New Zealand election live

Limited live commentary on today’s New Zealand election. Guest post by Adrian Beaumont

Live Commentary

9:42pm Nat and ACT combined have dropped to 61 of the 121 seats with 93% counted. “Special votes” that are counted in the three weeks after the election night count is complete will favour the left and probably cost the right a majority, meaning they will need NZ First to govern. Also Maori is just behind Labour in two seats; if they won both there would be a bigger overhang. But Nat will almost certainly win a by-election that was postponed from Saturday after a candidate died.

9:16pm Had to work on the Voice article. With 88% counted in NZ, National and ACT are down to 62 of the 121 seats. The election day vote has been worse for National than the advance vote.

7:11pm National may be doing worse on election day votes than advance, and have dropped back to 52 seats, with Nat and ACT at a combined 64 of 123 with 38.0% overall counted including 86.4% of advance votes.

6:15pm Nat and ACT keep climbing and are now at 65 of the 123 seats with 27% of overall votes and 73.5% of advance votes counted. It’s looking like the late polls badly understated the right this time after understating the left in 2020.

6:02pm With 66% of advance votes and 24% overall counted, Nat and ACT are now up to 64 of the 122 total seats.

5:50pm With 56% of advance votes counted and 21% overall, Nat and ACT combined are still holding at 63 of the current 122 seats.

5:35pm Maori now winning just three electorate seats, down from six previously. That means total number of seats falls back to 120, and Nat and ACT are currently winning 63 combined.

5:28pm Results so far reflect advance or pre-poll votes, of which 32% has been counted. Percentage counted is of the total number of polling places, so the left parties will hope the current count is skewed to smaller booths that count quickly in rural areas.

5:18pm With 5% counted, Maori party is winning six electorate seats, causing a three-seat overhang. However, Nat and ACT are still winning 63 of the 123 new total seats.

5:11pm First results, with 2% counted, would give the right 63 of the 120 seats.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

Polls close at 5pm AEDT for the New Zealand election. As in Australia, early voting has been available since October 2. However, I believe early votes are counted in NZ on election day, and so they will be released fairly quickly. Results from the NZ Electoral Commission will be available here.

I had a final preview for The Conversation on the NZ election on Thursday. There was a late Morgan poll, conducted September 5 to October 8, that showed the left parties (Labour, Greens and Māori) leading the right parties (National and ACT) by two points, but with 7.5% for NZ First it would make NZ First the kingmaker. 

In other news, it may well be the case that no Republican candidate for US House Speaker can win the 217 Republican votes needed to become Speaker without any Democratic support. It’s now ten days since Kevin McCarthy was ousted, and there’s no resolution in sight.

I will be writing about the Voice and the NZ election for The Conversation, so I won’t be following the NZ election throughout the night.

39 comments on “New Zealand election live”

  1. Presumably the numbers in are all early votes (“advance” votes) which are counted secretly during the day. They look at the high end of the polling for National/ACT, but I’m not aware of the likely peculiarities of these results, or if anyone in the game makes the effort to account for them (neither of the two TV networks seem to be doing it).

  2. Looks like National and ACT are doing very well at the moment (11% counted). If they don’t have to deal with NZ First they will be laughing.

  3. Note, about overhangs: the Port Waikato by-election will cause its own overhang seat, when it’s held next month (a candidate died after the rolls closed). There’ll be 120 MPs elected today, not including overhangs caused by TPM or whoever, and also not including the winner of that by-election (likely to be National).

    If Nat+ACT get a majority today, this doesn’t matter; however, if they fall just short, expect NZ First to give it a red hot go.

  4. Looks like the right are winning. Lost years coming up for the Kiwis. Tax cuts for billionaires, public services slashed, mates of the cons getting rort contracts, workers rights slashed. They’ve promised the world, going to reduce govt debt, cut tax but somehow spend more on schools & hospitals and jails for the poor.

    It’s a fantasy, and it’s going to be a shame that the working class will bear the brunt of the lies.

  5. From Wiki, with about 25% counted:

    Nat+ACT : 51%
    Lab+Grn+TPM: 38.5%
    NZ First: 6%
    others: 4.5%

    Assuming NZF and others go 50-50, that would be a 2pp of 56.5% (Aus style). If they lean Nat, it’s more than that. Yeah, not close at all.

  6. Guardian suggesting a raft of TPM wins could force enough of an overhang to make Peters kingmaker again, which would probably be good for The Left in the long term

  7. A Nat/Act majority is looking a bit unlikely now. Current vote percentages have them on a combined 63 seats. If there’s an overhang, as looks probable, this would be a bare majority, but late counting always favours Labour and the Greens, so odds are they’ll fall a whisker short.

  8. TOP haven’t won Ilam, so no rabbit out of the hat for them.

    The Graun reckons TPM have won SIX Maori seats, so that’s an overhang of 4 (3 extras for TPM, plus whoever wins Port Waikato). The magic number for a majority is now 63/124, with Nat+ACT currently on 64 seats. It doesn’t take too much of a drift away from National for that by-election to suddenly become important.

  9. Bird,

    Newshub has had Nat+Act on just 63 seats for the last half an hour or so (51 + 12).

    And Nat’s share has started to drop, losing half a percentage point in about the last ten minutes.

  10. A by-election in a safe National area is going to be easy for National to win. Especially if means that they don’t have to govern with NZ first – there will be people who normally vote for other parties voting National to avoid that.

