Labour could form government if NZ First breaks 5%
National is likely to win the next election but Labour could have a chance of forming a government if New Zealand First gets 5%, according to prediction by the University of Victoria's political market website iPredict.
But to do so Labour would have to form an unwieldy coalition featuring five parties.
Recently iPredict users have been forecasting a landslide National victory, with the possibility of it even governing alone.
But the general downward trend in National's forecast party vote over the last six weeks has continued this week, while Labour's forecast party vote has increased sharply.
National is now predicted to get 44.0% (down from 45.5% last week), Labour 33.6% (up from 30.2% last week), the Greens 7.0% (steady), New Zealand First 4.9% (steady); Act 4.3% (down from 4.7% last week).
The Maori Party is forecast to get 1.9% (down from 2.1% last week), United Future 1.6% (down from 2.1% last week), the Mana Party 1.5% (down from 1.6% last week), the proposed Reform New Zealand Party 0.7% (steady), and the New Citizen Party 0.6% (down from 0.7% last week).
Based on this data, and predicted electorate results, National would have 56 MPs, Labour 43 MPs, the Greens nine MPs, Act six MPs, the Maori Party three MPs, and the United Future and Mana parties two MPs each.
There would be 121 MPs, requiring a government to have the support of 61 MPs on confidence and supply, so the National Party would have the numbers with the support of the Act Party, or both the Maori and United Future parties.
Parliament would be as follows: National 53 MPs, Labour 41 MPs, the Greens 9 MPs, New Zealand First 6 MPs, Act 5 MPs, the Maori Party 3 MPs, and the UnitedFuture and Mana parties 2 MPs each.
There would be 121 MPs, requiring a government to have the support of 61 MPs on confidence and supply.
Under this scenario, government formation would be more complicated.
National Party would need all of the Act, United Future and Maori parties to govern meaning that the Maori Party would genuinely hold the balance of power.
This would give it the option of supporting a Labour/Green/New Zealand First/Maori Party/Mana Party government, which would have 61 seats on confidence and supply.
A two-party National/Green government would also be possible.