UMR – the poll Labour reveals sometimes

Labour have chosen to only reveal their internal polling (done by UMR) sometimes, and with a lack of details, so it is not possible to compare it against other polls properly, and it is difficult to see trends clearly.

They have given some journalists a glimpse of their latest UMR poll. It is indicative of a closing of support between National and Labour, but needs to be viewed with some reservations.

According to NZH:  Labour’s polling closes gap on National

The Labour Party will hold its campaign launch today with its own poll putting it just three points adrift of National – and bringing heartening news for Labour’s potential support partner the Greens.

The Herald has seen the latest poll results from UMR for a poll which ended on August 17.

That had National down three points from the week before to just 40 per cent.

Labour was up one point since the week before to 37 per cent – the same level of support it had in the One News Colmar Brunton poll released this week.

Summary of the results per NZH:

  • National 40% (down from 43)
  • Labour 37% (up from 36)
  • Greens 8% (no change)
  • NZ First 9% (up from 8)

The poll shows less movement among the smaller parties than the Colmar Brunton.

But no details given.

…the UMR poll traditionally has National at a lower level than most public polls.

The UMR poll canvasses 750 voters and has a margin of error of +/- 3.6 per cent.

This UMR poll is one snapshot in a quickly changing political environment.

Labour has obvious cause for renewed optimism, and National should be more concerned than they were last month.

Going by these numbers National would probably be able to form a government with NZ First but Labour would be unlikely too.

Poll rumour worse for Greens

Steven Mills has just been talking about polls on RNZ (he’s from UMR).

He said their are rumours around that National’s tracking poll has Greens down to 4.8%.

He said that that is believable as the UMR poll with them down 7 to 8% was taken before Graham and Clendon resigned, and before Turei stepped down.

He thinks Greens should get back into Parliament, but they may be substantially smaller than they are now.

And following that James Shaw is being interviewed.

He says that it will be tough for either David Clendon or Kennedy Graham to return to the Green list now Turei has stepped down.

He said that Clendon has indicated he isn’t interested, but Graham is having discussions with the party.

Shaw says he feels he did the right thing in fully supporting Turei, and said she also had the full support of the Green caucus, but that is obviously inaccurate given that Clendon and Graham resigned in protest.

He is blaming the media for putting pressure on Turei and forcing her to step down.

Shaw says he will remain sole leader until the election and beyond, and unless something else intervenes the co-leadership won’t be addressed until the next party AGM next July. That would be extraordinary.

UMR poll

Labour’s private polling from UMR is being leaked, probably by a jubilant Labour party.

Apparently:

  • National 43% (up 1)
  • Labour 36% (up 13)
  • Greens 8% (down 7)
  • NZ First 8% (down 8)

UMR tend to be hard on National and good for Labour but taking that into account this this is quite close to tonight’s Newshub poll.

Greens have taken a hit and Labour have picked up their discarded support

Surprising to some NZ First has also dropped back but I think they had been picking up disillusioned Labour leaning voters who have been attracted back by Jacinda Ardern.

This poll gives a good indication of the impact of Ardern becoming Labour’s leader, but won’t take into account the latest upheaval in the Green Party, especially Metiria Turei announcing she will step down as co-leader and will withdraw from the Green list. She still intends standing in the Te Tai Tonga electorate at this stage.

But this is just one of two snapshot polls in a very volatile campaign environment, with the second party leader standing down in just over a week.

Expect more changes that could go in any direction for any party.

Challenges for National

Despite the crisis faced by Labour, National still have challenges of their own heading into the election campaign.

Few expect them to do as well as last election when they just got a slim majority with 47.04%, trimmed to a whisker when they lost the Northland by-election.

Three recent polls:

  • UMR (Labour’s internal poll): 42%
  • Colmar Brunton: 47%
  • Newshub/Reid Research: 45.1%

I think the UMR poll is a bit older and tends to favour Labour rather than National, but these polls suggest that National have a challenge avoiding having to negotiate with Winston Peters based on all of these results.

