Days to the General Election: 35
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Alex's live election blog: We're being made to turn comments off on election day; Herald poll show Peters back in Parliament, Nats over 50%

Alex's live election blog: We're being made to turn comments off on election day; Herald poll show Peters back in Parliament, Nats over 50%

Here's a fresh spot for all election-related coverage.

See and compare all Parliamentary parties' policies here.

See their party lists here.

8:58 am: The latest Roy Morgan poll released this morning shows National on 49.5% and Labour on 23.5%. The Greens have had a big surge, up to 14.5%.

8:38 am: The latest Herald Digi poll has National above 50%, and shows Winston Peters would get back into Parliament with five other MPs, as he is over the 5% mark. the Greens would get 15 MPs back into Parliament on current polling, and Labour would get 34. But despite the Nats being over 50%, on the Herald poll there would be 126 [!] MPs in Parliament due to overhangs. This means National would still need either ACT, UnitedFuture (given Banks and/or Dunne win their electorate seats), or the Maori Party to have a majority:

National polled 50.9 per cent (up 1 point in a week), Labour 28 (down 1.1), Greens 11.8 (down 0.8), NZ First 5.2 (up 0.3), Act 1.8 (up 0.1), Conservatives 1.3 (up 0.7), Maori Party 0.4 (down 0.3), Mana 0.3 (down 0.1), United Future 0 (down 0.1).

The popularity of Mr Key as preferred Prime Minister remains high at 66.3 per cent, down slightly from 68.5.

Mr Goff's popularity has continued to rise throughout the campaign. He began it on 11.7 per cent and is now preferred Prime Minister by 19.5 per cent.

That could dampen any early challenge against his leadership, in the event of a loss.

* The poll of 850 voters was taken between November 17 and 23. The party vote figures are of decided voters only. The undecideds were 7.7 per cent.

8:18 am: To kick it all off, we're sorry to advise we will be turning off the comment function from midnight tonight (friday) to 7 pm Saturday. Why? Because the Electoral Commission has told us we should:

The Electoral Commission advises that no campaigning of any kind is allowed on election day. This covers any statement that is likely to influence a voter as to which candidate, party or referendum option they should or shouldn’t vote for, or which influences people to abstain from voting.

The general intention is to leave voters alone from midnight until 7pm on election day so they can vote without interference. The key messages are:

• News items must not include any words or images likely to influence voters.
• Restrictions apply to photographing or filming voters or candidates at or near polling
places on election day.

All election and referendum advertising and other statements, by anybody including the media, which could influence voters cannot be published or broadcast on election day until after the close of the poll at 7 pm.

Newspapers published after 6 pm on the day before election day are treated as being published on election day

News stories posted on websites before election day can remain, as long as the website is not advertised on election day. Comment functions should be disabled on all websites, including social media sites, until after 7pm on election day to avoid readers posting statements that could influence voters.

My view

Why they don't want to let you talk to each other, we don't know. The argument is that comments on websites are 'published statements' which could influence other voters. Yes, that is true - we give you the platform to publish, and you take the action of doing so yourself - so we could both be in trouble.

How about this for a thought then: Given they've put these restrictions in place, the Electoral Commission should now have to patrol every inch of the country, in every household, cafe and sports field on Saturday making sure no one talks at all about anything in a way that could influence others' votes.

Whether you discuss something through the medium of the internet, or through the medium of air (speaking directly to one another) shouldn't make a difference - they should treat all media exactly the same.

Are we just rolling over and playing nice? Well, perhaps. It's not that we don't trust you, of course. We just figure that if an organisation has the tenacity to say that you shouldn't be allowed to talk to one another on election day (and I do hope they will be patroling all the pubs and cafes to make sure no one is talking about the election there as well), then they will have the tenacity to go after us for not closing our comment section, and someone has gone on there and said 'vote for such-and-such'.

That's my two cents worth anyway.

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

We welcome your comments below. If you are not already registered, please register to comment.

Remember we welcome robust, respectful and insightful debate. We don't welcome abusive or defamatory comments and will de-register those repeatedly making such comments. Our current comment policy is here.


Voting is such a dissapointment, there is no party I would honestly want to vote for.  At best I'd be picking the least rotten apple, or voting against the worst.  Not a real choice, and this is what democracy has come to.  I've got 50+ different choices for breakfast cereal, and only two choices for PRIME Minister. 

I have a similar view; seems to me that the choice breaks down to one between a bunch of crooks (not that bright or competent) a bunch of idealists (not that bright or competent) and a handfull of egotistical oportunists out for a meal ticket.  Many people that I have spoken to particularly younger ones, have given up any faith in the electoral process and are not voting.  I supect that this will/is strongly favouring national and reflects a lack of leadership qualities from Labour.

It is not surpising that so many are voting with their feet.

I would have to agree with the above.. but the question remains, which will you be voting for, then crooks, the idealists, the opportunists, or a null vote? After all, a null vote is really a vote for whoever the majority of the country does vote for...

Yes that is the question.  We have to make an active choice otherwise we cannot complain and will be handing over our political system and the country with it to whoever is ambitious enough to take charge.  For me the choice has to be the idealists because whatever their shortcommings are, their objectives are decent however misguided in some points.  If they were lucky enough to get in one would have to hope the realities of office would straighten out the worst of their foolishness.  The other lot would single mindedly pursue their stated rather suspect narrow objectives without much care or interest for the good of the country or where it is headed.

