Election 2014; A Post-mortem; a Wake; and one helluva hang-over






It would be fair to say that the results for Election 2014 did not go as anticipated.

The Left has had a drubbing – and some of it was of our own making. In other aspects, there were some interesting lessons to be learned…

1. Green Voters & Electorate Votes

Some Green supporters are either woefully ignorant of MMP – or have been smoking to much of a certain herb. Or, gods forbid, they are so desperate to remain ideologically pure in their principles, that they are willing to allow a right wing candidate to be elected, rather than supporting a candidate from another party on the Left.

In  Ōhāriu (as well as other electorates) Peter Dunne was returned to office because Green Party supporters cast their electorate votes for Dunne, instead of the Labour candidate. Preliminary election results for Ohariu yield the following;

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ANDERSEN, Virginia: (Labour)11,349

DUNNE, Peter: (United Future) 12,279

WOODLEY, Tane: (Greens) 2,266

Had supporters of the Green Party given their electorate votes to Viriginia Andersen, Peter Dunne would have been defeated by 1,336 votes.

The Greens need to get it through to their supporter’s thick heads that giving their electorate votes to their own candidates is a waste of effort and an indulgence we cannot afford.

When elections are close-fought and majorities slim, such indulgences cannot be tolerated, and the Greens need to educate their supporters quick-smart, if we are to win in 2017.

This is a problem I blogged about three years ago. Why am I still having to point out the bleedin’ obvious?!

2. The Conservative Party

All ridicule and derision aside, Colin Craig’s Conservative Party deserves accolades. The CCCP got damn close to the magical 5% threshold – without a jot of support from Dear Leader Key and his National Party strategists.

No cuppa tea for Colin Craig – the Conservatives worked their backsides off to achieve a credible result. The Conservatives won 4.12% of the Party vote.

Meanwhile, the rort that is the ACT-National dirty deal was rewarded with a parliamentary seat in Epsom. ACT won 0.69% of the Party vote.

Kudos to the CCCP – and a curse upon the walking political corpse that is the ACT Zombie Party.

3. The killing of Mana

‘Congratulations’ to the Labour Party for successfully killing of Mana.

Question: what kind of a fool destroys his own ally, to the eventual benefit of his enemy?!

It takes a spectacular degree of sheer stupidity to achieve such a feat – and still not win the election! At this rate of ‘success’, Labour will kill off  all it’s allies; then self-destruct; leaving the National Party and it’s henchmen (Peter Dunne and ACT) last men standing.

If this is ‘clever strategy’, what am I missing?

4. Nicky Hager & ‘Dirty Politics’

Make no mistake, Nicky Hager wrote the truth in his expose, ‘Dirty Politics’.

Some critics have suggested that it was not the “right time” to release the book, so close to the election. So, when was the right time? Afterward? When it’s too late to do anything about it?

No, the right time to reveal the truth is always now. Not later.

What New Zealanders ultimately decide to do with that truth is up to them. But at least they can never say  they never knew what was going on. The excuse of ignorance cannot be used when the truth is laid bare for all to see.

Nicky Hager revealed the dirty side of politics.

1,010,464 voters chose to ignore it.

5. National did not increase their support!

The media – as usual – are being sloppy and lazy when they excitedly exclaim about National increasing it’s support. No such thing has happened.

In 2011, National gained 1,058,638 Party Votes.

This time, they gained 1,010,464.

According to my trustee hamster-powered calculator, that’s a drop of  48,174 votes. Their electoral support fell, not increased.

It’s this kind of  sloppy reporting that actively assists the National Party avoid real scrutiny by the media.

6. The Labour Leadership

If Labour want to indulge in an orgy of purging, sackings, rejuvenation, or whatever euphemisms they want to employ – fine.  I say, “Enjoy the bloodletting. Knock yerselves out. ”

But please. No more changes in the Leader of the Labour Party.

It takes years for the public to get to know a political leader.

And it takes years for a political leader to become truly experienced and confident in his/her role. Otherwise you get this kind of event – where he is blindsided by a media-pack ambush and caught badly off-guard.

Changing leaders every time plans do not succeed invites organisational  instability and undermines any opportunity to build rapport with the public.

Stick with Cunliffe. Support him. Let him grow into the role. Let the public have a chance to get used to him.

The alternative? Just look at ACT to see what effect four leadership changes in six years has achieved.

7. No more Teflon John

John Key may have won a third term – but his problems just got worse.

Lurking in the background;

  • Increasing child poverty and inequality
  • an economy about to tank
  • housing unaffordability that will worsen
  • Judith Collins and National’s restless right-wing faction
  • Cameron Slater and his unpredictability
  • and an increasingly aggressive  media chasing stories that will become harder and harder for Key to ‘casually’ dismiss

Teflon John is gone – and in his place is a very mortal, vulnerable politician.

8. Stuart Nash

Pundits and media commentators on TV3 gushed at Stuart Nash’s “awesomeness” at winning the Napier electorate. At one point, I thought Josie Pagani on TV3’s election panel was going to declare her undying love for the guy and call for his immediate canonisation at a Saint.

It’s rubbish, of course.

Nash did not “win” Napier.

The National candidate, Wayne Walford lost the electorate when Garth McVicar from the Conservative Party split the right wing vote in the electorate. Remember; electorate contests are still fought using First Past the Post – not by any  proportionality or preferential voting.

The actual results were;

McVICAR, Garth: (Conservatives) 7,135

NASH, Stuart: (Labour) 14,041

WALFORD, Wayne: (National) 10,308

Add McVicar’s 7,135 to Walford’s figures, and the combined 17,443 would have trounced Nash easily.

Be wary of media hype. It maybe useful to sell advertising, but is useless for factual purposes.

9. Kelvin Davis

Likewise with Kelvin Davis. Davis did not “win” Te Tai Tokerau. It was “gifted” to him as a dirty little rort, when John Key, Winston Peters, and the Maori Party told their supporters to vote for Davis, over Hone Harawira.

This was a disgusting, shabby example of dirty politics.

Kelvin Davis is “Labour” in name only and, like Peter Dunne and David Seymour,  he should not forget who his political patron really is. He is John Key’s errand boy.

Kelvin Davis has no mana from this dishonourable “victory”.  By contrast, Hone Harawira, may have lost his seat – but he retains his mana.

10. “The forces on the right…”

… are very united, said Josie Pagani, on TV3’s political panel. And she would be 100% correct.

This is one of the lessons that Labour should be taking from the 2014 elections; unity is strength.

National did not seek to destroy potential allies. With the exception of the Conservative Party, it actively supported them. Either with direct deal-making (Epsom and Ohariu), or with “nods-and-winks” (Maori Party).

Even with the Conservatives – though Key refused any actual deal-making, he did not go out of his way to under-mine Colin Craig’s party. Just in case they reached the 5% thresh-hold and thus became potentially useful to the Nats.

By contrast, Labour campaigned to destroy the Mana-Internet Party, and the Greens undermined Labour with it’s comment that Labour’s policies would have to be “independently audited” – a phrase picked up by Key and used to attack Cunliffe.

Key projected stability and co-operation on the Right.

The Left projected intense rivalry and a hatred of each other that was volcanic in intensity.

Who did Labour and the Greens think the public would vote for?