BUT anything could happen now as a result of Labour’s torpidity followed by turmoil.

This could throw everything wide open if voters desert Labour and switch to the Greens or NZ First. Or voters may prefer the safety of an uninspiring but well known National plus a few small support parties again.

National still have the advantage of having a good relationship with several small parties still, while the Labour-Green Memorandum of Understanding was effectively thrown out the window by Metiria Turei and now Andrew Little seems to have smashed any window of opportunity for Labour.

So National has been helped by the turmoil on the left, but they have to do more to help themselves. Arrogance and complacency are probably their biggest challenges to overcome, but they could do with a much stronger approach from Bill English as well.

If they cruise then NZ First and the Greens make pick up the bulk of the votes thrown up in the air by Labour.

NZ First accused of leaking UMR poll

Winston Peters has generally trashed polls as fake and meaningless, but it looks like when they suit his purposes he isn’t averse to leaking them.

Two months ago from RNZ:  Peters calls polls fake, claims he’ll win 20% of vote

RNZ’s most recent poll-of-polls had New Zealand First sitting at 8.7 percent.

But Mr Peters said the media’s polls were fake – and his own polling put his party’s support far higher – closer to 20 percent.

“I’ve got the statistical evidence to prove it, I don’t know why the media carry on with their mindset and keep on boring people witless with scenarios that are not going to happen.”

I don’t think he produced any evidence, which isn’t unusual for him.

A week ago on RNZ:  Winston Peters says polls giving him 10% are fake

New Zealand First leader says media polls giving him 10 percent are fake and he’s going to get 20% in the election.

A Colmar Brunton poll had just been published with NZ First on 11%, up 2.

Then last Friday from Newshub:  Labour’s confidential polling leaked:

Newshub has been leaked poll results from the company that does Labour’s internal polling which show it is in big trouble, two-and-a-half months out from the election.

The results show Labour is on 26 percent support – crashing from 34 percent in May.

And New Zealand First, for the first time in three years of polling, is no longer the lowest rating party.

Winston Peters and co are on 14 percent – up 5 percent since May – just overtaking the Greens who are on 13 percent.

Peters didn’t slam this poll as fake.

The company, UMR, does the polling for Labour’s inner sanctum and the results are normally kept secret from the public.

Earlier in the year Little went public with a UMR poll that wasn’t as bad as usual for Labour.

Tonight the Labour Party and UMR said the results had not yet been released to the Labour Party and the leak must have come from a corporate client who had already been provided the results.

Today: Andrew Little accuses Winston Peters of leaking poll that made Labour look bad

Andrew Little is accusing Winston Peters of leaking poll results that are damaging to the Labour Party.

“Whenever you see something that’s reported as a leak, you look at who talks about it the most,” he told Newshub.

“I’m pretty sure NZ First has UMR as a pollster, so I think the leak – in inverted commas – is more likely from New Zealand First than anybody.”

This seems to have been confirmed by Duncan Garner.

Peters didn’t deny it, he avoided ‘reacting’.

“I’ve got no reaction to that. I couldn’t give a rat’s derriere what he says,” the NZ First leader told The AM Show on Monday. He wouldn’t reveal if NZ First used UMR for its polling.

“We don’t divulge who we talk to on the issue of polling… That’s not information you’re privy to… It’s none of your business.”

Mr Peters has been talking up the poll regardless, suggesting he’ll soon have the right to call himself leader of the Opposition.

“If [Labour] go from 26 down to 22, that’s it. Andrew is not in Parliament,” Mr Peters told The Nation on Saturday. “So why would you make these statements, that he’s the next leader of the country? Or the leader of the Opposition?”

It’s not unusual for politicians to trash polls and news they don’t like and then hypocritically promote what suits their purposes.

But UMR is just one poll, a Roy Morgan poll also published last week had NZ First on 8%. Peters would probably call that fake.

Peters has usually been staunch in not predicting election outcomes. On the Nation on Saturday:

Look, you know, one thing is very important in life, and that’s this – don’t count your chickens before they hatch.

