2005 New Zealand general election

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2005 New Zealand general election

← 2002 17 September 2005 (2005-09-17) 2008 →

All 121 seats in the House of Representatives, including one overhang seat
61 seats needed for a majority
Opinion polls
Turnout2,304,005 (80.92%) Increase3.94%
  First party Second party Third party
Helen Clark 2.jpg
Don Brash 2011 - edited.png
Winston Peters cropped.PNG
Leader Helen Clark Don Brash Winston Peters
Party Labour National NZ First
Leader since 1 December 1993 28 October 2003 18 July 1993
Leader's seat Mount Albert List List
(lost Tauranga)
Last election 52 seats, 41.26% 27 seats, 20.93% 13 seats, 10.38%
Seats before 51 27 13
Seats won 50 48 7
Seat change Decrease 1 Increase 21 Decrease 6
Electorate vote 902,072

Party vote 935,319

Decrease 0.16
Increase 18.17
Decrease 4.66

  Fourth party Fifth party Sixth party
Rod Donald and Jeanette Fitzsimons (cropped).jpg
Tariana and Pita at Maori Party Launch 2005 (cropped).jpg
Peter Dunne, 2007 (cropped).jpg
Leader Rod Donald
Jeanette Fitzsimons
Tariana Turia
Pita Sharples
Peter Dunne
Party Green Māori Party United Future New Zealand
Leader since 21 May 1995 7 July 2004 16 November 2000
Leader's seat List
Te Tai Hauāuru
Tāmaki Makaurau
Last election 9 seats, 7.00% 8 seats, 6.69%
Seats before 9 1 8
Seats won 6 4 3
Seat change Decrease 3 Increase 3 Decrease 5
Electorate vote 92,164
Party vote 120,521
Decrease 1.70
Decrease 4.02

  Seventh party Eighth party
Rodney Hide at parliament.JPG
Jim Anderton 2008 (cropped).jpg
Leader Rodney Hide Jim Anderton
Party ACT Progressive
Leader since 13 June 2004 27 July 2002
Leader's seat Epsom Wigram
Last election 9 seats, 7.14% 2 seats, 1.70%
Seats before 9 2
Seats won 2 1
Seat change Decrease 7 Decrease 1
Electorate vote 44,071
Party vote 34,469
Decrease 5.63
Decrease 0.54

Results by electorate, shaded by winning margin

Prime Minister before election

Helen Clark

Subsequent Prime Minister

Helen Clark

The 2005 New Zealand general election on Saturday 17 September 2005 determined the membership of the 48th New Zealand Parliament. One hundred and twenty-one MPs were elected to the New Zealand House of Representatives: 69 from single-member electorates, including one overhang seat, and 52 from party lists (one extra due to the overhang).

No party won a majority, but the Labour Party of Prime Minister Helen Clark secured two more seats than nearest rival, the National Party of Dr Don Brash. With the exception of the newly formed Māori Party, which took four Māori electorates from Labour, most of the other parties polled lower than in the previous election, losing votes and seats.

Brash deferred conceding defeat until 1 October, when National's election-night 49 seats fell to 48 after special votes were counted. The official count increased the Māori Party share of the party vote above 2%, entitling them to three rather than two seats from the party vote. With four electorate seats, the election night overhang of two seats was reduced to one, and as National had the 120th seat allocated under the party vote, National lost one list seat (that of Katrina Shanks) that they appeared to have won on election night.[1]

The election was a strong recovery for National which won 21 more seats than at the 2002 election, where it suffered its worst result in its history, and the highest party vote percentage for the party since 1990; indeed, National saw its first vote share gain since 1990. Despite its resurgence, National failed to displace Labour as the largest party in Parliament. National's gains apparently came mainly at the expense of smaller parties, while Labour won only two seats less than in 2002.

