Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Election sudoku

Time to play some E9 sudoku again, mining the election statistics for patterns and clues to the future.
The Maori roll expanded to 208,003 voters this election, but only two thirds of them - 67.07% to be exact - turned out to vote. That is 10 percent better than 2002, when Maori voters didn't feel there was a choice on offer, but it is still below 1996 when NZ First slate of dynamic candidates drew 77% of Maori electors to the polls, or 1984 when more than 80% turned out to throw out Rob Muldoon.
That means the Maori party failed to capitalise on the huge amount of support it seemed to be generating and getting those people to the polls.
Since its next major task is likely to be whipping up Maori interest in the electoral option - which could result in one or two more seats for it to win - that may present a problem.
Certainly, while it will never come out in public and admit it, Labour's interest is for Maori voters to cross over to the general roll. Under MMP, winning Maori electorates isn't as important for Labour as it once was, and with the right candidate it can win them back anyway. What is important is winning the party vote in those seats - which it does. But it doesn't hurt to have a big chunk of Maori and Pacific Island voters around when chasing to general electorate seats, especially in the provincial towns.
We can say conclusively that the Maori Party's hunt for votes in Australia and elsewhere was a waste of plane tickets. For the Maori electorates were only 602 valid overseas votes, including defence force votes, down on the previous election.
They were evenly divided between Labour and the Maori Party 267/266. Pita Sharples, who went doorknocking across the ditch, only got 41 overseas votes to John Tamihere's 63.


Blogger sagenz said...

It would be a bit difficult for some of the Maori electoral population to vote when they are not yet 18.

9:22 PM  

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