But in another break from Peters tradition, in his speech to the NZ First congress on Sunday he closed with:

“So spread the word. This time, in our 24th year, we are going to transform the electoral system and we will be most definitely the Government.”

However he hasn’t produced a poll that backs that up yet.

Part of a UMR poll

A bizarre news report from Newshub – they have reported on a leaked UMR poll (Labour’s internal pollster) but have only given some of the results Updated with more details):

  • National 42% (previous 6 results 43, 43, 42, 44, 42, 43)
  • Labour 26% (previous 6 results 28, 28, 34, 30, 32, 29)
  • NZ First 14% (previous 6 results 12, 12, 9, 9, 9, 11)
  • Greens 13% (previous 6 results 13, 12, 13, 13, 13, 12)

The story was about how bad it was for Labour, but this is similar to the Colmar Brunton poll where they were 27% – see The actual Colmar Brunton poll results.

Greens are not out of the ordinary on 13%, they were 11 in the Colmar poll.

What will put a shiver up the spine of other parties and many voters is the NZ First result, 14% (Colmar was 11%) – this is a big rise for them.

And not mentioned either – these three parties total 53% so National must be well below the 47% of Colmar, which should be a concern for them. Perhaps Patrick Gower is saving that for another story.

UPDATE – online now:  Labour’s confidential polling leaked

This has more details, including National:

  • National 42%
  • Labour 26% (34% in May)
  • NZ First 14% (9% in May)
  • Greens 13%

They don’t state the movement for National and Greens, but that is an alarming result for National.

But they have this graphic:

Oddly National have been in the low forties since March. They have not been consistently that low in any other poll.

And for Labour the drop isn’t that dramatic, the 34% in May looks like an outlier.

UK and NZ polls similar

Matthew Hooton claims that the non-public UMR poll has National on 44% and Labour on 28%.

That’s still a big lead for the Conservatives in the UK and Labour there has a lot of ground to make up to be competitive in their election to be held in a month.

There’s still over four months until New Zealand’s election.

National on 44% (they were 43.5% in last month’s Roy Morgan poll) is in risky territory. At that level of support they would have to have NZ First support, either in a coalition or from the cross benches, to form a government.

They could recover some support, depending a lot on how well this month’s budget is seen by the public, but they could just as easily slip back more.

Labour at 28% seem stuck in the high twenties. They were 29.5% in last month’s Roy Morgan. Unless they improve substantially it will be difficult for them to form a government.

These poll numbers are supported by Colin James’ column this week.

Labour in congress — needing a stronger story

The “Jacinda effect” appears to have wisped away. Here and there in the Labour party one can hear glum whispers of three more “long years” in opposition.

Likewise from “coalition” partner, the Greens — who, by the way, got far more in election donations in 2014 than Labour.

“Nine long years”, Labour grandee Steve Maharey used to intone in 1999 before Labour’s win that year. Stuart Nash intoned it last week with the same hope of release.

But will it be “12 long years”? That question will hang over this coming weekend’s pre-election congress (conference).

Labour’s poll average has sunk from over 30% in March to under 28%. Was the lift it got after making Jacinda Ardern deputy leader a blip? (National has also slipped but is still around 45%.) 

Every ‘game changer’ tried by Labour seems to have been no more than a blip. The closer ties with Greens, and attempting to combine Labour and Green poll support so they look competitive with National, has failed to lift anyone by NZ First.

A lot could happen over the next four months. Both National and Labour will be hoping that NZ First isn’t the main beneficiary.

Labour’s internal poll

Following advice from Labour chief Andrew Little’s acting chief of staff Andrew Little, acting chief press officer Andrew Little has revealed the private Labour poll that Little swears by, in contrast to Little’s lack of confidence in Colmar Brunton’s latest public poll.

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This shows Labour within the range they have been in polls for months, albeit higher than the 26% in Colmar’s latest.

It also has National on the lowest poll result for eight years. No wonder Little wanted this to be true.

But it is just one poll. And in making a big issue out of yesterday’s poll Little has probably done himself any PR favours. His press secretary has let him down.

