red tide is Penny Simmons who has been confirmed as the MP for Invercargill.

Key statistics

  • The total number of votes cast was 2,919,086.
  • The number of special votes was 504,625, 17% of total votes (2017 – 17%).
  • 68% of votes were cast in advance (2017 – 47%).
  • 82.2% of people who were enrolled voted (2017 – 79.8%). This is the highest turnout since 1999 (84.8%).
  • The final enrolment rate was 94.1% (2017 – 92.4%), the highest since 2008 (95.3%).

A high turnout is good for democracy.

Allowing people to enroll on Election Day no doubt helped increase the enrollment rate.

The increase in advance votes might prompt a change in the law that makes Election Day campaign-free.

Labour has the numbers to change the law by itself but such changes ought to be made by consensus and passed by far more than a simple majority.

Election Sept 23


Prime Minister Bill English has announced that the general election will be held on September 23rd.

He’s following the example of his predecessor John Key who announced the date early.

This gives certainty for everyone about when the regulated period before election day starts, makes it easier for the people who administer the process and takes the politics out of setting the date.

September 23rd is the first day of school holidays but with the freedom for anyone to vote early that shouldn’t be a problem.

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He also spoke of which parties National could work with in the next term should it be in a position to lead a fourth government:

“Under MMP elections are always close so we will be taking nothing for granted as we campaign for the right to lead New Zealand for another term,” says Mr English.

“We will be fighting hard to win every party vote to ensure we are in the best possible position to form a strong and stable Government that continues to deliver for all New Zealanders.

“However, MMP means we will almost certainly have to work with other parties.  This will likely be in the form of confidence and supply agreements, which have worked well for us in the last three terms.”

Mr English said his preference is to continue working with current partners –  ACT, United Future and the Māori Party.

“Together our parties have provided a stable and successful government at a time of great uncertainty in many parts of the world,” says Mr English.

Mr English ruled out working with the Labour-Greens grouping. 

“They are an increasingly far left, inward looking grouping, with no new ideas who don’t back New Zealanders to succeed.

“New Zealand First is an unlikely partner, however I am prepared to have discussions with them post-election depending on the makeup of Parliament,” says Mr English. 


Election Day


It’s Election Day and the Electoral Commission has issued a reminder that blogs are included in the instruction to not post anything that might persuade people to vote in a particular way.

Because of that any comments made from midnight until 7pm will be put into moderation until I okay them.

Law lags behind life


The Electoral Commission advises no campaigning is permitted on election day and says:

News stories posted on websites before election day can remain, as long as the website is not advertised on election day. Comment functions should be disabled on all websites, including social media sites, until after 7pm on election day to avoid readers posting statements that could influence voters.

That is the law but it is lagging behind life with so much communication taking place on social media.

Texting (which I don’t think is included), Facebook and Twitter are modern versions of letters and phone calls.

It would be impossible to police all Facebook and Twitter interaction and the idea that someone might be falling foul of the law for telling their friends something which might be construed as influencing their votes is ridiculous.




It’s election day and I’m not sure if the law applies to blogs but in case it does I won’t be posting anything that might be construed as campaigning until after 7pm.

Comment moderation is on until polling booths close too which means I’ll have to check comments before they’re published.

Your comments are welcome but they won’t be seen until I’ve okayed them.

13 more sleeps . . .


. . .  until election day and John Key’s ahead in the character polls.

17 more sleeps . . .


. . . to election day and advance voting  starts today.

Only 18 more sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and John Key pulls the parsley vote.

20 more sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and not all the news is political.

22 more sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and guess who’s blaming immigrants  again.

23 more sleeps . . .


. . .  until election day and the full list of parties  and candidates standing has been announced.

26 more sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and the economy took the top slot at the campaign launches.

27 more sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and last night’s opening addresses of the wee parties support the case against public funding of political parties.

29 more sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and Labour’s supposed to be governing but still hasn’t come up with anything to address the economic crisis.

30 more sleeps . . .


. . .  until the election and candidate nominations open today.

31 sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and 19% of people  ought to have a comprehension test before they’re allowed to vote.

Only 32 sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and the cupboard is bare.

33 more sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and if you want an easy vote  you have to be enrolled by Wednesday.

Hat Tip Poneke

Only 34 more sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and the Electoral Commission is spending $40,000  on newspaper ads this weekend explaining the Electoral Finance Act.

Only 35 sleeps . . .


. . . until election day and  John Key has proved he can cook.

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