Rob Hosking explains how National would gain an advantage in the extremely unlikely event they won Mt Roskill in the by-election.
National has one large advantage in the byelection – well, two, perhaps. There are significant benefits from what is still, despite a fairly lacklustre run since re-election at the end of 2014, an aura of success – or at least of not being as pratfall-prone as Labour.
And National, unlike Labour, is not struggling to get donations for next year’s general election, let alone for a byelection.
The biggest advantage is much the same as Hillary Clinton has in making a fight of Arizona. No one is going to be all that cut up if the party loses.
But a win would be the equivalent of an intercept try in rugby: a large psychological blow to the opposition.
In fact to some degree the psychological blow has already been struck: Labour in Mt Roskill, like the Republicans in Arizona, is being forced into defending home territory, territory it should be able to take for granted, at least to some degree. Read more »