Thought the pandemic was disruptive? Going into Election 2020, I think there are a whole bunch of curve balls and dark horses that could also destroy the status quo.
Conflict with China:
The looming conflict between China and America is going to be played out in our neighbourhood and because the American election is the backdrop to that conflict, expect Trump to create so much pressure China responds in the South China Sea, Taiwan or Hong Kong before November. Such a conflict between our economic overlords and our political masters will cause enormous waves inside NZ, especially with the National Party a puppet for Chinese aspiration in this part of the world.
Jami-Lee Ross’s interesting point of difference with his new political party is that he is attacking China. It could be a misread of the electorate with the largest asian population in NZ, or he and his rumoured strategist Simon Lusk have seen something in Botany’s asian diaspora that is anti-Chinese Government. National’s candidate and fundamentalist Christian, Christopher Luxon, should win this seat easily, but JLRs strategy suggests he is seeing something we are not and that could create a curveball on election night.
Maori Party electorate wins:
Another curve ball could be a resurgent Māori Party. They have a real chance in Te Tai Hauāuru and Tamaki Makaurau and with a resurgent Party vote could end up with 2 electorate MPs plus a list MP.
All bets are off if the damn plague gets back into the country and it is a perceived incompetence on the Government’s behalf. If we have to go backwards into Lockdown there will be outrage and Jacinda’s popularity could plunge.
Muller yells at a journalist:
One of the most interesting parts about Muller’s terrible first week was how angry he got in each of the media interviews. His frustration and incompetence combined to make him flustered and he snapped at each of the interviewers. The problem is that Muller is middle management and as such simply barks orders unchallenged, he isn’t used to being debated or argued with. As National flounder, his temper tantrums will get worse and if he loses his cool in an interview he’s toast and National will crash.
The looming economic meltdown is National supporters only hope that their fortunes will get better, but the counter intuitive position could be that many NZers would cling even tighter to Labour because Jacinda’s promise of kindness and wage subsidy is far more welcoming than National’s ‘get up you big girls blouse, we have work to do’
It’s ‘clone season, if a we are hit by a devastating cyclone with huge damage, the climate crisis will force itself back into the election.
The Alpine Fault is due to rupture. The election would need to be called off if it did before September.
Massive jump in migration:
Migrant workers inside NZ desperate for inclusion in wage subsides and welfare (plus those unlucky enough to be outside the country when the borders closed) are begging and begging and begging and begging for kindness but with so many domestic NZers not feeling safe, the Government wishes to avoid the possible voting backlash of helping those deemed ‘other’ when voters themselves are vulnerable. Adding to this will be an enormous surge in migration from Kiwis deciding that now is the time to head home as everywhere else plunges into plague. Our migration will surge from returning citizens and permanent residents making the needs of migrant workers even less likely to be heard or supported.
NZ First funding scandal:
Bubbling along in the background is NZF’s funding scandals and I imagine that will be the main focus on Winston during the election. If there is an announcement before the election, NZF won’t be able to avoid the scrutiny and brand damage. It will also make Labour question why they shouldn’t put distance between them and NZF.
Majority Labour Government:
The most likely outcome will be a Labour majority government, the danger for Labour is that to date they have managed to shrug off doing anything genuinely meaningful for housing, poverty, inequality, justice and the climate because they can point to bad Uncle Winston and say, ‘bad uncle Winston won’t let us’. With a majority Government however Jacinda and Grant can’t hide their own over caution and will need to actually spend their political capital rather than constantly save it.
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