Advance voting well ahead

Advance voting in the first week totals 445,350 which is well ahead of last election.

Cumulative Advance Votes Issued

Daily totals for 2017 are approximate only and may be subject to change.

Date 2017 General Election 2014 General Election 2011 General Election
Wed-Sat 49,497 18,818
11 September 39,643 22,234 8,893
12 September 48,545 22,846 8,845
13 September 66,535 23,950 9,750
14 September 74,039 29,033 11,041
15 September 83,409 31,753 13,399
16 September 87,357 46,200 20,115
17 September 45,822
18 September 60,966 27,841
19 September 62,595 32,937
20 September 86,021 38,380
21 September 122,017 64,137
22 September 160,467 80,402
Overall total 445,350 717,579 334,558

It looks like the total could easily get up towards or past a million early votes.

Total turnout in 2014 was 2,446,279 votes.

See Has advance voting gone too far?

Advance voting can now be counted from 9 am on election day, so there should be a lot of the votes counted ready to be announced soon after 7 pm. Last election I think advance votes had similar percentages to the final vote, so we may have a good idea of which way the result will go not long after 7 pm.

The Nation: Coleman v Clark on health

 

There will be a debate this morning on The Nation on health spending, between the Minister of Health Jonathan Coleman, and Labour’s health spokesperson David Clark. These two have clashed a number of times in Parliament.

Health is on of the biggest issues of concern to New Zealanders. In the latest Herald-ZB-Kantar TNS online survey of 1000 voters…asked which of eight issues was most likely to affect their vote:

  • Economy 25%
  • Health 16%
  • Housing 12%

You need a healthy economy to provide good health care (and housing).

Providing healthcare is very expensive. here will never be enough money to provide all the health care wanted. Governments have to balance health spending against need and against other spending demands.

Labour have claimed that health funding has been effectively cut.

Stuff: Frustration, disappointment over health funding in Budget 2017

Patients and healthcare workers say they have been left frustrated and disappointed by “inadequate” funding for health in the 2017 Budget.

They said the Government’s announcements on Thursday would not go nearly far enough in addressing concerns about overworked staff, access to new medicines, and access to mental health treatment.

The Government said total health spending would be a record $16.77 billion in 2017/18 – an increase of $879 million, with an overall increase of $3.9b over the next four years.

However, the record claim does not take inflation into account, and sidesteps the fact that almost half the spending will go toward mandated wage increases as part of the pay equity settlement.

Budget 2017: Health funding to record levels with $1.7b injection to DHBs 

A strained health sector is set to receive a record $3.9b shot in the arm, with $1.8b going to District Health Boards (DHBs) alone.

While DHBs funding is above the $1.7b figure Labour claims has been stripped out of the health service, the Council of Trade Unions is warning the devil is in the detail.

The increase to DHB funding has built on previous years – going up to $1.8b across four years, up from $1b last year. As a yearly figure, DHBs will get $439m, up from last year’s $400m.

 

Election 2017 – Finance debate

Tonight there us an election finance debate in Queenstown from 7.00 – 8.30pm. The change of mind by one person to participate has increased media interest (it shouldn’t have made any difference). Those taking part:

  • Steven Joyce (National)
  • Grant Robertson (Labour)
  • James Shaw (Greens)
  • David Seymour (ACT)
  • Winston Peters (NZ First)

Topics: immigration, housing, tourism, the retirement age, inequality, employment and water.

Time: 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

The debate will be broadcast with live video on the RadioLIVE and Newshub Facebook pages:

The ASB Great Debate is being hosted in Queenstown, with Newshub’s Patrick Gower as the MC.

There will be a catch-up audio broadcast on RadioLIVE beginning at 8:30pm.

Stuff will be live blogging and have a preview: Live: The big finance debate

We’re going to be live blogging through the night on this one and also bringing you some live stand-ups because what makes this particularly interesting tonight is that Peters is showing up. It’s understood Peters wasn’t going to be here because he refuses to debate Seymour but the leak of his superannuation overpayment has changed all that.

Being here gives Peters the opportunity to debate Joyce (remember Peters is blaming the National Party for leaking his overpayment and doesn’t believe Joyce that he didn’t know about it). So in short, expect some fireworks.

No doubt Seymour will do his best to wind up Peters over the course of the evening as well. They were on the same plane down to Queenstown and some of us on that flight were slightly alarmed about how that might turn out (for the record they didn’t speak to each other).


It was advertised to start at 7 pm. Live streaming started just after 7:10, to a peech by someone from the ASB. And the last 10 minutes the mayor of Queenstown has been speaking. He has just now finally stopped at 7:25 pm.

Starting with an opening statement from each MP.

James Shaw first. He says government should be solving the great problems of the time, and new Zealand has been run by grey administrators. He is giving a very general election speech, going through the three key Green policies. He got to the second, fixing a busted system of poverty. Then he ran out of time.

Winston Peters starts by saying how much the others in the campaign are throwing money around like 8 arm octopusses, without a hint of irony. He says we need a dramatic change of direction with economic and social change required.

Steven Joyce starts by positively promoting how well business is doing. He is targeting business but also mentions families. National’s main thrust. A fairly good speech for a business audience.

Grant Robertson talks about ‘the opportunity facing New Zealand”. “If we invest properly in our people…we will be able to seize those opportunities”. He claims New Zealand is in a “productivity recession”.  He pushes the three years free education not just for university but also trades.

