2 months out from the General Election and suddenly an explosion of politics that transforms this election from a dreary jog of civic obligation into an explosive sprint for power.
The Greens have given a triumphant slap in the face to every rich white male broadcaster with a huge jump in support, but it’s the actions today of an incredibly confident Jacinda Ardern who took over from Andrew Little as Leader in an incredibly dramatic political move after 3 disastrous Polls in a row that reshapes the entire political landscape.
Everything is now up for grabs.
Political Party Challenges:
NATIONAL – current poll of polls 45.8%
National continue to tank in the Polls and they are falling far faster than they were in both previous elections. Their slew of admissions that social policy and infrastructure has failed is too little too late and they are now having to campaign on an agenda they are directly responsible for.
Bill English looks tired already and the threat to National’s support parties means they will need to be able to cut a deal with NZ First to ensure they retain the Treasury benches.
The release of their social policy looks disingenuous when you consider they had spent the first 8 years cutting these services. It’s desperate stuff and it’s wilting in the spotlight.
LABOUR – current poll of polls 25.1%
BOOM! With one Press Conference, Jacinda has reset the political landscape. Her poise, her humour, her confidence radiated and THAT is what will draw the middle to her vision. She managed to over shadow 4 previous leaders in less than 10 minutes and gained more positive media for Labour than the previous 3 terms combined.
For first time in 9 years ‘game changer’ means something in NZ politics.
Gen Y and X are the lowest voter turn out age group, seeing one of their own lead Labour will engage and excite the very electorate Labour needs to win this election.
She’s not our Corbyn, but she could be our Trudeau, not in an ideological sense but in a generational shift sense.
Despite polling so poorly, you would have to say Jacinda’s Leadership could create a youth quake, especially if Labour bring in a huge education policy for tertiary students.
GREENS – current poll of polls 13.5%
We now have our Corbyn! Metiria’s courageous admission that she was forced to cheat a draconian welfare system 25 years ago was attacked by every major white male rich broadcaster in the country, in what was an astounding character assassination, and yet the Greens have triumphed by increasing their polling numbers.
If the Greens can win over many beneficiaries who don’t vote they will not be leap frogged by NZ First and they will have a far larger say in any possible Government than previously available to them.
Greens could be on their way to their highest result if they maximise that beneficiary vote.
NZ FIRST – current poll of polls 11.5%
Winston was on his way to something special right up until he brain farted a desire to use a binding referendum to kill off the Maori electorates. That’s not an issue anyone really cares about, nor is cutting back on the number of MPs. He has sounded old and silly on those issues.
NZ First won’t take Labour votes now Jacinda is the Leader, he’ll have to gain them off National, but most importantly the deep personal relationship Winston has with Kelvin Davis and Willie Jackson reshapes the possibility of NZ First going with Labour instead of National.
MAORI PARTY – current poll of polling 1.3%
The Maori Party are in deep trouble now. With Kelvin moving to the list, Labour can offer MANA a lifeline in Te Tai Tokerau if MANA pulls its non aggression pact with the Maori Party and directs MANA voters to back Tamati Coffey in Waiariki and support Peni Henare in Tamaki Makaurau. That will snuff the Maori Party out altogether and eliminate a coalition partner for National.
UNITED FUTURE – current polling 0.1%
Greg O’Connor still drawing a lot of attention. O’Connor has been doing far better than anyone expected on the local issues. With Jacinda as Leader, Greg should gain even more support. Greg winning here would eliminate another National Party coalition partner.
ACT – current polling 1%
If Gareth Morgan stands in Epsom, Seymour could be gone. His embrace of euthanasia is deeply unpopular with the Asian vote in Epsom and Gareth could give him a real run for his money.
TOP – current polling 2%
The only way Gareth wins is if he runs in Epsom. If he doesn’t run, he won’t win and they won’t gain 5%. If he runs in Epsom and wins he will bring in MPs off his party vote list, could be a fascinating dimension of the election.
MANA – current polling .2%
With Kelvin moving to the list, Labour can offer MANA a lifeline in Te Tai Tokerau if MANA pulls its non aggression pact with the Maori Party and directs MANA voters to back Tamati Coffey in Waiariki and support Peni Henare in Tamaki Makaurau.
Hone should be on the phone to Willie Jackson and Kelvin Davis right now.
My conclusion 2 months out is that everything has changed for this election. Jacinda’s performance today was super nova, the Greens have won their mojo and for the first time in a very long time I am genuinely hopeful we could see something unique here, not just an accidental win or a calculated math trick – we could have a progressive political vision sold with passion.
This could be the first Government that voters vote for rather than vote out.