A new Taxpayers’ Union - Curia poll shows Labour crashing to below 30 per cent and National and Act with enough support to form a government.
The poll, released today, also shows Winston Peters and New Zealand First above the 5 per cent threshold and returning to Parliament, while for the first time the Labour and National leaders are on level-pegging in the preferred PM race.
The poll shows National up 1.6 percentage points from last month to 34.9 per cent, while Labour is down 4 points to 27.1 per cent.
Act is on 13 per cent and the Greens, where most of the Labour supporters appear to have moved after Chris Hipkins ruled out the Greens’ wealth tax, are up 3.1 points to 12 per cent.
New Zealand First is on 5.8 per cent, up 2.5 points, while Te Pāti Māori is on 2.5 per cent.
Translated to seats in Parliament, National and Act would together hold a one-seat majority of 61 seats, while Labour would have 34 seats, the Greens 15, New Zealand First seven, and Te Pāti Māori three.
It also shows that if National or Act were to lose the slightest bit of ground, then New Zealand First might come into play for them to form part of the next government.
Despite the fall in his party’s support, Hipkins has gone up two points in the preferred PM stakes to 25 per cent, but National leader Christopher Luxon is up five points to be on level-pegging, also on 25 per cent. Peters and Act leader David Seymour are both on 7 per cent.
It follows the latest Newshub Reid Research poll last week that had National and Act forming a government with 63 seats in Parliament, while Labour had dropped to 32.3 per cent.
The July 1News Verian poll also had National and Act being able to form a government - with a one-seat majority.
And the latest Herald poll of polls has a 59.1 per cent probability that National and Act would be able to form a government if the election was held this weekend.
It follows a turbulent month for Labour, including the Kiri Allan saga that culminated in her resignation, leaks to National including claims about Labour’s tax plan to remove GST from fruit and vegetables, and allegations of a massive fiscal hole.
Asked yesterday about the polls, Hipkins said: “The polls from New Zealand-based polling companies are showing that it’s a tight race. That’s certainly what’s being reflected in our own research at the moment, and is being reflected in the sentiment on the ground. But I would note that the Labour Party hasn’t started its campaign yet.”
Speaking in Auckland today, Luxon said, “There’s only one guaranteed way to change the government - and that is to party vote National.”
Asked if he would work with Winston Peters, Luxon said he was focused on the National Party.
Speaking to Newstalk ZB, Peters said his national tour from Invercargill to the Far North was paying off.
He repeated his stance of refusing to support Labour this election, and regretting supporting Labour into Government in 2017 because he was kept in the dark over the He Puapua report; Labour has said the report was not deliberately withheld from Peters.
“I’m not going to work with a party that is demolishing democracy,” Peters said, referring to Labour’s co-governance plans.
The Taxpayers’ Union – Curia Poll was conducted from August 3 to August 8, a period that included the Greens wanting free dental care paid for by a wealth tax, and Labour releasing its plan for a second Auckland harbour crossing.
The sample size was 1000 eligible New Zealand voters: 800 by phone and 200 by online panel.
The margin of error is 3.1 per cent.
Derek Cheng is a senior journalist who started at the Herald in 2004. He has worked several stints in the press gallery and is a former deputy political editor.