The latest 3 News/Reid Research poll shows Labour's attack on Chinese foreign buyers in the Auckland property market has failed to give the party a popularity boost.
"This is a hugely important issue," says Labour leader Andrew Little on the party's attack over foreign buyers. "The Government has ignored it for far too long. Someone had to raise it, as uncomfortable as it is."
Labour was looking for an Orewa moment, where racial division turns into political popularity, but it hasn't come, although public opinion is on its side.
Asked should the Government ban "foreign buyers", who are not residents or citizens, from buying houses, 61 percent said yes. Thirty-five percent said no, and the rest didn't know.
A majority of National voters, 54 percent say ban, compared to 43 percent who don't. The rest didn't know.
"We've raised it," says Mr Little. "We're going to continue to fight on that issue."
As preferred Prime Minister, John Key has dropped a bit to 38.3 percent – significant because he's usually in the 40s. Mr Little has dropped to 10.2 percent – dangerously close to single figures. The problem is Mr Little has fallen behind New Zealand First leader Winston Peters, who is on 11.3 percent.
"There's only one leader of the Opposition and that's me," says Mr Little.
So the results put more than a little heat on Labour.
3 News/Reid Research poll, July 15-22, 1000 voters Margin of error: +/-3.1 percent
National – 47 percent, up 0.6 percent (on last poll in May) Labour – 31.1 percent, up 0.7 percent Greens – 11.4 percent, up 0.3 percent NZ First – 8.4 percent, up 0.3 percent Conservative – 0.7, down 1.2 percent Maori Party – 0.6 percent, down 0.5 percent ACT – 0.5 percent, no change United Future – 0.1 percent
Seats in house
National – 57 ACT – 1 United Future – 1 Maori Party – 1Right – 60
Labour – 37 Green – 14Left – 51
New Zealand First – 10 (would hold balance of power)
John Key – 38.3 percent (down 1.1) Winston Peters – 11.3 percent (up 0.1) Andrew Little – 10.2 percent (down 1.4)
Should the Government should ban "foreign buyers", people who are not residents or citizens, from buying houses?
Yes – 61 percent No – 35 percent Don't Know – 4 percent
Yes – 54 percent No – 43 percent Don't know – 3 percent