NZ election 2020: Jacinda Ardern’s Labour Party on track for majority – live | World news
The most interesting electorate right now is probably Auckland Central, where first-term Green MP Chlöe Swarbrick is narrowly ahead of Labor candidate Helen White.
Swarbrick currently leads by 414 votes, which is equivalent to about 2.2% of the vote counted so far. The sitting National MP Nikki Kaye is retiring and the new National candidate is languishing in a distant third place.
Judith Collins leaves for National event
50% of the votes counted: Labour ahead
Judith Collins will make her way to National event in 5 minutes’ time
So Labour’s vote has dropped further to 50.2%, but it’s worth emphasising that in practice they won’t need a majority of the vote to win a majority of seats.
At the moment 8.2% of the party vote is sitting with parties that won’t win any seats, including 2.4% for Winston Peters’ New Zealand First. Those votes are effectively ignored when seats are allocated, so Labour only needs to win a majority of the 91.8% cast for Labour, National, Green and ACT. If you change the denominator, Labour’s vote is currently 54.7% of the threshold-eligible party vote.
If you assume no change in the proportion of the vote going to parties that won’t win seats, Labour’s vote would have to drop to 45.9% to not win a majority of the threshold-eligible party vote. That seems implausible.
Labour supporters are gathering outside the town hall in Auckland to celebrate.
They say the “mind-blowing” numbers of support for Labour are a win for progressive politics around the globe.
“This is once in a lifetime,” says a supporter named Chris. “Mind-blowing”.
“Science and clear communication around Covid-19 have won the day against Trumpery and fake news – people have clearly seen how the government looked after us,” says Christine.
“I think people are really grateful with the way Jacinda has handled Covid; she is leading the world. We are able to live our lives normally with very few restrictions – it is just a blessing.”
“She had March 15 and then she had Covid- she dealt with them with care, firmness and kindness. The results tonight are a reflection of hard work, commitment and what she has done for the country,” says Moustafa.
“This victory will be a stake in the heart for neo-liberal politics, the people count more than the market. People pulling together can win the day,” says Cameron.
We are starting to see the Labour party vote drop. It’s dropped from 50.6% to 50.3% in the last few minutes.
It’s too early to say but it’s possible we could see a change in the trend as different tranches of votes are reported.
Not that this will see a huge turnaround in the result, but this could be enough to slim Labour’s majority, or possibly require Green support.
40% of votes counted: Labour well ahead
Greens congratulate Labour on ‘extraordinary win’
Labour MP Jenny Salesa says Jacinda Ardern’s competent handling of Covid-19 has convinced New Zealanders to trust her for a second term. She said the New Zealand government believed in science, and trusted the experts.
“Kiwis seem to be voting for progressive values, you see the result of Covid-19 here – we’re so different, we’re free, we can have mass-gatherings, we can go to school, we can go to work – and that is thanks to her [Jacinda] and the team of 5 million”.
In terms of transformational change, Salesa wants to do more for her community in terms of affordable housing. The UN special rapporteur said earlier this year that New Zealand was in the midst of a “housing crisis”.
“We’re very, very aspirational – we want to do more in housing, health and education.” Salesa said.