Sounds like we need "The McGillicuddy Serious Party"!

REMINDER  - 2 ticks for Nats on Sat  if u want NZ to  prosper  !


15  Greenies in parliament is 15 too many

Have a look at the  Oz govt with Green senator Bob Brown now  the de facto PM -   in comes a new carbon tax ,a new mining tax and now he is getting treasury to do costings on a new petrol tax !

Unless you vote in Epson in which case National would rather you didn't.

Bob Brown doesn't have that much influence; the carbon tax is to show the world that Australia is doing something (if not very much) and the mining tax is because the Government need the windfall to compensate for declining revenue.

FYI from a reader via email:

Hi Bernard,




I used to think: "that's us," when John Key talked about "mums and dads investors". I used to feel warm and fuzzy towards him and that I was being included in his considerations. I'm sure he wants lots of others to feel like that also! My wife and I have a small portfolio with a few thousand shares in several listed companies. The other night on tv, Mr Key said how "we'd" be able to buy shares, once the asset sales commence after the election. I am not so sure. Today we received notification that: "we regret to advise that Direct Broking's allocation from the bookbuild" (we'd applied for Trade Me, and Mr Key mentioned Tr. Me) "will not be sufficient to satisfy demand"...etc. I can see this happening with the asset sales. The large institutions will snap them up initially @ discounted brokerage and the small timers will be @ the market's mercy if they want to buy them, later, once listed. If we're lucky we'll seem to be owners as our Kiwisaver provider will no doubt be buying some. I remember a similar thing happening when NZX was listed; it only ever tracked upwards in price once the smallfry were in a position to buy.




The second "Bee in my Bonnet," is about the political system choices in our referendum. There is an assumption that there have to be PARTIES for us to have our DEMOCRACY. Obviously parties will never suggest this, but why shouldn't all MP's be Independent? I think Party Politics has had its day, far too much money/time/systems/proceedures wasted by chopping and changing. How many people agree with ALL points of the manifesto of the party they vote for @ the moment?  Independents should go to Wellington from their ELECTORATE and debate the issues as they arise. This group of selected/respected people would make decisions following debate and not according to any pre-arranged lines. Again: Democracy doesn't have to be about Parties. I believe it's about debate followed by sound decision making, issue by issue, without grouping. Why can't each electorate appoint its MP and send that person to Wellington for 3 years?


Happy Voting Tomorrow





No we should dump electorates.  Electorates are an anacronism when voting for a government for the whole country.  Doesn't encourage big picture thinking, rather patch protection and troughing.  

The party vote is the one.

You'll be happy to know NZX peaked 6 months after it was listed at over $11 now about $2.22, it looks as  though they had a share split, but from the ipo at $6.50 they are going cheap now.  I wouldn't advise catching falling daggers though.

I would be happy with a tiny govt, limited to what laws they can make, and a maximum per year of about 2-3.  Local govt can take care of the local region, you can vote with your feet easy enough.  All govt needs to do is protect our borders, and uphold the law.  Socialist states are expensive, ask Russia.  Bugger all tax for govt, local govt provides education and health, and jobs for people that want to work but can't find a job.  No free lunch for anyone, if your family wont care for you, and you wont care for yourself tough shit.

Landlord - is your name Forrest Gump?

How could you possibly post such horrible things about our nice Mr Key?

He worked very hard for his millions and millions and deserves his chance to now get his money into nice productive businesses with guaranteed returns once he manages to sell NZ's electricity.

Yes it is true - i had it confirmed by a structured finance team I worked with in the Uk. Nothing out if order there , exotic imtruments wreak shit, that how they are designed.
Expect further nasty details to filter out in time, and his spin team and the media to shrug shoulders and ignore it. If they get another term it will be carnage and I should think even the most sycophantic of hacks will be looking for more history on the lying toe rag.

Thanks for picking up the Friday Funny  of late  Sore L....I been a bit under the pump so to speak.... I'm sure I'll get the humour back  at some point ....looking  forward to a little irony  to marvel at does not seem to reveal itself to me untill I'm on the outside looking in.

Stay Well...

I find that comment shutdown order fucken i'm not voting, the pollies are all a bunch of useless prats

Matt think it through ...a non vote is a vote for the sitting administration...i'm sure you can find it in yourself to at least show a protest that has some recordable merit.

Agree with Christov Matt, I thought about not voting too but its not the way forward so I started to look at it from a distance. Party vote for Nz first , based on the media and other parties especially JK being very vocal against him. He could at least make life harder for the blues. Keep mmp too, it just needs some tweaks is all. Major parties want fpp or something like it back badly. You know this stuff though.

The options and the way the system has been worked is rooted though I agree Matt

Matt, may be too late to vote from Australia.  I left it until this afternoon and faxed it away at 4PM.  I think you have until 7pm NZT to fax it.  Can't drop it off to local govt office anymore.  fax is the only way (don't why we can't email it.. )

Just watching a uk property programme rerun from a few years ago, the whole boom really was built on greedy mania. Quite surreal watching it now

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Days to the General Election: 35
See Party Policies here. Party Lists here.