Ten things Labour and the Greens should consider in the coming days, weeks, months, and next three years.




Electoral Commission:  Election Results — Ōhāriu

Electoral Commission: Election Results — Overall Status

Wikipedia: 2011 General Election

TV3: Cunliffe’s links to Liu

Electoral Commission: Election Results — Napier

Fairfax media: Greens eye bigger supluses

Previous related blogposts

Post mortem #1: Green Voters in Electorates

Teflon Man No More




2017 - question



= fs =


  1. I agree with your analysis. 2017 starts now. Labour in particular needs to decide who they are and what they believe in. Their lack of vision destroyed them in 2011 and again in 2014. They must decide on this in the next 6 months and then relentlessly stress this over and over again from then on. They cannot win elections by sitting on their butts for two and a half years, then hope to win by issuing policies. I’d suggest that the majority of voters had little or no idea what Labour’s policies were.

    Dirty politics and Dotcom cost the so-called left badly by sucking away their opportunities to promote policies. Get them out early, often and loudly so by the 2017 campaign voters know what Labour stands for well in advance of the campaign. OK, so National may steal a watered down version – isn’t that a plus?

    The Green’s philosophy is well known and the result, for the second successive election, sadly suggests that they will struggle to grow their vote past this level.

    As for Labour leader, David Cunliffe must continue. Clark lost in 1996 before winning in 1999 and Norman Kirk lost in 1966 and 1969 before winning in 1972. There’s no reason to change and the ABC group, if they survive, need to be publicly exposed if they rear their heads again. NZ elections are now very presidential and so Cunliffe needs time to cement his public profile.

    If Labour fail again in 2017, their day is done. That would be a travesty for the party of Savage, Fraser and Nash.

    • I would say ‘dirty politics’, and the issues raised by Greenwald , Snowden (ie : mass surveillance ) are a symptom of a society slowly moving towards a closing down of democratic principles.

      Unfortunately , the ABC’s are a part of that process….and a pruning of dead wood is needed.This should be the first thing considered….following that…policy development and a strict ‘stuck record’ approach is need to constantly reinforce those policies before the public.

      Theyve got 3 years in which to implement the program.

    • Dirty politics and Dotcom cost the so-called left badly by sucking away their opportunities to promote policies.

      Bollocks. What caused the lack of focus on policies was the MSM’s focus upon National’s distractions which included National saying that there was no policies coming from the left when the opposite was actually true. If the MSM had been doing their job rather than propagandising for National they would have reported that National was corrupt and without policies and that the left was releasing polices and what those policies were.

      If Labour fail again in 2017, their day is done. That would be a travesty for the party of Savage, Fraser and Nash.

      Nothing lasts forever and trying to make it do so only causes harm.

      • Why wait for 2017 to confirm Labour’s failure? They are redundant, clueless and impotent now.
        A new movement needs arising and with so much vitality available from the temporary destruction of Mana and Internet a huge opportunity exists.
        Get over your false claim to history Labour … time to reinvent the Savage, Fraser, Nash, and Kirk kaupapa, get an honest relationship with te ao Maori, get with modern technology, re brand, re assemble and arise!
        Or just die, you are brain dead already.

    • If you accept the issues of climate change, end of cheap fossil fuels, global financial uncertainty, inequality etc, – as there is only one party speaking up, you would want the Greens to have a strong voice regardless of what is happening around them. Does that suggest that NZ voters don’t accept these issues yet … ?

  2. Lets have no more babbling about the inaccuracy of polls due to landlines etc
    The Greens who you might think would benefit have not held their vote in two elections
    I was wrong I thought it could be done with the help of Winstone but the Left were not wanted or rather their message wasn’t

    Time to regroup, listen to the people, and get organised

    • What? The Greens increased their vote from 7% to 11% in 2011 and have pretty much held their vote this time around – hopefully with the specials they will get another MP in and so will have come through battered but intact.

      The vote has gone down yet again and that favours the Right. National lost votes as well as everyone else apart from NZF and Conservatives. Their victory has come about as a consequence of people being turned off politics – the avowed goal of the dirty politics group in National.

    • Ray is right listen to the people this has not happened from labour or greens and only by Winston.

      Labour Stuart Nash was the outstanding (now MP) that listened to the Napier electorate, but Greens and other labour largely ignored us as a 14yr community group.

      Stuart is proud to be a Grandson of Sir Walter Nash and worked tirelessly for Napier as a candidate leading up to the election, so Ray yes he deserved to win.

      Useless Nat’ Walford wouldn’t even meet us in Napier so good riddance to him he is very arrogant to.

      Nats are closing the Napier police station and wants to amalgamate all local councils and Nash as well as Napier mayor opposed this along with Garth.

      Mc Vicar who actually worked for Napier crime was also upset as he wanted the police station to remain, hence become sort of a partner with Nash to snatch back Napier from the Tory’s.

      How could you close a big City police station down without repercussions?

      Same applies to closing our Gisborne/Napier rail service down as well.
      Dumb move by Nat’s. too aggressive.

  3. According to my trustee hamster-powered calculator, that’s a drop of 48,174 votes. Their electoral support fell, not increased.

    You may want to get a new hamster.

    You are comparing final results 2011 with with preliminary results 2014. There are still about 250000 votes to be counted.

    Greame has an estimate how that will look.


    If he is right that would mean National will get about 1.1m vote , so an increase over lats election.

    But of course he also estimates a result of 47.24% of the final votes, which would mean a 0.07 PP decrease over 2011.

    Better compare apples with apples.

    • Correct. I am “comparing final results 2011 with with preliminary results 2014”.

      Because the Special Votes have yet to be counted and apportioned to parties.

      On top of which, Special Votes tended to favour parties such as the Greens. So National’s preliminary vote will most likely drop.

      And my hamster is fine. Taking a well deserved break.

      • Also you didn’t factor in the increase for the conservative party…well over 50% of NZ voted to the right. This is a disaster. The left has been crushed. NZ voted for the status quo of child poverty, privatisation and a society with a decreased capacity for empathy.
        I honestly feel like I’m living in a society like “The Invasion of the Body Snatchers”….so very alien…

        • Also you didn’t factor in the increase for the conservative party…well over 50% of NZ voted to the right.

          Nope. Once the non-vote is taken into account two thirds of the population didn’t vote for National or the right.

          We have the same problem as last time – the lack of engagement by a large sector of NZ.

            • Perceived wisdom, Rory, is that non-voters are mostly the disenfanchised; alienated; lower socio-economic – those who have been promised much by successive governments, and are still waiting.

              Meanwhile, those on the right are well-motivated to go out and vote, to protect their privileges and status in society.

              The ones who I’ve been getting out to vote all fall into the former category. I’ve yet to meet a right wing voter who wasn’t motivated to vote.

              • Not having a dig Frank, but I’d be interested to see where this perceived wisdom has come from? Have there been any polls of non-voters? I just don’t buy the the tag of non-voters are predominantly to the left…just look at voter turn out in post-great depression in the 1930’s where voter turn out was as high as 92% – the poor were backing progressive leftist policies then. So it begs the question, why not now?

                • Because they have been sidelined and ridiculed for the last thirty years even when they’ve been promised more from political parties.

            • True and that is the problem. No government in NZ can, while 30% don’t vote, claim to have the consent of the governed.

