The polls add pressure

The NZ Herald has released another poll that shows that?the?step-change Labour were looking for is in fact going the wrong way just three months out from the election.

Labour’s support dropped among decided voters by almost two points to 31.5 per cent – its second lowest since 1999.

This follows a three-point drop the month before. Its lowest was in July 2008 when it polled at 30.8 per cent.

National remained steady on 52 per cent in the poll of 750 eligible voters – enough to secure it 65 seats in Parliament and govern without requiring support from other parties.

Labour would have 39 seats.

The Green Party and?NZ First were the main beneficiaries of Labour’s fall. The Greens went up by 1.5 points to 9.8 per cent – their highest in the poll since mid 2002, and enough to add three more MPs to the nine they have.

NZ First went from 0.9 to 2.4 per cent after its annual conference.

Among the minor parties, Act support dropped from 1.4 to 1.2 per cent, meaning that if Epsom electorate candidate John Banks wins he will carry only party leader Don Brash to Parliament from the party list.

Hone Harawira’s new Mana Party is on 0.2 per cent – down from 0.4 per cent – meaning that if Mr Harawira holds his Te Tai Tokerau seat, he will be in Parliament on his own.

The?Maori Party was on 1.8 (down 0.2) and United Future was on 0.1 (down 0.5).

With three months to go before polling day, undecided voters had dropped from 11 per cent to 9 per cent this month – well below the same point before the 2008 election, when 17 per cent were still undecided.

The poll of 750 eligible voters was between August 19 and 26.

Even the NZ Herald sees that this election is about three main parties and the rest, signalling the problem that National’s leadership cannot see past this election.