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National 45%, Labour-Greens 42% in latest Roy Morgan poll

Just three percentage points separate the governing National Party from the combined vote of Labour and Green party supporters in the latest Roy Morgan opinion poll, its second to last before polling day, Sept. 20.

Covering the full period since the release of Nicky Hager's 'Dirty Politics' book and the resignation from Cabinet last Saturday by former Justice Minister Judith Collins, the poll shows National on 45 percent support, while Labour and the Greens combined poll 42 percent, placing the main Opposition parties within striking distance of defeating the incumbent government of Prime Minister John Key.

However, the news is not all good for Labour, which has slipped 1.5 percentage points to 26 percent support, while the Greens have risen 4.5 percent to 16 percent, their best result since August 2012.

For its part, National has taken a three point knock to sit at 45 percent support, the lowest level of support at which it could realistically expect to be able to form a government. Roy Morgan conducts a rolling nightly poll, so the result covers the views of 762 people polled in the period Aug. 18 to 31, so picks up two full weeks of political reaction to the Hager book, but very little of the reaction to Key's move against Collins, which saw her resign last Saturday, Aug. 30. (See graph below)

"If a national election were held now, the latest New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll shows that the result would be too close to call," the Australian-based pollster says in a statement with the latest results.

In this poll, New Zealand First entrenches its position the post-election kingmaker, with support rising 1.5 percentage points to 6.5 percent, while Internet-Mana has faded 1.5 percentage points to 1 percent support, which would return it just one MP, assuming co-leader Hone Harawira wins his electorate seat of Te Tai Tokerau.

Colin Craig's Conservatives party also makes ground, up 2.5 percentage points from the last poll to hit its highest ever score in a Roy Morgan poll, at 3.5 percent support, but still short of the 5 percent required to enter Parliament unless a Conservative candidate does the unexpected and wins an electorate seat.

The Maori Party's support halved from the last poll, to 0.5 percent, while the Act party doubled its support to 1 percent. United Future, previously at 0.5 percent support, registered nil in the latest poll.

If today's numbers were converted to electoral seats, they would deliver a 121 seat Parliament, in which National would have 57 seats, four short of a clear majority, while New Zealand First would have eight MP's.

Labour would win 32 seats and would be the weak larger partner in any governing arrangement with the Greens, who would gain 21 seats for a combined total of 53 seats, eight short of a clear majority, which New Zealand First would be able to supply on the results of the latest poll.

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Comments and questions

Maybe John Key might want to have a proper enquiry and stop the rot in NZ politics and also instruct his authorities to revisit the Hanover finance and Strategic finance fiasco's

That might be useful for the next poll and the election

Rather than run his own enquiries with his own agenda's and get people like Peter Townsend to go against their usual principles so that John can leverage everyone else's successes - not his lack of

John if you show some leadership and integrity you might pull another election off!!!

Didn't the Hanover and Strategic finance fiascos occur under your Labour mates, or at least under their rules?

Lindsay I am not aligned to Labour - I am in the middle but swaying towards the left this time as National are so morally and ethically corrupt and unlike you I have principles and won't attach to such a situation.

The fiasco was exposed post GFC once the global circus caught up on itself. It wasn't caused by NZ - was it
What I am saying is it is wrong no matter who was in power and I am aggrieved that the National led Government didn't bring them to account.

The issue is that National was remarkably slow to take action and stop the unafforbable money, easy credit and high returns flowing from the poorly supported finance companies because National and Bill English were overly concerned to keep the good times flowing, speed the dairy conversions and give jobs and farms to the hoi polli. Labour then and now seemed a more intelligent party somewhat more likely to tell ordinary people they didn't have the minimium required talent, IQ or to tell a business or farm that it would never work because it lacked the min level of modern tech or its staff lacked the min required look, qualifications and often intelligence or youth.
The problems were on Bill English's watch and no one was less prepared to make the hard calls. It remains true today that the Southland ex St Pats Silverstream would rather an enterprise and country goes belly up , than tell his ordinary voters that there wrong. Also the Government and its bloggers represent the same sanctiomonious moralility as the ghastly John Banks rule of Auckland that basically ghetoised minorities and the sex industry in Auckland and has massively restricted alcohol outlets. The NZF Act hyprocrisy and puritanism is mysoginist and sickening. The purpose of economics is to promote happiness and pleasure -even Keynes and Hayek would have agreed. National and Act and John Banks councils dont-. The Nats aim to control society and the rules to protect ordinary men and enable them to hold and control sexual activities of women DPBs etc. Vote them out.

My dear Robert Miles - I am almost persuaded to give up reading NBR if I must read the drivel you expound.

Where does Roy Morgan conduct their rolling nightly poll, Are they calling 762 people in the various boroughs of Auckland. Of this current poll were most of the calls on the Coromandel or to the student accommodation at UA or AIT. Talking to my acquaintances and friends not one has ever been polled, perhaps because we live outside Auckland. I suggest these polls are not worth the paper that are printed on.

Your criticism can apply to any poll especially the ones that show the results you want to see.

No-one else seems to have noticed, so I'll remark that our political system seems to be looking strangely Teutonic lately. As in Germany, the Greens are polling strongly, there is a new left political party that might break the five percent threshold and National/the Christian Democrats are in the most prominent position but have little to no surviving partner parties to associate with. Germany's classical liberal Free Democrats fell out of the Bundestag when they polled below five percent of the total voter share, without any constituency seats. Although, New Zealand First are the cuckoos in the nest.

Expect a constant drip, drip of more damaging revelations leading up to polling day, and the big one may come on Dotcom day (the 15th)? Classic tactics are to save your biggest for last. The revelation's on Katherine Rich today look like just another taster, I suspect the Big Kahuna is still out there. By polling day even the most All-Black worshiping/snapper quota obsessed Kiwi won't be able to ignore what is under their noses.