      • It’s rather likely that National will pick up at least 48,000 special votes, though, which will give them more votes than last time.

      • Frank there are 254,630 special votes in NZ yet to be recorded. Assume (conservatively) that 40% are National. That gives a National total of 1,112,316. Compare that to the National total of 1,058,636. Maybe your hampster needs a holiday.

        You are correct though that (a) Labour is still basically a FPP party, (b) too many reporters and political commentators don’t think MMP, and (c) the Greens and Labour both need to think strategic in electorate voting.

  4. Likewise with Kelvin Davis. Davis did not “win” Te Tai Tokerau. It was “gifted” to him as a dirty little rort, when John Key, Winston Peters, and the Maori Party told their supporters to vote for Davis, over Hone Harawira.
    This was a disgusting, shabby example of dirty politics.

    So in point 1) you lament that the greens do not vote enough strategically, but here when others do it, it’s a “disgusting, shabby example of dirty politics.” ?

    How does that fit together?

    • It “fits” if you understand that neither National nor NZ First stood candidates in Te Tai Tokerau, so their endorsement of Davis was nothing more than a disgusting move at dirty politics.

      • So if the Greens were not to stand a candidate in Ohairu, then that would have been dirty politics? But by standing a candidate and having people vote for that person, that’s stupid Green voters not playing MMP?

        Frank, have a lie down. Come back in a few days.

        • The Greens have always sought the Party Vote since Jeanette Fitzsimons lost her Coromandel seat in 2002.

          Campaigning for the Party vote is tactically fine. (Even the Nats seek Party votes.)

          Wasting electorate votes is not.

          Had a lie down earlier. Having a coffee now, and replying to your inanities.

          • “The Greens need to get it through to their supporter’s thick heads that giving their electorate votes to their own candidates is a waste of effort and an indulgence we cannot afford.”

            How exactly should they do that? There will always be people who don’t understand MMP, and people who the GP can’t reach. Better for the GP to just not stand a candidate in crucial electorates. They did with with TTT, why not Ōhāriu?

            However for the GP to not stand candidates in Labour possible seats, Labour is going to have to be kinder to the GP. It’s not the GP that is dragging the chain on pan-left cooperation

            • “and the Greens undermined Labour with it’s comment that Labour’s policies would have to be “independently audited” – a phrase picked up by Key and used to attack Cunliffe.”

              Maybe, but Norman had a point about the audit, and this is well after Labour refused to work with the GP during the campaign. From the GP perspective they had to go for all votes they could get at that stage, not just to increase their vote, but because Labour were so patently not willing to commit to forming a left wing govt and like Peters wanted to see which way the chips fell. There was every chance that Labour would go right towards Peters rather than left towards the GP. I think the GP struck a fine balance between not hobbling Labour and still not being willing to be walked over like in the past. Am pretty sure the GP will still be willing to work co-operatively, but their patience isn’t infinite.

            • Weka –

              “However for the GP to not stand candidates in Labour possible seats, Labour is going to have to be kinder to the GP. It’s not the GP that is dragging the chain on pan-left cooperation”

              I concur.

  5. Nicky Hager and Kim Dotcom lost the election for the left. I commented a couple of weeks ago (and received lots of thumbs down) that their is something strangely egotistical about releasing a book during an election campaign that could completely swing that campaign. Right or wrong, one person is taking on the mantle of being the single voice that decide the result. Although appalled by the revelations in the book I felt insulted by Hager. This made people on the right more tribal. Then with Dotcom’s ego (and I feel for him for what he’s being forced to endure) added to the mix, Key was made to look like the underdog. Simultaneously, Labour were shut out. A lot of work from here. I thought Cunliffe’s concession speech was excellent and he really does have the policies that NZ needs. Only 36 months to go and a lot pain for National along the way.

    • If there weren,t for Nicky Hager’s book and Kim Dotcom effort to exposed the spying over all of us, the election result would be much worse. Thanks to both of them, the end result is much butter. In addition,the Labour Party had such a stupid strategy and very complicated policies that even themselves haven’t understand it. Add to this those thousand of people who didn’t vote and you will get a very grim picture.

      • Nah, can’t agree, We spent months waiting for Cunliffe to get his time in the spotlight and it didn’t come. On top of that RAHCHCH is right about the whole thing pushing the tribal buttons of those on the right.

        I don’t think Hager was arrogant though, I think he did the right thing but I think it turned out to be strategically the wrong move.

        It was such an unusual election I think it just really unpredictable, another week later could have been quite different.

        I’m terrified about the TPPA now though.

        • Aaron – “I don’t think Hager was arrogant though, I think he did the right thing but I think it turned out to be strategically the wrong move. ”

          Then again, if Hager had waited till after the election, I wonder what the reaction of the media, public, and left wing commentators might have been?

          Not very understanding, I’m guessing.

          Nicky was in a classic damned-if-you-do-damned-if-you-don’t scenario.

          Once you have that kind of information when is it ever the right time to release it?!

        • Nicky Hager is in the business of selling books . He released his book at a time calculated to maximise sales – nothing more.

  6. With the economy mostly improving (albeit unequally) and the NZX consistently making new all time highs, it would have been unusual to see a change of government in such circumstances.

    2017 will be a very different economic climate.

    The left have 3 years to get their shit together.

    The Rogernomes within Labour have to go. If Labour can’t figure out thats why their voting base is eroding, then they’ll die off as a party. The Rogernomes need to leave Labour and move over to ACT which is from whence ACT came and where they belong.

    • And I’ll add…

      If Labour can get rid of the Rogernomes and actually be a left wing party (and lets face it, they’re not left, there is very little to distinguish their economic policy from Nationals) then Labour and Greens need to work together.

      If Labour and Green could get together before an election and have an agreement, which included strategically removing candidates from seats where they don’t want the left vote split, they could win next time.

      Labour need to stop trying to be central. They need to go back to their core values and actually be a left wing party. Albeit the most central of the left, but they need to be left.

  7. This is the last time I participate in the electoral farce, The left needs to move beyond party politics – my suggestion is anarcho-syndicalism. I’m going to increase my volunteer work and barter/trade with people of a like mind.
    Sorry I’m just not happy living within dictatorship by majority.

    • Rory, I suggest you give serious thought to doing both; combining your volunteering and bartering with voting every three years for the party that is most closely aligned to your values.

      As an activity, voting is pretty effortless but hugely important; we would have had a very different result last night had the number of election abstainers been very low.

      When people relinquish their right to participate in shaping the future, the future is likely to produce yet more unpleasant outcomes.

  8. What I learned from this election:

    1. I will have to see John Key’s shit-eating grin for another 3 years.
    2. John Key is covered in Kevlar, not Teflon.
    3. The majority of NZ voters, like the US during the George W. Bush years, have embraced anti-intellectualism by rallying behind blokesy John.
    4. Internet Party and Mana ultimately destroyed each other. They were never politically compatible.
    5. No one from the right gives one whit about their own dirty politics, unless accusations of it are shown in which case it causes NZers to increase their support.
    6. The “flawed” landline polls are flawed no longer. They were remarkably accurate this time, as was iPredict. I wasted my vote backing Internet Mana, because I bought into the lie that iPredict was incorrect in saying TTT was at best a 50-50 for Hone.
    7. I will have to see John Key’s shit-eating grin for another 3 years…

    • I’m not sure the ‘flawed’ polls were fixed, I think they just got lucky. If this election had been held even a couple of days later or earlier we may well have had quite different percentages. I think the right were riding a wave of sympathy at all the perceived attacks – and they spun it all beautifully but it was dependent on the media describing the Moment of Truth as a but if a fizzer.

