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Labour smashed in latest poll (Fairfax Ipsos)

LATEST: Parker, Robertson back Cunliffe | Roy Morgan poll has Labour on 28%

Labour support has plummeted 6.3% to 23.2%, according to the latest Fairfax Ipsos poll

National climbs 8.9% to 56.1% — which would translate to 74 seats, easily enough to govern alone.

In the preferred prime minister stakes, John Key is up three points to 51.4%, Labour leader David Cunliffe down two to 11%..

The Fairfax Ipsos survey is the fourth post-budget poll to show National with strong support, and Labour knocked back.

The latest horror numbers arrive on the heels of the Mr Cunliffe embarrassment over a letter of support for Donghua Liu, and a day before a three-month pre-election window when Labour's caucus can change its leader by a simple majority vote (compared to the new primary system that saw Mr Cunliffe take control as votes from party members and affiliated unions outweighed those of MPs).

And while logic dicates that potential challengers like Grant Robertson and David Parker should bide their time, and let Mr Cunliffe take the rap for a likely dismal September 20 election result, NBR political editor Rob Hosking notes that logic often goes out the window in the heated environment of leadership stoushes — and that something seems to be afoot in the Labour camp (more from Mr Hosking shortly).

Mr Cunliffe has reportedly issued a warning to his colleagues overnight, saying members of caucus who move against him would be viewed like "scabs" (the derogatory term for workers who cross a picket line during a strike).

But some MPs could see themselves having nothing to lose. Political commentator  David Farrar notes that would translate to 29 seats, meaning if Labour holds 23 electorates it would have just six list MPs, putting the likes of Andrew Little and Jacinda Ardern under the gun, along with othe members of caucas — a pending outcome that could focus their minds in any leadership challenge.

Elsewhere in the Fairfax Ipsos poll, the Greens are down 0.8% to 11.9%.

NZ First falls 0.5% to 3.2%

Internet Mana is on 2.1%, enough to get three MPs into Parliament if Hone Harawira holds his Te Tai Tokerau seat, where he is polling behind Labour's Kelvin Davis.

ACT, United Future, the Conservative Party and the Maori Party all register below 1%.

The telephone poll surveyed 1014 people between June 14 and 17 and had a margin of error of 3.1%.

Comments and questions
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The Labour Party Executive will be lamenting the fact that IMP stole a march on them and have already soaked up all the surplus political talent remaining on the Left, leaving Labour with only the talent still left in their caucus.

So Labour wil soon get a Newest, new, New Leader...

If the Labour party list due out next week doesnt include some new blood, (new Male and Female, Straight and Gay, unionists and non unionists) then this pool will prove very prophetic. Labour needs to appeal to middle NZ and not get completely hijacked by small minority interest groups to ever improve in the polls.

Used to vote Labour but when aunty Helen let power go to her head I crossed the line to John. At least you can talk to him. Labour needs to sweep the floor and bring in people you could imagine having a drink with in a bar.

You're right actually, and I can't think of a single remaining Labour MP who fits that category. Shane Jones was the last out the door.

Just shows you what a great move getting rid of Jones was for Key. It was playing the long game at the time, but very very smart. Not everyone loves Key, but he is superb at what he does. It feels good to have him on our side when as a country we're dealing with international issues too.

While you can talk to Key and/or National, it doesnt necessarily mean they listen. They ignored the stop asset sales reference, and seem to have sold mining licenses wholesale to their mates.

While I am not oppose to mining, what the general public are perhaps not aware of is just because you sell licenses doesnt mean these large overseas interests will develop them. Some buy the rights to stifle competition. Further, applications need to be resourced better when venturing into unknown territory. Its not the wild west, that some have exploited in the past. All I can say is thank goodness for the world wide web. Its provided way more transparency on the truth, than the past.

Further, I wouldnt read too much into these polls, other than it is propaganda by vested interests. While it has the chance of destablishing Labour, the majority who get blinded by this wont be voting National. Theres only one vote that counts, and thats on the day.

Perception becomes reality on polling day - so perception matters.

Meanwhile, a leader resorting to calling some of his caucus members as scabs because they rightly are questioning his leadership credentials is indicative of how he is now beyond salvation.