On 17 October, Clark announced a new coalition agreement that saw the return of her minority government coalition with the Progressive Party, with confidence and supply support from New Zealand First and from United Future. New Zealand First parliamentary leader Winston Peters and United Future parliamentary leader Peter Dunne became ministers of the Crown outside Cabinet, Peters as Minister of Foreign Affairs and Dunne as Minister of Revenue. The Green Party which had supported Labour before the election received no cabinet post (see below), but gained several concessions from the coalition on matters such as energy and transport, and agreed to support the government on matters of confidence and supply.

The election[edit]

The total votes cast in 2005 was 2,304,005 (2,164,595 & 139,510 Māori). Turnout was 80.92% of those on the rolls, or 77.05% of voting age population. Turnout was higher than in the previous 2002 election (72.5% and 76.98% respectively), and the Māori roll turnout at 67.07% was significantly higher than 2002 (57.5%).[2]

In the election 739 candidates stood, and there were 19 registered parties with party lists. Of the candidates, 525 were electorate and list, 72 were electorate only and 142 were list only. All but 37 represented registered parties (on the list or in the electorate or both). Only 35 candidates from registered parties chose to stand as an electorate candidate only. 71% of candidates (523) were male and 29% (216) female; the same percentages as in 2002.[3]

Labour had achieved a third term in office for the first time since 1943.

MPs retiring in 2005[edit]

Eight MPs intended to retire at the end of the 47th Parliament.

Party Name Electorate
ACT Deborah Coddington (List)
Richard Prebble (List)
Green Ian Ewen-Street (List)
National Lynda Scott Kaikoura
Roger Sowry (List)
Labour Helen Duncan (List)
Janet Mackey East Coast
Mark Peck Invercargill

Detailed results[edit]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Summary of the 17 September 2005 election for the House of Representatives[4]
Party Party vote Electorate vote Seats
Votes % Change
Votes % Change
List Electorate Total +/-
Labour 935,319 41.10 Decrease0.16 902,072 40.35 Decrease4.34 19 31 50 Decrease2
National 889,813 39.10 Increase18.17 902,874 40.38 Increase9.84 17 31 48 Increase21
NZ First 130,115 5.72 Decrease4.66 78,117 3.49 Decrease0.49 7 0 7 Decrease6
Green 120,521 5.30 Decrease1.70 92,164 4.12 Decrease1.23 6 0 6 Decrease3
Māori Party 48,263 2.12 new 75,076 3.36 new 0 4 4 new
United Future 60,860 2.67 Decrease4.02 63,486 2.84 Decrease1.52 2 1 3 Decrease5
ACT 34,469 1.51 Decrease5.63 44,071 1.97 Decrease1.58 1 1 2 Decrease7
Progressive 26,441 1.16 Decrease0.54 36,638 1.64 Decrease0.20 0 1 1 Decrease1
Destiny 14,210 0.62 new 17,608 0.79 new 0 0 0 new
Legalise Cannabis 5,748 0.25 Decrease0.39 2,601 0.12 Decrease0.05 0 0 0 Steady
Christian Heritage 2,821 0.12 Decrease1.23 1,296 0.06 Decrease1.99 0 0 0 Steady
Alliance 1,641 0.07 Decrease1.20 1,901 0.09 Decrease1.60 0 0 Steady
Family Rights 1,178 0.05 new 1,045 0.05 new 0 0 0 new
Democrats 1,079 0.05 new 565 0.03 new 0 0 0 new
Libertarianz 946 0.04 Increase0.04 781 0.03 Steady 0 0 0 Steady
Direct Democracy 782 0.03 new 1,934 0.09 new 0 0 new
99 MP 601 0.03 new 0 0 0 new
One NZ 478 0.02 Decrease0.07 214 0.01 Decrease0.12 0 0 Steady
RONZ 344 0.02 new 131 0.01 new 0 0 0 new
Unregistered parties 1,466 0.07 Decrease0.12 0 0 0 Steady
Independent 11,829 0.53 Decrease0.22 0 0 0 Steady
Valid votes 2,275,629 98.77 Decrease0.07 2,235,869 97.04 Decrease0.05
Informal votes 10,561 0.46 Increase0.04 24,801 1.08 Decrease0.21
Disallowed votes 17,815 0.77 Increase0.03 43,335 1.88 Increase0.26
Total 2,304,005 100 2,304,005 100 52 69 121 Increase1
Eligible voters and Turnout 2,847,396 80.92 Increase3.94 2,847,396 80.92 Increase3.94

The election saw an 81% voter turnout.[5]

The results of the election give a Gallagher index of disproportionality of 1.11.

