For those with a passing interest in numbers, there's been no shortage of numbers to consider as poll after poll has rolled out before our eyes over the last week. But the most recent cycle of polling ended last night with the release of the 3News/Reid Research poll.
It's not a poll that's going to give the Labour Party or the Left in general any comfort. As you can see in the graphic above, Labour dips back under the 30% mark, whilst National rises 1 percentage point to 53.3%; well above the mark where it can do the MMP impossible and govern alone. The Greens continue to poll well, recording their highest level of support on a 3News poll.
Labour will be gutted by this result. Its tax proposals, its superannuation proposals and the proposal to pay Working for Families to beneficiaries have all been rejected, as have Labour's snide attacks on John Key. Just when there was a glimmer of home for Labour with National dropping under 50% in the Herald Digipoll, 3News has slammed the door on Phil Goff's foot. The begging letter sent by Labour's general secretary Chris Flatt on Friday which began "Friend, the shift has begun" suggests that Labour is lacking funds as well as friends.
Sure, there are still eleven days until the country goes to the polls, but the gap should have showed signs of closing by now. The Labour Party is, on current polling, facing a rout of historic proportions, and everyone one Labour's list from about Darien Fenton (#18) down will be getting rather anxious as the numbers continue to roll out. Labour's list candidates face an added dilemma; there are at least six candidates on the list from Chris Hipkins (#30) down who have very winnable electorates; each one of those who succeed in their electorate contest will send the cut-off line on the list one place higher.
It will be fascinating over the next two weeks to see what Phil Goff and his erstwhile campaign manager Trevor Mallard have in store to try and discredit John Key. Labour has fired all its major policy shots, but it seems that the phone is off the hook as far as the electorate is concerned.