The decapitation strategy in play now

Arts, lifestyle and travel blogger, David Farrar, writes:

I’ve blogged the latest Roy Morgan poll at Curia.

It has Labour at 23% which would see them get just 28 MPs in a House of 120. As they hold 27 electorates it means on that poll they would get just one List MP – their leader Andrew Little. If they drop just 1% more, then Little loses his seat. Alternatively if they pick up one more electorate seat then again Little loses his seat.

Other List MPs such as Jacinda Ardern and David Parker are toast on this result.

It is always useful to compare polls to the same time period in the previous election cycle. So how are National and Labour placed in November 2013 and November 2016?  

  • November 2013 – National 44.5% and Labour 34.0% for a 10.5% lead
  • November 2016 – National 49.5% and Labour 23.0% for a 26.5% lead

A huge difference. This is the second lowest poll result ever for Labour in the history of the Roy Morgan poll.

This brings into play the decapitation strategy from National.

This is where they now put the hammer down and obliterate Labour to push them even lower in the polls, thereby taking out their leader at the top of the list. We are approaching over-hang scenarios now where Labour MPs win more electorate seats than their percentage of the vote suggests they should have.

Things become very dynamic though when parties collapse. Safe seats can become marginal, slightly marginal seats can be lost. We will also witness electorate candidates distancing themselves from party branding. Labour’s brand is now toxic, so they won’t want a bar of Andrew Little and Labour on their signs.

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