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Likeability doesn't make a good PM, Bridges says while shrugging off negative approval rating

Being likeable doesn't make a you a good prime minister, National Party leader Simon Bridges said in the wake of 1 NEWS' Colmar Brunton poll which shows his approval rating in the negatives.

It was revealed yesterday that 29 per cent of people approved of how Mr Bridges has handled his job as National Party leader, 51 per cent disapproved and 20 per cent did not know or refused to answer - leaving his overall approval rating at -22.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's approval rating is at +33. When asked if they approved or disapproved of the way Ms Ardern is handling her job as Prime Minister, 62 per cent of people approved, 29 per cent disapproved and eight per cent did not know or refused to answer. 

But Mr Bridges told Breakfast host Hayley Holt this morning that being liked doesn't make you fit for the job. 

"Ultimately, I like lots of people, I like you Hayley, I don't want you to be prime minister. I don't think that's your role," he said.

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Political editor Jessica Mutch McKay has the results. Source: 1 NEWS

"I think New Zealanders are seeing an effective opposition under me. We're holding the Government to account, we're focused on every day issues that they don't see the Government focused on, and they're also understanding more and more that we're doing the work with our discussion documents, we've got more coming so that our plans are, dare I say it, more real than the Government's."

He added that in the role of Opposition Leader he felt he "wasn't doing too badly" but that "the kumara doesn't go on about how sweet they are".

"It's the party vote that matters," he added

Monday's 1 NEWS Colmar Brunton poll showed National is sitting on 47 per cent, up two percentage points. While, 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.

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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

"At 47 per cent we take nothing for granted. We've got a lot of work to do showing New Zealanders our positive plans but we're serious, and we're seriously on a mission," Mr Bridges said.

When asked why the Party was so popular, especially in its first term as the Opposition, he said: "I think ultimately it's actually relatively simple. I think New Zealanders are seeing the Government doesn't know what it's doing."

However, he assured Kiwis that National did know what to do.

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Our polling reveals the gloss appears to be wearing off Labour. Source: 1 NEWS

"We're also focused on the right stuff, which is everyday New Zealanders' everyday issues. It's people stuck in traffic when they're trying to get their kids to daycare or to get to work, it's the tax and the costs that's making it harder, it's issues like measles and surgeries and not enough of them happening, and we're very much resolutely focused on those things."

He reiterated that National's focus was to "reinject confidence in the economy", as well as focus on building infrastructure, health and education.

"It's about not mucking around wasting money on this, that and the other thing like this Government does."

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The National Party leader talked about his negative approval rating in the latest 1 NEWS Colmar Brunton poll. Source: Breakfast


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