The National Party would win in a landslide victory if an election was held now, according to the latest Roy Morgan opinion poll.
From support of just 42.5% two polls ago, National has now shot up to 52.5% support, including a full 7 percentage points gain in the latest poll.
This latest poll was conducted by telephone – both landline and mobile telephone, with a NZ wide cross-section of 849 electors from May 19 – June 1, 2014.
"If a National Election were held now the latest New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll shows that the result would be a landslide victory for the National Party and a third term for Prime Minister John Key," the Roy Morgan company said.
National's support, following its successful public selling of a Budget showing a return to surplus, is now at levels not seen since before the last election. Its actual election night showing in 2011 was just 47.31%, which was, of course sufficient to get it over the line and form a government.
The Greens and Labour combined are now at about their level of support in the last election. The two parties together mustered 38.5% in the latest Roy Morgan poll.
The Greens, however, went backwards at a rate of knots in the latest poll, plummeting to 9% support from 13.5% in the previous poll. The Greens's showing in the latest poll was its worst since September 2011 and puts it behind the 11.06% share of the vote it attracted in the election of November that year.
Labour edged back to 29% from 30.5%. It attracted 27.48% of the vote in the last election.
As if the news for the National Party was not good enough, support for its coalition partners also improved with the Maori Party 1.5% (up 0.5%), ACT NZ (1%, up 0.5%) and United Future 0% (unchanged). This poll was of course conducted before ACT MP John Banks was found guilty of filing a false electoral return.
Among other parties New Zealand First was on 4.5% (down 1.5%), the Mana Party 0.5% (down 0.5%), the Conservative Party of NZ 1% (unchanged) and the Internet Party is 0.5% (unchanged). There's no impact shown in this poll of the Mana-Internet Party deal and emergence of Laila Harre as the party leader, but it occurred at the end of the polling period.
Roy Morgan executive chairman Gary Morgan said the poll showed "a strong positive response to the predicted Budget Surplus of $372 million handed down by Finance Minister Bill English" and National had now "surged to a huge lead" over a potential Labour/ Greens alliance.
"The closer the election, it appears the less support there is for the main opposition parties, with support for Labour now stuck below the level that prompted the resignation of previous leader David Shearer for most of 2014.
"The initial surge provided by David Cunliffe has well and truly worn off."