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Alden Bates' Weblog

Feigning normality since 1973

Predicting the election outcome

Filed in: Tetrap.Local.

No, not the US elections, the New Zealand ones. For while the Americans try to decide whether they want Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, or John "Dubya II" McCain as president, New Zealand is gearing up for the 2008 elections. Unlike the US elections we vote all at once, so the buildup is purely campaigning.

Last election I posted about the current political parties so I guess it's time I did so again...

The major parties:

Labour, who have been in power for the last century, have done a reasonable job in running the country, but are polling badly. This is possibly due to the fact that leader Helen Clark is almost incapable of admitting any wrong doing on the part of her or her ministers. Also may be due to the fact that, after years of claiming that they couldn't afford tax cuts, Michael "McScrooge" Cullen suddenly found they could, right when election year rolled around. That's not at all suspicious.

National, though currently high in the polls, have a limited choice regarding coalition partners, mainly because no one else really likes any of their policies. Are now lead by John Key, who New Zealanders seem to prefer for prime minister despite him not having actually done anything that might indicate he'd be really good at the job. I'm quite confused as to why people think he'd be any good. Perhaps it's the way he munches on insects? Maybe it's the way he cosies up to known criminals? Of course, he did replace Don Brash, who makes peat look charismatic, but he was also implicated in the same tell-all book which brought down Mr Brash.

Minor parties:

The Maori (only) party have the problem that their ministers can't keep their feet out of their mouths, such as leader Tariana Turia endorsing vandalism. Won't form a coalition with National, because National want to get rid of the Maori seats, which are the only things keeping the M(o)P in parliament. Therefore most likely to side with Labour.

The Greens may face public backlash over the fact that one of their MPs is responsible for the controversial fascist smacking law, which does nothing to curb the tide of abused children and merely turns normally law-abiding parents into criminals. The only party further left than Labour.

ACT, AKA The Rodney Hide Party, have the benefit of a reasonably good public profile, mainly due to the fact that every time something political happens, Rodney appears on the news to give his view. Hard to tell who they'd side with.

NZ First, AKA The Winston Peters Party probably won't get in. Winston, of course, lost his seat in Tauranga last election, but got in as a list candidate. His public profile is also extremely low since the last election, due to him having been appointed minister of foreign affairs, and therefore out of the country most of the time.

The Progressive Party, AKA The Jim Anderton party, has managed the feat of having an even lower public profile than NZ First. May get back in assuming Anderton retains his seat and if so, will no doubt stick with Labour.

United Future: does any one pay attention to them any more?

Now, serious campaigning has yet to start, but I'm going to predict that National will do best out of the two main parties. They won't have enough seats to govern, but will manage to persuade a minor party to form a coalition with them.

There, that's my political post for the next three years. It may even bear some resemblance to reality in a few places!

Posted March 13, 2008 11:19 PM


Did I write this? You seem to have replicated my cynical style perfectly. I, of course, concur with all of your points. I don't, however, think Winston should be counted out...that greasy snake manages to save his bacon every time, and this time will probably be no different.

Posted by: Jeff Stone | March 18, 2008 6:55 PM

I suspect that people might be a bit more reluctant to vote for ACT now that Roger Douglas has rejoined it too... :)

Posted by: Alden | March 18, 2008 10:46 PM

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