  9. For their blatant rotten manipulation in the TTT electorate, Labour, Winston Peters and FJK, have betrayed Maori in general, through denying Maoridom a single, strong voice against poverty, Hone Harawira!

    Winston Peters is from Northern Maori, so his actions are particularly bad, betraying his own people big time!

    Shame, shame, shame on the damn lot of you involved in this filthy game!

    • You know what? ….for a long time…..had a fair bit of respect for old Winston….going back to the Winebox days , respected his outspokenness , and the fact that he was generally of an old school nationalistic politician…

      This latest backstabbing of Hone….well old son….with you and Key , and that mutt Davis, combining with the maori party, et al….

      Sorry to say it Winston…your now out the back door….and I gave you a lot of benefit of the doubt…no more , me old son.

      Now see here..Im a white guy ,…who at first took umbrage at Hone for some of his early comments , but I got over all that ….he then teamed with Laila , there was John Minto , Annette Sykes….all strong people…people who would have spoken out and put Key on the back foot , constantly applied the pressure….

      And now I see Cunliffe dishing it to Mr Kim Dotcom in the Herald…..using him as the scapegoat. After pandering to middle NZ and distancing yourself from Mr Dotcom and by implication IMP. Trying to obscure the fact that NOW YOU SEE how wrong it was to put that idiot Davis against Hone. Morons.

      You know what? …all politics aside….you bastards are all weak.

      As people you are weak.

      You people would back-stab your own families to win votes.

      And what did all your collective duplicity get you…..you lost the bloody election despite of all your great maneuvering . And wrecked what could of been a valuable ally for the future.

      Your sickening.

  10. Thanks for an interesting and informative analysis.

    I think Cunliffe is gone, though. The Labour Party, though possibly standing to the left of the National Party, is in my view touching shoulders with it, and is no longer – hasn’t been these 30 years – a party of the Left. Oh, sure, I prefer it to the Nats any day, but I haven’t forgotten that it was a Labour Government that first promulgated the policies continued by subsequent Administrations.

    I don’t absolve the Clark Government either. Recall the Multilateral Agreement on Investments? Just the earlier attempt to foist upon New Zealand (inter alia) what is now called the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Change of name; who knows? It might slip under the radar. But the Labour Government was all for it.

    Recall the GM scandal? John Campbell was right to ambush PM Clark on this: she deserved to be ambushed. Recall the Clark Administration falling over itself to bring in measures to curb my freedoms, in response to a terrorist act more than half a world away. And do recall that the Clark Administration wasn’t above a little bit of sly benny-bashing during the course of its 9-year tenure of office.

    But the Clark administration had one or two things in its favour. It had at least the virtue of something approaching competence – Michael Cullen was on the whole quite a good Min of Fin; and there was at least a nod towards social policy (Parental Leave, for instance).

    I’m given to understand that David Cunliffe is (was) a more left-leaning Labour man. The rest of the Party don’t come across as such, and any rallying round behind their man by the Labour caucus was not especially noticeable.

    I mentioned elsewhere on the Daily Blog an idea I had for a political cartoon: David Cunliffe fronting the Party, with his caucus … erm … colleagues standing behind him, knives at the ready. Here’s another: David Cunliffe as Paul Bunyan’s Christian, the burden on his back comprising the Labour parliamentary caucus.

    But one thing that no political party, nor the electorate at large has so far grasped. It’s quite simple really. When times are tough, the Government should increase spending. If the moneys need to be recouped, do that in good times.

  11. Had the left won it would inherit an economy and housing market about to implode. And implode it all will.

    Guess who would get the blame if that happened under a left leaning administration?

    Although this result is disastrous for the long term future of a fair and prosperous society in NZ, at least the left will have dodged the bullet of responsibility for it. 30 years of laissez faire doctrine will leave nothing else to blame.

    And don’t blame the left for this defeat, look to your fellow citizens.

    • Richard you are 1000% CORRECT.
      I saw the property bubble burst while in Toronto in 1992 and Bank repossession’s were quickly followed as people just walked out as bailiffs drove up and secured the property.

      33% of all homes were taken this way so Auckland is really close to collapse soon…

      What is sad is that in almost everywhere else properties have already slumped, so what makes Auckland any different?

      Big bust up there for sure and Key will be blamed big time for it all, as he talked it up. We now have changed from a caring society to one of Me Me Me.

  12. Just a quick note on point 5. The top figure is full and final counting special votes. Special votes haven’t been counted yet this time around.

  13. Good summary.

    What a horror show alright and too many reasons to list why.

    However I want to know why Labour saw it as positive to dump Mana from parliament. It was like the good ol days of FPP and that John Key was backing Davis should have rung alarm bells. Christ all mighty there are some thickies in Labour at the moment and I’m afraid DC is one as I noted him gloating on Labours chances with Te Tai Tokerau in the last debate. Dave it ain’t 1972! Maybe there was a good reason I’m unaware of. Maybe the KDC link was poisonous, its certainly what I have heard.

    I’ve said it before but Nationals smear campaigns on David Cunliffe definitely paid dividends for National last night. I can only hope that should it happen again he and Labour are on to it early and DC doesn’t take a beating and not fight back as he did this year.

    And what the fuck is it about left wing politics? The ugly abusive public infighting, the “you are not as left as us so you are not worthy” shit that without doubt puts voters off for years to come. There is no end to it, only division, and it may be borne out of real beliefs to improve the world we live in rather than a naked cling to power, but it’s self perpetuating and self destructive. I have read that many articles in the Daily Blog written by so called left wing veterans that do that very thing. National need only sit back and smile and do nothing safe in the knowledge that in the end have many allies in the left whether those allies know it or not!

    And yes the Greens, the superior Greens who ran the smart campaign over Labours inept gaff strewn attempt. Why say you can work with National and I don’t care if it was a technical relationship? For fuck sake that was NOT smart it was suicidal. That’s unless the Green Party meant it and in that case a giant reassessment is required by the left.

    You are right though, these parties need to sit down and decide firstly do they want National gone and if so then how they can co-operate best to achieve that goal without harming each other. Because 2014 was NOT the way to do it and I am hugely pissed off.

    And how we overcome the void that is our main stream media is going to be a whole other challenge.

  14. Why does Green even put candidates in electoral seats they can’t hope to win? National doesn’t put candidates in the Māori seats (and then has the bloody cheek to tell Māori who to vote for). The argument used to be that it gave them practice, and if they did well they’d be given safer seats / moved higher up the list. Can’t they do that in safe National seats, or seats without issues?

    11. The media
    I explained to an American friend that we now have several commentators akin to Fox’s Bill O’Reilly. That would be bad enough but that one of them even figures prominently in ‘Dirty Politics’ ought to have been a deal-breaker. I didn’t ever hear about Greens saying Labour’s budget should be “independently” audited (which seems innocuous to me) but I couldn’t stop hearing the outright piffle that the Greens had “gone over to National”. That was a scandalous lie.

