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Research Results

6.3% more could vote, no party governs alone

6.3% more could vote, no party governs alone
An online wall of advice for electors: 6.3% more may vote

The number of people saying they will definitely vote in this weekend’s general election has risen 6.3% in the six days to midnight November 24.


An Horizon Research poll of 3,347of these Definite Voters, conducted between 7.30am Tuesday November 22 and midnight Thursday November 24, finds some 81.4% of the total 18+ population now say they will “definitely vote”. This is up from 75.1% in the HorizonPoll conducted between November 19 and 21.


At the 2008 election 75.1% of those aged 18+ turned out, or 79.5% of those aged 18+ who were enrolled.


Horizon's final pre-election survey is weighted by age, ethnicity, education, employment status, personal income and party vote 2008 to ensure a representative sample of the New Zealand population aged 18+. The maximum margin of error at a 95% confidence level is +/- 1.7%.


Applying the margin of error and taking a mid-point the "probable" vote share, expressed as a percentage of the total 18+ population, the result is:


Act 2.7%

Conservative 5.3%

Green 12.4%

Labour 29.1%

Mana 3.2%

Maori Party 1.1%

National 33.7%

NZ First 11.2%

United Future 0.7%

Other 0.6%


To give these results some context, in 2008 National won 32.9% of the vote expressed as a percentage of the total 18+ population, Labour 25%.


Given the range of error the Conservative vote could be between 2.4% and 5.8%, New Zealand First between 7.9% and 11.3%.


The results are detailed in this spreadsheet.


Leaders’ debates – possible influence


The current survey started the morning after Monday night’s Labour-National leaders’ debate on TV3.


An HorizonPoll of 1000 electors taken the day after the first main party leaders’ debate on October 31 found Labour leader Phil Goff had won the debate by 7.4% over National leader John Key. The debate delivered a next-day support lift to Labour of 4.7% among definite votes and those who were undecided with a preference. This eroded again later. National suffered a 3.6% fall in support the day after the first leaders’ debate and recovered some of this later.


A similar post-debate support spike may have followed Monday’s debate this week. The survey captured more than 240 respondents who saw the leaders’ debate on Wednesday night on Television One.


Horizon polling between November 8 and 15 found 59.1% saying their party vote was being influenced by discussions they have heard between party leaders. 56.8% said leaders’ personalities were having an influence.


But the main influencing factor, however at 90.8%, was confidence in a party’s ability to manage the economy. 88% also said the “state of the economy” is an issue influencing their party vote choice.


National has focused strongly on economic management.


Labour’s campaign has focused significantly on asset sales. Some 64.4% said the partial sale of assets would influence their vote. Unemployment (74.4% influence) is another area pin-pointed by Labour.


The results, as other Horizon ones have found throughout and before the campaign, indicate no party will govern alone.


The election outcome will depend very much on candidate-vote support for minor parties in seats like Epsom, Rodney and Ohariu, and final party vote support levels, specially for the Greens, New Zealand First, Act, Maori and Mana parties.


Please view the full analysis of these results for those who say they are registered and will definitely vote in this spreadsheet.


For further information please contact:


Manager: Grant McInman

Telephone: 021 076 2040