NZ Election 2020 final results: Labour's red wave pushes out two National MPs as Māori Party celebrates new seat

National's losses to Labour have only grown bigger with the final results of the election confirmed, while the Māori Party is celebrating a new seat in Parliament. 

The Electoral Commission unveiled the final results of the election on Friday - that's votes that have come in from overseas, as well as votes from people who enrolled on Election Day and those who voted from a different electorate. 

National, which had already suffered a huge defeat in the preliminary results, has now dropped even further. The party now has only 33 seats compared to the 35 it had on Election Day, compared to 56 after the 2017 election. 

The poor result for National comes as deputy leader Gerry Brownlee has confirmed he will not seek re-election in the position when the caucus meets next week. 

"Today, with the release of the special vote count, we have our final numbers. Our smaller team of 33 is now ready to focus on the work ahead," Brownlee, who lost his Ilam seat to Labour's Sarah Pallett, said in a statement. 

"My focus, moving forward, will be on rebuilding National's base in Christchurch and representing our voters there. Accordingly, I will not be seeking reappointment as the deputy leader when Caucus meets on Tuesday." 

Labour now has 65 seats compared to 64 on election night. Labour had already flipped 14 electorates red on Election Day, and the final results show it has snatched up three more: Northland, Whangarei and Maungakiekie. 

Labour's Priyanca Radhakrishnan has won Maungakiekie with a majority of 635 votes over National's Denise Lee. Labour's Willow-Jean Prime has also won Northland with a majority of 163 votes over National's Matt King. 

Lee is the MP who wrote an email during the election campaign criticising National leader Judith Collins, which was leaked to Newshub. Collins said the leaked email cost the party 5 percent of the vote in internal polls. 

National leader Judith Collins with Denise Lee.
National leader Judith Collins with Denise Lee. Photo credit: Newshub

Both Radhakrishnan and Prime were already coming into Parliament on Labour's list so there's no change there. But Labour's Emily Henderson - who is not currently an MP - has won Whangarei, ousting National's incumbent Shane Reti. 

Henderson, whose legal background spans family court work to negotiating major criminal justice reforms, will be Labour's new MP. 

Dr Reti is high on National's list so he will remain an MP, but Lee and King will not make it back into Parliament. As these two are leaving, Maureen Pugh - who was tipped to lose her place in Parliament - will stay on as an MP from National's list.

The Māori Party has picked up another seat from the special votes, meaning it now has two seats in Parliament. Māori Party co-leader Debbie Ngarewa-Packer will join Rawiri Waititi as an MP. Waititi has taken Waiariki from Labour's Tamati Coffey. 

"I'm looking forward to getting my hands dirty alongside Debbie, getting to know the electorate better and more importantly understanding how I can advocate for their needs and their aspirations," said Waititi. 

Coffey said Waititi ran a "robust" campaign in Waiariki. 

"I acknowledge and respect today's outcome," he said in a statement. "I want to mihi to my supporters and those who gave Labour a clear majority in terms of the party vote."

Māori Party co-leader Debbie Ngarewa-Packer.
Māori Party co-leader Debbie Ngarewa-Packer. Photo credit: Newshub

The Greens and ACT both retain their 10 seats each with no change. 

The Greens are celebrating the fact that MP Chloe Swarbrick has secured the Auckland Central seat from National. Swarbrick held the electorate by a margin of 492. The final results show her margin has increased to 1068.

"When we started the campaign to win Auckland Central, our message was clear, Aucklanders should elect who they believe will best represent our city. I am so honoured to have the privilege of representing our home and communities," Swarbrick said after the final results. 

"I'm very excited to get stuck into the issues that matter for the people of Auckland Central, including a strategy to end homelessness."

The Green Party has only once before secured an electorate seat, won by the late Jeanette Fitzsimmons in 1999.

Green MP Chloe Swarbrick.
Green MP Chloe Swarbrick. Photo credit: Newshub

But Swarbrick is disappointed with the final result of the recreational cannabis referendum. The result after specials remains unchanged the same as euthanasia. Kiwis want to legalise the End of Life Choice Act but don't want weed made lawful. 

The final results show 65.1 percent in favour of legalising euthanasia compared with 33.7 percent against. As for recreational cannabis, 48.4 percent were in favour compared to 50.7 percent against. 

"Today also delivered the news that the cannabis referendum has not been just short of successful, with 50.7 percent voting against the bill," Swarbrick said. 

"As a country we've come so far in understanding the need to reduce the harm of drugs by bringing them out of the shadows, and I remain committed to working for a drug harm reduction approach to drugs in the future."

The final results of the election show 94.1 percent of Kiwis enrolled to vote - the highest since 2008. A high 68 percent of New Zealanders cast their vote in advance compared to 47 percent in 2017. 

Final election results

  • Labour - 50 percent or 65 seats
  • National - 25.6 percent or 33 seats
  • Greens - 7.9 percent or 10 seats
  • ACT - 7.6 percent or 10 seats
  • Māori Party - 1.2 percent and 2 seats
  • New Zealand First - 2.6 percent
  • The Opportunities Party (TOP) - 1.5 percent
  • New Conservative - 1.5 percent
  • Advance NZ - 1 percent