    • Because you can’t argue for party votes unless you do? And (how many times does this have to be said) it is the Party votes that determine the shape of parliament – apart from a few key electorates.

      You should put your energy into arguing for STV at the electorate level. Then we wouldn’t have these debates.

      • Paddy – I’m not sure standing candidates at electorate level (for smaller parties anyway) does much to increase their share of the Party Vote. Nationwide advertising and leaders debates seems to be more effective.

        The public meetings I’ve attended would not have contributed to any party’s share of the Party Vote – especially as most of the attendees were party members or partisan voters with minds already made up.

    • If you have a candidate in the electorate you party is put in the top party vote box on the ballot paper, increasing the chances of geeting party votes, compred with being banished to the party list at the bottom of the voting paper.

      And you then get to attend electoral meetings, uping the profile for the party more.

    • I think the real problem here is the FPP electoral seats. There’s this problem of ‘if you don’t want National you should vote Labour’ in the electorate, but to me that is just going to further entrench the big two/FPP nature of the whole game, and where or when will it end? If you take this approach you’re just perpetuating Labour or National being the big two into the distant future.

      To me the problem is FPP electoral seats mixed with MMP party vote. Sure ‘the candidate with the most votes wins’ sounds nice and simple, but I don’t think it reflects the reality of how people feel about their local candidates. We should petition for a change.

  15. Interesting thoughts Frank. I too wondered about our FPP electorate system. Surely we could move to a transferable vote system? (In all honesty, I would like to see electorates go all together – I agree with what Alvin Toffler was writing about in the 70’s that geographic-based voting makes little sense in a modern world).

    But about Teflon John I’m not as optimistic as you. It’d be nice to look at the tougher questioning he’s been getting in the media over the last few weeks and think it’s the beginning of something new, but I get the feeling it’ll be an election cycle blip and we’lll see more of the same in the future. As noted on here last week, the MSM are still running stories sourced from Whale Oil and I think these results give National the mandate to move forward even more with their dirty politics approach, leaving John clean and smiling his smug little grin.

  16. A cursory glance at the right would confirm this fundamental solidarity. Whereas the Left (foolishly ) displayed egos, personal ambition , division….

    I beleive the main causitive factor is to be found amongst Labours own ranks. For two reasons. 1) Labours refusal to eject the ABC’s…or any remnants of neo liberalism (why are they still there ? )

    The destruction , antagonism and division this group has caused more than anything else is Labours core problem. They need to go. It was because of this group there is now no IMP in parliament – not because of ‘dirty politics’ , not because of mass surveillance , not because of corruption…but because of prize ignoramuses like this :

    From the idiot who flippantly ludicrously , and destructively started off the campaign with ‘We should look into bringing back the moa ….. Id like a small moa…one that I could pat’…

    Through to the unbelievable arrogance (and colossal stupidity of the Labour party itself ) of Davis in Te Tai Tokerau..in opposing Hone /Mana.

    Just two small examples of many , many , many incidents that have gone on in not only this election but past ones all too frequently.


    Davis is nothing more than a foot soldier for the neo liberal faction and National….he too , …must go.

    This faction….have deliberately acted as ‘implants’ for their neo liberalism .

    The second is Labours craven gutlessness to avoid true Left policy in trying to be a ‘centrist’ party……constantly trying to pander to some mythic middle class who they percieve as seeing left wing policies as valueless. In so doing…they are neither left or right and present no real alternative to National. And this directly borne out of suffering these neo liberals in their midst.

    So therefore …two immediate solutions possibly would be :

    1) Expell any and all exponents of right wing neo liberal ideaology…As it runs contrary to and is not compatible with the Social Democratic stance of the Left.

    2) There would need to be close co operation amonst Left partys…and this would entail some sort of forum and a kind of ‘charter ‘…to ensure a cohesive and strategic united front , whereby policies….can be refined ,…and not run counter to other political groups.

    This would in effect serve much like the very simple arrangement among the Right – whereby ‘neo liberalism ‘ is the overriding uniting force.

    • Maybe Matt MCcarten needs to brush up his skills ,never heard much from him ,if he was allowed to give strategy or if he was ignored.
      labour and greens needs someone who sees the bigger picture and knows how to play the sneaky game of politics .

      • Elle – Matt was a back-rooms organisor. As such we’re not supposed to “hear from him”…

        When he was the organisor for the Alliance, he was totally invisible to the public, but his strategies were superb.

  17. Don’t bag the Greens for attacking Labour. Labour lost voters, the Greens didn’t – even though internet Mana mostly affected the Green vote. ACT behaved like National’s lapdogs and see how well that worked out for them!

    An ACT that told the truth about Key – that Key borrowed sixty billion dollars and spent it all on benefits, and so now every nett-tax-paying (i.e. potential ACT voting) household will have to pay an extra three hundred thousand dollars in tax – would have done rather better than talking about “ideas” and incest…

  18. Labour can’t win with the capital gains tax. The people who it would benefit don’t find it enticing enough to vote for and there are just too many people see it as burning their money so won’t vote Labour.

    Labour should go with the Financial Transaction Tax instead – most people won’t even notice it the tax if it’s something like 0.1%.

    John Key gushed thank his pollster Farrah for all his work – it may have been his work but it was based on our information – we can’t give it to them. If curia rings you up wanting info you just have to say No. If you want the left to win you can’t give National strategic information like that.

    Frank, you did a power of good with your well research articles. Keep it up, we’ll need it more than ever.

  19. You are the political expert, not me, so I may well be wrong, but is it possible your hamster compared polling night results before special votes, against final results including specials, to derive his/her figure of 48,174? If so the advice given you by the hamster about a drop in National support may be in error?
    Can you please also advise what a “trustee hamster” is? – as in the past I have always described my own hamster as a “trusty hamster”.
    I do hope you are not guilty of “sloppy reporting” of these or any other matters?

  20. Im glad to read your post, I thought the same that Labour was disloyal to internet mana ,and the public picked up on it,I wondered if Labour really wanted to win .Winston shot himself in the foot by knocking out Hone Harawira.
    Kelvin Davis must be really laughing,Peters gained nothing ,I presume he was relying on having a foot in both camps .
    Key played both Peters and Cunliffe, Key encouraged Cunliffe to rely on just three parties by calling them ragtag alliances and Cunliffe thought he was smart by only having three. Key would have allied himself to attilla the hun to get in.
    Feel very sad for dot com .he thought he had pulled out all the stops ,he should have verified his email not rely on his overseas help, and his nervous loud laughing was irritating, the event came across as a bit amateur, but I hope he dosnt give up or give in , he showed the public what the real spy story was .
    Key didn’t win except by being more tactical and smart , Cunliffe lost by being to conciliatory to Key saying he had done well to bring us through the problems,Key just borrowed his way out, Cunliffe being too polite got him nowhere .
    If I hadn’t read your article I would have thought the election was rigged,after all Key had big corp behind him. it would have been easy for them .
    Nz will be in very dire straights ,Key will use his win as a mandate to do what he likes, Judith Collins will be let off ,Jason Ede can come out of hiding, and expect Collins to be PM before too long.Very sad for NZ.

