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National leader Chris Luxon on track for New Zealand election win

Chris Luxon says he's eager to talk economic ties with his Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese.

Chris Luxon says he's eager to talk economic ties with his Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese. Photo: Getty

Centre-right opposition National remain on track to win the New Zealand election, with Chris Luxon’s party 10 per cent clear of Labour in the latest TVNZ poll just days from the October 14 poll.

The TVNZ-Verian poll results show National, on 36 per cent, are poised to end six years of Labour-led governments, but need the support of two coalition partners – ACT and NZ First – to govern.

“I think New Zealanders want to change in direction and what they want as leadership, a team and energy and ideas to take the country forward,” Luxon said.

While that coalition is unlikely to please Luxon, who has been begging Kiwis on the campaign trail not to give their vote to Winston Peters’ NZ First party, he enjoyed better news in the preferred prime minister result.

Luxon, the former Air New Zealand chief executive in his first term as an MP, has crashed through to be the top choice as prime minister for the first time in a TVNZ poll.

He had the support of 26 per cent of Kiwis, just ahead of Labour leader and Prime Minister Chris Hipkins, on 25.

Labour’s campaign has run aground this week as Hipkins caught COVID-19, opting to isolate in an Auckland hotel room and adopting pandemic-era virtual campaigning techniques.

On Wednesday night, he is hosting a virtual town hall meeting that Kiwis can log onto, with a second town hall meeting for kids on Thursday.

Labour’s campaign for a third term largely comprises of attacks on National’s plans to cut the public service and offer income tax relief funded by dubious new taxes.

“I think New Zealanders know that if National and ACT win, they’re going to lose,” Hipkins said.

Of Labour’s two likely support parties, the Greens registered 13 per cent support, while the Maori Party came in at two.

That leaves the left bloc with 41 per cent support as a whole.

ACT polled at 10 per cent – down two – while NZ First has the support of six per cent, meaning the right bloc has 52 per cent support.

ACT leader David Seymour said the presence of NZ First in parliament was “a huge worry for New Zealand”, while Peters pledged to be a stable force in government.

“We’ve got an obligation no matter what the circumstances to try and ensure three years more stable, much better government,” he said.

TVNZ-Verian poll result

National: 36 per cent (steady) – 46 MPs in parliament

Labour: 26 (steady) – 33 MPs

Greens: 13 (steady) – 17 MPs

ACT: 10 (down 2) – 13 MPs

NZ First: 6 (steady) – 8 MPs

Maori Party: 2 (steady) – 3 MPs

Preferred PM

Chris Luxon (National): 26 (up 3)

Chris Hipkins (Labour): 25 (up 2)

Winston Peters (NZ First): 4 (steady)

David Seymour (ACT): 3 (down 2)

Chloe Swarbrick (Greens): 2 (up 1)

James Shaw (Greens): 2 (up 1)

-AAP
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