Just over three weeks ago New Zealanders went to the polls to elect the 51st Parliament of New Zealand. The New Zealand National Party, led by Rt. Hon John Key, was overwhelmingly re-elected for a third-term in government.
On the night it seem John Key and the National Party may have managed the unthinkable and secured an outright majority under a mixed-member proportional electoral system. Unfortunately, once the special votes were counted the National Party ended up being one seat short of an outright parliamentary majority.
Nevertheless, John Key and the National Party still broke political records in being returned to power for a third consecutive term with a higher percentage of the vote then in their first term.
The official count recorded the National Party with 47 percent of the votes and the Labour Party with only 25 percent (the Labour Party’s worst election result since 1922). The remainder of the votes went to the minor third parties.
The election campaign itself was a messy affair with a number of distractions by third party groups aimed at undermining the National Party. These distractions dominated the media and at times prevented political debate on policy issues. There was the publication of “Dirty Politics”, a book by an investigative journalist based on stolen emails, which drew links between the National Party and a conservative attack blogger. Then there was a political party funded by Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom (who is also facing possible extraction to the United States). The party failed to win a parliamentary seat, despite Kim Dotcom pouring more than three million dollars into the campaign.
Ultimately, New Zealand voters saw past the distractions and gave their tick of approval to John Key for the superb job the Government has done over the past two terms in managing the economy. This led the John Key to remark in his victory speech that this was a victory for those who kept the faith.
The economy is growing at close to 4 percent GDP, employment is falling, wages are rising faster than inflation, and the Government’s books are on track for surplus next year with further tax cuts on the horizon.
John Key was officially reappointed and sworn in as Prime Minister this week by the Governor-General.
Former IYDU Vice Chair Nikki Kaye was re-elected as the Member of Parliament for Auckland Central and also reappointed and sworn in as a minister this week.
The National Party will form a minority government having signed support agreements with three collation parties: the Maori Party, ACT, and United Future.
Former IYDU Vice Chair
Former New Zealand Young Nationals President