  21. On the electorate point: Labour also need to get it into their heads that they can’t expect free lunches from the Greens. If they’re going to pull stunts like at the Greens’ expense and refuse to talk concerted campaign strategy, they can’t expect cups of tea in important electorates.

  22. Contrast point 1 – Green party supporters should give their electorate votes to labour with point 9, where you criticise John Key and the Maori Party for doing *exactly* what you are suggesting in point 1. Why is one smart politics, and the other dirty?

  23. I have to take exception to 6. Anyone But Cunliffe. He’s just too dorky.

    When Labour started tanking in the polls a National MP said “Shearer would be starting to come into his own about now”, so I see your point.

    Unfortunately, whatever it is, I don’t think Cunliffe has it. Don’t ask me who I’d prefer though – Shearer or even Goff would probably have done better.

    • Waz – “Don’t ask me who I’d prefer though – Shearer or even Goff would probably have done better.”

      I like Shearer. He seems a perfectly pleasant sort of a bloke. Reminds me of Bill Rowling.

      But – and this was raised by Linda Clarke on TV3 on Election night – how would he have gone up against Key? My suspicion (and I could be wrong) – not very well.

      But, who knows…?

      • Well…being of rural stock myself…I’d like to see a bloke in a checked shirt with a voice like a parade ground sergeant yellin at his dogs to ‘GET IN BEHIND ‘!!! having a go at Key….

        Someone with a bit of mongrel …like an old time union hall boss sort off…but then…that s just me,…I guess that era’s over 🙁

    • Short memories and lack of pattern recognition?
      The rhetoric around Cunliffe is exactly the same as the narrative that was created around Goff, and then Shearer…….and no doubt the next, and the next Labour leader

  24. A thoughtful analysis but a couple of points:
    3. Labour vs Mana: I think the outcome for Hone here clearly illustrates Labour had to distance themselves from Internet-Mana or get dragged down with a sinking ship. As Kim Dotcom acknowledged, his brand was perceived as toxic by most New Zealanders. I think it was a smart move by Labour.
    6. Totally agree that the labour leader shouldn’t be revisited, this will lead to further weakening of the party. However, the mainstream media is already calling for it so it’s probably just a matter of time.
    10. The forces on the right may be united but we also saw there is only one viable option for right voters. The greens did get a little overconfident and the slightest sign of trouble in a left wing alliance was certainly picked up on by the media.

    I’m disappointed but given we had the best part of three years of the mainstream media largely campaigning on behalf of the national party a couple of months of (more) balanced coverage of the politics – not policy – was never going to be enough. At the least I’m hoping a more critical media will emerge out of this, but I’m not optimistic.

    • Id agree….but considering the amount of pressure on Mr Dotcom, publicly , legally – caused by a corrupt govt in my view , – and the sheer magnitude of the moment of truth and the message it conveyed…

      Put yourself in his shoes for a minute and think how it would feel..to be maligned , set up , arrested, publicly demonized ,have pressure on a marriage, be the receiver of puerile insults from a prime minister , (unbelievable )assets frozen ….

      Im sorry …but that shoddy bullshit treatment makes me fucking angry. Tried in the court of public opinion.

      FUCK YOU , KEY.

      I don’t think many of us could have handled it a lot better , really.

  25. Is Josie Pagani the meth freak in a red dress on TV 3? If so, O-M-G!!

    In any event, there is only one phrase to describe what happened: an old fashioned beat down of epic proportions.

  26. Greetings Frank.

    I have read and admired your blogs on TDB for months, especially the persistent and incisive investigations. (Regards also to Hercules!)

    As a rule, comments on threads at TDB and The Standard are more likely to be informative, while comments on Whale Oil and Kiwiblog are more likely to be abusive or slanderous, and I see an inverse relationship going on with this – the more informative, the less likely to be emotional.

    Among the many recriminations I have read today there were a couple of passing references to the possibility of vote-rigging, in the context of this election, but they drew no responses and weren’t seeming to be taken seriously.

    I don’t want to bore you, but here are some thoughts, which I’m presuming you’ll be able to digest given the detailed posts you’ve made.


    With the recent election in Fiji, with the Commodore winning by a landslide, the international observers saying it all looked fine and a group of losing candidates claiming it was rigged… well, given we don’t know, it might be just their sour grapes (though what else I’ve read about the Commodore makes that seem unlikely), and it also might have been rigged cunningly enough to slip past the international observers. (Locals might be biased, but they also know the local conditions better.)


    Vote rigging is casually alleged in Zimbabwe, Syria, Russia and elsewhere, and quite widely discussed in the USA once enough people have been able to see how it was done. Understandably the MSM would never suggest such a possibility here, but readers of Dirty Politics would have no doubt that, given what else it has clearly done, there is no reason to suppose that such a government would abstain from rigging if they thought they had found a foolproof way to do it.


    In conversations with friends I note that the idea that ‘we just don’t do that in NZ!’ is deeply entrenched, as entrenched as some other ideas probably were before Mr Hager’s latest book came out. I guess I’m asking if you and Hercules would like to consider looking at the matter more closely.

    As a relevant example, years ago Australia’s Howard government invaded Aboriginal land and staked it out with police on the grounds that unacceptable abuse perpetrated by Aboriginal men on the more vulnerable was taking place. I believe that such abuse would not have been taking place before Europeans arrived and was therefore originally caused by colonial abuse of the whole indigenous people.

    It seemed a clear case of how divide and rule works.
    Apply enough deprivation and any group will fight with itself as long as they believe that the problem lies with the slightly greedy they can see and not with the very greedy prodding them like puppet masters from the shadows. Much has been written today about ‘what the left did wrong’, all based on the single huge presumption that the election result proved it and was itself absolutely beyond question.

    Yet I question it. There are very good reasons for the tradition of secret ballot as applies at all really important elections, but it would be naive to think that such appropriate secrecy could not or would never be used inappropriately by some on whose honesty we depend and have recently been discovered not rising to the challenge of that responsibility.

    A final example –

    Much has been made of how the PM changed his ‘no mass surveillance’ position every day in the leadup to the election, released declassified documents that were beside the point, etc.

    Why did he go so out of his way to look more untrustworthy than he would have if he had just stuck with his original lie? After all, it would still have come down to his word against those of Snowden and Greenwald – evidence but no proof thanks to the excuse of state confidentiality. Has anyone else wondered this?

    Well, none of that would have mattered if he knew the election result was already in the bag.

    What if? What if NZ voters aren’t actually ‘that stupid’ and were going to (and did) vote for change, so much so that even most National party members were worried about what they could see coming (just one of the pieces of circumstantial evidence)…until Mr Magic in a ‘surprising result’ (MSM) and to rapturous applause pulled the rabbit out of his top drawer.

    As with the question of mass surveillance, the question of electoral fraud, for related reasons, is very difficult to prove beyond doubt, but once it is seen as a possibility there seems to be plenty of circumstantial evidence supporting the probability.

    What do you think?

    • There are several anomalies with this election. Firstly, there was the last 3 News-Reid Research poll before the election.

      “National are on 44.5 percent, and they haven’t had a result lower than that in the 3 News poll for five years. It’s a danger zone for the Prime Minister and means he soon could be out of power.”

