Newshub-Reid Research poll: Do Kiwis want a snap election?

The latest Newshub-Reid Research poll shows Kiwis want Chris Hipkins to keep the election in October and not force a snap election. 

It comes as Newshub reveals threats against politicians have significantly increased in the last year and the biggest target was Jacinda Ardern.

At a jam-packed O-Week tent at Auckland Uni, getting snaps and selfies, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins was doing what his predecessor, Jacinda Ardern, could no longer do.

"We are seeing more polarisation in our politics," he said. 

On the 2020 campaign, Ardern was mobbed in malls. But post-COVID and post-protest, en masse meet and greets were shelved because the very real threat of danger was too high.

"That's a bit sad really because I like the way we did politics previously, where generally speaking we might have argued our case hard but we weren't so combative."

Newshub can reveal just how combative it was getting.

Figures obtained under the Official Information Act show in 2021 there were 70 threats to MPs - that jumped to more than 100 last year.

Ardern specifically was the target of more than half of those - getting 50 threats in 2021 and a record 60 threats last year.

"My message to New Zealand is to continue to have friends who disagree with you," said Hipkins. "Because that's the way we avoid a polarised society where we do end up with things like the threats of violence increasing."

Threats spiked in February amid the Parliament protest. A monthly breakdown shows Ardern got nine threats that month, more than every other MP combined. Collectively they got seven.

Threats spiked again towards the end of the year, Ardern got six in December, whereas MPs collectively got nine.

Asked if he is more concerned about his safety since becoming Prime Minister, Hipkins said: "Probably a bit less because I get a bit more support with that these days."

That support - diplomatic protection - is always there, watching Hipkins stretch his Prime Ministerial meet-and-greet muscles.

National leader Christopher Luxon is also relaxed about being in public.

"I feel safe and I enjoy getting out talking to New Zealanders. It's important that I follow safety guidance when it's given and for me, it's important to keep talking to New Zealanders too."

A snap election isn't what most Kiwis want.

We asked New Zealanders in our latest Newshub Reid Research poll following Ardern's resignation whether there should be a snap election to vote in a new PM.

The results show 31 percent said yes - bring on a snap. But 58.7 percent said no. The rest didn't know.

Hipkins again ruled out a snap election on Tuesday. 

A snap election clearly not something he's keen to chew over.