Bill English

Labour’s vote winning strategy – voter immobilisation

Jerome Mika, the Labour candidate about to take a pasting from Judith Collins in Papakura has revealed why Labour is going to get wasted on Saturday.

They want to immobilise voters.

mika Read more »

Labour’s election campaign is slip, slidin’ away

The election is slip, slidin’ away from Labour.

They are approaching the territory of Bill English, expect a sudden collapse of their vote in this final week as people wake up to the fact that they can’t win.

Voters don’t vote for losers.For the same reason people leave early from a rugby match when their team is getting pasted the voters will abandon Labour.

National is urging its supporters not to split their vote as our latest poll confirms the minor parties are on the rise – and Labour continues to slump.

The poll signals a horror start to the final week of the campaign for Labour as its support slides to 22.4 per cent, putting it on track for an unprecedented trouncing.

It appears to have bled some support to the Greens, who are on 13 per cent. But most attention is around the seeming unstoppable rise of Winston Peters and NZ First.

Read more »

How to put positive spin on dreadful numbers

The NZ Herald has some new numbers from their polling that looks at some key demographics.

But watch how they spin the numbers.

A breakdown of the latest Herald Digipoll results according to gender, location and age shows where the parties are strongest and where they are gaining and losing ground.

Labour’s popularity with male voters has increased, with 21.2 per cent of men supporting it for the party vote, compared to 18.4 per cent last week.

The party’s support among women hasn’t changed much, with 27.8 per cent this week, compared to 28.9 per cent last week.

Those numbers are simply dreadful for Labour. As I said earlier in the week Labour’s internal polling was showing them with a one in front of it and it looks like Digipoll has found the same.

Sure it has increased to barely over 20% and in the territory of Bill English’s dreadful 2002 result. Even thenumbers for women are bad and lower than when David Shearer led Labour. The Herald spins this as positive…Labour’s popularity amongst men is rising…when it is around 20% it can only but rise!   Read more »

What dead rats will Labour have to swallow?


Labour’s continued poll ratings means they are going to lose their third election in a row, and fifth from eight under MMP.

There important lessons for Labour are similar to the ones National learned after Bill English totally wrecked the party and won 20.93% of the vote in 2002.  Read more »

Sledge of the day

No need to say anything for this one except for turn it up a bit, just don’t watch with your  mouth full.

The Predictable Failure of David Cunliffe (Ctd)

Today’s polls are more bad news for Labour.

They rolled David Shearer when he had 34% of the vote.

The new messiah, David Cunliffe, has managed to lose them 10% of the vote since then.

This was very, very predictable. I have been predicting it for ages.

David Cunliffe is dead set useless, and Labour should have run some polls to see what the population thought of him before they selected him as leader. His negatives were seriously high to being with, so he was always going to tank Labour’s vote.

Having high negatives is not career ending. Helen Clark demonstrated this, when she managed to take Labour down to 14% in the polls, with a 2% preferred Prime Minister rating.     Read more »

Vernon Small interviews his keyboard

Vernon Small is supposed to be clever, he is rather pink coloured and enbedded deep within Labour and so when you read articles like his one this morning you really wonder if he is so embedded in the left he has no idea what actually goes on outside his state funded cubicle in the Press Gallery.

Especially when he makes silly statements like this:

The really tricky one is how to deal with Judith Collins, a senior minister at the heart of his government who has clearly taken her friendship with Slater too far.

How can a friendship go too far? What sort of friendships does Vernon have? You know attending concerts with Labour MPs and staffers in Martinborough? (Yes Vernon you were, I was sitting two rows behind you and the Labour “friends”)

Key has opted for the lesser of two evils by keeping her on with only a mild rebuke. (‘‘Unwise’’, in the glossary of political discipline, is somewhere near the bottom of the rising crescendo that passes through inappropriate and ends up at inexcusable and unacceptable for a minister.)

The alternative was to sack her or issue a much stronger rebuke, but on that he was boxed in by the final warning he gave her for not being full and frank with him during the Oravida controversy.

Also, a tougher response would have given credence to Hager’s book, which Key has been at pains from the day it was published to avoid doing.

That begs the question what he will do with Collins if he is prime minister after September 20.

She could be offered up as a sacrifice on the altar of a deal with Winston Peters – he is no fan of National’s hard Right – with a Cabinet demotion. That was unlikely before the events of last week.