      According to Sean Plunket, he said on RadioLive that 44.5 percent was generous as an insider had told him that the National party’s own internal polling had them on only 41 percent. Add to this the historic precedent for overstating the polling support of the right and you would have to say they were in real trouble.
      Most right wing pundits at the time seemed to be in a real state of panic. So what happened …

      How could Judith Collins be voted in? How could Christchurch vote National back in? How could Simon Bridges be voted back in?

      How could the stuff Ipsos poll which has been widly out from the 2011 election results be the most accurate this time round. Very strange. Someone needs to investigate this.

      • Good point on Christchurch. We all hear how poorly everything is going from insurance to rebuilding to housing costs along with the continuing problems with flooding etc and the net result is a resounding party vote of confidence for National. So either its media hype and everything is ticking along nicely, voters had no desire to protest even if things are dire or the opposition parties policies completely missed the mark. I certainly didn’t think the latter was the case.

        But the opposition was not united that’s for sure and I understand that this has finally dawned on Cunliffe. Bit late now Dave!

    • George – thanks for that analysis.

      I ‘m thinking that electoral fraud in this country would be unlikely simply because, being so small, it would eventually get out into the public arena. Prosecutions and convictions would follow, with high ranking National party apparatchiks and politicians ending up behind bars.

      This is evidenced by Nicky Hager’s book which outed the dodgy dealings of Cameron Slater, Judith Collins, Jason Ede, and others.

      It destroyed Collins’ career and leadership ambitions.

      It sent Jason Ede into hiding.

      It reduced Slater’s power, as National MPs will think twice before having any further dealings with him. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if Joyce has “read the riot act” to all National ministers and MPs to steer clear of Slater.

      Electoral fraud isn’t impossible – but highly unlikely.

      Especially to maintain the secret. Imagine if one intoxicated National Party apparatchik at a party started mouthing of about how they had stolen the election – and a journo had been within earshot. (Not an impossible scenario. One of my journo contacts, at the NZH, tells me that’s where some of their best ‘scoops’ come from – over-hearing chatter from lips loosened by too many Vodka Cruisers!)

      National’s electoral success can be rooted in four main areas;

      1. Key’s on-going blokey popularity (damaged as it might be)

      2. the economy “seemingly” doing well – at present

      3. infighting between left-wing parties who failed to show the same solidarity that National was able to show with it’s potential coalition partners

      4. The media being fixated on spying, and irrelevancies, instead of serious policy analysis.

      There is a fifth reason, but I have hesitated to refer to it. The Dotcom Factor. The failure of the ‘Moment of Truth’ to deliver the link between Key and GCSB dodgy dealings was the point at which it fell apart.

      Strangely, though Greenwald and Snowden showed that we are under mass surveillance for our meta-data – most New Zealanders seemed unperturbed. At least, not as concerned as when the GCSB was first set up in the 1970s.

      The reason may well be the double influence of continuing fear-campaigns by governments using terrorists as bogeymen (the 21st century version of reds-under-the-bed), and most people being “relaxed” about our blokey PM.

      I suspect if exactly the same situation occurred with a Labour PM, there would be massive public outcry; media opposition; and considerable vocal right wing agitation.

      Add to that KDC’s failure to deliver the evidence he promised to prove that Key knew well in advance about Dotcom and the impending raid on his home – and his credibility simply collapsed.

      Up until that moment, everything KDC had stated had been proven true; had won Court cases; and his evidence convicted a Minister of the Crown.

      KDC’s failure at that point not only damaged Mana-Internet, but may have reflected badly on the Left as a whole.

      I don’t condemn Dotcom. He’s been the target of some fairly nasty state power. And I understand what he was trying to achieve. (People from Europe generally have a more jaundiced viewed of State power in our lives. Here in New Zealand, we’re… “relaxed” about it – unless it interferes with our recreational consumerism.)

      • Thanks Frank – I take your points.

        And all are likely to have contributed. However, our faith in the system does itself in my opinion make it easier for a vote to be rigged if they reasonably believe no one will be looking.

        It’s often noted that advertising is so expensive that it wouldn’t be done if it didn’t work. Whatever it was worked spectacularly well this time – when since MMP has a party got enough votes to govern alone?

        As you say, it would be a serious matter were it to be discovered. Which means that there would be no question of telling anyone in the party – no need or reason for them to know. Somewhere in the space between emailing the booth results through and adding them up there is probably a point where the correct totals are up to one person.

        Easily done, absolute foolproof security less easily assured. Sure I can’t prove a thing. I had expected the early votes to have been precounted and published at 7pm but they seemed to arrive mixed in with the election day votes, which raises the question of where they were sitting all that time and how accessible if they were not counted until after 7pm like all the others.

        If agreed that ‘the right don’t really want you to vote’ and can and will pay hefty fees to Redacted and Redacted, pushpoll and voter discouragement specialists, they clearly have motivation and capability and can be expected to seek the opportunity. I’ll be relieved if a certain minister stood down for corruption weren’t there on a healthy majority looking for all the world as if what she did doesn’t matter a bit.

  27. Hi Frank,

    I presume that someone has pointed out the Special Votes: 254,630 that haven’t been counted yet? That is why National has an election night *counted* vote lower than their *final* vote in 2011.

    Electorate candidates in Labour fight for the seat for exactly the same reasons that the IMP did. Each electorate seat that could be won provides a base to gain party votes from. After all parties are first there for their own interests not those of other parties. But the party doesn’t tell the candidate what to do in winnable seats. After all the candidate is making a considerable personal sacrifice to run a campaign in giving up their time to try to win it.

    You want a seat, then you work your arses off to win and hold it. No amount of whining gets around that you have to work at it. Labour activists told IMP activists that. You just weren’t listening.

    And in any case I thought that IMP would get between 2-3% max in the party vote. They got just over 1%. Tell me – where is the benefit to Labour from having the IMP in adopting holier than thou attitudes when most of us optimistically thought they could deliver so little?

    It would have been better if the Dirty Politics book had been earlier. But it wasn’t ready. It will roll on into the next electoral cycle.

    I agree that Josie Pagani is (to put it mildly) over ramping National losing votes to McVicar and splitting the right vote. She is (as usual) being foolish. All it does is to detract from her other points. Any activist who reads the numbers in Napier will just dismiss her as a political featherweight. But I think that she is directing her words at the media rather than politicals. They are numerically stupid enough to swallow her gormless crap.

    What you are missing is that “cooperation” on the right has led to a pile of dead or dying bodies of political parties. It isn’t healthy to let a parasite suck you dry regardless of how healthy the parasite looks.

    There is a reason that the conservatives and NZ First stay out of the range of National’s loving embrace. It is the Joyce strategy. And you want that for parties on the left? I’d suggest you have a longer and clearer think about that…

    • Hi Lynn,

      “I presume that someone has pointed out the Special Votes: 254,630 that haven’t been counted yet? That is why National has an election night *counted* vote lower than their *final* vote in 2011.”

      Yup. As I pointed out to Sean above, the Electoral Commission’s page seemed a bit vague on how they had included the numbers in the overall count.

      I am assuming that National’s overall percentage of the Party Vote will drop from it’s current 48.06% (http://www.electionresults.govt.nz/electionresults_2014/partystatus.html) to a lower figure. Special votes tend to favour the Greens.

