Tau Henare voted for a Labour candidate today for the first time in his 54 years. The retiring National list MP said tonight he voted National on for the Party Vote but Kelvin Davis instead of internet Mana leader Hone Harawira for the Te Tai Tokerau electorate vote.
"It's not that I don't like Hone. It's just that I don't like Kim Dotcom." In the past he has voted Mana Motuhake, NZ First, Mauri Pacific and National. He's going to be commentating on Maori Television tonight.
Supporters were steadily streaming into Labour HQ at the New Lynn Community Centre, in leader David Cunliffe's electorate.
Having voted early in the campaign, Mr Cunliffe had a rare sleep-in this morning.
He then attended his children's Saturday sports. If he was looking for a good omen, he would have been pleased - his son William's water polo team the Ponsonby Sharks won 16-1.
Mr Cunliffe is watching the results at his home in Herne Bay, and was likely to head to the centre with his wife Karen Price and party secretary after 10pm, depending on results.
Peter Tchernegovski, 89, used to mow David Cunliffe's lawns.
"This will be my first and my last drink," he said. He went to Labour HQ every election.
The National Party election night event started quietly at the Viaduct Events Centre. A couple of dozen supporters are scattered around the main hall, including
Mission Bay lawyer Denis McNamara was confident Mr Key would retain his post. A coalition with potential kingmaker, New Zealand First leader Winston Peters, was OK with Mr McNamara, and long as the union was stable.
"I'm pleased this Dotcom distraction sideshow is finished", he said, referring to the German internet tycoon facing extradition who has formed a political party to challenge Mr Key's mandate.
A party staffer said a large number of media were expected, with 130 registered for the event. Most are from New Zealand, but representatives are also expected from France, China, the United Kingdom and Australia.
The internet Party launch is metres away from National's - at The Cloud.
Christine Rankin, the Conservatives Epsom candidate, arrived at the party's election-night base at the North Shore Golf Club.
The room had begun to fill up with supporters although Mr Craig was not expected for some time.
A close watch is being kept on the party's vote percentage, with groans greeting Duncan Garner's comment that the crucial 5 per cent mark could be missed.
Ms Rankin told the Herald there was a "huge" night ahead.
"It's very exciting, very scary. We had such a big campaign and we have given it our heart and our soul, and we are a young party, we are a little party, and we have big expectations of ourselves."
Asked her expectation for the party vote, Ms Rankin was coy: "let's just see what unfolds".
On her candidacy in Epsom, Ms Rankin said she entered the race late but gave it everything.
"It is not something we expected to win. I didn't do it for that reason. But I did want to give the Epsom people a choice.
"But they make up their own minds, and they may well do what they are told, which is to vote Act...and I always knew that, but I wanted to give it a shot."