More on the Morgan poll

Apparently continued silence by Martyn Bradbury on the latest Roy Morgan poll which came out a week after he posted BREAKING EXCLUSIVE: UMR SECRET POLL – National 41% Labour/Greens 45%

Since the Memorandum of Understanding, the First Past the Post mainstream media have had to start reporting the results as MMP ones. This perception change now allows Opposition voters to see they can win.

National is in trouble…

Once these private internal polls start becoming reflected in the TVNZ and TV3 Polls, National will start to implode with a power struggle.

The Roy Morgan poll has National on 53%, Labour on 25.5% and Greens on 11.5%. No word on what Bombers perception of this is.

One perception at The Daily Blog though, from Cleangreen. On the UMR ‘secret poll’:

Yes joy rings out finally National are on their way out hooray.

But in a comment yesterday on the Open Mic thread Cleengreen said:

Latest Roy Morgan and any other political poster companies we think we should trust! – well don’t – read below.

The Politicians are all under orders from the Bilderberg Group and are simply minion’s that carry out orders for the global elite and that is why you see a clear hard nosed similarity over every issue now, and the media is the same parrot for these cabals also as the pollsters are to!!!!

Does anyone understand how flimsy and vulnerable and easily rigged results of Pollster’s polling data can occur where the companies cannot verify their results or edit them to see if they are changed?

Poll result good, pollster good. Poll result bad, pollsters bad.

There was a lot of talk about the 10% bounce back for National (but interestingly no one seemed to bat an eyelid at Labour dropping 2.5 to 25.5%).

Chris Keall has posted Roy Morgan manager defends *that* poll at NBR:

The chattering class was quick to scoff when at the new Roy Morgan poll which showed a 10% jump for National (864 eligible voters were surveyed by phone).

There was eye-rolling from the left and the right, and I can see why: there were no political bombshells during the survey period (June 17 to early July) to warrant such a shift.

In a press release, executive chairman Gary Morgan pegged the Nats’ bounce on John Key’s announcement of a $1 billion housing infrastructure fund.

I’m not so sure.

Keall “asked Mr Morgan if he was confident of the poll result” and the RM poll manager responded:

We are very confident these results reflect a shift in voting intention in New Zealand towards the incumbent.

That is very likely to be correct. The questions are by how much, and why.

Andrew Little has had nearly two years to cut through and even before this poll, had really made little headway.

The New Zealand economy is booming at present with Kiwis returning to the country after years of outflows across the Tasman.

Also, specifically with this poll we conducted some additional research during this period which indicates that Housing Affordability/ House prices/ Shortage of Houses/ Homeless etc. has increased significantly as an issue in New Zealand this year.

The announcement of the $1 billion housing infrastructure fund is perfectly timed to take advantage of this sentiment. There are a large number of Kiwis out there who believe they will see the benefit of this $1 billion infrastructure fund personally.

It could be that housing has been a significant factor – perhaps a lack of confidence in Labour’s policies, or a desire by many voters to retain the capital value increases.

There was also a discussion at Dim-Post: Roy Morgan wild guessing game

No doubt Labour will start leaking that their secret polls show them getting a major bump after their conference. If you added all the bumps they’ve claimed from their private polls they’d be on about 500% by now.

Danyl has been quite cynical about Labour lately.

My guess about the swing – if there was a swing – is that the news recently has been dominated by horror, fear and uncertainty. Terror attacks, racial violence in the US, Brexit, and so voters are looking for political stability and supporting National. If they are.

Swordfish, a regular poll commenter at The Standard, joins the discussion. Another pseudonym I’m not familiar with, Pollster,  joined in.

It has nothing like the spikes the Roy Morgan does, and when it does it’ll be an occasional 2-3% shift, not a 5-10% (or in this case 16%) swing as the Roy Morgan has. What the UMR has shown since the election has been a pretty static political environment. The Roy Morgan suggests that from month hundreds of thousands of people are swinging wildly from Labour and the Greens to National and back again. It’s why no one in the business takes them seriously.

