New Zealand 2014

Photo courtesy of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Zealand_Parliament#mediaviewer/File:Parlamento_da_Nova_Zel%C3%A2ndia.jpg

Welcome to the Tally Room guide to the 2014 New Zealand general election. This guide includes comprehensive coverage of each electorate’s history, geography and candidates, along with maps and tables breaking down the results of the last election.

This guide also includes posts summarising recent New Zealand political history, the key electorates, the recent redistribution and the New Zealand electoral system, as well as summaries of the race in each region.

Table of contents:

  1. Electorate profiles
  2. Regional summaries
  3. Key seats
  4. Political history
  5. Electoral system
  6. Redistribution
  7. Political parties
  8. Contact

Electorate profiles

Seat profiles have been produced for all 71 electorates. You can use the following pages to find your way to each seat’s profile.

Click below to click through to individual electorate profiles.

Regional summaries

These regional summaries will be posted on the front page over the course of the next week:

Key seats

There are a number of key electorates which will be significant in deciding the next election result.

Four political parties (Internet/Mana, ACT, United Future and the Conservative Party) will be relying on victory in one particular electorate for entry into Parliament, and to be eligible to also win list seats.

The Māori Party’s total result will depend on how many electorates the party can win, as the party has always won more electorate seats than its party vote would entitle them to.

The major parties will also be fighting over a number of key marginals, but the results in these races will not change the overall number of seats each party holds, as the number of total seats will be determined by the national party vote.

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Political history

New Zealand’s Parliament dates back to 1854, but the modern major parties date back to the 1930s. In 1935, Labour won power for the first time, and the following year the National Party was formed.

Since that time, there have been five Labour governments and five National governments.

Since 1935, Labour has won eleven elections, and National has won fifteen elections.

Politics was almost entirely dominated by these two parties until the early 1990s, when the electoral system changed to a proportional system. Since that time, no party has ever won a majority in the Parliament, and in most cases a government has relied on at least two minor parties to create a working majority.

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Electoral system

New Zealand’s electoral system changed quite dramatically in 1996. Since that year, New Zealand’s Parliament has been elected by the Mixed Member Proportional (MMP) system.

MMP is a system that involves local elected MPs who represent distinct electorates, as well as top-up “list seats” which are filled by party candidates from a national list.

The system ensures a relatively fair result, but it has its own quirks and oddities.

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Redistribution

New Zealand recently undertook the first redistribution of New Zealand electorates in six years. The new boundaries are expected to apply for the 2014 and 2017 elections.

The last redistribution, prior to the 2008 election, created 70 electorate seats. 47 of these seats were North Island general electorates, 16 were South Island general electorates, and the other seven were Māori electorates.

Since the last redistribution, the population has grown most strongly in the North Island, so the North Island was granted a 48th electorate.

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Political parties

There are eight political parties with representation in the New Zealand Parliament, and two others with a realistic chance of winning a seat in 2014. Click through for short descriptions of each party.

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Contact

If you have a correction or an update for a single electorate page, feel free to post a comment. You can also send an email by using this form.

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About the Author

Ben Raue is the founder and author of the Tally Room.

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