Labour overtakes National in 1 News poll, could form government with NZ First only; Greens back above 5%, NZ First loses support; Ardern ahead of English in preferred PM stakes

Labour overtakes National in 1 News poll, could form government with NZ First only; Greens back above 5%, NZ First loses support; Ardern ahead of English in preferred PM stakes

By Alex Tarrant

Well, the scene was set at 6pm Thursday night: Labour overtook National in the latest political poll, indicating Jacinda Ardern could form a coalition with New Zealand First only.

The 1 News Colmar Brunton poll - conducted between Saturday and Wednesday night - showed Labour up a further six points to 43%. National was down three points at 41%. The Greens were up one point to 5%, New Zealand First down two to 8%, the Maori Party down one to 1%, and TOP also down one to 1%.

Seats would be divided up as follows: Labour: 52; National, 50; Greens 7; NZF: 10; Maori: 1; ACT: 1. (This implies the Maori Party only wins one electorate seat.) On the preferred Prime Minister stakes, Ardern has taken over the top spot from Bill English, at 34% to 33%. Winston Peters was down to 4%.

Read leaders' debate updates below - latest first:

8:05: Well, it's over. That was quite a debate - all square?

The final segment began with both being asked about their views on Donald Trump – if he rang asking for more troops in Afghanistan would you answer the call?

“It’s been an interesting presidency that’s for sure,” English says. Any request on Afghanistan would be taken on its merits – NZ is independent, but we do want to play our part in keeping the world safe – there are Kiwis all around the world, he says.

Both say they are worried about how the North Korea situation could play out – some judgements could take us somewhere dangerous, they agree.

Ardern says while she supported the move to send three extra non-combat troops recently, as Prime Minister she would want to review the mandate. “I think you could call me very hesitant,” she says.

On Labour’s fair pay reform policy – Mike Hosking asks if everyone is going back to unions. But Ardern says Labour is trying to achieve fair wages. She says English is scaremongering when he says Labour’s policy would take us back to the 1970s.

English raises the 70s – it isn’t necessary to recreate a 40 or 50 year old structure, he says. New Zealand now has a settled industrial relations structure, he argues. Ardern responds that Labour’s process would sit employers down around the table with employees. Could have one to two of these negotiations per year. Ardern guarantees that we won’t see huge national strikes like in the 70s.

The final question is to both: What has each learnt about themselves after rising from deputy to leader. English says he’s more motivated now about providing choice this election. Says Labour could slow NZ down: “We can grasp the opportunity we’ve all worked so hard for.”

Ardern says she has learnt from her 1-hour transition into the leadership role. She says that cemented her view that she has good instincts and a good set of values to fall back on and that these will help New Zealand under Labour. “New Zealand can be even better than it is.”

7:51: After the break Hosking asks Ardern if she accepts Labour would be inheriting a successful economy. “Yeah I do,” she replies. But she’s also concerned about how people feel – says two thirds of earners didn’t receive a wage rise in line with the cost of living last year.

Onto water tax, Ardern says the policy is specific for commercial users of water. “Our rivers are dying.” Asked about impacting dairy farm profitability, she effectively says it shouldn’t be a problem if they’re profitable.

English says National has been working on this for seven years. “You should get out,” he tells Hosking – policies are working now, he argues. Water tax could cut across work being done in communities out of sight of the media – it’s already happening, he says.

Ardern says some farmers are doing amazing work. English raises David Parker’s recent comment that if farmers push him on the details then Labour would punish them by doubling. It.

Ardern says “everybody” owns water. And that she thinks that can be a legal argument. Accepts that some groups have more of an interest, like consent holders and Maori. English says that the moment a tax is placed on water, ownership will be contested. National will continue what it’s doing by measuring, adapting farming practices and working on local government practices.

Ardern raises that English has bumped water allocation work off to a working group that will only respond in December. Would like to see what English does after they report back, she says.

English says the discussion is not about a trade-off – can have a strong rural economy and have good environmental standards.

7:38: Back into housing. Hosking asks Ardern how much an affordable home should be: Certainly not a million in Auckland, she replies. Roughly $400-600,000 is Labour’s aim, she says.

Hosking puts to her that a builder told him today that it would cost $450,000 before land for a modest three bedroom house. Does Labour want to drive down house prices? Ardern skips around that – want to build more homes in the affordable range, she says.

“We’re not building homes that a first home buyer is looking for.” NZ is building homes that are too large, she says, adding NZ needs more apartments and townhouses.

English is asked about wages – he uses the Super argument, as it’s linked to the average wage – Super payments have gone up twice the rate of inflation, he argues as Hosking puts it to him that wages have hardly gone up versus inflation.

Hosking uses that to move on to Auckland costs – how can people deal with them while wages are stagnant and house prices rise? English says National is opening up land. He then gets on to international trade, and having a go at Labour’s industrial relations policy.

On productivity, English says JB Were’s recent ‘productivity recession’ comments are “just wrong.” They have overstated the case, he says. Ardern disagrees. English again hits out against vague values statements and subsidies for expensive tertiary education policies - they aren't going to help businesses become more competitive in a global economy, he says. Talks about trade deals again.

Then onto medicinal cannabis – Ardern says Labour would support it: “One word, yes.” English says National could support an easing of the law if clinical trials along current drug lines show medicinal cannabis will work.

7:24: Into the second break talking about opportunities for school leavers - English notes apprenticeships, while Ardern talks about Labour's planned civics classes and that secondary school students can look forward to some free tertiary education - whether at uni or polytechs.

7:23: Immigration questions allow Ardern and English to also talk about apprenticeships. Ardern says job shortages will be matched with migrant skills. So tradespeople will still be allowed in. She says focus will be on apprenticeships too.

English says that’s already happening – young people are telling him that employers are fighting for them and they’re doing well. “I’m glad they’re not pretty damn hopeless any more,” Ardern says.

English says won’t slow down migration numbers – doing so would slow the economy. National is working with industries to tweak matching gaps to migrant skills: “Someone has to pick the Kiwifruit, someone has to milk the cows, someone has to drive the trucks.”

7:18: Back straight into Labour’s tax plans – Ardern says she’s being transparent – talks about home ownership plans. Says English and Key brought in a form of CGT – the bright line test – which Labour wants to extend to 5 years from 2, and get the working group to see if that’s enough.

