Judith Collins put on a brave face but the latest political poll is a shocker for National.
The trend might be headed in the right direction for the party, up 4.5 points and Labour down 10.8 points in Newshub Reid Research poll.
But the numbers don't tell the whole story.
The last poll was taken when the party was in the pits - soon after the party's scandal over an MP and former president sharing Covid patient details and soon after Todd Muller had resigned from the leadership. It is no wonder it polled 25 per cent in July.
Considering where it had come from, National appears to have barely recovered at 29.6 per cent to Labour's 50.1 per cent.
With less than one week to go until advance voting starts, the poll would see three frontbenchers ousted, Paul Goldsmith, Michael Woodhouse and Nicola Willis, and 14 other MPs.
The polling was taken in the middle of what was supposed to be big moments in the Collins-led comeback.
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The polling period included the release of National's fiscal plan and its $3000 tax-cuts, and the party's campaign launch.
Collins had a good debate against Prime Minister Jacinda on Tuesday.
But her party's central campaign theme of prudent fiscal management has been undermined through a couple of errors and contentious issues around the fiscal plan, prepared by Goldsmith.
It has dogged her every day on the campaign as new issues have arisen. None has been a drastic enough error to require the resignation of the finance spokesman, Paul Goldsmith.
That would cause only more self-inflicted damage on the party.
But in the hands of Finance Minister Grant Robertson, such errors have become an effective political weapon against National. And it is likely to become a feature of the Collins-Ardern debates.
Collins may need to draw on that brave face for some time to come.