That's funny. I always found her quite approachable. Still, not much use for that now, other than to help JK complete the pitch for the UNSC that she initiated.

I agree 100% - I used to vote Labour too - but Helen stuffed up this country and we are just coming out of it. I once stood for the Labour nomination for Te Atatu when Bassett retired but the fiasco that happened around that election plus the advent of MMP caused me to move overseas for 10 years. Sure minority parties should have a say in how the country is run but I don't believe they should have the balance of power. That's too much like the tail wagging the dog for me !! Returning to NZ back in 2006 gave me the view that the country had gone backwards since we left. NZ Inc is a business and needs smart, level headed business people to run it as a business - it's not a charity. I think John Key should have the job as long as he wants it.

Ordinarily, you would think that Cunliffe could weather gaffe, despite his harping about National's unholy tie-up with Liu's party donations and reciprocal favours that were supposed to follow. But this latest episode has become one misstep too many; following on from Cunliffe's hidden trusts to disguise donations, getting the figures conveniently wrong on the Baby Bonus, his highly-embellished CV and a raft of other blunders.

The letter-of-support for Liu's residency application was perfunctory, almost generic, and it was written over a decade ago -- and it's reasonable to accept that Cunliffe couldn't recall writing it when balanced against the morass of letters posted from his electoral office. However, when he appears wide-eyed and earnest before the reporters, and makes solemn and unequivocal undertakings of not having dealings with Mr. Liu, and it turns out that he has, he then appears to be either willfully engaged in deceit or hopelessly incompetent by not checking the firmness of the terrain he's preaching from.

Cunliffe's time as leader of Labour has been a never-ending one of seeking Gotcha! moments from National; not realising that his own foot was ensnared in the gin trap that he himself constructed. He is fatally wounded, and his caucus know there is no coming back from the sliding polls

As the party leader, Cunliffe should remember what Truman (?) said:

"the buck stops here"

This should be enough for the Wall Street Wolf to sell off the rest of our assets and plonk another 100 billion dollars of debt on the country while pretending to ""balance the current account".

The sheeple are about to get fleeced to the bone!

Means more foreign exchange dollars to come into the country so that the leftists can feed of the state's tits? Even while they cry over spilled milk?

It's not the spilled milk that bothers me. It's the ever-widening gap between rich and poor, the pretence of JK that selling assets is good for the economy when it clearly isn't, and his insistence that he's squeaky clean, even while he and his chronies openly support corruption and crime.

That's what bothers me. And National's lifelong, death-pact allegiance to the past.

The least he could do is withdraw support from those criminals who choose to eat earwax. Ugh, gross.

No Kimlian, it's not clear to me - I see a more broaden financial markets now with some good assets for NZers to buy (including for the lower paid through their Kiwisavers), I see less debt than otherwise, and I see lower interest rates than otherwise, and I see less taxpayer risk around poor assets management e.g. solid Energy....frankly I suppose dividends would be nice on the whole 100% rather than 51%, but that's only part of the bigger picture ...short answer is, not all of us blinded by the dumb asset sales hype put out from the left.

'National's' lifelong death pact allegiance with the past? I thought it was IMP dredging the last of the Alliance/New Labour barrel and coming up with Harre and Minto! Even Sue Bradford's moved on from there!

As far as I recall, JK has not sold a single asset. He has sold parts of some of the assets but he has retained the majority shareholding in all of them so effectively the Govt still "owns" them. He stood on a platform of partial asset sales, got elected and has duly delivered on that platform. The fact many were opposed is actually irrelevant. Also the money raised from the partial sale was to be directed towards capital investment. No idea whether that has actually happened or not but if it has it means the New Zealand people now have ownership of new assets as well as holding controlling shares in those partially sold. I don't see that as a bad outcome at all.

It must be very quiet at a certain mansion in Coatesville this morning.

Just a light panting as he walks between fridges?

You got to wonder when the next Dotcom - Labour bombshell will hit the headlines ? Hold on to your seats folks!

The Oz election syndrome of 2013 - the washout of Labor support - will spillover in Sept. Frankly, the Liebour Party here needs a good dose of the <><><><>s to clean out the career Pollys, get some spunky young blood