English says the housing market is flat to falling. “Speculation has been broken beaten.” Says National looking at infrastructure and opening up land; lessons from Christchurch.

7:10: Onto the numbers. English says National’s policies are costed and affordable, and that Labour’s are vague high-level statements. Put to her that Labour has promised $20bn of policies, Ardern says the fact we know the number is because Labour has put it out there with their fiscal plan.

English tries to take it onto tax – Hosking holds him up on it for later though. PM gets a quip in about Labour taking $1,000 a year off meat workers to subsidise students studying law.

Then onto tax – Ardern says give us a chance to set up a working group. Labour wants to find a way to fix housing affordability. English butts in – affordability is best since 2008 – to which Ardern asks could you expect people to afford a deposit of $150,000 for a house in Auckland.

Into the first break on housing solutions: Ardern says its important her generation could get into housing. “That’s important”. She says this is lead by her values to which English responds: "People can't go shopping with your values."

7:04: The first question is on the poll: Hosking asks English why National is losing; English says they’re not – National’s numbers show them a bit stronger. English says he’s not there to debate polling numbers – that’s up to voters to decide.

Ardern says she’s not taking things for granted – we’ve seen a huge amount of change the last 3-4 weeks so it could change again the opposite direction. Ardern says the Greens will still get the first phone call post-election even if Labour is in a position to form government with New Zealand First only.

7pm: And we're off. Some people might be interested in what the leaders are wearing. I'm not, really, so we'll leave that. Big day today - I reckon it's when the campaign proper starts. Have to admit I was surprised by the 1 News poll - hadn't expected Labour to be that strong so soon. The onus now is on Bill English to solidify and work on National's support. Who would have thunk that at the end of July. What a campaign we're having.

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Thanks for covering the debate live.

Interesting. I doubt this would have happened if they hadn't changed their leader, as not much else has really changed. I suspect people are fed up with the same old, and wanted someone young and fresh. I think the same thing happened with National and John Key being made leader


You are correct Rob. For nine years National MPs have gone to work to eat their lunch, they've picked up their pay cheques on Friday arvo and gone home. Suddenly their lazy politics has been noticed and good old Kiwi folk realise they've been dupped for almost a decade. Change has come and things will be different for awhile.
Anyone but National.

What a smug complacent lot this National outfit turned out to be. Lost in their own special well appointed ivory tower, well above all the peasants, but at the same time, well fed & flattered by all their cronies in the big corporate world that Mr Key created Corporate New Zealand Ltd in the very same image. So insulated and insular how could they thus go wrong if all the polls, supported ably by the hopeless and hapless opposition in parliament, evidenced that there was nothing about to knock one of one's perch. Well it has taken just a mere slip of a lass do just that. Just shows, what a fabricated house of cards, this government and it policies have been. Government of the people, by the people, for the people. I don't think so. But democracy does work, out they go!


I think Kiwis are increasingly realising two key things:

1. If they're not a property investor or business owner they've been in the shade under National while others enjoy the sunshine.

2. They're being asked to compete with Third World workers on wages and foreign millionaires on house prices - and that's an untenable equation for the remainder of Kiwis.

Bill English again would not admit tonight that a housing crisis exists, nine years after National campaigned on the need for urgent action on the housing crisis. That's avoiding the facts for a little too long now...

And most national supporters supported key, and not English last time he got a chance and now the same things happening again

Haha. Who posted that some Nat voters have gone to TOP? Neck and neck with the Maori Party. I said it earlier today; a vote for TOP is a wasted vote.

That was me, amongst others I suspect. TOP might not make threshold but stranger things have happened. Evidence would suggest a vote for either of the major parties is the wasted voter. After listening to Gareth Morgan decimate the status quo you'd have to be on drugs to even consider it.

Next you'll be calling for a return to FPP.

My actual preference is STV. I dislike being forced to choose one size fits all.

A preferential system would be preferable.


Well I'm not surprised, most people have had enough of National's false economy that's now starting to bite us all, people are starting to wake up to what's been happening. Even those paper millionaires are starting to see sense as they watching their properties capital gains drain away day by day.


This election is Vote for Change and needed a catalyst............ Rest will be history.

Whew, I thought you were going to let me down today

Ode to Taxinda (sung to Katy Perry’s Alien)

You're from a whole other world
A different dimension
You open my eyes
And I'm ready to go, lead me to the polling station
Tax me, t-t-tax me
Infect me with your spin and blind me with your visage.
Tax me, t-t-tax me
Wanna be a victim, ready for the recession.


We're already heading in to a recession haven't you noticed. Time to redress the balance in favor of the majority of Kiwi's and residents not just the wealthy 1%.

Nothing visible in the Bays yet. 78% of properties sold at auction last week for a record 145% of CV. More seriously, if Labour do get in, a recession would doom them to another 9 years on the opposition benches so this may be the change we needed.

You're lucky, it's really visible here in Auckland, lots of unsold properties and now mortgagees are showing up not so much in the cheap areas where you would expect but in the really expensive areas like Parnell and Mission Bay.

Hey and guess what, as prices go down you won't be seeing any wealthy Aucklanders looking to retire in the Bays, so those increased house prices that you're enjoying won't last for much longer down where you are.

Remember you have National to thank for that, even if they go in they would not be able to bring back that lovely jubbly cash of you that's what happens why you rely on a false economy. :)

The Bays is in Auckland. Post Code 1071.

The Bays is Kohimarama *Ahem* ^^

Yes, a few wasted words in that diatribe. I have been to the Bay (Hawkes Bay) but would never buy property there.

Tauranga is slowing, homes are taking a lot longer to sell, and papamoa alone has 400 listings on trademe with heaps of new homes and some are being rented out, tepukes listings keep growing with the same houses that are to high just sitting because the few buyers that are still around are getting picky, it slowly turning to a buyers market, I see a big problem in tga specially, sooner or later the big money from Auckland will dry up and this area has built a lot so we might have a over supply with very slow demand, plus Aucklanders have brought a lot of investment property in tga, papamoa is full of Auckland owned rentals and those rentals could easily go down in rent because of the over supply of houses, plus tga is right next to Auckland in city's that are unaffordable, locals in the tga area can't afford these prices so in a way tga is worse off than Auckland for property falls because tga doesn't have a housing crisis it has a housing over supply with developers and builders in deep

I don't know about papamoa, but highly desirable areas like Mount Maunganui and Matua won’t go down much. They came off a very low base in 2013. The nominal prices ~700k are low given that the target market are wealthy baby boomers. Same can’t be said for much of Auckland with nominal prices well over a million.

that is the problem with nationals economic plan, lets sell houses to each other that will make us a richer country LOL

So house sales equate to a successful economy or not ?
Remind me to never ask you for advice, about anything.

