Large party self interest taints MMP threshold debate

Both Labour and National are playing a self interested political game with the democratic principles with their manouvering on the MMP threshold.

This probably ensures it wlil become too political to change the threshold before next year’s election – and that’s probably the intent of National in particular.


  1. Finbaar Rustle

     /  5th March 2019

    The threshold should be raised to 15%

  2. Finbaar Rustle

     /  5th March 2019

    No party should be allowed any more than 27% of the seats

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  5th March 2019

      That would only be possible if we abolished democracy.

  3. David

     /  5th March 2019

    Why would 5% be undemocratic and self interest and 4% virtuous ? Its 10-20,000 votes difference which seems immaterial in the overall scheme of things and in a system where the top ranked party is now in opposition.

    • Duker

       /  5th March 2019

      Top ranked party in opposition ?

      Hilary Clinton totally agrees with you there..
      Meanwhile in Australia, the largest party -labour- is in opposition.
      has happened previously in Germany late 70s and in UK in the 1920s

      World didnt end….. in case you havent noticed , democracy isnt a perfectly formed system

  4. Zedd

     /  5th March 2019

    IF they want ‘real representation’ in parliament, then maybe they should dump the threshold; every seat equiv. to about 0.8% ?

    BUT obviously the ‘major parties’ do have an element of self-interest (politics 101) & would likely prefer to ‘keep the crazies’ & ‘other minor parties’ out !

  5. Patzcuaro

     /  5th March 2019

    How many votes should a party need to gain seats? 26,000 is 1%, 52,000 is 2%, 78,000 is 3% and 104,000 is 4%. My thoughts are between 50,000 and 75,000, so about 2.5%

    • Duker

       /  5th March 2019

      4% is about 105,000 votes , 5% is 131,500 votes based on 2011 which was quite a high turnout.
      Each election population increase means an extra 5000 votes needed to meet threshold over that for the previous time
      in 1996 , the first MMP election , 5% was 106750 votes
      And the Christian coalition with 4.3% missed

      I think a more valid threshold is the number to get around 5 Mps which makes it a true party than can operate in parliament etc.

  6. I’d be more sympathetic if they took the MMP review recommendations in toto:
    “The Commission presented its final report to the Minister of Justice on 29 October 2012 with the following recommendations:

    The one electorate seat threshold should be abolished (and if it is, the provision for overhang seats should also be abolished);

    The party vote threshold should be lowered from 5% to 4% (with the Commission required by law to review how the 4% threshold is working);

    Consideration be given to fixing the ratio of electorate seats to list seats at 60:40 to address concerns about declining proportionality and diversity of representation;

    Political parties should continue to  have responsibility for selecting and ranking candidates on their party lists but they must make a statutory declaration that they have done so in accordance with their party rules;

    MPs should continue to be allowed to be dual candidates and list MPs to stand in by-elections.”

    Instead it does look like self interest, and makes it easier for National to dismiss it. Real shame nobody did a damn thing when it was released.

  7. Duker

     /  5th March 2019

    in the 2012 review which recommended 4% threshold ( which is about 95,000 votes), I thought the labour party supported that ?

    There have been 3 previous occasions when a party got between 4 and 5% of the vote but missed out

  8. NOEL

     /  5th March 2019

    Aw come on we’ve been here….a number of times.

    Anyone know where out there is the one on do voters want and increase in trough feeders?

    • Duker

       /  5th March 2019

      Dont think any one is saying ‘lots more Mps please’. The threshold just changes the way exactly the same number of MPs are distributed.

  9. Ardern says no change to the threshold for next year’s election.

      • NOEL

         /  5th March 2019

        Greens getting put in place? Hope so.
        Shaw making it uncomfortable for O’conner on pig farrowing who couldn’t really answer because of legal considerations.

        • Duker

           /  5th March 2019

          Nationals poodles when speaking out of turn had to prostate themselves and chant 3 x time – I recant

  10. Tipene

     /  6th March 2019

    Whatever the threshold is – if voters don’t support a party at that threshold, then the voter has spoken, and that’s democracy.