What on earth has Ms Rich got to do with the govt? All major businesses use public relations firms or agents.

1. Rich was a 3 term National MP.
2. Rich took up the position of Chief Executive of the New Zealand Food & Grocery Council in March 2009, following appointment in November 2008. This is the mouthpiece of the biggest NZ food and drink concerns.
3..She was appointed to the board of the Health Promotion Agency in June 2012. This is a CROWN ENTITY.
4.June 2012 - John Key claimed that the appointment of of the head of an influential lobby group for the food industry to a health promotion agency was not a conflict of interest.
5. Emails leaked to political writer Nicky Hager claim that Rich, in her role as Chief Executive of the Food & Grocery Council, has while on the board of the Health Promotion Agency (THE AFOREMENTIONED CROWN AGENCY) fed prominent blogger, Cameron Slater, with posts that denigrate individuals in academia and the media who report on news or support health initiatives inimical to the interests of the food, alcohol, tobacco and soft drink industries. The posts have been published as if by Slater himself on his blog Whale Oil Beef Hooked as recently as February 2014.

And you really are asking what this has to do with the government? Really?

Yes. That is what I asked which I'm sure was plain, not ambiguous in any way and easy to understand.

Interesting with these polls - after all the smear labour has zero cut through. This is amazing the Greens not NZF will lead the Labour government very soon. I have always said labour actually hard core support is 20% reflective in their union support and how many are joined - that means 6% are just anti right voters. 16% greens are liberal people in NZ which means 60% of people in NZ are centre right. Labour will now be really worried - they will have to bow 100% to the Greens and no mandate from the people in NZ. The 6 headed party is now just down to a two headed monster and the Greens now own Labour.

While pre-election polls are notoriously questionable (at best), the prospect of a government led by a leader with less than 16% personal support of the electorate amplifies the weakness of this MMP system. Winston would never be happy to accept a support role under David Cunliffe's leadership and with the Greens twittering from their trees, the only positive aspect of this bunch would be the media circus!

This is one poll. There will be more variations. While National is not doing as well presently, they may well bump up a bit after the PM's strong performance in the latest leader's debate. Labour continues to languish badly. The Green result has a rouge look about it as their trend has been at around 13%. Next poll please!

Key is gone and he knows it!

What goes round comes round. His economic plan was to cosy to the US, and it may have worked for him; cause that was what it was all about..

Can anyone tell which country has ever benefited long term with the US? Maybe individuals on a short term basis; hardly the masses!

"Key is gone". Hardly! He is still easily the most popular leader by poll and the National party, like it or not still attracts 45-50% of the vote whereas the left wing parties remain splintered. Wishful thinking perhaps!

Do you really think he is as popular as the polls say. Most people cant be bothered being interviewed for polls.

Do you really think he is as popular as last election, because he only got in doing tea with non disclosure Banks, and then by hairs breath? Work it out for yourself.

Actually Key is very popular with the productive sector of the economy i.e those that generate income. He's simply not popular with that sector of society whose survival relies on the contributions (tax) of the productive sector into the economy.

I beg to differ, for Provincial NZ the Key Government has been the worst in 50 years, (the best being that of Keith Holyoake). Yes John Key has been good for Dairy farmers, and for Auckland but that's it. National will be battered in provincial seats, they know that, that is why a large number of sitting provincial National MP's threw in the towel. Watch for Labour having several new electorate wins, maybe so many that they end up with no list MP's.

If most people can't be bothered being interviewed for polls, as you claim, how could anyone possibly know?
You could perhaps contemplate that, while I try and figure out what a 'hairs breath' is.

Everyone knows polls are a joke, except you maybe?

Have you considered why this is? Heres an idea! Businesses prefer more profit and less tax, which is what this National Government is about. This concept would work, if only the profits stayed in the country, but they dont.

And before you go on about Tax, it is the only way to keep the level of public (roads, schools, hospitals, etc) and social benefits this country enjoys going. And if you havent noticed, this is less and less, and more user pays (for those that can afford it). If you have a better idea, then tell me. As it is, large multi national corporates reside in tax havens to avoid paying their dues.

Back to polls, Elections results are the best guide.

In the under 30's (who barely vote but outnumber the retirees) the left is more Green than Labour. If they don't win this election and arrest their free-fall: I can foresee the Greens eating their share of the votes over the next decade. Much like the National Caucus, there's plenty of deadweight in Labour that would be un-electable if not for safe seats, if they lose, hopefully a round of retirement could refresh the party a bit. National have built up solid support for the future, but their next PM after Key I suspect has yet to even step foot in parliament; some serious succession woes to come.

Big jump in support for the Conservatives.

I'm going to follow dot coms lead and vote early; i.e. before his "big reveal" on the 15th. Will not be letting that self absorbed twit corrupt our democracy. Two ticks national by the way. Really hope NZ doesn't end up with a Labour/Green/Internet-Mana/NZFirst coalition, that can only end badly.

Don't worry dotcodotnz, the way things are going, it'll be a nice tidy Labour-Green coalition with the others sitting in low-level accord, case by case.

What is the advantage of voting early? You're just wilfully shutting out the possibility of new information.

Agree there are many thousands of cuts to be inflicted on Key and his Natpatsies between now and the end of voting.

Hilarious you fit the bill nicely. Typical left wing communist style of twisting what I said to "agree" with a completely different proposition. Got love stereotypes!

But I've seen enough to cast my vote now, not interested in cynically timed release of what will surely be questionable information.

Looking forward to the result either way actually. Either a continuation of sensible governance to the benefit of NZ or the amusement of watching the communists go down so hard they won't get a look in for the next 20 years.

Happy voting NZ. However it turns out we will get the government we deserve.