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Sunday Star Times-HorizonPoll shows election close call

9 Jan 11

Sunday Star Times-HorizonPoll shows election close call
57.5% think National will lead the next Government, but coalition margins razor thin

This year's general election could result in a close call, according to a major new Sunday Star Times-HorizonPoll.


The Sunday Star Times reports results this morning saying: Kiwis expect John Key's National Party to romp to victory in this year's election, but Labour still has a chance of leading a left-leaning coalition government, according to a major new poll.


Two-thirds of voters polled last month by Horizon Research believe National will be able to govern after the election, expected to be held in November.


But when asked to reveal their personal voting intentions, the result makes the election too close to call. National is by far the single most popular party, with 40.4% of the 1718 people polled saying they will give it their party vote, compared to just 28.3% for Labour.


But the poll also predicts 8.9% for both the Greens and New Zealand First, 2% for Act, 1.7% for the Maori Party, and 1.2% for United Future.


When those parties are taken into account, a Labour-Greens-New Zealand First alliance (46.1%) would be a whisker ahead of a National-Act-Maori Party-United Future coalition (45.3%).


The Horizon online poll differs from many others by asking "undecided" voters which way they are leaning. The polling company says that by extracting answers from undecideds, it is taking the temperature of the crucial "swing" voters who actually decide an election result, and thus presents a realistic and broad view of how people are likely to vote.


It is a different view from the competing polls currently predicting far healthier results for National. If Horizon's figures are replicated on polling day, New Zealanders won't have a clear-cut result, because the parties would be jockeying to form coalitions under the MMP system.


Full Sunday Star Times story is here.

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