G-Man on Winston

used to work for Winston as a press secretary. So it is with interest we read his blog at Gotcha:

What did I think of The Big Speech? To mix canine metaphors: It was a dog’s dinner, all over the place like a mad dog’s shit. I thought Winston now sounds like a man desperately searching for relevance.

Normally I smile politely to myself, but tonight I AM writing New Zealand First off as a going concern. I can say with 100% confidence that New Zealand First will not be in the next parliament after 2011, and anyone who thinks otherwise is delusional.

A big call.

Please understand, this conclusion has not been reached from a point of anger: I personally like Winston. This conclusion was reached after a cold, objective look at the facts. Simply put, Winston does not have the resources or political credit to launch a serious attempt at re-election. …

Voters can be compared to a finance company. If we can indulge in an extension of that analogy then New Zealand First, and Winston in particular, have used up all their (political) credit, and now have a bad credit rating.

Winston’s counter to this is to paint himself as the victim of a conspiracy; his amazing speech this last weekend to the New Zealand First conference explicitly states this …

And some advice:

Right now Winston’s biggest asset is the respect and weariness that his political foes and the media have of him. They too have a fear that he may very well have the powers to be the comeback-kid once again, and aren’t prepared to write him off. The result is that they continue to give him token attention.

If they really want to get rid of him then they should simply ignore him. Winston’s only chance of getting traction is to be a gadfly who gets a reaction from those with better things to do, to be an itch that has to be itched.

Without that traction then the laws of rational expectations applies: if potential NZ First voters believe that NZ First will not get over 5% then they will not be prepared to vote for him, and his support will stay low, repeating the cycle– Unless NZ First is around the 5% within 6 months then he has no chance whatsoever. The chances of that happening, with the country emerging from recession and National so far ahead in the polls are zero.

NZ First was at 1.5% in the last Roy Morgan poll. To make 5.0% is an additional 100,000 voters or so.

And Roy Morgan were quite accurate in predicting NZ First. Their pre-elections campaign polls has NZ First at 5% (14 Sep), 4% (5 Oct), 4.5% (19 Oct) and 4.5% (2 Nov). They got 4.1%.

During 2005 to 2008, Roy Morgan never had NZ First under 2%.

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