Te Ururoa Flavell is staving off Labour’s assault on the Māori seats with a clear lead in his home electorate of Waiariki.
Māori Television’s latest Reid Research poll reveals Flavell is running in the right direction while former broadcaster Tamati Coffey chases to stay in sight.
Flavell scored 60.1% of voter support as the preferred candidate among 400 voters with Labour’s Coffey behind on 39.9%.
“This is a good result. It doesn’t mean though that I’ll now just rest on my laurels. Absolutely not,” said Flavell.
“I need to continue to try and push for the peoples vote, and hope that the Māori TV polls are right on the money.”
Among younger voters, however, the Māori Party co-leader is a slow starter. Support among voters 18-24 was 37.5%, rising to 47.1% for ages 25-34 and 52.6% among 35-44.
But Coffey has youth on his side – literally.
Faster out of the blocks, he scored with voters aged 18-24 at 62.5%; beating Flavell again with 52.9% for 25-34 and 47.4% among 35-44.
“I’m of a younger demographic. I speak their language. The stuff that I say cuts through. So, yeah, I’m happy about that,” said Coffey.
“The polls are a bit random. If they were consistently saying that then I might have a cause for concern. But it is very inconsistent with what we understand.”
Flavell finds his pace again among older and loyal voters who are more likely to get to the ballot box with 58.6% support among ages 45-55; 65.6% for 55-64 and 62.4% among 65+.
Coffey begins to fall behind as experience takes the lead with 41.4% support among ages 45-44; 34.4% for 55-64 and 37.65 among 65+.
A total of 400 voters were polled from July to September 3.
In the Party Vote, Labour is away and running at 49.6%, nearly double the Māori Party in second place on 26.5% while New Zealand First 10.2%, National 5.6% and the Greens 4.8% round out the top five.
Labour’s dominance in the field is significant with a 15% increase in support as the preferred party since the 2014 election. The Māori Party has only a slight increase of 0.6%.
But the Māori Party survived off the winning finish of Flavell in the last election. They’ll need him to claim Waiariki yet again to survive another term in parliament.
Tamati Coffey will go head to head with Te Ururoa Flavell in our #Election Aotearoa debate on Māori Television this Tuesday, September 12, at 8pm.