Ikaroa-Rawhiti byelection: a good victory for Labour

All 111 booths in the Ikaroa-Rawhiti by-election have reported in and Labour’s Meka Whaitiri has won by 1,761 votes.

Turnout was very low. Just 10,570 ordinary votes cast plus 1,620 special votes which equals 12,190 total votes.

This compares to 18,732 votes in 2011, and as a turnout of people on the roll is around 35% only.

The main four candidates’ (with change from 2011 electorate vote in brackets) results are:

  • Meka Whaitiri (Labour) 41.5% (-19.2%)
  • Te Hāmua Nikora (Mana) 24.8% (+10.5%)
  • Na Rongowhakaata Raihania (Maori) 20.0% (-3.1%)
  • Marama Davidson (Green) 11.3% (no candidate in 2011)

It’s a good victory for Labour, with a 16.7% margin (was 37.6%) over Mana, being 1,761 votes.

Mana were obviously lying over their claims that Labour polling had them only 5% behind. Should help David Shearer’s leadership (which will make the Nats happy), but can’t be too complacent. The total vote share of 42% is less than Maori and Mana combined.

Mana did well to come second, and reports were they had a good activist base at work, plus an attractive candidate to youth.

The Maori Party lost votes from 2011. This should be a wake up call to them that they need to sort their leadership out, or they will struggle to retain support.

Davidson for the Greens did pretty well, with her vote being slightly above the Greens party vote in 2011. Sounds like she will get a reasonable list placing in 2014.

Meka is now an MP. On paper she looks like she could be one of the better Labour MPs. Congratulations to her on her election.

Political commentator David Farrar posts at Kiwiblog.

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