Nothing visible in the Bays yet. 78% of properties sold at auction last week for a record 145% of CV.

Sample size? 12?

9 houses offered at Auction on Wednesday last week. 7 sold. It was a B&T agent who gave me the info. I imagine they would be happy to give out more detail if you want to slice and dice the info.

On a sample size of 7, not really too much slicing and dicing you can do.

Yeah some how I don't think the RE's given you correct info, I've just looked at the B&T results here that just show 4 properties that they sold recently for Auckland. That's hardly going to make an dent on the current property listings showing 9609 for Auckland.

Just checked the results on his link. B&T auction at 10am 23/8 Shortland Street

10 properties, one sold prior. Six sold under the hammer. 3 were from 1071, all of which sold.

You may wish to send some thanks Bill's way, as he's claiming to have broken speculation and that the housing market is now flat-to-falling.

In seriousness too, I do agree with you that Labour may be unfortunate enough to get in and have to deal with the outfall from the National ponzi, and may end up wearing some of that egg on their face. It would be more just for National to be in government if/when things crash.


Thank god will not be forced to tolerate arrogant ministers.

The only way to shut them was by voting them out.

Hopefully this is the begening of the end of National.

I agree. When you have Minister who was a beneficiary stating that NZ should become a tipping culture you know they have forgotten what it is like for most kiwis. Definately out of touch.


National urgently need to bring back Nick Smith

My understanding is that the Nats think tank have sent Nicky boy on a top secret high level mission to Eastern Albania to research their housing industry.

He will be returning the day after tbe election if the Nats are successful.

If they are not they have asked him and his clipboard blanky to stay in Albania (for ever).

Or he's locked himself in a toilet and nobody's noticed yet.

A toilet? I think you mean affordable studio apartment.


Arrogantlt BE said that we the national are safe and all the other parties are eating each other vote but now what.

Karma is a B.....

Also the advertisement prepared by national is not positive and in bad taste.

Vote for positive government instead of policies of denial, lie and manipulation followed by national and even if that did not worked pass the blame to other.


National's ad is a fitting metaphor for where they're at.

1. It's a regurgitation of their last ad - they're out of new ideas.

2. Their runners are dressed in teal rather than blue - they hide their true colours

3. The message is all about "winners" and "losers" - how they frame their world view.

The reality is their time is over.


in my mind he is not looking good in the debate and even mike has rebuffed him a couple of times on BS answers.
i just watched the ad and had to laugh its already out of date, labour can govern with only one party in support whereas national will need to hobble together a bigger cohort


I was actually quite surprised at 'ol Hosking's tenacity.
Even BE looks rattled by it. Not easy street, as he was thinking.

Hosking is ripping the billshitter a new one - just watching the talk re cheap labour being imported.

he has surprised me he is giving it to bill, jacinda just need to sit back and let him do the job for her


Last Sunday on Q and A two of the people on the panel both said "housing" is National's achilles heel. Some of us have done okay during the last nine years but a lot have not and they are worried for their children and grandchildren. If Labour get over the line on election day National only have themselves to blame. They have been missing in action in regards to housing which most New Zealanders feel is one of their basic rights.

Well, in Maslow's hierarchy of needs, it's really the base of the pyramid. Not much point progressing towards esteem and self actualization when you're in a position where you have to trade off your working life to live in sub-standard accommodation. And from a societal perspective, that's more representative of the third world than what you would expect from a country such as NZ.


"Housing is now more affordable than it was in 2008." Bill English two minutes ago during the debate on TV One. I call bullshit and liar! Median house price in 2008, 500k. Median house price in 2017 ONE MILLION Dollars! Salaries have gone up by 10%. It doesn't matter what he says for the rest of the debate, he has looked NZ in the eye and blatantly lied. Or worse, he has NO idea!


so much BS he can not help himself,now he is saying all young people can find any apprenticeship they want.


But didn't he say fairly recently they were "all on drugs..."...?

The Nats switched memes: it seems they gave up the smashed avo on ciabatta for meth....


Having a cheap burger tonight I overhead some young Kiwis lamenting the fact they couldn't even get a job in a cafe a little while back. These were well-dressed, well-spoken Kiwis. The hospitality industry just isn't interested when there are easy-beat, exploitable imported workers to be had instead.


Denial by misrepresentation of statistics and heavy use of (his own) anecdotal evidence - does he take us all for fools?

Yes blue meanie , so the big number is 50%, does housing go down 50%, does wages go up 50% , does Aucklands 10x income need to drop by 50% , could people afford homes in 2007 even tho it was a boom high, I think yes, with demand for homes now at a low, mainly low income low cash FHBers, Jacinda and bill know exactly where house prices are going, you could tell in the faces when spoken about it,

Housing is now more affordable than it was in 2008. *
* If you already own a house

And this in the papers. And surely must be a good thing right? "A Chinese tourism company looking to cash in on the Kiwi housing crisis has turned its eyes on Millwater in north Auckland.

Hong Kong's Orient Victory Travel Group has bought three adjacent parcels of land in Millwater on the corner of Millwater Parkway, Bankside Rd and Miller.

It purchased the 15,742 square metre piece of land, that sits beside KingsWay Junior School and across the road from the Millwater shops and Silverdale Primary School, for $9 million."


I feel sorry for the local foreshore as the asians will strip ever living thing from it .
It has happened on many beaches I visit ... the grandparents collect anything that is under on or near a rock to feed the family ... overtime the place will look like we're they came from .

Westerners need to realise that every other culture is out to play the game for themselves, their families and people that share the same characteristics (language, genetics). Here we are passing the ball to them!

We're helping them colonise us. What in the hell...

The contestable fund provides $520,000 annually for projects that support leadership and social cohesion in ethnic communities as well as cultural events.

