The Dim-Post

September 29, 2008


Filed under: nz blogs,Politics — danylmc @ 7:35 am
Tags: ,

DPF is trying to start a meme that Labour’s core voters are deserting them, in support of which he posts various anecdotes about anonymous lifetime Labour supporters who are suddenly voting National.

Another leftie friend told me last night that she now thought she might hold her nose and vote National. Now a month ago she was absolutely adamant she would vote Labour, but the sticking up for Winston is just a step too far for her.

The polls don’t really bear this out though – Labour’s core support remains remarkably stable. National are killing them in the polls and some of those votes come from Labour but most of their support comes at the expense of the minor parties – ACT, United Future and New Zealand First.

Maybe these anecdotal switches haven’t translated into poll results yet and in the upcoming weeks we’ll see Labour drop down into the mid-20’s.

It’s possible – however my experience in talking to pro-Labour friends over the past couple of weeks is that they’re as loyal as ever; they think Key is untrustworthy and that the media have been horribly unfair to poor Winston Peters. My impression is just as anecdotal (read worthless) as DPF’s but I think that Labour’s pro-Winston spin has been successful at maintaining the loyalty of many of their supporters.


  1. What the polls really show is that nothing is happening. National’s lead: solid. Labour’s base: solid. ACT’s revival: none. NZ First destroyed – no; or getting martyr boost – no. Greens 5%. Dunne, Anderton – who? Maori Party – will gain seats.

    In the past week all the usual media (TV 1 & 3, Fairfax, Herald) have published their polls, and tried to make a dramatic headline out of them. Real story: no change, and probably not much interest either. But the truth is too dull to tell.

    Comment by sammy — September 29, 2008 @ 9:14 am

  2. Sammy – I think that’s a dead accurate description. This could turn out to be an incredibly boring election.

    Comment by Danyl Mclauchlan — September 29, 2008 @ 9:19 am

  3. Dunno how you’re going to account for someone like me then, Danyl – I’ve voted Labour since 1987, but I won’t be casting a vote for them this year. OTOH, I won’t be voting for National either. Maybe the Maori Party will get my tick this year (I have not a scrap of Maori ancestry myself, ‘tho I have cousins who are Maori).

    Comment by Deborah — September 29, 2008 @ 10:01 am

  4. In 2002 when it became obvious National wasn’t going to win lots of their voters. Some went to the wee parties because they couldn’t bring themselves to vote Labour and wanted a moderating influence; and some went to Labour because they didn’t want the Greens to have too much power.

    Do you know if that showed up in the polls this far out from that election? If it did it could indicate Labour’s down to its rock solid core support; if it didn’t then it could shed support to the wee parties from those who want to moderate National and to National from those who don’t want Act to have too much power.

    Comment by homepaddock — September 29, 2008 @ 10:02 am

  5. Homepaddock

    Votes didn’t shift in that way to Labour in 2002. They went from a high of 53% (3 months out) to 41% at the election.

    For Labour voters to make a tactical shift (which is what you describe) they need somewhere to go. That is what Peter Dunne has been saying – that there could be a reverse 2002, benefitting United Future. I think that’s highly unlikely, and the Labour “meltdown” is just a right-wing dream. The Greens could benefit, but not the so-called centre, which has no credibility now (unlike 2002).

    Comment by sammy — September 29, 2008 @ 10:44 am

  6. This is MMP! Most of the non-boring stuff happens after the election.

    Comment by bradluen — September 30, 2008 @ 5:14 am

  7. I do hope this post-election period doesn’t feature Winston holding out for the biggest baubles.

    Comment by llew — September 30, 2008 @ 2:55 pm

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