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Polling message to both major parties

Editorial

David Seymour and the ACT Party have continued to rise in popularity as New Zealanders sour a bit more on the Government and its pandemic handling, and find little that is appealing in the National Party and its leader Judith Collins.

The latest 1 News Colmar Brunton poll out last night had ACT up 5 points to 14 percent support, while 11 percent of the 1001 people surveyed from September 22-26 rated Seymour as their preferred prime minister, also up 5 points.

Remarkably that personal rating for Seymour as PM is more than the combined figure of the three National Party MPs who featured, with Collins registering 5 percent, down 4 points, Christopher Luxon 3 percent and Simon Bridges 2 percent. So while National’s leader has taken a dive in this poll as talk continued over a possible challenge, support has not shifted to her most likely replacement — a turning back of the clock to reinstate Bridges — but rather towards the ACT Party leader who has been a more effective Opposition voice, especially around Covid-19 matters. It seems the onus for now has to be on Collins to lift her game.

National fell 3 points to 26 percent support in this latest Colmar Brunton poll while Labour was also down 3 points to 43 percent, again requiring the Greens — steady on 8 percent — to form a government on these numbers. Jacinda Ardern’s personal popularity fell 4 points to 44 percent. The other party to see a gain alongside ACT was NZ First, up 2 points to 3 percent support.

Three other recent polls have painted roughly similar pictures of the political scene as we approach 12 months since Labour won a first ever majority in the MMP era.

A Talbot Mills (formerly UMR) poll taken between August 31 and September 6 had Labour at 45 percent support, National on 26, ACT on 13 and the Greens on 6 percent.

A Curia poll conducted for the Taxpayers’ Union from September 5-9 had Labour on 46 percent, National at a paltry 21 percent, ACT closing in on it at 15 percent and the Greens on 10 percent.

Going back a month earlier to the other major political poll, the latest Newshub-Reid Research survey result released on August 1 had Labour slumping 9.7 points from its previous poll to 43 percent, National up 2 points to 29 percent, while ACT was up 4 points to 11 percent.

Both National and Labour will be taking stock of their policy positions and pronouncements in light of their falling support of late, while ACT and Seymour will be rubbing their hands and wanting more of the same.