      A similar situation occurred in 2011 when National’s election night result dropped from 47.99% (http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10768928) to 47.31% (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Zealand_general_election,_2011) after Special Votes.

      “Electorate candidates in Labour fight for the seat for exactly the same reasons that the IMP did. Each electorate seat that could be won provides a base to gain party votes from. After all parties are first there for their own interests not those of other parties. But the party doesn’t tell the candidate what to do in winnable seats. After all the candidate is making a considerable personal sacrifice to run a campaign in giving up their time to try to win it.

      You want a seat, then you work your arses off to win and hold it. No amount of whining gets around that you have to work at it. Labour activists told IMP activists that. You just weren’t listening.”

      I think you’re missing the point here, Lynn. In normal circumstances, what you say holds perfectly true.

      However, in certain exceptional circumstances – ie; Epsom, Ōhāriu, and Te Tai Tokerau – there was more riding on who won those seats than usual.

      Each one of those three seats could have brought in an extra MP, on the coat-tails of the winner.

      So, had Hone Harawira won, he would have pulled in an extra MP (or more if their Party votes had been higher). A Labour-led government would have got TWO (or more) Mana MPs for the price of one Labour MP.

      In a tight election, as early polling suggested, the difference between a National-led or Labour-led government could have been one or two MPs.

      Evidence of this? Maori Party leader Te Ururoa Flavell won the Maori seat of Waiariki , bringing in Marama Fox on his coat-tails.

      National got two coalition partner MPs for the price of one.

      Them’s the rules until the coat-tailing provision is done away with, and until that day, we have to play by those rules if we’re going to win government.

      I do not believe scrapping over individual seats, for little or no gain, serves the purposes of the Left.

      But what it does show to the public is that Labour is more interested in their own political fortunes rather than the “Big Picture” of growing the Left-wing bloc.

      By contrast, National gets this. I believe that’s a further reason why the public still support the Nats – they’ve shown they can work collegially with their potential coalition partners.

      We have yet to learn that salient lesson.

      “What you are missing is that “cooperation” on the right has led to a pile of dead or dying bodies of political parties. It isn’t healthy to let a parasite suck you dry regardless of how healthy the parasite looks.

      There is a reason that the conservatives and NZ First stay out of the range of National’s loving embrace.”

      I disagree. The “Conservatives and NZ First [did not] stay out of the range of National’s loving embrace”.

      Key rejected the Conservatives. Not the other way round.

      And Winston Peters simply played his old “neither confirm, nor deny” trick that he always plays, with both Labour and National.

      The reality is that Key has shown his ability to work well with other parties, both in coalition, and on the hustings by not slagging them off.

      Contrast that to the Left…? See what I mean?

      Until the Left can demonstrate a similar collegiality, why should the public think we can work together as a government?

      In my view, we need to prove it, not just talk it.

  28. Thank you Frank, another informative sum up of yesterdays dire news.

    There was one major winner in this election, and that was the MSM, who used every trick in the book to ensure that the National Party will continue with their dirty means of governing for another 3 years.

    They forget one issue though, when the TPPA is endorsed, it will affect every NZer, it won’t matter whether we are rich or poor, we will all be dancing to the tune of the US puppeteers.

    Shame MSM.

  29. The greens should not have stood in Ohariu. Increased Right representation by one seat. Now we have same buffer for ants as in 2011 – Act, Dunn, Maori party.

  30. What this really means is that the “100% Final Count” shown on TV for the 2014 election is actually almost 300,000 votes short. The election night count does not yet include all of the special votes – overseas voters, and all the locals (like myself) who voted outside of their local district. The Daily Blog made the mistake of comparing interim incomplete 2014 counts with the final 2011 counts, and drew invalid conclusions. It was probably a genuine mistake due to mathematical incompetence, rather than politically motivated.

  31. Nga mihi Frank, wow these points are right on the money! I do so hope that Labour and the Greens can sort their 2017 Campaign strategy out and get their supporters to unite also. The MANA Movement will continue after some thanking people, reflection on what actually happened and decisions on where to from here. Mauri Ora!

  32. Oh c’mon Green voters! I voted Greens but voted for the Labour candidate. How hard is it?! Now we have three more years of corrupt, synthetic drug propping up, bow-tie wearing, Cannabis hating idiocy.

    The enemy of my enemy is my man, remember?
    I ain’t tryin’ to be ending up in this man’s dilemma. -M1, dead prez

  33. Sorry to make your points uneven Frank but I think the news media had a huge part to play in what happened. They are all propaganda parrots for the right. Brainwashed? Backgrounds? I don’t know. But they report lies as truth and truth as lies as far as the left is concerned. There was a concerted effort to go after KDC notably Paddy Gower’s outburst on Twitter supported by Davis, Nash, Hipkins demonstrated this. Gower proclaimed he was going to stop this rort. So the news media hounded KDC, falsely reported the IMP position as being the KDC party and curried favour from John Key by embellishing and publishing his KDC putdowns. Racism reared its ugly head, the news media happy to report this and KDC bore the brunt of this.
    Their role as propaganda parrots has never been scrutinised, it should because they do have an important role in influencing how things turn out e.g. Cunliffe has to resign over an 11 year old letter and false claims, while John Key is made out to be the man next door. The press half heartedly go after Right stories. Mum and dad NZer just hear the small sound bites and that becomes the truth. We need to all move into the real world and look to US and UK to see what is happening with news media manipulation. Not nice but the left world wide (even Putin in Russia) are getting taken out and the news media are used to accomplish this.

    • Yes, – nothing more than a den of weasels and pit vipers.

      To be honest….I would favor a radio station set up to cater for the Left…whereby ALL Left party’s could contribute….along with discussion of policy’s, ….that would have the capacity to reach a wide audience of a cross section of demographics.

      Perhaps funding through donations and organic produce advertising along with small businesses could offset some fees.

      Radio Pacific used be a little along those lines.. Wouldn’t be long before it would become a well known major deseminator of news for the Left….guest speakers , current events with knowledgeable people offering constitutional , legal opinion…..and a natural rallying point for shaping ideas and policy. WITHOUT interference from biased MSM .

  34. Dirty POlitics, the surveillance state, the TPP, neo-liberal policies which have led to ever-increasing inequality and poverty are as important as ever to the future of democracy and justice in NZ
    for a summation of my thoughts on Dirty Politics and neo-liberal economics, please watch these 2 youtube posts – http://youtu.be/dTZdbmXSNWI
    http://youtu.be/ahN0hEqVreI If you can’t beat ‘em make fun of ‘em
    – See more at: https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/09/21/humble-pie/#sthash.I98ju8cO.dpuf

  35. This is the third election where Green voters have put Peter Dunne back in parliament by voting for the Green electorate candidate. Slow learners apparently. Maybe the Greens will eventually get a clue and stop running electorate candidates in seats like this…too much to hope for?

  36. While you make some good points, number 5 is simply wrong. National did increase their support in both percentage of those voting, and in absolute numbers. Your mistake is not including special votes in the 2014 total and comparing that to a total that does include special votes. There are over 300,000 special votes to be counted. Always compare apples to apples.

  37. I am not politically astute, but my constant thoughts during the election campaign were “The Nats don’t need to ‘Divide and Conquer’, the left are doing it for them.”

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