Is that 4 acres

Well it could be another money laundering operation or a way to get around their capital flight restrictions. If you do a quick search on for this FT article you'll see why:-

FT article: China’s fake travel spending masks capital flight, warns Fed
Outflows have also artificially cut country’s trade surplus, says discussion paper

To be fair I'm quite suprised at Hosking ripping into Bill. I thought he would be a bit more softly-softly with him.

Oh, and a bit of a laugh at how Bill says NZ has a great economy. Nothing about it being made up of housing debt though.

I agree wildcard. Bill is on his back foot.

Good pt from MH re JBW saying we are in a productivity recession .

With 2 quarters of negative GDP/Capita we most definitely are but the billshitter still thinks he is in the house and the speaker will save him after he gives us a serve of BS that did not address the pt

Bill English- welcome to the New World!

True :)

I wasn't surprised, because he wanted to be seen as unbiased. I have to admit that English did seem to be quite rattled, although I don't think he is really the best public speaker.

> Bill says NZ has a great economy

Jacinda could have ripped him one there.


Now English is saying that he appreciates housing costs are too high for nurses, cops and other regular folk. So what is it English? Cheaper or more expensive?

National seem to think the answer to high and rising house prices, is to make them more affordable. eg reducing interest rates and grants and the ability to withdraw more from kiwisaver. But that isn't solving the core problem, and that is the DTI ratio of wages to house prices.

And it's setting up a precarious debt bubble for the future. Yet this is supposed to be the party of sound economic management...?


wow he just said business look to cut costs( low wages) and improve profits


You got it down before I did. So now we know why uneducated immigrants are so popular! This is good for NZ, how?


Yes, tellingly obvious that he really believes a low wage economy is the only way to compete in the agricultural sector.


High Immigration.

“Someone has to pick the Kiwifruit, someone has to milk the cows, someone has to drive the trucks.”

Thats what we call high skills in NZ, we set the bar really high. Cant even train NZers to pick kiwifruit, milk cows and drive trucks.

Good points buddy!

Perhaps this would explain the productivity recession that JBWere says where currently heading into. Kiwifruit picking and packing is a highly labour intensive and low value economic activity. So is hospitality and food service. We're not doing enough high productivity economic activities to counterbalance that predilection focus our economy on tourism, food services, food processing,horticulture and agriculture that delivers low productivity and wages for workers.

Good for the employment figures the bosses, but not so good for the workingman or woman.

The Israelis have got this down pat. They get foreigners to pay them to work on their Kibbutzes.

You get free room and food on a kibbutz for your work, and you don't have to pay for it. Been there done that.

At one point a large portion of the Israeli working holiday visa holders were working for a company that sold snake oils to old ladies in the shopping malls. The entrepreneurial Israelis were even so kind as to escort the gentiles to the ATM to help them pay.

Phantom Dairy-Farms and Kiwi-Fruit-orchards in Auckland

Somebody please tell Unha-closp that's why Auckland can't release all that land because it is land of national significance for all the dairy-farms and kiwi-fruit orchards that require people to pick the kiwi-fruit and milk the cows that we need to bring 300,000 migrants into Auckland do

Just goes to show he looks down on these workers and what he considers to be menial jobs. Very insulting.

Exactly, Bill thinks our economy consists solely subsistence pastoral farming. He is also technologically unaware; someone doesn't have to milk the cows or drive the trucks as these things can be automated.

Robots can do all of this. It's funny that businesses come up with solutions when they can't underpay third world labour.
Labour shortages and arrival of new varieties have made getting the fruit off the vine at the right time a huge challenge for growers.
Now a team of scientists and engineers working with Waikato and Auckland universities have developed a new robotic picking machine, designed to move along beneath the vines, gently taking the fruit as it goes.


Comment re character from this debate.
Bill is all smirks and BS and unfortunately he comes into this election with questions on his trustworthiness.Too many issues were simply unansweable without BS after 9 years on the sticks.
JA is prepared, answers the question, in one word likeable and until we see different, seemingly trustworthy.


I concur. My favourite part of the debate was when Bill was tirading about taxes and Jacinda turned to him and said "I don't know who you are debating, but those aren't my policies." To me that showed that Bill hadn't done his homework and also that all the scaremongering of National supporters, is absolutely nonsensical and nonsense!

Good call about Bill talking about the taxes. He mentioned paying down debt on One News the other night. How do we pay down debt without increasing tax and having decreasing national productivity?

Bill sounded like many of the overt National voting one trick pony types who comment around here - so one dimensional and blinkered you'd think they were running in the 7th at Ellerslie. Due for the knackers yard after yet another failure at the winning post


pretty apparent that constant strawman attacks on the Labour Party from Bill English. He was frantically grasping at something to get the better of Jacinda, but miserably failing. Pretty embarrassing really.

I had to laugh when Jacinda had to retort in response to Bill's rambling attack, "I don't know who's policies you're debating, they're certainly not mine?"

Well that was pretty full on. All square? Hopefully that helped everyone. Good to hear your thoughts.


i thought it was 50/50 those that like jacinda will think she did well, those that like bill will be the same.
as for the undecided i dont think this debate will help them make up their minds
the all parties debate will be very interesting with the latest poll results and the dislike between WP act and national


OMG this will be a landslide for labour. Please vote Winston for some sort of balance

Winston will go with National. Your dream of building a home is never going to come to fruition. Winnie has the concerns of the aged at the heart of his constituency. He will NEVER collapse their unearned riches in property. You can't have it both ways, National and falling house prices. Bill himself said he want more immigrants to build more houses for immigrants!

At the current polling numbers maybe I should vote for the watermelon party to make sure Labour get over the line.

Act actually have the best policies for building (I'm also trying to build) but support full on globalization which is just stupidity when the immigrant populations are very cohesive and nepotistic.

While the Greens policy on refugees is sickening so is the massive cultural replacement driven by the "Nation"-al party.

So, may be the Kiwis should all get out, after selling their houses, so the country can run with immigrants, for immigrants and by immigrants ?

It has been a very long time since Maori have run the country. Immigrants have ruled New Zealand for the benefit of immigrants since we signed the treaty of Waitangi! At one point they event tried to breed Kiwis out so that there were fewer than 5,000 kiwis in all of New Zealand!

