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Health the top factor driving New Zealanders’ party vote choices

6 Oct 20

Credit: The Spinoff
Health the top factor driving New Zealanders’ party vote choices
It's definitely a COVID-19 election

Health is the issue most driving New Zealanders’ choice of party vote in this election.

New polling by Horizon Research finds five issues rank above all others in overall importance.

  • Health, a factor for 54%, equivalent to around 1,941,400 adults
  • COVID-19 pandemic economic recovery, 51% (1,833,600 adults)
  • COVID-19 pandemic management, 48% (1,725,700 adults)
  • Affordable housing, 45% (1,617,900 adults), and
  • Keeping people in jobs, 44% (1,581,900 adults).

Education (38%) and overall quality of life (37%) are next most important.

Horizon says the results indicate that election is a pandemic-driven one, with a high underlying concern to ensure that the quality of life is maintained. It partly reflects earlier Horizon polling in June in which, asked simply “what do you most need right now?”, large numbers of New Zealanders said “security” and “peace of mind”.  This poses a challenge for parties to ensure not only policies but the tone of their campaigns sit well with New Zealanders.

Respondents could select as many issues as they wished.

Issues driving current choice of parties:

The importance of issues varies according to the party for which respondents intend to vote in the 2020 election.

For intending Labour voters, the most important factor is pandemic management, for National economic management, for Green climate change and for ACT COVID-19 pandemic economic recovery.

Top 5 by intended 2020 party vote:

By age group Health is number one for those aged 55 or older, and between 25 and 34.

Pandemic economic recovery is number one for those aged 34 to 54.

Climate change is the top issue among 18-24-year-olds.

Top 5 by age group:

The poll of 1,481 adults was conducted from a September 24-28 Horizon Research survey of 1,481 adults nationwide, representing the 18+ population at the 2018 census and party voted for at the 2017 general election. At a 95% confidence level, the maximum margin of error is+/- 2.6. Respondents are from Horizon’s specialist research online HorizonPoll and Maori panels and a third-party specialist research panel.

The research was commissioned by Horizon in the public interest.

For further information:

Grant McInman, Manager, Horizon Research Limited, email, telephone 021 076 2040