Above are my poll predictions, net of the nutter under 5% riff-raff (Tamaki, Opportunity Party et al).
Including NZ First as anti-government, those numbers amount to 2 in every 3 voters being anti-government.
Much of Labour’s lost vote will go to the Greens and the Maori Party, while many others will simply not vote.
Post-election I expect Hipkins will remain Labour leader but anticipate some older Cabinet minister survivors to announce their resignations next year. That’s because after enjoying cabinet office with all of its trappings for 3 or so years, the prospect of joining a rump Opposition is understandably disheartening. Some will pursue local government elected office.
That’s a good thing for Labour in introducing fresh blood; enthusiastic rather than burnt out.
The principal thing voters crave is stability and certainty, thus as our post-war political history shows, government has been dominated by National who simply “mind the shop”.
But after 3 or even 4 terms voters develop a time-for-a-change mentality and elect Labour who in their first term usually introduce overdue reforms. The danger lies giving them a third term in which madness, naivete and mis-placed idealism come to fore.
Helen Clark was an exception in running a National type, don’t rock the boat government and thus gained 3 terms. Under Michael Cullen we enjoyed quality economic management, arguably the best in the post-war years.
Their moments of madness were relatively trivial, my favourite being Judith Tizzard’s announcement of an “unemployed artists benefit”.
Three days after that announcement I ran across her at a cocktail function. “For God sake Judith,” I said, “there’s no such thing as an unemployed artist, just unsuccessful ones”.
“It’s not a concern Bob,” she said, “Our people (Internal Affairs) tell me they’re only expecting less than 20 applicants”.
From memory within 2 months the scheme was dropped after several thousand applications were received from the East Coast, a plainly organised affair. They were artists all right; bullshit artists.
The current government will go down in history as the worst of the post-war seven decades and Jacindamania as the most shameful and embarrassing phenomenon our history.