Would prefer to see Hosking ask his questions and then sit back and let them answer
Every now and then he kept interrupting and talking over the top
Didn't like that

What - I disagree. He was pointing out that BS was not acceptable.

Something like this needs to be set up in parliament so that the actual question gets answered.


I hate politics and had to watch through gritted teeth but I did think Jacinda was terribly weak on substance. Don't get the hype myself. She is very average. Enough said back to sport.

There is only so much you can do with these types of shows. They do seem to be almost scripted/ rehearsed. Do they get the questions before hand? I think she did a pretty good job, and in terms of likability, I think she came across better than BE.

She wasn't amazing, but at least had a few facts and figures whereas Bill trotted out broad, meaningless generalisations and smirked. Bill's been around for ages in Parliament and should know how these debates go. He had a massive advantage in experience over Jacinda who has only been the party leader for about 2 days but failed to capitalize on it.

I wouldn't say that Bill has a massive advantage in experience. Almost all Jacinda's working life has been in politics - if not in NZ then abroad. She was for two years President of the International Union of Socialist Youth which has as one of their activities '... IUSY trains activists at the grassroots level in the international political debate and policy development by organizing conferences and supporting political campaigns and initiatives on a regional and global level.
Jacinda has a Bachelor of Communication Studies (BCS) in politics and public relations so one would expect her to be a good speaker/debater.

Bill is a career politician of almost 30 years.

Yes Bill has 30years experience, but Jacinda has 16years some of it has been worldwide political exposure. He may have an advantage, but I don't believe it is a 'massive' advantage as it has all been in NZ.
I notice she hasn't been wearing her 'power' red and black lately and her clothing colours are more muted and softer looking. She is certainly a breath of fresh air for Labour.

Who induced our steady-does-it Bill to wave his hands about while trying to re-phrase Opposition policy?


I maybe stupid but all you Labour supporters need specs or larger hearing aids.
I like Jacinta but where is no substance to paying for the promises -yes tax working groups that Jacinta even admitted tonight that they don't have enough time to get facts and figures
Free education -mean a tax somewhere else or we even have to work until we 90
Reduced doctors fees is that really going help a family the cant even afford $31
Cleaning all rivers -how often does your family swim in river ?
tax tax tax more tax
Jacinta EVEN ADMITED tonight that Bill has done a good job.
If you are just voting for a pretty face , there will be a lot hardship


You are stupid, but carry on...

Wheres the substance you are stupid all you are looking at is A pretty face

Actually both parties promised to clean rivers, the difference being labour wanted the farmers to pay whereas bill wanted us all to pay.

It's jacinda.

Tom Joad, you forgot to mention the appearance of the lady jogger in the nat's ads - very likely crafted by JK - he must in the background pulling the strings (or is it ponytails) for national still I suspect.

Well ... impressing debate, and well done Mike Hosking ..... my takeaway is :

We have a choice of either chasing some vague and invisible mirage with no settled numbers and just TRUST the values and promises of an inexperienced 37 year old fresh and young Leader who looked smoother than teflon in her debate - or follow a team of more experienced people led by a much more professional politician , have a practical and doable vision , tried and trusted with money and in taking the country into prosperity to build on that base going forward ...

They both had good points, but emotions, fantasies, and hopes are not enough to keep us where we are or taking us forward without solid improvement - the way Labour is tackling this is not really encouraging , most of their plans would be realised in the long term ( mostly their second or third term) - they will be prone to trial and error and that is dangerous . We will only know the amount of good or damage they have made after 3 years ...

We know National for their Good and Bad and know their shortfalls, nothing like the deep hole Labour is driving towards ...most of Bill's remarks were practical and business savvy.
The possibilities about dragging us backwards were possible despite Jacinda's reassurances!

Jacinda had big holes in her debate tonight, she was vague on taxes, wishy washy and slippery on Union contracts, same on water tax, quite weak on improving productivity through training !, and same on CGT .... Very Very Vague on housing affordability tossing numbers around to impress the audience, jumping from average house ($1M) to an Affordable being between $400 - $600K , then from 170m to 100m down to 2 bedroom apartments ... etc ... she obviously has no idea about the costs and what she is talking about ... neither does her team of cheerleaders !!... she slipped away from Mike's cost of 3 bdrm cost remark and bringing current house prices of 66% of NZers down , and she will be throwing money at this building promise like there is no tomorrow and will end up selling them at loss ( our loss!) .. she came across to be very transparent to show that she will be governing on her own principles and good intentions ...Alas, that on its own is NOT good enough - she has actually exposed a lot of the vague and ill-studied policies that Labour is trying hard to HIDE !! and showed that the emperor indeed has no clothes!

Some Voters will drive all of US over a cliff if they chose Labour to lead this term !! lol, along with WP ....


My takeaway was that National had no real answers for low wages, high house prices, polluted rivers and high debt and BE was simply relying on BS tried and tested in the house. I think he was visibly upset when MH pulled him up on the BS and had to laugh when he tried to present proposed actions thought up last week as solutions to issues which have been fermenting throughout the last 9 years.

Regarding your cliff analogy the unfortunate truth is that a lot of NZ are already falling off the cliff.

That is about what I heard too

I'm calling it now.
National are toast.

listened to radio lie and Rodney hide called them gone as well unless something major happens ie another earthquake, trump causing a war.
he says that this election will be about promise over experience, we have had the experience and now we are looking for promise off better than we have

..I called them toast 3 months or more ago..well before Little left.

Take your pick..its going to be Labour/Green (with Maori in there too) or National/Winston.

Winston has had his day. As election draws closer I'm picking NZ First to decline, Green to start recovering.


We are going over the cliff either way .... look at the personal dept levels ..


or follow a team of more experienced people lead by a much more professional politician , have a practical and doable vision , tried and trusted with money and in taking the country into prosperity to build on that base going forward ...

What's National's "practical and doable vision" and how will Bill take NZ into prosperity? More immigrants, lower wages, higher house prices, decreasing productivity, more homeless, no additional infrastructure spending? Could you name some decent, proactive things National has done in the last 9 years that has improved NZ as a country, and not just property owning Boomers?

I'm generally curious as you seem to give Labour a hard time but say very little about National's governance (or lack of).

