Saturday, 26 November 2011
at 9:30 pm by LudditeJourno
So 9.30pm and I'm finally here.
Combination of gorgeous weather in Wellington and drinking cider in the garden. San Francisco Bath House is absolutely full to the brim, apparently the party sold out in an hour.
So the Greens at this point on 10% which means they'd have 13 MPs, a whole bunch of new bods in parliament. No Mojo Mathers though, and I have to admit I'd like to see that diversity issue addressed - imagine parliament using all three of our national languages.
Really only just checking seats and stuff out now, so excuse me if I'm a little behind. And I'm going to focus on seats I'm interested in so here goes.
Wow Auckland Central too close to call, ditto Waitakere. Bad news for Jacinda Ardern I'd have thought if she can't win this one back in terms of cred.
Hone and Kelvin are still pretty close in Te Tai Tokerau, while Rahui Katene looks like she's on her way out of Te Tai Tonga. Pita Sharples is being run pretty close by Shane Jones in Tamaki Makaurau too. Other Maori seats as expected, with incumbents looking strong.
This is a funky crowd who are very loud and full of beans at the moment. Live music playing - not the funky Newtown Rocksteady yet sadly. I'm not always a fan of this bar, too dark and grotty, but it's pretty positive atmosphere tonight.
James Shaw giving a speech about the Greens owing this town. Apparently they are equal with Labour in the party vote for Wellington Central. He's gracious in acknowledging all the people who get out there to support the candidates. Plus congratulating Holly Walker on being a new MP.
Now Holly is on stage. Cue wild cheering while she also gives credit to her team.
Some electorates which were awfully close last time are complete knock-outs at the moment, probably a credit to well-performing first term MPs. So Grant Robertson is home and hosed in Wellington Central, and the charismatic Simon Bridges is streets ahead. I have to say that, I interviewed him for a magazine when I was trying to be a journo :-)
It's hard to believe it but I reckon Winston's done it again (thanks to the two Johns, not the two Ronnies - though you'd be forgiven for getting them confused frankly). Horrifying but also hilarious - quite how someone with such a tenuous grip on the truth can continually reinvent himself - but also could there be a bigger f**k you to New Zealand politics?
So I'd been avoiding looking.....and that was wise as it turns out.....the National voters in Epsom are doing the very smart thing and making sure ACT is in parliament so National can position themselves as centrists. John Banks, the man who Don Brash got for free when he bought the ACT Party, is coming on home, thanks to tea tip-offs.
The music here is getting seriously funky, Motown covers by a woman who can sing, I am womanfully just moving around in my seat rather than throwing over my blogging duties, you'll all be thrilled to hear.
Now Ohariu, where it also appears John Key's instructions have been heeded. Good grief, Peter Dunne may never never never leave parliament.
Russell Norman via videolink in the house. Getting rousing cheers as he, quite rightly, points to a third party getting 10% of the party vote as a significant victory.
15 seats counted all to Nats, including the thumbs down to Andrew Little in New Plymouth. Not a good look for a potential leader.
Looks like the only Maori seat changing hands is Te Tai Tonga. Which will leave Tariana Turia the only woman in parliament from either Mana or the Maori Party. Mana wahine?
Steve Chadwick safe for Labour at this point, I'm sure I understood Maia's post about voting and abortion choices but I'm pretty sure that's good :-)
Thirteen Green MPs still on target to get in - seven women - but distracted by the best dance song of all time, Stevie Wonder's Superstition - this band is fabulous.
Ok, so the 13 women - all of whom except Metiria Turei and Catharine Delahunty newbies. What can we expect? I thought Denise Roche was very good in the Backbenches Auckland Central debate, plus at least Holly Walker and Jan Logie are out and proud feminists. Not sure about the others. Interesting.
Brendon Burns, Christchurch Central. Just holding on at this point by 4 votes.
Pacific MPs standing in electorate seats are doing well. Sua William Sio is in Manakau, Kris Faafoi is ahead of Hekia Parata (she'll be disappointed I think) and Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga is ahead in Maungakiekie.
Far more muted applause for live feed of Russel Norman and Metiria Turei talking about going into talks post election with different parties.
Back to funky music.
10.30pm MMP is safe. Which is a welcome relief - despite all the people who like unbridled power doing their damnedest, New Zealanders vote for the most representative kind of democracy on offer. No doubt Winston will become the stick to beat MMP with now - I wonder if he will be able to stop himself giving them good cause?
One of the provincial city seats National said they were targeting, Palmerston North, is staying red. Don't know enough about this seat to say why.
Not likely to have the Conservative Party in parliament. Which will disappoint those who like to hit their children without it being frowned upon no end, no doubt. Colin Craig nowhere near Rodney and miles off the magic 5%.
Waitakere's voters are not be be tempted by Mana's Sue Bradford so far - she's got just over 200 votes - and Sepuloni is more than 700 behind queen of the Westies Paula Bennett.
Don Brash is resigning. Crikey. That's the shortest leadership period in history, unless you count those where someone is killed, isn't it?
Stuff is calling this the worst result for Labour in nearly a century.
James Shaw back on stage here, to a crowd chanting his name, because Wellington Central has 26% party vote Green. Apparently it's the highest percentage in any electorate?
James Shaw says he thinks the Greens will pick up another seat on special votes. If so, that makes Mojo Mathers another new Green MP, and, he says, just the fourth deaf MP in the world. Enough already with not knowing anymore I can share about Mojo Mathers - but this is a diverse Green list in terms of gender, sexuality and disability.
Phil Goff looking sombre on TV, not loud enough over the party going on here to hear properly. Wonder how Julie's getting on? Do wonder too, if the policies Labour floated this election are going to be a whole heap easier to talk about now they are "out there" - capital gains tax in particular.
I'm nearly done here. Bit of a dud night for me - I'd hoped against hope that Epsom and Ohariu voters would refuse to vote in line with the Prime Ministerial instructions, and actually vote for the candidate they wanted. Very pleased to see MMP still with us though, and good result for the Greens, holding their polling rather than dropping off as they have done the last couple of elections.
Labour will not be surprised, but it must still be devastating. And who knows where NZ First leached their votes from?
Nikki Kaye holds Auckland Central and Brendon Burns Christchurch Central - the second certainly close enough to change hands after the special votes.
And my electorate, Rongotai, with the three MPs actually in parliament - Annette King, Chris Finlayson and Russel Norman - stays firmly red.
Wellington Central also has three MPs in parliament - James Shaw, Paul Foster-Bell and the returning Grant Robertson.
That's all from me folks - have a good night celebrating or commiserating - and to all the people who've put hours and hours of voluntary time in to supporting people they want to see speaking for them, enjoy having your lives back.
I'm going to drink cider and dance. Ciao for now.