I’ve been lucky enough to get a look at the research that comes out of these focus groups and to be honest it almost makes me cry in frustration.
I can only imagine how it makes Labour staffers feel.
Focus group after focus group are shown a range of policy that doesn’t have any Party affiliation attached to it and asked for their thoughts on it.
They look at the National Policy without realising it is National Policy and throw it aside.
They look at the Maori Party Policy without realising it is Maori Party Policy and throw it aside.
They look at NZ First Policy without realising it is NZ First Policy and throw it aside.
Then they come to Labour Party Policy and they all react positively to it.
Then they utter the most painful words in the world for Political Pollsters to hear, ‘Why doesn’t Labour have policy like this”.
That’s when the grim reality of what Labour have been up against for 3 terms becomes abundantly apparent.
Voters can’t name a Labour Party policy and they complain Labour don’t have any policy, yet when confronted by the Policy stripped of its affiliation, they all love it.
Labour’s problem for 9 years has been its ability to communicate their ideas to an electorate who are desperate for new ideas on the social issues that impact us all.
Where Jacinda is so different from Goff, Shearer, Cunliffe and Little is that voters are listening to her so that when she communicates Labour policy, (the very same policy they all love when it’s stripped of its affiliation), they will listen.
Labour’s collapse in the Polls has gifted them a Leader who can finally explain policy in a way that resonates and is listened to, this changes the dynamic and also makes National’s next attack line, which has moved from bad leadership to bad policy, far more of a difficult trick to pull off because when it comes to policy, Labour’s are light years ahead of National.
Labour intend to pump $19billion into NZs social infrastructure over 4 years, let me repeat that – $19billion! National in comparison is simply offering everyone $20 each a week more.
That is the clear choice for voters this election – 2 big mac combos worth of tax cuts or a fully functioning education, health, mental health and welfare system.
Which one New Zealanders choose will say a lot about who we are as a people.