Jacinda Ardern remains the hands-down favourite as prime minister with her closest rival, National's Simon Bridges, lagging almost 30 per cent behind her.

The latest 1 News Colmar Brunton Poll shows Ardern's position in the top job is secure despite strong opposition to the Government's fuel tax and a mediocre response to its handling of the cow disease Mycoplasma bovis.

Ardern is the country's preferred prime minister at 41 per cent, followed by Bridges at 12 per cent, deputy PM Winston Peters at 4 per cent and Judith Collins sitting at a lowly 2 per cent, according to 1 News. Ardern and Bridges have gained 4 and 2 per cent, respectively, in popularity since February.

But when it comes to Peters being acting PM when Ardern goes on maternity leave, only 32 per cent thought he would do a "good job" - down 2 per cent since February. Fifty-five per cent thought he would do an "okay job" and 11 per cent thought he would do a "bad job".


The Government's handling of M. bovis also received a mediocre response with 42 per cent describing the handling as "okay", 24 per cent thought it was "poor" and 14 per cent saying it was "good".

Despite Bridges lagging behind Ardern in popularity, support for the National Party has risen 1 per cent to 45 per cent while Labour remained unchanged at 43 per cent.

The Greens and New Zealand First have both fallen 1 per cent in popularity, to 5 per cent and 4 per cent respectively.

The poll of 1007 participants ran between 19 and 23 May.