Newshub poll: Bill English has solid backing as Opposition leader

Most New Zealanders think Bill English is performing well as leader of the Opposition, according to the latest Newshub-Reid Research poll.

That's despite rumours of an impending leadership change; rumours fiercely denied by almost all National MPs that Newshub spoke to.

The Newshub-Reid Research poll results show:

  • 53 percent of New Zealanders polled were positive about Mr English, saying he is doing "very well" or "fairly well" as Opposition leader.

  • 24 percent think he's performing poorly.

  • 20 percent are middling, saying he's performing "neither well nor poorly".

  • Mr English's performance has fallen at the upper end of the scale. Those who think he's performing "very well" are down 6 percentage points since September to 14 percent.

A majority of New Zealanders think Bill English is performing well as Opposition leader.
A majority of New Zealanders think Bill English is performing well as Opposition leader. Photo credit: Newshub.

Despite Mr English's secure position, the question remains: is performing "fairly well" good enough for a leader standing opposite Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern?

Ms Ardern's performance will be released, along with the full poll results, at 6pm on air and online.

 

Discussions about who could replace Mr English in a change of leadership are rumoured to have been taking place within National.

Almost every National Party MP that Newshub spoke to on Wednesday denied those discussions had occured, with only Sarah Dowie saying there had been "a bit of talk" about who would hypothetically replace Mr English.

It is unclear whether National believes anyone could out-perform Mr English against Ms Ardern.

Newshub-Reid Research interviews were conducted using online polling and computer-assisted telephone interviewing. Some 750 people were interviewed by phone and 250 online between Thursday, January 18 and Sunday, January 28.

Data is weighted to ensure a cross-section of representation of age, gender and geography.

The sample error is maximum of +/-3.1 percent at a 95 percent confidence level.

Newshub.

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