Labour’s surge

Labour’s turnaround from a floundering mess of a party to a vibrant, confident and genuine contender in the election has been as dramatic as the Green crash.

Metiria Turei’s beneficiary mission gamble precipitated a crash in Labour’s support, but unlike the Greens they acted quickly and positively by installing Jacinda Ardern as leader.

Ardern stepped up with aplomb, aided by an adoring media. This instantly revitalised Labour, and caused many voters to quickly reassess their options.

Two polls have shown how much despair in Labour has changed to hope and enthusiasm.

Two poll results yesterday put numbers on an obvious turn around in support.

  • Newshub/Reid Research 33.1% (up 9.0)
  • UMR (Labour’s internal poll) 36% (up 13)

This only just covers the emergence of Ardern and the resurgence in Labour. It could be an initial surge that settles back, or it could be a snapshot in an ongoing trend upwards.

National have barely moved in both polls (44.45 and 43%), with most of the swing coming from the crashing Greens and also from NZ First – the attraction of Winston Peters as a protest or ‘no decent option’ vote seems to have diminished.

Ardern and Labour still have to campaign well, and Ardern will have to measure up in the leaders’ debates, which now look likely to be just head to head with Bill English. It is an interesting contrast.

Ardern has the advantage of looking young and fresh, but she will have to show she has a good grasp of the key issues, particularly economic matters and costings of Labour’s policies.

English is a contrast, generally regarded as steady and reliable and he has a very good knowledge of policies and issues. He also has a healthy economy to promote as a success.

Two weeks ago the election looked like National versus the rest.

But for the first time in years it now looks a real fight, a contrast between one strong party and one revitalised party. Voters have a lot to consider over the next month or so.

Labour have vitality and momentum and could easily improve more, as long as they don’t make any major mistakes. Keeping Kelvin Davis out of the spotlight could be a good idea.

However this has already been a fast changing and volatile campaign so anything could happen. And National could as easily trip up as Labour.


  1. David

     /  August 10, 2017

    Her water charging announcement if it had been done by Little would have been torn to shreds already, its not exactly recieved glowing press coverage. Labour are still rubbish just with a new smiley logo.

    • Gezza

       /  August 10, 2017

      Well, that’s where I reckon maybe 1ewes is the channel to watch for political reporting this time round. They seem to me to be providing pretty fair & neutral coverage of the 3 main parties in the news headlines these last couple of weeks. Their reporters, especiall Dann & The Vance, show video clips of the best performances by their leaders & crew, but they also identify the issues – such as objections to farmers havong to pay for water – that could be problems for them as well.

      What I’d love to see is a few decent leaders debates & spokesperson vs Minister debates, special programs – but I doubt we’ll get those, the media’s still otherwise too focussed on rubbish programming.

      • David

         /  August 10, 2017

        I was hoping to see someone from the brewing industry on last nights news warning of a price increase on a jug of beer given water is a big input.
        The Press and Herald editorials have pointed out the somewhat massive lack of any detail on water charging and of course the Iwi angle.

        • Watch the price of milk go through the roof and be unavailable to those poor families liebor carp on about

          • Blazer

             /  August 10, 2017

            scaremongering nonsense.Targeted levy,will exclude dairy and help clean up waterways with the money raised.Commonsense.

            • PDB

               /  August 10, 2017

              Labour said ‘all big users of water’ – dairy is a ‘big user of water’ – your deflector is broken.

          • Blazer

             /  August 10, 2017

            @PDB…householders are big users of water….do they pay?

        • Blazer

           /  August 10, 2017

          when people can pay $24 for a glass of craft beer,its not an issue.

      • I’m watching 1 News far more than Newshub now.

        • Gezza

           /  August 10, 2017

          You would agree with me PG that they seem to be doing a pretty fair & professional job of their coverage then?

          • Generally as good as anyone on video, but RNZ and Morning Report are doing very well at the moment. They are good at covering breaking news in the morning, 6pm news is mostly a bit of a summary.

      • NOEL

         /  August 10, 2017

        Aint it wonderful. No bullshit political ads and you can find something elsevwhen the news comes on.

    • Vague and lacking impact, but it may not feature much in the election party from in Canterbury and other areas where Labour aren’t strong anyway.

  2. Patzcuaro

     /  August 10, 2017

    Look at the contrast between Labour and the Greens now. Little saw the writing on the waĺl and put the party first by resigning with dignity. Turei put herself first and by the time she finally resigned the Grèens were in chaos. Politics 101 if you stuff up apologise without saying but and resign asap. Little will be back but Turei brand is toxic.

    Barclay and National are luck to have resolved their issue before the campaign real began. Bradley’s image is now toxic as well and he managed to tarnish English too. Turei then stepped in to take the limelight.

  3. David

     /  August 10, 2017

    Ardern clearly sees there a lot of soft votes to be stolen from the Greens while they are on the back foot hence early policy announcements of farmers in the ETS and water charging and clear pitch to younger voters and good on her but she will win zero votes in the middle which she needs.
    When scrutiny comes on Ardern,s 3 announcements so far are a fuel tax, a water tax and an agricultural emmissions tax. Socialist Cindy ?

    • Blazer

       /  August 10, 2017

      Only the very wealthy pay NO tax…according to one. ..Sam Morgan.

  4. Apart from the soft NZF vote returning to Labour, the most surprising feature of the UMR poll was that National actually went up by one point, despite saturation media coverage for Labour and the Greens.

    • And UMR tend to be light on National support. Mid forties is amazing for the end of a third term but avoiding needing Peters seems difficult.

  5. Alloytoo

     /  August 10, 2017

    Conventional wisdom is that all the Green voters will Return to Labour, I’m not sure that will hold true. Some may well abstain in disgust, or vote national along with their husbands for a change.

  6. sorethumb

     /  August 10, 2017

    Stephanie Rogers – “Labour Insider” needs to go to Spec Savers

    “But let us be absolutely crystal FUCKING clear about this. Metiria did not resign because her admission was political suicide. She did not resign because it ~wasn’t a good look~ or whatever nonsense my commentariat comrades want to spin.

    She resigned because her family, any family, could not withstand the appalling, personal, vicious abuse being hurled at them.”

    She resigned because her family, any family, could not withstand the appalling, personal, vicious abuse being hurled at them [by Metiria’s construing of her circumstance]