As for experience, we just had a forex trader as a PM, the States has a businessmen as President and France has a banker running the country.

I see you've picked up on "vague" winning the word count on the debate bingo card tonight. Overused and unimaginative. Hope he expands his vocab before the next one.



Eco, for better or worse, whether we like it or not, this election is now an anti vote, the negatives against National by far out numbering the positives for Labour. By that I mean if National had been a great government with great policies of great success for the greater number of the citizens of this country, and if this was truly confirmed by the state of the polls, up until a month ago, then it would not have been possible for a new leader of the opposition to totally up end that in a small number of weeks. The fact is this National government has been totally out of touch, arrogantly so, with the every day people of this country for far too long, and those people have understandably and justifiably, turned against them. All that was needed was a white knight, so to speak, to arrive on the scene. Oddly enough, would have passed something like the same sort of comment about the Clark Cullen government 10 years ago. Sentiment can be much more powerful than reason, especially in a dissatisfied and aggrieved electorate.

I totally agree with that Foxglove... Indeed it was the same situation in 2008 when people had enough of Labour at the time just like it is clear that sentiments are driving the Poll results today ( dare I say desperate and somewhat blind sentiments and urge for change rather than more objective views)

My concern is that this Labour team will lead the country alongside WP to a fiasco !! ... I am guessing it will be A mess to say the least ... plus apparently it will cost us all quite a bit until we find if all these benefits and pronises are actually realisable.

At the end of the day we all succumb to the decision of the majority of NZers as we pride ourselves on our democracy.

I reckon there's a fair chance they'll end up having to clean up the mess when National's Ponzi fails, yeah. Will be somewhat unjust given it's taken National some years to pump up.

Tks Eco & agreed. The tax outlook is scary ominous to say the least. There is ability, potential & will for Labour to tax NZ to a standstill!To be selfish, being a senior one might be no affected so much, unless of course there is a straight tax on capital lurking, poll tax?That's why for the first time my party vote is NZF. Safety brake!

Can't a government simply not buy bulk farmland etc and then rezone as residential meaning the land costs are relatively affordable. Seems reasonable compared to Natonal thinking it's cool that the city mission need to spend $75million to create 80 residencies!

And turn off the immigration spigot .

a team of more experienced people led by a much more professional politician , have a practical and doable vision , tried and trusted with money and in taking the country into prosperity to build on that base going forward ... this indeed is a vague mirage of word salad aspiring to be fact but falling short. National's economy is a mirage built on housing and immigration. Even Bill himself has said it's dependent on immigration...and Jacinda was correct in that we're now in a productivity recession.

This is what you get for kicking cans down the road. Nine years after campaigning on the housing crisis Bill still can't admit there's a crisis, which is exactly why they've done nothing of any effect.


Auckland is full ... we do not need people who are good at collecting money from another country to come here and collect more money and return nothing back to the economy. Bit of a broad statement but open your eyes and see what is happening. You will never see an Indian or Asian employer hire New Zealand staff . We need to be more selective with imagination.

Agreed, But when you convince our people to run a van or a truck, collect rubbish, clean offices after work, nursing, elderly care, pick fruits at min wage, work long hours as taxi drivers, couriers, dairy operators and take on slim businesses like dairies and veggie shops - then our productivity will somewhat improve - until then ... we will still debate this till the cows come home ...

A reminded that this issue has been all around the world and specifically europe for decades, ..Turks in Germany, North Africans and Africans in France, Belgium, Spain etc
all of them had this argument for years and they just complained and finally accepted that their own were either too lazy or reluctant to do the dirty jobs ...

Asian and Indian employers hire their own because of the Culture... not lower wages ... they apply their own rules which are understood by their own people , not some namby pamby BS ... simple! -- they all work hard and do what they are told and appreciate the value of the $$ they earn..


Im a NZer and I have done hay, kiwifruit picking, kiwifruit packing, strawberry picking, pumpkin picking, onion picking, milking and farming, fencing, sweeping and cleaning, whatever it took to get money.

Pay the money and people will do it. Low wage immigration is just that. Keep the wages low to keep business profits high. If a business needs low wage immigration to succeed then maybe its not a good business. We want businesses that pay good wages.

NZ was made from people doing the hard yards, its a poor argument to say NZers wont do this and that. Give them a chance. If you dislike NZers so much why are you here.


Nzers did these jobs long before we had lots of low quality immigration. In fact they still do where I live.
Whenever someone says kiwis won't do these sorts of jobs it always safe to add 'at the pathetic wages that they offer'.
The only thing that will drive productivity in nz is increasing wages and the substitution of capital for labour.
In nz we've always had the attitude of all hands to the pump rather than getting a better pump. No surprises given our simpletons approach to wealth creation through property investment.
If you aren't part of the solution then you're part of the problem.
The reality is that Indians and Asians do hire their own to pay them lower wages.
And those workers all work hard for low wages because the alternative is a return to the 3rd/developing world.
Are you suggesting the lowest paid/most vulnerable people in nz need to compete against the 3rd world for their wages?
If so, I hope that the new labour government taxes your housing investments until your pips squeak, to give those at the bottom end a little more.

Seems you are stuck in the 70s mate, ...Times have changed.... the world has, and is, moving on and the "pumps" are now super fast and don't need too many hands to turn them, lol .. and Capital ( or robots) is and will be replacing labour, mostly the current middle class. And businesses are squeezed on margins in a world of high competitive low inflation markets - so your wishes of higher wages will hardly find listening ears!!

The foreigners mentioned above are actually here to stay ... almost all are residents or on the way to be ... so they either work or go on the DOL , but they prefer to work and get ahead.

Property investment is housing almost 33% of NZers who do not own their own homes ... or you didn't know that either ?

If all these jobs are going why the need for cheap immigrant labour?

I remember back in the early 90s when national drove down wages by removing national awards, they said don't worry, when demand for labour picks up so will wages. Well guess what happened?
I found out that was utter crap. as soon as demand picks up and wages start rising employers start squealing like a stuck pigs and suddenly the immigration spigot gets turned on.

At least more Nzers owned their own houses in the 1970s.