Votes summary[edit]

Constituency Vote
NZ First
United Future
Party Vote
NZ First
United Future
Parliament seats
NZ First
United Future

Electorate results[edit]

Party affiliation of winning electorate candidates.

The table below shows the results of the 2005 general election:


  Labour   National   ACT   United Future
  NZ First   Progressive   Māori Party
Electorate results for the 2005 New Zealand general election
Electorate Incumbent Winner Majority Runner up
Aoraki Jim Sutton Jo Goodhew 6,937 Jim Sutton
Auckland Central Judith Tizard 3,884 Pansy Wong
Banks Peninsula Ruth Dyson 1,923 David Carter
Bay of Plenty Tony Ryall 13,584 Pauline Scott
Christchurch Central Tim Barnett 7,836 Nicky Wagner
Christchurch East Lianne Dalziel 11,973 David Round
Clevedon Judith Collins 12,871 Dave Hereora
Clutha-Southland Bill English 13,032 David Talbot
Coromandel Sandra Goudie 10,578 Max Purnell
Dunedin North Pete Hodgson 7,630 Katherine Rich
Dunedin South David Benson-Pope 10,640 Conway Powell
East Coast Janet Mackey Anne Tolley 1,219 Moana Mackey
East Coast Bays Murray McCully 7,286 Hamish McCracken
Epsom Richard Worth Rodney Hide 3,102 Richard Worth
Hamilton East Dianne Yates David Bennett 5,298 Dianne Yates
Hamilton West Martin Gallagher 825 Tim Macindoe
Helensville John Key 12,778 Judy Lawley
Hutt South Trevor Mallard 5,740 Rosemarie Thomas
Ilam Gerry Brownlee 7,821 Julian Blanchard
Invercargill Mark Peck Eric Roy 2,052 Wayne Harpur
Kaikoura Lynda Scott Colin King 4,675 Brendon Burns
Mana Winnie Laban 6,734 Chris Finlayson
Mangere Taito Phillip Field 16,020 Clem Simich
Manukau East Ross Robertson 9,890 Ken Yee
Manurewa George Hawkins 11,707 Fepulea'i Aiono
Maungakiekie Mark Gosche 6,450 Paul Goldsmith
Mount Albert Helen Clark 14,749 Ravi Musuku
Mount Roskill Phil Goff 9,895 Jackie Blue
Napier Russell Fairbrother Chris Tremain 3,591 Russell Fairbrother
Nelson Nick Smith 10,226 Jen McCutcheon
New Lynn David Cunliffe 8,078 Mita Harris
New Plymouth Harry Duynhoven 5,439 Moira Irving
North Shore Wayne Mapp 9,701 Phil Twyford
Northcote Ann Hartley Jonathan Coleman 2,383 Ann Hartley
Northland John Carter 9,275 Shane Jones
Ohariu-Belmont Peter Dunne 7,702 Charles Chauvel
Otago David Parker Jacqui Dean 1,995 David Parker
Otaki Darren Hughes 382 Nathan Guy
Pakuranga Maurice Williamson 9,582 Michael Wood
Palmerston North Steve Maharey 5,500 Malcolm Plimmer
Piako Lindsay Tisch 8,351 Sue Moroney
Port Waikato Paul Hutchison 13,498 Louisa Wall
Rakaia Brian Connell 10,448 Tony Milne
Rangitikei Simon Power 9,660 Marilyn Brown
Rimutaka Paul Swain 8,277 Mike Leddy
Rodney Lockwood Smith 11,536 Tony Dunlop
Rongotai Annette King 12,638 Nicola Young
Rotorua Steve Chadwick 662 Gil Stehbens
Tamaki Clem Simich Allan Peachey 9,510 Leila Boyle
Taranaki-King Country Shane Ardern 13,118 Maryan Street
Taupo Mark Burton 1,285 Weston Kirton
Tauranga Winston Peters Bob Clarkson 730 Winston Peters
Te Atatu Chris Carter 10,447 Tau Henare
Tukituki Rick Barker Craig Foss 2,402 Rick Barker
Waimakariri Clayton Cosgrove 5,606 Kate Wilkinson
Wairarapa Georgina Beyer John Hayes 2,752 Denise MacKenzie
Waitakere Lynne Pillay 4,942 Paula Bennett
Wellington Central Marian Hobbs 6,180 Mark Blumsky
West Coast-Tasman Damien O'Connor 2,154 Chris Auchinvole
Whanganui Jill Pettis Chester Borrows 2,402 Jill Pettis
Whangarei Phil Heatley 9,089 Paul Chalmers
Wigram Jim Anderton 8,548 Allison Lomax
Māori electorates
Electorate Incumbent Winner Majority Runner up
Ikaroa-Rāwhiti Parekura Horomia 1,932 Atareta Poananga
Tainui Nanaia Mahuta 1,860 Angeline Greensill
Tāmaki Makaurau John Tamihere Pita Sharples 2,127 John Tamihere
Te Tai Hauāuru Tariana Turia 5,113 Errol Mason
Te Tai Tokerau Dover Samuels Hone Harawira 3,613 Dover Samuels
Te Tai Tonga Mahara Okeroa 2,503 Monte Ohia
Waiariki Mita Ririnui Te Ururoa Flavell 2,871 Mita Ririnui

