Yes Gareth, voters can be THAT thick, 2% of them at least

Gareth Morgan

Gareth Morgan can’t believe that voters are thick:

Gareth Morgan says his reaction to Labour’s surge in the polls after Jacinda Ardern took over as leader was to think voters “cannot be this thick”.

“It took wind out of everybody’s sails. When 20 per cent of the population moves in 24 hours on a smiley face. You look at it and you go – ‘Jesus, they cannot be this thick’.”

Morgan has almost lost his voice and told the Herald he’s “pretty shagged” – and unable to say how he thinks his political party will fare on Saturday.

TOP will need to get at least 5 per cent of the party vote to enter Parliament.

“We just did our 80th town hall last night in Christchurch … that’s what I do every night … I’m in a bit of a bubble in a way because I get people all over me. It’s very easy in that position to say, ‘Oh the whole world is going to vote for me’. So I just don’t feel that I am in a position to gauge reality.

“I see [TOP’s position in polls] at 2 per cent, steady. Then I’m surrounded by nothing but positivity by young people, and I’m supposed to make a sensible judgment out of that? No idea. I’ve got no idea. What will be, will be.”

What will be is he will have wasted a good wedge of cash by simply not listening to professionals and thinking he knows best. Kim Dotcom made that mistake, and so did Colin Craig.

Morgan said Ardern taking over as Labour leader had made life difficult for other parties, but things had settled since then.

“And I think it was just a euphoria that at last Labour were going to be stepping forward, as opposed to being angry about everything. Which is where Andrew [Little] was.

“I just think it was that sense of political relief. So good on her. Awesome – she has captured the mood and has made absolutely a contest out of it. She might even win it.”

She captured nothing. Labour had nothing to lose. Last nights poll, though, shows that voters really aren’t that stupid, they’ve seen through Jacinda-mania and the media can be held accountable for that.

Morgan said he has spent about $3 million on TOP’s campaign, and had invested in the Morgan Foundation for many years beforehand, which had helped for the base for policy development.

He said the policy people had engaged with most was TOP’s tax policy, which would expand the definition of taxable income to include a minimum rate of return from productive assets – including houses.

Another lesson from setting up a new political party was how disconnected political media and commentators were from New Zealanders, Morgan said.

Whatever happens on Saturday, Morgan said TOP would continue beyond the election.

“I think the TOP community is too big now for it to be the end. We’ve got 800 volunteers, 40,000 people on the email. They are big numbers. We have 4000 paid subs or something like that.

“I don’t think it’s the end of TOP at all. I have deliberately said to myself to focus on getting the shop to Saturday. Then on Sunday and Monday you start thinking about what next.”

Gareth Morgan should seek advice from the Kerrigan family if he thinks that TOP has a future.

He would have been better to have a big bonfire and burn $100 notes. At least there would be some benefit from that…some people would have been able to roast marshmallows and keep their hands warm.


-NZ Herald

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.