Election Date

June 4th, 2005 at 1:20 pm by David Farrar

The NZ Herald talks about Labour’s fears over the the bad budget reaction (an own goal of unprecedented ability), and that this makes 30 July election more unlikely.

I agree.

They pick the next date as 20 August, mentioning the four week recess in late June and July would keep parliamentary scrutiny to a minimum. They are right, but overlook that it would be unprecedented for the PM to call a non-snap election without Parliament having the right to have an adjournment debate and valedictory speeches for retiring MPs. So she would have to call it by say Tuesday 21 June to allow time for this. Also with Nats conference that weekend, it would be great timing for National to start the campaign with the profile of its annual conference.

I don’t see a eight week campaign being likely. In theory the PM could recall Parliament in July, but this is normally only done for things like the Iraq war, and it would undermine the image of not going early.

So I am now going to pick September 17 as most likely.

At the end of the day, the PM will call an election the moment Labour have some upwards momentum, which is probably a clear couple of weeks of no scandals, and at least three positive poll results. So it still could be July 30 if the next two weeks go well, but unlikely.

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