The only reason 33% of Nzers do not own their own home is because of the crowding out effect by investors creating a captive clientele.
I have no problem with housing investment providing everyone who would like to own a house can.
That would allow the property investment market to be a proper market.
I suspect there are far more rental properties than required if the artificial demand was removed.

Oh yeah, I forgot, kiwis don't want to work and would rather languish on the dole. Dopeheads.

Again, the world is moving on ..and labour markets all over the developed countries are going through huge quantum leaps due to technology and globalization ... what was a given 5 years ago is very shaky today and might not be here in the next 5 years ...this is not making things up ... a bit of reading might help .... e.g. they are talking about illuminating a lot of the primary health care requirements in the near future as computers diagnostics is perfected world is changing ... from fully automated insurance claim systems, automated corporate account auditing, automated accounting and taxation systems ..etc .... the days of near 4% unemployment may be numbered mate !!

Here, this might cheer you up:

"The only reason 33% of Nzers do not own their own home is because of the crowding out effect by investors creating a captive clientele." .... with respect, I am lost for words mate , this statement is so absurd, i can't find any proper reply for it !! ... Which one came first, the chicken or the egg ??

"I suspect there are far more rental properties than required if the artificial demand was removed." ... !! What artificial demand mate? .... I have been a property investor for a very long time ( in Auckland and the regions) and haven't seen this "artificial demand" you are talking about .. all I could see was "Essential Demand" . People wanted to rent because they are on the move, chronic beneficiaries which will never own a house, people who chose to live a casual lifestyle, young couples, young families etc ... Nothing Artificial there, that is all Real Demand for accommodation ... are you sure you live in NZ?? ...

The property rental market is , and has been, working properly on almost balanced supply and demand like any other business...every now and then a wave of immigration distorts the supply side and gets everyone screaming at the top of his lungs... it happened few times between 1995, and 2007 .... Investors buy properties all the time, just like any business expanding its plant and capital ( whenever there is increased demand) .... so check your facts mate, it is not as simple as you think it is !!

Kiwis don't want to do those jobs you listed because they're unskilled labour, have low paying salaries and entail no career progression. Not to mention a lot are seasonal jobs or contract positions with high job insecurity. No Kiwi (especially the NEETs) is going to choose to make a living picking fruit or scrubbing toilets for $15 an hour.

True, they don't and they won't ... why bother working for $15 when you can put your feet up and collect the benefit every Wednesday !! .. Does that have any career progression? ... or if you have few more babies will do the trick !! -- I am not picking on beneficiaries at all but that is a fact -- our benefit safety net system is holding some of us back...

I know that our mates do not like to get out of bed for less than $25 bucks an hour - but that is one of the reasons pushing NZ to import what we need ... life moves on and businesses don't have the luxury of waiting for these NEETs or any other to fill the vacancies they have at realistic wages ..... and yes that includes hospitality, cleaners, Healthcare, and low grade jobs in addition to tradesmen and experts ...

why is there a shortage of Labourers in the building industry?? , I hear that a hammer hand is payed north of $35 - 40/hour in Auckland and there is tons of work there ... so where are those who are looking for work? .... or are we waiting for Labour initiatives to pay them an extra $50 a week , One year free education on the TAXPAYER to see if they are going to like it ??... they might drag the Horse to the water but will they make him drink too !!? .... Maybe they should also scrap the Drug tests in the current H&S legislation to make it easier to take in more staff...!!

In the US, people work for less than $10/h cash ( official is $12, I think) and get few scraps in the way of Food stamps, because they don't have an unemployment benefit system... other countries have limits ... in Germany , people on benefit are on call to do all sorts of work, including cleaning snow of the roads at night, or distributing newspapers at 3:00 am on a freezing winter morning, or collecting rubbish .... these are not 3rd world or low productivity countries, are they?

My point is , when we have such fundamental problems in our society we cannot just blame immigration, businesses, or the government ... unless we are really addicted to the nanny state to take care of doing it for us !!

You are making things up as per usual to suit your view.

For Instance, German unemployment benefits only require that you are:

are available for work (i.e. you must be fit to work and prepared to accept any reasonable employment) and
are actively seeking to end your unemployment, such as by writing applications and going to job interviews when invited by an employer.

Link as follows:

Nothing there about being on call.
The benefit paid is also much higher. Up to 67% of your previous wage/salary

I am not making things up and don't really care about what you believe and not trying to convince anyone with my views ... I had friends in Germany who have gone through what I described ... they were there on the benefit for long time .... !!

You said you have friends, that's making things up.

These jobs are not career orientated jobs but you can clean, pick fruit, do hay and go to university, you can clean and start a cleaning business. You can start as a labourer or milker and become a share milker then a farmer. These are not dead end jobs for some.

Sure you get some people who are not focussed on careers but thats happened since day dot. There has always been hard workers and labourers in NZ, its the work ethic we have been bought up with. To say since National has come in and especially since 2008, we have somehow lacked in work ethics is disingenuous and an outright lie.

I remember back in the meat processing days, some of the labourers were making lots of money and they were loving their jobs. The problem is the wages have dropped, and people do not love those jobs so much. It all comes down to money. Pay a proper wage, provide path ways to improve and you will get the workers.

Eco, most of those jobs can be automated. There are robotic vacuum cleaners, vending machines, fruit picking robots, Volvo have self driving trucks.

My View my friend owns one of the biggest Foodservice groups in Nz , he is an Indian who employs 500 plus staff and most of them are kiwis don't talk twaddle ,that is being racist

Is he an Indian or a NZer, I have Indian friends, but to me they are New Zealanders, they are either born in NZ or have integrated so much that they are NZers.

New immigration is not like this. Too many are coming in to fast, and they are not integrating.

After B E was telling us how well we're doing, wages ahead of inflation and so on. M H says if we're so rich how come we can't afford a house - or words to that effect.
Good question!

I quite like em both but neither party are getting my vote. Jacinda presents well, but there is not a lot of substance there and the party behind her is just not up to it. Bill is smart, but like a lot of the Nationals is just blind on economy, water quality and their daft preference for GDP numbers over citizen benefit.
I believe I have an obligation to vote. Gonna be a hard one.

Hosking for once was not a twit. He did a good job. Remarkable. Helped a lot by both Bill and Jacinda being respectful people.