List results[edit]

Highest polling party in each electorate.

MPs returned via party lists, and unsuccessful candidates, were as follows:[6][7]

Labour Michael Cullen
Margaret Wilson
Dover Samuels
Jim Sutton2
Mita Ririnui
Rick Barker
Jill Pettis
Ashraf Choudhary
Shane Jones
Dianne Yates2
Ann Hartley2
Georgina Beyer2
Maryan Street
David Parker
Russell Fairbrother
Dave Hereora
Moana Mackey
Sue Moroney
Darien Fenton
Unsuccessful: Charles Chauvel1, Lesley Soper1, Louisa Wall1, William Sio1, Brendon Burns, Hamish McCracken, Denise MacKenzie, Max Purnell, Thomas Harpur, Leila Boyle, Dinesh Tailor, Phil Twyford, Jennifer McCutcheon, Chris Yoo, Michael Wood, Linda Hudson, Stuart Nash, Tony Milne, David Talbot, Marilyn Brown, Anjum Rahman, Eamon Daly, Judy Lawley, Michael Mora, Erin Ebborn-Gillespie, Ailian Su, Ghazala Anwar, Paul Gibson, Kelly-Ann Harvey, Camille Nakhid, Ola Kamel, Andrea Bather
National Don Brash2
David Carter
Katherine Rich
Tim Groser
Richard Worth
Clem Simich
Georgina te Heuheu
Pansy Wong
Chris Finlayson
Nicky Wagner
Tau Henare
Chris Auchinvole
Mark Blumsky
Kate Wilkinson
Nathan Guy
Jackie Blue
Paula Bennett
Unsuccessful: Katrina Shanks1, Fepulea'i Aiono, Ravi Musuku, Moira Irving, Mita Harris, Michael Leddy, Conway Powell, David Round, Gilbert Stehbens, Kenneth Yee, Paul Goldsmith, Malcolm Plimmer, Nicola Young, Tim Macindoe, Allison Lomax, Weston Kirton, Rosemarie Thomas
New Zealand First Winston Peters
Peter Brown
Brian Donnelly2
Ron Mark
Doug Woolerton
Barbara Stewart
Pita Paraone
Unsuccessful: Susan Baragwanath, Jim Peters, Dail Jones1, Craig McNair, Edwin Perry, Bill Gudgeon, Brent Catchpole, Joe Williams, John Foote, Fletcher Tabuteau, Alan Heward, Kristin Campbell Smith, Bryan Lundy, David Fowler, Brendan Stewart, Brett Webster, Bob Daw, Murray Strawbridge, Moetu Davis, Toa Greening, David Mackie, Anne Martin, Julian Batchelor, Chis Perry, Lindy Palmer, Brian Roswell, Matua Glen, James Mist, Howard Levarko, Paul Manning, Timothy Manu, Kevin Gardener, Graham Odering
Greens Jeanette Fitzsimons
Rod Donald2
Sue Bradford
Sue Kedgley
Keith Locke
Metiria Turei
