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Research Results

Māori support for Labour falls, Ardern preferred PM

15 Mar 22

Māori support for Labour falls, Ardern preferred PM
Ardern preferred MP, but Māori party vote support softens

An exclusive HorizonPoll of Māori for The Hui television programme finds party vote support for Labour has gone soft, Jacinda Ardern is preferred Prime Minister and the cost of living is the top issue likely to influence party choice next year.

Key findings from the nationwide online survey of 511 Māori respondents, aged 18 or older, are:

Party vote if an election were held tomorrow:

  • Most people remain loyal to the party they voted for in 2020, but 17% have indicated some sort of switch away from Labour.       
  • Labour is still well ahead for Māori voters (37% would give Labour their party vote if an election were held tomorrow, followed by 11% for each of the Māori Party and National). The intended Labour vote represents a significant decline. 54% of respondents had given their party vote to Labour in 2020.
  • 14% say they don’t know who they would vote for if an election was held tomorrow.
    • 58% of these came from Labour, but this is similar to their 2020 party vote (54%) and indicates the “I really don’t know” comes from a broad range of parties.

Preferred Prime Minister:

  • 47% of the total sample prefer Jacinda Ardern as Prime Minister
    • 68% of people aged 55 years and over
    • 62% of those with three or more doses of the vaccine (including the booster)
    • 56% of males (females 40%).

Top issues affecting party vote in 2023

  • The cost of living stands out as the issue Māori will most base their party vote on at the next general election (72%) – indicating inflation is a risk to the government.
    • Housing (62%) and health (60%) are also leading issues people will base their vote on.

Best performing Maori MPs:

  • The highest performing Māori MPs only get about 30% saying they are performing well.
    • The MPs with highest ratings are Marama Davidson (31%), Kiritapu Allen (20%) and Nanaia Mahuta (29%).

About the poll:

Members of the HorizonPoll national and Māori panels plus two third-party respondent panels who identify as Māori and are aged 18+, responded to this online survey between 17 and 28 February 2022.   

The total sample of 511 respondents is weighted on age, gender, highest educational qualification, personal income and region to match the adult Māori population in 2022 (extrapolated from the 2018 and 2013 censuses.)

At a 95% confidence level, the survey has a maximum margin of error of ±4.3% overall. This increases with smaller sub-groups, and increases again when comparing two sub-groups.