- Latest polling shows NZ First is on track to get back into Parliament.
- Despite NZ First, National/ACT are polling well and may form a majority by themselves.
- If NZ First fails to get in, National/ACT would be even more likely to form a majority.
- This means voters who prefer the right over the left can afford to risk a vote for NZ First.
NZ First bid to regain a presence in Parliament making headway
The latest Taxpayers’ Union/Curia Poll has NZ First at over the crucial 5% party vote needed to ensure seats in the Beehive, although not by enough to be confident yet. The party vote is their best chance at getting back into Parliament.
Despite the hubbub that Peters and his party may be stealing votes from the centre-right, that same poll suggests National and ACT together have enough seats, albeit barely (61 of120), to govern-even if NZ First has the 7 seats this poll suggests.
Ironically, if NZ First doesn’t quite get over the line, then the National/Act combination would actually increase to 64. This is because the National/Act combined vote would be a higher percentage of the votes that would end up counting. This is very significant as it means a voter who wants to vote Labour out can risk that their vote for NZ First may not count.
The latest Voters United poll, which is only of voters who say they are going to vote for a minor party, shows NZ First nosing ahead. This is an upward trend for NZ First.
No doubt NZ First is running an energetic campaign. Peters has seemingly attracted many from the so-called ‘freedom movement’ with his nod towards those opposing vaccine mandates and willingness to question vaccine safety and efficacy.
ACT leader David Seymour has downplayed NZ First’s chances of getting back into Parliament and ruled out sharing Cabinet duties with NZ First. However, ACT has also launched a series of attack ads against the party. Some would suggest this indicates ACT acknowledges NZ First’s chances.
NZ First has been steadfast against co-governance
Despite naysayers questioning whether Peters can be trusted not to go with Labour, it seems like the co-governance issue makes that a non-starter.
Peters and other senior party members have been consistently strident in anti co-governance messaging. Notably, Casey Costello (herself of Māori descent) has just signed on as a candidate. She was the head of anti co-governance group Hobson’s Choice for 7 years and she joined NZ First because of its conviction on this issue. It is unfathomable NZ First will change on this issue. Contrast that to the absolute commitment Labour has demonstrated towards co-governance.
You could say identity politics is another area where there is a chasm between the positions of Labour and NZ First, and this is added insurance there would be a revolt at NZ First if Winston tried to flip flop.
Even in the impossible to believe circumstance that Labour said they would change on these issues, surely NZ First wouldn’t believe the needed follow through would happen.
In a nutshell, it’s reasonable to say NZ First won’t be scheming with the left any time soon.