The Opportunities Party leader Gareth Morgan says he is big fan of new Labour leader Jacinda Ardern, partly because she does not indulge in attack politics.
Morgan, who admitted that his own style of politics was confrontational, said he admired Ardern's calm temperament and said she would "break the mould" of aggressive, male-dominated politics in New Zealand.
He said Ardern's appointment as Labour leader was also good for his party, because it had turned the election into a competitive contest rather than one in which National was a runaway favourite.
"Otherwise the election would have been a tragedy for New Zealanders," he said today. "Governments just get more and more arrogant the longer they are in power."
Morgan said he hoped Ardern's overhaul of the party's election platform would include innovative new policies, because its existing ideas were "rather like reheating old vegetables".
Ardern, who was chosen to replace Andrew Little as leader yesterday, is expected to reveal her new approach to the election and possible new policies later this week.
Top has so far proposed radical changes to tax, welfare and superannuation, including means-testing the pension, replacing the benefit and student loans with a basic income, and requiring tax to be paid on a broader range of income including assets like housing.
Morgan's party has started to get some momentum, rising in three recent political polls to between 1.5 and 2 per cent.
In a 1 News-Colmar Brunton poll released on Sunday, Top rose 0.4 points to 1.5 per cent. In a leaked UMR poll, the party rose slightly from 1.7 per cent to 1.8 per cent.
And in the Newshub-Reid Research poll, it rose 1.2 points to 2 per cent. In that poll, the left bloc of Labour, Greens, and NZ First could form a government if Top was a part of it.
The rise in popularity came after Top announced it would extend its policy of a $200-a-week basic income to people aged between 18 and 23.
Morgan said he was very happy with the party's progress and he hoped its popularity would now "snowball".
When he launched his new party, Morgan said he might pull out of the race if Top was not polling well close to the election and swing in behind another party.
He said today that his party was now committed until the election: "It's too late to pull out now."
The party is targeting the party vote and needs 5 per cent to enter Parliament.