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Labour Still Floundering In Latest Poll

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Helen Clark
Helen Clark

A week into a dramatic New Zealand election campaign that has seen Labour pull big election promises out of its hat, has still not been enough to make any impact on National's commanding lead, according to the latest poll.

Today's Fairfax Nielsen poll suggests voters have been largely unmoved by the big campaign launches on Sunday, the release of National and Labour's economic packages, and the first televised leaders' debate between Labour's Helen Clark and National's John Key.

The poll puts National on 51 percent and Labour on 33 percent -- figures virtually unchanged from a month ago.

Of the minor parties, only the Greens made it above the 5 percent threshold for winning seats in Parliament, rising two points to 7 percent.

However, Miss Clark was given a small reprieve with the preferred prime minister ratings, with the poll showing her moving up five points to 35 percent. Mr Key slid down two points to 43 percent.

Mr Key said yesterday that the poll was encouraging, but there was still a long way to go, while Miss Clark made it clear she did not believe the result.

"That doesn't reflect the trend in other recent polls," she said.

Other polls have suggested the final three weeks of the campaign could be volatile, with some pointing to a dramatic narrowing of the gap.

Labour started the week buoyed by Miss Clark's success at flat-footing Mr Key at their set-piece campaign launches, but Mr Key tipped the scales back in his favour with a better performance on the crucial One News leaders' debate.

Party insiders have identified the risk that voters will baulk at changing the government in uncertain times as one of the biggest threats to their campaign.

The poll questioned 1160 people over seven days up till Tuesday, and has a margin of error of 3.2 per cent.

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