Read more »

Bill English is a pious hypocrite

Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

Some days ago Bill English was piously claiming that he would never do anything dirty like talk to a blogger.

This came as a huge surprise as anyone that has been around the National Party for as long as I have knows all sorts of exceptionally dodgy stuff Bill English has done in the past to get his own way. The stories are endless and probably should come out.   Read more »

Trotter on politics, no surprises we are all nasty

Chris Trotter is once again the sensible and reasoned commentator of the left.

He reckons there are two kinds of politics, foul and fouler.

The sanctimony of many on the left is astonishing to watch…and Chris Trotter in his usual manner softly points this out.

Nor is the dark anti-hero of Hager’s Dirty Politics, Cameron Slater, without precedent when it comes to the New Zealand Right’s long history of doing damage to its political enemies.

As Listener journalist (and now Bill English’s press secretary) Joanne Black wrote in her review of Redmer Yska’s study of the newspaper Truth (of which, ironically, Slater was the last editor): “For nearly 40 years [James] Dunn, as Truth’s in-house censor, read almost every word of every edition before it was printed. But his influence was not only on what not to publish for fear of defamation suits. He also played a backroom editor-in-chief role and was himself the source of many stories, including those that satisfied his virulent anti- Communist beliefs, which were shared by editor Russell Gault.”

The great Prussian military theoretician, Carl von Clausewitz, famously described war as “the continuation of politics by other means.”

I would argue strongly that the reverse of that famous formulation is equally true. That politics is the continuation of war by other means.    Read more »

Economy is going fine, “says” Prefu

The Treasury today released the pre-election economic and fiscal update (Prefu), giving an update on the state of the Government’s books just a month out from the election.

Crucially, Finance Minister Bill English’s long-promised surplus for 2014/15 is said to be on track by Treasury, the Crown’s official bean counter.

The surplus is, in fiscal terms, wafer-thin at $297 million, down from $372m in the last forecast, and equivalent to just 0.2 per cent of total economic output.

But the outlook for surpluses in the following years is markedly weaker than it was in May’s Budget, delivered just three months ago.

Treasury has cut the projected surplus by $500m in each of the next three years, meaning the combined surplus between now and mid-2018 is $6 billion, some $1.5b below what it had in autumn been expected to be.

Well, need some money to give away during the election I guess.   And what is $500M compared to the billions and billions promised by the Green and Labour Parties?

 the economy in general was “growing strongly”, Treasury Secretary Gabriel Makhlouf said.

Forecast to grow at an average of 2.8 per cent over the next four years, Makhlouf said this was “above its sustainable long-term capacity to grow”, meaning inflationary pressure on the economy was building with a strong residential housing market in Auckland and Christchurch.

“It underlines, among other things, the importance of fiscal restraint in a growing economy,” Makhlouf said.

“Prudent careful management of the Crown’s finances remains a priority as the Crown looks to maintain annual surpluses and remain on track to pay down debt.”

English said the Government would seek to keep on top of its books in a bid to give certainty to households.

“There is no room for significant loosening of the purse strings,” English told reporters at a press conference in the Treasury this morning.

While National wanted to reduce taxes “when there is room to do so”, English warned that any cuts, when they came, were likely to be modest. He flatly ruled out an announcement on a possible tax-cut package ahead of the election.

English said National had maintained room to alter its spending plans, while Labour had committed all of its spending allowances for the next four Budgets.

Desperation is a stinky cologne.

Economy is the number one election issue across the spectrum.

Looks like National are going to go into the election with all the big boxes ticked.


The highlights:

- Treasury says the economy is “growing strongly” and expected to continue to do so, with recent falls in dairy prices not outside forecasts.

– This year the books are forecast to return to surplus; wafer-thin at $297 million. It nevertheless fulfils a major political promise which if missed could have hurt Finance Minister Bill English’s credibility.

– Beyond 2014/15 the surpluses will not grow at nearly the rate that Treasury had forecast, owing to a cut in the level of expected revenue from tax, especially GST.

– This means debt will be higher for longer, now peaking higher and later at $67.9b in 2017/18.

– Unemployment is forecast to drop to 4.5 per cent by 2018, down from 5.6 per cent at the end of June.


– Skillfully hacked from Hamish Rutherford at Stuff