KH the respect for each other was the main thing I took out of it all. David Parker was down in our neck of the woods very recently. When asked by a horticulturalist why they should pay a tax on irrigation water when the rivers around here don't have a problem that is caused by the industry, and yet other urban commercial water users who do contribute to poor water quality don't have to pay, Parker replied 'it would not fly politically'. First honest answer I have heard from Parker in this whole water debate.....


The Immigration crisis has caused the Housing crisis .

We all know this , so why the hell are the politicians admitted to the real cause of the problem

In 2014 almost everyone had a roof over their heads, so can someone explain how we suddenly have 40,000 homeless people ( allegedly 24,000 in Auckland ) ?

Have we demolished houses ?

Clearly not , we are building houses apace.

So who are the prime suspects ?

Its the roughly 320,000 new arrivals in 5 years that has caused this, call it the unintended consequence of an open floodgate immigration policy

BE started to use Christchurch as the example of the national supply argument to lower house prices and
MH called BE on this, said his numbers dont add up and he wont be able to build enough houses for the people coming so house prices will rise again in the near future as demand drives up the price.
thats what makes me laugh about politicians and the bending of the truth, it was both more supply and lack of demand ( the Christchurch population dropped) that caused the prices to fall in christchurch

its called the LH (Auckland Council) not knowing what the RH (Central Government) are doing. And having polar opposite ideals/policies/motives.


Glorious. Momentum is everything. National down down down Labour up up up

76,491 people signed a petition to have Mike Hosking removed as the moderator!

Flagrant political bias notwithstanding, I thought Jacinda walked all over Bill English, but according to (Fairfax) and the NZ initiative (a neoliberal think tank) it was Bill English who won, hmm funny that. Quite interesting that was only a few weeks ago offering a payout of 3.25:1 for Ardern becoming next PM, however they've since removed the ability to place bets. Obviously the political landscape has changed dramatically.

I hear that people spontaneously start smiling and try to meet Jacinda when she's out and about. It's understandable, she'd make a great PM.

I was the one quoting Sportsbet previously. The market was always set to end on August 23. I don't gamble so I don't understand the point of it ending at that date. The only live odds I can find now are at PredictIT which is US based. After last night, National has dropped to 77cents. Labour is at 23 cents.

I called it two weeks ago on this channel. Labour to win in their own right. Another two percent swing and Labour will have their 60 seats

You could be right, half the population is below average intelligence.

I think you are right Ex-expat, after all right-wingers are less intelligent than their left counterparts

great. first member of staff came through talking about moving to Aus. How many more thinking this? The Taxinda juggernaut rolls on.

Are they going for Aus's higher tax rates or a better job?

macawsley I didn't ask.

however I would be interested to know if this is repeated elsewhere?

I don't believe that it is a coincidence that the exodus from NZ during labours previous term, and reversal under the current national government is unique. time will tell I guess.

Taxinda aye? Please remind me what political Party last raised taxes? Don't they wear blue? Or is it teal now?

K2 -Taxinda?

Let me get this right. National drop taxes yet increase govt debt by something between 60 to 80 billion dollars and you think that is a good thing??

Debt, high house prices, pollution, congestion, crime, racial issues - All this shite we are heaping on future generations.

History will not be generous to the Nats 9 years.

I am guessing you dont have children.......

smalltown read up about economic theory. national increased debt massively to keep nz inc turning during the gfc. if they hadn't we would have been Greece II. the unemployment rate would have been 20%+
National did it bang on. Now the economy is ticking over nicely, they are paying down debt fast. Labour will cause the economy to tank, are talking about borrowing to fund the election bribes, and pay back debt at a slower pace. but hey we get a massive lollie scramble.

hate to spoil your party but "Debt, pollution, congestion, crime, racial issues - All this shite we are heaping on future generations" has always been there. A change of government wont alter this one iota.

There is no evidence that tax and spend hurts the economy. Quite the contrary.

National used borrow and spend. Labour will use tax and spend. Who really are the fiscal conservatives?

The major difference is that Labour's spending will help the poor more than the rich. Which is actually exactly what we need.

The ultimate in tax and spend is communism, you reckon that there is no evidence that communism hurts the economy?

How much did National borrow and what did they spend it on to keep the country running during the GFC?

You sound like an experienced actuary who consults for public and private financial institutions of the world based on your very authoritative and in-depth understanding of finance and economics in general. Thank you for taking the time to share your insight with us mere mortals.

Got the impression that Mike was deliberately baiting Bill, to right his image of a National Leaning Broadcaster ?
Got some brownie points that way, for sure.

The debate was disappointing - if you could call it a debate

First - Hosking kept interrupting and talking over the top of the candidates - the qualities of a good moderator is to ask the question and sit back and let the candidates answer - he couldn't help himself

Bill English never answered half the questions put to him but deflected and bloviated with a deluge of meaningless data - and Hosking let him get away with it. One example was Hosking taking English to task about 9 years of knowing our rivers are unswimmable and what he has done about it and English went into a long meaningless discourse about measuring the rivers - today did some fact checking and find that what they have done is alter the (acceptable) measurement benchmark of E.coli from 260 to 540 ppm - see problem solved

Check that here

Much of Bill English's contribution to the debate was to lie

PS: English solves rough sleeping and homelessness with a subsidy to Auckland'd City Mission who will build 80 rooms - see - problem solved - What about Hamilton, Tauranga, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin.

$27 million to take 80 rough-sleepers off the streets

One only has to study the Trump phenomena to undertand the lying works. The secret is to tell lie after lie, so many lies that each new lie takes over from the last one, the public cannot keep up, the ability to hold the poltitcian to task evapaorates as the lies become the norm.

After a time the lies don't matter as they are are the new normal. The public cannaot process what is real, what is not, what is policy or what it means. So they opt out....and vote on lipstick.

Bill is just getting warmed up.

It is becoming quite apparent that when BE faces a difficult question his reaction now is to lie.

I would suspect this was not how he was brought up and is more to do with the training he has received from his predecessor who was actually world class in lying.

We are choosing our PM and New Zealands representative here and I suspect Prime Time TV matters more to many people than the Party or the Policy or the Parliament.

Sorry Bill - we all know where nice guys finish
National Caucus should have rolled you when John Boy left. Is it too late?

Nikki Kaye v Jacinda Ardern would have been a much more interesting proposition for this election.