Unsuccessful: Nándor Tánczos12, Mike Ward, Catherine Delahunty, Russel Norman1, Steffan Browning, David Clendon, Lucinda Highfield, Jonathan Carapiet, Roland Sapsford, Mojo Mathers, Mikaere Curtis, Paul Bruce, Jeanette Elley, Muamua Strickson-Pua, Richard Davies, Lois Griffiths, Natalie Cutler-Welsh, Jane Pearce, Lawrence O'Halloran, Richard Green, Claire Bleakley, Irene Bentley, Craig Carson, Nicola Harvey, Moea Armstrong, Steve Bayliss, Laura Beck, Sarah Brown, Terence Creighton, John Davis, Katherine Dewar, James Diack, Ruth Earth, Kathryn Elsen, Graham Evans, Nicholas Fisher, Robert Guyton, Daniel Howard, Philippa Jamieson, Stephen Lee, Alan Liefting, Mary McCammon, John Milnes, Michael Morris, Noel Peterson, Paul Qualtrough, Jacob Rawls, Raewyn Saville, Ian Stephens, Richard Suggate, Peter Thomlinson
Māori Unsuccessful: Atareta Poananga, Simon Wi Rutene, Glenis Philip-Barbara, Robert Consedine, Pakake Winiata, Te Whiti Love, Angeline Greensill, William Maea, Monte Ohia, Te Orohi Paul, Bronwyn Yates, Charles Joe, Teremoananuiakiwa Tahere, Malcolm Peri, Anthony Ruakere, Ratapu Te Awa, Brett Cowan, Josephine Peita, Anne Fitzsimon, Abraham Hepi, Ngahiwi Tomoana, Tureiti Moxon, Aroha Reriti-Crofts, John Harré, Rangi McLean, Tell Kuka, Bill Puru, Mere Rawiri-Tau, Richard Orzecki, Maraea Ropata, Robert Hosking, Daryl Gregory, Rangi Tawhiao, Andre Meihana, Solomon Matthews, Adell Dick, Georgina Haremate-Crawford, Raewyn Harrison, Cecilia Hotene, Alice Hudson, Reimana Johnson, Rahuia Kapa, David King, Aaron Makutu, Kelvin Martin, Merehora Taurua, Frances Waaka, Henrietta Walker
United Future Judy Turner
Gordon Copeland
Unsuccessful: Marc Alexander, Larry Baldock, Murray Smith, Paul Check, Janet Tuck, Bernie Ogilvy, Graeme Reeves, Russell Judd, Hannah Baral, Joy Lietze, Neville Wilson, Richard Barter, Stephen Taylor, Ian McInnes, Ross Tizard, Fiona McKenzie, Andrew Barr, John Walker, Ram Parkash, Ralph Kennard, Jayati Prasad, Vanessa Roberts, Gerald Telford, Robin Loomes, Robyn Jackson, Anthony Gordon, Gregory Graydon, Martyn Seddon, Bernard McClelland, Beth Stone, Robin Westley, Rosemary Drake, Gordon Hinton, Michael Satur, Diane Brown, Steven Dromgool, Andrea Deeth, Mark Peters, Mary Moffat, Dennis Wells, Milton Osborne, Garry Pedersen, William Pickering, Adam Archer, Neil Linscott, Barry Hayes, Janita Stuart, Dianne Wilson, James Rudd, Peter Mountain, Stuart Robertson, John van Buren, Jeffrey Leigh, Matthew Collier
ACT Heather Roy