David Seymour says we are heading towards bankruptcy and if the election doesn’t get here soon the country will run out of money. Not just financial bankruptcy but also intellectual bankruptcy. A few swipes at National. “We have to fix our RMA”. He’s got a few facts and figures. He claims to be 16 points ahead in the Epsom electorate so says a part vote won’t be wasted.

Then a diversion to the Super leak.

Joyce categorically denies any Minister leaked.

Shaw says he it is very said we are going through a series of scandals. Big cheer.

Robertson agrees and says that is not what this debate is about to bigger cheers.

Peters goers over all the claims he has made over the last few days. He has been allowed to hijack the finance debate. Major accusations. Polite shot applause. Nothing gained by letting him rehash.

Now something key to Queenstown – housing. But each MP is allowed to give a speech which is saying nothing much new.

Robertson carefully talks about cracking down on speculators to a Queenstown audience.

Peters gives his usual spiel, subdued applause.

Shaw gives a reasonable speech, promotes CGT, reasonable applause.

Seymour gives one of the strongest speeches and criticises National more than Labour, strong on reforming the RMA. He promotes half GST on construction to local government. His speech gets strong applause and laughter.

Peters then attacks Seymour saying he is giving a valedictory speech.

Robertson is asked to rule out CGT on businesses and farms – he defers to ‘getting the best advice possible’. Joyce slams him for not being up front, Robertson has a response ready – back to national raising GST, but that’s risky territory promoting the idea of a post election somersault.

Peters sounds very whiny about how bad things are, but he won’t commit to any policy positions. Asked about stopping Labour imposing a CGT and he says he was a Treasurer once.

Robertson again asked on CGT on businesses – he again avoids it. Audience groans.

Seymour and Peters going hammer and tongs again, Seymour digging on peters not deciding if he would stop a CGT or not, or whether he would go left or right, and saying businesses want certainty. Peters bites and rants and says Seymour won’t be back in Parliament after the election.

Election videos – Labour and National

Labour’s new election video is very Ardern orientated, with only brief glimpses of Grant Robertson and Kelvin Davis (who has been quickly relegated to the background) plus plenty of adoring supporters.

89,738 views.

It is mostly ‘visionary’ and is likely to excite and enthral many, but without any details.

National has been promoting themselves like this:

3,444 views.

But they have also been attacking Labour, like this:

26,325 views.

Labour are vulnerable on tax issues, but it is a risk running negative attacks on social media, especially when they contrast so much with the vibrancy and positivity of Labour’s promotions.

The latest ‘pulse’ from Zavy:

ZavyFacebook20170823

 

 

Party ‘pulse’ and activity on social media

An early peek at Zavy, a new website that scores the positive and negative ‘pulse’ and activity of parties on social media by measuring the sentiment of of comments and public activity on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

A current snapshot of the Facebook channel:

ZavyFacebook20170821

The Zavy Pulse maps the change in sentiment of each political party’s activity on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Text analytics define whether the comments made are positive, neutral or negative.

This illustrates Labour’s rise and sustained activity when Jacinda Ardern first took over, then the spike over the weekend with Labour’s campaign launch.

It also shows a dip and then a dramatic dive for the greens coinciding with their convulsions last week, and also a negative reaction to National’s boot camp policy.

The wideness of the lines show ‘volume of conversation’. You can scroll and click to see online articles and posts relevant to the measure.

You can point to any part of the lines to click up relevant news, like this from yesterday:

ZavyPulseLabourExample

You can also compare public activity on different platforms.

Labour and TOP are doing the best on Facebook:

ZavyScoreboardFacebook

The Zavy Scoreboard presents each political party’s share of social media conversation: their total number of interactions on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Greens and NZ First do better on Twitter:

ZavyTwitter

The Greens dominate on Instagram.

It’s well worth having a play with: Zavy – New Zealand Election 2017

Election policy tool

If you like to look at party policies in depth The Spinoff has a tool that may help.

Introducing Policy NZ: an incredible new tool to help you decide how to vote in Election 2017

Personality is central to politics. That much is a truism. And it’s not just inevitable but necessary that voters get a chance to examine the people seeking the highest seats of power. We want to get a sense of them, to weigh up trustworthiness and character, to understand better how they might behave under pressure, how they interact with others and what they look for in a biscuit.

But sometimes it gets a bit much. While the ability to communicate a party’s ideas and plans are critical to the modern politician, we don’t always get enough of the ideas and plans themselves.

In the last fortnight, for example, a couple of high-profile leader resignations have sucked most of the oxygen out of the campaign preamble, leaving some to say – and here I’m paraphrasing – What ho, Spinoff / other friendly media outlet! How about giving us more about the policies the parties are actually putting forward.

So here it is. The Spinoff is thrilled to bits to lift the curtain today on what we think is a very important and beautiful addition to media coverage of the election.

Conceived and assembled by Asher Emanuel, Ollie Neas, Racheal Reeves and their exceptional team of developers and researchers, Policy is, we think, a seriously big deal. Collecting the policy positions of the main parties and presenting them in a clear, accessible and digestible fashion, the tool allows readers to flick through policy areas, compare the parties’ positions and drill down for more detail

Election 2017 policies: http://policy.thespinoff.co.nz/