 

The Spinoff and SSI polling

Depleted New Zealand polls have been bolstered with The Spinoff and Jennings Murphy using Survey Sampling (SSI).

The Spinoff has provided a useful addition to media coverage in New Zealand for the last couple of years or so.

A New Zealand site covering pop culture, sport, politics and social life through features, criticism, interviews, videos and podcasts.

About: The Spinoff is an online magazine and custom content creator. We employ some of New Zealand’s best non-fiction writers to create smart, shareable content.

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A New Zealand site covering television, sports, books, politics, media and more. Features, criticism, rankings, podcasts and video from writers like Steve Braunias, Alex Casey, Toby Manhire and Scotty Stevenson. Edited by Duncan Greive.
Brought to you by Lightbox, Bigpipe, MBM and Unity Books.

More media is better, and The Spinoff do some good content, including some investigative journalism.

They have also started doing polling (in association with Jennings Murphy) using SSI (Survey Sampling International).

SSI is the premier global provider of data solutions and technology for consumer and business-to-business survey research, reaching respondents in 100+ countries offering the widest, most diverse access to audiences around the globe through its own panels, social media, online communities and affiliate partners. SSI has 40 offices in 20 countries and serves more than 3,000 clients worldwide.

It is good that someone else is commissioning polls in New Zealand, there were not many left doing them.

Time will tell how accurate SSI turns out to be. They do all there polling online, not like traditional polling by phone like Colmar Brunton, Reid Research and Roy Morgan.

We already have one fairly close comparison with UMR, who also do online polling.

SSI: “Do you think we have a housing crisis in Auckland?”

  • Yes 84%
  • No 10.3%
  • Don’t know 5.7%

Survey Sampling International (SSI) conducted an online survey among a representative sample of 760 Auckland residents aged 18 and over with quota applied to gender, age and region within Auckland. All respondents were screened to ensure they were New Zealand residents and eligible to vote. The polling period was 17-19 August and the margin of error is +/- 3.6%.

UMR:

  • Yes 81%
  • No 14%
  • Unsure 5%

The poll of 1,000 New Zealanders over the age of 18 was taken from July 29 to August 17 through UMR’s online omnibus survey. There were 633 home owners and 331 Aucklanders who took the poll.

The results are very similar, within margins of error, so they compare well.

Both online polls but while the polling periods overlapped they varied markedly in polling time, 3 days (SSI) compared to 3 weeks (UMR).

However ‘housing crisis’ is a simplistic media driven question that doesn’t really mean much apart from giving the Opposition ammunition to say ‘told you so’ and the Government will keep responding ‘we’re doing everything we can’.

It will be interesting to see if The Spinoff also did party polling, and if so how that stacks up.

 

 

Poll on house prices

According to Hive News UMR released a poll on housing yesterday, but I can’t find anything about it at UMR, only at Hive News and other websites that refer to Hive. So I’ll extract what I can from Hive News Tuesday: Poll finds 60% Aucklanders want lower house prices;

Nationwide (964 respondents) prefer house prices to:

  • to fall but not too much 37%
  • to fall dramatically 26%
  • keep rising at a slower pace 10%
  • keep rising rapidly 4%

Home owners wanted house prices:

 

  • to fall but not too much 40%
  • to fall dramatically 15%
  • rise at a slower pace 13%
  • rise rapidly 2%

 

Aucklanders:

  • wanted house prices to keep rising rapidly 4%
  • wanted house prices to rise at a slower pace 13%
  • prefer that house prices either fell a bit or fell dramatically over the next year 60%

They also asked if respondents thought there was a housing crisis:

  • Yes 81%
  • No 14%
  • Unsure 5%

I think these are the numbers but can’t guarantee I have sorted out the Hive jumble.

The poll of 1,000 New Zealanders over the age of 18 was taken from July 29 to August 17 through UMR’s online omnibus survey. There were 633 home owners and 331 Aucklanders who took the poll. UMR conducts polls for Labour.