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Labour just behind Nats, NZ First on the cusp in new poll

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern picks a pomelo with Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh – her Labour party would likely govern on a new poll. Photo / Supplied

A new poll has Te Pāti Māori in the driver’s seat and a likely Labour-Green government, while NZ First is on the cusp of the 5 per cent threshold to make it back into Parliament.

A corporate poll from Labour’s pollster Talbot Mills, obtained by the Herald, had National in the lead on 35 per cent, no change from last month’s poll.

Labour was down one point to 34 per cent.

The Greens were steady on 9 per cent, while Act fell one point from 11 per cent to 10 per cent.

Te Pāti Māori was on 3.2 per cent, up one point, while NZ First was on 4.4 per cent, up 0.4 points. TOP was on 2 per cent.

Assuming Te Pāti Māori wins at least one seat, this would put the party in king or queenmaker position at the next election.

That would likely mean a Labour-Green government, given Te Pāti Māori has said it would not work with Act under its current policy platform and Act has been similarly critical of Te Pāti Māori, but left the door open to working with the party if necessary to form a government.

This is the first poll from Talbot Mills in three months that did not predict a National-Act government.

The poll showed rising pessimism in the electorate, with people thinking the country was on the wrong track increasing from 46 per cent to 49 per cent and the number thinking it was on the right track decreasing from 45 per cent to 41 per cent.

Respondents were even more pessimistic about the economy, with 73 per cent saying it was poor or not so good, up from 69. The percentage of respondents saying the economy was good or excellent fell to 25 per cent from 29 per cent.

Labour leader Jacinda Ardern has increased her performance in the preferred prime minister rankings, rising three points to 40 per cent.

National leader Christopher Luxon was steady on 24 per cent.

The figures come from Talbot Mills’ November poll.

They are similar to numbers from the most recent poll taken by National’s pollster, Curia.

The November Taxpayers’ Union-Curia poll had Labour on 35 per cent, up one point and National on 38 per cent, down one point.

Act was on 10 per cent and the Greens were on 8 per cent, each up one point.

Te Pāti Māori was steady on 2 per cent and NZ First was up two points to 4 per cent.

Ardern’s preferred prime minister number was also up in that poll, rising from 33 to 35 per cent.

Luxon’s fell from 23 per cent to 21 per cent.

Fieldwork for the poll was taken between October 31 and November 7. The maximum sampling error is 3 per cent at the 95 per cent confidence interval.

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