Simon Bridges has dropped down to seven per cent in the preferred Prime Minister rankings, with fellow MP Judith Collins overtaking Winston Peters into third position.
“There’s no doubt for any leader, for me, the toughest week in politics,” the National Party leader told 1 NEWS.
“I think there’s no doubt that would have had an impact.”
Jacinda Ardern – 42% (up 2%)
Simon Bridges – 7% (down 3%)
Judith Collins – 5% (up 3%)
Winston Peters – 4% (down 1%)
Last week saw dramatic political events unfold in the National Party, with MP Jami-Lee Ross quitting the party and making a number of allegations against leader Simon Bridges.
The Opposition leader said it was the party vote that “really matters”, however he did not take the results lightly.
“I’ve got work to do.”
It was Bridges’ lowest poll rating since he stepped into the role as National Party leader.
He had been sitting at between 10 and 12 per cent in previous polls.
The results also showed Labour rose three per cent to 45 per cent and National is down two, to 43 per cent, compared to the last poll conducted nearly three months ago.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern rose two per cent to her highest rating as preferred PM to 42 per cent.
The Labour leader told 1 NEWS she hoped it was a “reflection of people feeling happy with the general direction that we’ve taken as a Government”.
“Leadership is not without its challenges, there are moments of strength and tough times in office as well.”
National MP Judith Collins had been sitting on two per cent since April’s poll, and has jumped up to five per cent.
Bridges said Collins, who rose to five per cent, was a “high-profile, energetic, valued member of caucus”.
Winston Peters dropped from five per cent in the last poll to four per cent.
Simon Bridges’ handling of the expenses leak
The results come after the tumultuous events sparked by the National Party expenses leak, with the party launching an inquiry into who leaked the information.
Those polled were asked if Bridges’ management of the issue had affected their opinion of the National leader.
Thirty-eight per cent said they felt less positive about Mr Bridges and 51 per cent said it had not made a difference.
Two per cent felt more positive towards Mr Bridges and eight per cent either did not know or were not aware of the leak.
Interviewing took place from October 15 to October 19, with 1,006 eligible voters contacted either by landline or mobile phone. The maximum sampling error was ±3.1 per cent.