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Ardern unfazed by downward poll results - 'We're doing better than we did even on election night'

Prime Minister Jacinder Ardern said today she is unfazed by yesterday's poll results which show the Labour Party slipping in popularity, adding that people will understand they came into Government after years of underfunding.

The news comes after 1 NEWS' Colmar Brunton poll yesterday revealed National was sitting on 47 per cent, up two percentage points. Labour dropped by three to 40 per cent. The Green Party increased slightly, up to seven per cent, and New Zealand First received four per cent support.

Ms Ardern told TVNZ1's Breakfast today she doesn't consider the poll results a disappointment, though.

"When you reflect on our polling that brought us in and allowed us to actually form a Government, we're doing better in this poll than we did even on election night."

She said there was more work to do, but that she was pleased with the progress made by Government in the past two years.

"We are a year out from elections, we know that we need to keep up the investments we've already had in the last two years into new schools and into rebuilding our hospital system, into investing into regional New Zealand."

The poll also revealed 14 per cent of people don't know who they'd vote for, while four per cent refused to answer.

When asked how she would win those voters, Ms Ardern said, "the sense I get is they do know that we've inherited nine years of under-investment so it does take time to turn things around".

"We just need to keep demonstrating that progress, particularly for New Zealanders in their everyday lives.

"We keep needing to make that difference, and people need to feel it themselves. That's what makes a difference to their personal votes."

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The Government would be more worried if the same poll results come six months from now, said Auckland University’s Jennifer Curtin. Source: Breakfast

Earlier on Breakfast, Auckland University professor of politics Jennifer Curtin also wasn't looking to heavily at the poll results. She said said the timing of the poll likely had a big influence on its outcome as it came two days after the opening of the board room.

"We know that the CEOs that were part of that weren't particularly warm about the current Government and the speed at which it was taking on some things - too fast on environmental issues, too slow with the working groups and discussions and stuff," Ms Curtin said.

"So I think it's not so bad. They would have been worried if this was a poll in six months time, but they've got their [$7.5 billion] surplus now and they're looking healthy on the economic management front so they've got some money to spend, so that's a good place to be going into the last year before an election."

However, Ms Curtin also said it was time for the Government to focus less on international issues now and shift to tackling the domestic issues, like Ihumātao.

She said Labour would be more disappointed than worried about the poll results, meanwhile National would be pleased with the results - especially Party leader Simon Bridges.

"Bridges will feel confident. He's been a lot more present in the media - some gaffs but some policy suggestions, some going negative, some going not so negative - and that seems to have worked for him," Ms Curtin said.

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1 NEWS’ Colmar Brunton poll last night revealed Labour dropped by three points to 40 per cent, while National was up two to 47 per cent. Source: Breakfast


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