  11. Ugh, what a night.

    I’d honestly rather National and ACT govern alone than be forced into coalition with this seemingly-deranged incarnation of NZ First. It’s lose either way though.

  12. BS Fairman: It may be safe for National against Labour, but NZ First will be throwing the kitchen sink at it. Being FPTP, it’s possible that Labour and the Greens sit it out (to help NZF), while ACT sit it out too (to help National). A straight choice between Nat and NZF would be one helluva fight – both parties coming off the election with momentum.

    The Maori seats seem to be 4 TPM, 1 Lab, 2 too close to call (Tamaki Makaurau, Te Tai Tokerau). How those two end up will affect how big the overhang is.

    For the electorate seats that don’t matter so much, the Greens seem to have won 2 or 3 (held Auckland Central, picked up Wellington Central and possibly Rongotai), and ACT’s deputy leader has easily won Tamaki from National to join David Seymour.

  13. Nat/Act now down to 61 seats (50 + 11) with 94 percent counted. Postals favour Labour, so it’s looking increasingly like the overhang will mean no majority.

  14. Newshub’s coverage has been truly cringe-worthy. The governance of their country is at stake, but they seem more interested in putting on a Vaudeville routine. The only reason I’ve kept watching them is the constantly updated data on the bottom of the screen.

    I appreciate the ABC and Antony Green even more.

  15. The 1News/Verian poll from 7-10 Oct was fairly accurate, only slightly understating the National vote.

    That poll projected Nat at 47 seats, currently with 96.2% counted looking at 50, which is likely to drop to 49 as late counting will not favour Nat.

    ACT was projected in Verian to get 11 seats, which is the likely result. Hence Nat + ACT = likely 60.

    That will not be enough for Nat + ACT to govern without NZ First. Peters will be able to demand whatever he wants, because he knows that neither Nat nor ACT will want a re-run of the election.

    Verian projected Labour to 35 seats, currently at 34 seats.

    Green Party was overstated in Verian at 19 seats, whereas likely to end up with either 14 or 15 seats.

    NZ First (W. Peters) was projected in Verian at 8 seats, which is the likely result.

    Verian understated the Maori Party vote. The Maori Party have also won Maori seats from Labour.

    A young 21 year old Maori woman named Hana-Rawhiti Maipi-Clarke has defeated the veteran Maori MP and outgoing Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta in the seat of Hauraki-Waikato:

    Official results are at:

  16. Spence says:
    Saturday, October 14, 2023 at 10:38 pm
    “Interesting Labour conceding.”

    I guess Peters has indicated NZ First will not support another Labour government.

  17. Well, a Labour-Green-NZF-TPM coalition that’s only a couple of votes from failure would be pretty much unworkable, so it’s kinda inevitable.

  18. Looks like the two close Maori seats have stayed with Labour, so there’s two overhang seats – one for TPM, one for the by-election winner.

    Interesting twist with that by-election: Andrew Bayly, the siting MP for Port Waikato, ended up back in parliament anyway – he got in via the party list. If he wins, he gets his old job back and the next person down the Nat list replaces him, while if he loses, he’s still a list MP – there’s no downside for him personally.

  19. Peters has had a history of reinventing himself and NZF, and this time it was as a far-right cooker type that I think even National would be relieved not to have to get into bed with (if they can avoid it). Labour and this NZF wouldn’t touch each other with a bargepole.

  20. Bird of paradox at 11.35 pm

    Of the 7 Maori seats, the Maori Party will hold 4 and Labour 3. If the Green Party had not stood in those two close Labour-leading seats (Tamaki Makaurau and Te Tai Tokerau) the Maori Party might have won both.

    In 2017 National dropped from 58 to 56 in late counting, while Labour and the Green Party gained one each.


  21. Hindsight’s a wonderful thing. Tamaki Makaurau was marginal Labor in 2020 (and still is), but Te Tai Tokerau wasn’t – it’s the deputy Labor leader’s seat!

  22. Labor lost the election because they had a dud leader. Simply put Chris Hipkins was a terrible leader and their members of parliament gone should have seen this coming. How badly they have let their constituents down.

  23. Winston Peters will make Rob Oakeshott look like a speed chess player. He’s off and running real slow:

    ‘Winston Peters’ unhelpful press conference

    Winston Peters gave a brief, cryptic and characteristically unhelpful press conference to a dozen journalists just after 10.30am on the shoreline at Russell Kororāreka.

    He set the tone with an opening demand that reporters’ questions be “sensible”, and the threat that “if I hear anything that is not to do with what this election is about, then this press conference will be over”, and it didn’t get much better from there.

    The substance of his comments boiled down to: wait until November 3, when all the special votes have been counted, and then we’ll see what happens.

    He has a point here, of course: if National’s numbers slip after those final 20% of votes are counted, Christopher Luxon may want – or even need – to forge some kind of alliance or accommodation with Peters, and the maths of it all won’t be fully settled until the last votes are counted.

    But alongside this commonsense, there was a blizzard of old-school Winstonian anti-media rhetoric, complete with buzzphrases like “corrupt media”, “you guys failed”, “look – you’re not doing the maths”, plus the old favourite: “we were Cinderalla-ised, marginalised and shut out”.

    Watching the back and forth of questions was, like so many Winston pressers before, a head-spinning experience: here’s a guy talking into the cameras of six or seven of all the biggest media organisations in the country, insisting media aren’t giving New Zealand First enough coverage. Whatever, Winston.

    – By Adam Dudding’

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