As the UMR polls aren’t published their claims can’t be verified, although Swordfish says:

Last 4 UMRs had Labour on 28-33%. Over the same period, the Public Polls put the Party in the range of 26-31%. Not an enormous divergence.

That’s a 5% range from UMR, the same as for ‘public polls’.

The last four RM polls for Labour were 25.5, 28, 29,5, 26 which happens to be a smaller range of 4%.

Pollster also said:

As for Labour staffers briefing internal polls, that’s not something I’m aware of, but I wouldn’t assume that’s why the UMR poll occasional finds its way into the public arena.

Frequently it’s Hooton who claims to have had a leak of Labour’s secret internal polling, when actually he just gets the UMR Omni from one of his clients as I do. I can also confirm he often makes up the figures, because he is a shameless liar.

Hooton bit back:

I think I have mentioned specific quantitative numbers from UMR polling data twice in the media. UMR polling is what “Labour’s secret internal polling” is – or, has been historically. It is also sold to corporates as you indicate.

Unless you think UMR does one quantitative study each month for its corporate clients and then another one for Labour. Perhaps it does. I don’t see that point in that though. Whenever I have mentioned polling of any kind the numbers have been correct.

Pull your head in with your lying accusations, whoever you are, anonymous guy on the internet.

Anonymous people on the Internet who appear to have a vested interest, and who promote polls only when their cherries are ripe, but never publicly publish any poll details, and make lying accusations about people with different political leanings, barely deserve to be taken with a grain of salt.

An accurate pollster on the payroll

David Farrar posted Is Key on drugs ask du Fresne? at Kiwiblog. He quoted from a column by Karl Du Fresne: John Key: Mr Nice Guy’s unbelievable aura of serenity:

I have never met John Key, but like anyone who follows politics I’ve been able to observe him via the media. And after studying him carefully, I think I now realise the explanation for much of his behaviour. He’s on drugs.

Not the illegal kind, I should stress, but the mood-calming type that doctors prescribe. This may sound flippant, but consider the following.

In the 2014 election campaign, Key was subjected to possibly the most sustained media offensive faced by any prime minister in New Zealand history. Day after day he was tackled by an aggressive media pack trying to trap him on dirty politics, illicit surveillance and other touchy issues.

His answers were often unsatisfactory, which served only to ramp up the media frenzy. But through it all, he appeared supernaturally imperturbable. He patiently batted away reporters’ questions and accusations with his familiar bland inscrutability. There were no meltdowns, no hissy fits, no petulant walkouts.

This was downright unnatural. No politician should be that unflappable. He can have achieved it only by the ingestion of large amounts – indeed, industrial quantities – of tranquillisers.

Cameron Slater explains at Whale Oil that the serenity is based on accurate polling.

No Karl, the serenity comes from having an accurate pollster on the payroll.

That way you know that, despite the baying pack of dogs that is the press gallery, your policy platform is being well received, your party is performing well and that Twitter and Facebook aren’t the real world.

This is why John Key thanked David Farrar on election night, he was the one who provided the information daily to John Key to let him know that Dirty Politics, the plot of the left-wing to unseat his government, wasn’t working as they expected.

I agree. Knowledge may not be power but it can help a lot, if it’s accurate knowledge.

Contrast that with the inept polling and claims by people who should know better like Rob Salmond and David Talbot. Salmond constantly inflated Labour’s real poll results, sometimes by up to 10%, giving his small band of readers and assorted hangers on, including the leadership of Labour at the time false hope.

Inaccurate knowledge can be worse than none.

Serenity comes from accuracy, panic comes from idiocy and losing your head.

Slater can still write insightful posts (if he wrote it).

It is said that Key relies heavily on his monitoring of public opinion as provided by Farrar’s Curia polling. It is certainly going to be more useful than reading blog opinions, which are slanted towards the vocal fringes (except here of course!)

Thomas Jefferson to Joseph Cabell, 22 January 1820:

…my hopes however are kept in check by the ordinary character of our state legislatures, the members of which do not generally possess information enough to percieve the important truths, that knolege is power, that knolege is safety, and that knolege is happiness.

Key may not always be happy with what happens but he is safely in power for now.