Unsuccessful: Muriel Newman, Stephen Franks, Graham Scott, Ken Shirley, Kenneth Wang, Gerry Eckhoff, Lindsay Mitchell, Bronwyn Jacobsen, Simon Ewing-Jarvie, Jo Giles, Willie Martin, David Olsen, Hamish Stevens, Andrew Jollands, Hardev Singh Brar, Lech Beltowski, Ian Beker, Christopher Brown, Kevin Gill, John Waugh, Dianne Dawson, Kevin Murray, Stephen Langford-Tebby, Gavin Middleton, John Fraser, Frances Denz, Elizabeth Barkla, Nigel Chetty, Scott Clune, Michael Collins, Tetauru Emile, Andrew Falloon, Michael Heine, Kerry O'Connor, David Seymour, Helen Simpson, Philip White, Alan Wilden, Andrew Stone, Barbara Steinijans, John Riddell, Carl Peterson, Andre Peters, Julie Pepper, Thomas McClelland, Alexander Mann, Michelle Lorenz, Nigel Kearney, Nicholas Kearney, Mark Davies, Stephen Cox, Raymond Bassett, Brian Davidson, Rebekah Holdaway, Shirley Marshall, Patrick O'Sullivan, Garry Mallett
Progressive Unsuccessful: Matt Robson, Grant Gillon, Megan Woods, John Wright, Sione Fonua, Vivienne Shepherd, Ngov Ly, Fatima Ashrafi, Barry Wilson, Fale Leleisiuao, Russell Franklin, Paula Gillon, Philip Clearwater, Trevor Barnard, Raghbir Singh, Brenda Hill, Fiona Beazley, Russell Caldwell, David Reeks, John Maurice, Seyed Kazemi Yazdi, Heka Heker, Veronique Stewart-Ward, Zemin Zhang, Julian Aaron, Sukerna Amirapu, Annette Anderson, Sukhdev Bains, Peter Banks, James Boyack, Ian Donald, Lewis Holland, Karandeep Lall, Jacqueline McAlpine, Claire Main, Philippa Main, James Palmer, Max Panirau, David Parkyn, Elizabeth Patchett, Talatala Po'e, Pavitra Roy, Elspeth Sandys, Anthony Sharrock, Barry Silcock, Karen Silcock, David Somerset, Petronella Townsend, Martin Vaughan, Jennifer Wilson
Destiny Unsuccessful: Richard Lewis, David Jesze, Elaine Herbert, Hayden Solomon, Nigel Heslop, Etuate Saafi, Anita Breach, Charles Te Kowhai, David Knight, Hawea Vercoe, Neils Jensen, Sophie Hemahema-Tamati, Rodney Gabb, James Te Wano, Stephen Sinnott, Frances Williamson, Kerin Roberts, Peter Johnston, John Kotoisuva, Karen Penney, Colin Ranby, Tala Leiasamaivao, Paul Hubble, Roberta Maxwell, Tony Harrison, David Daglish, Jason Thomson, Maru Samuel, Stephen Brown, William Sadler, Patrick Morton, Ned So'e, David Isaachsen, Mason Lee, Stanley Green, Patrick Komene, Anthony Ford, Maureen Vincent, Albert Wipani, Brian Ane, Tauha Te Kani, Douglas Keven
Legalise Cannabis Unsuccessful: Michael Appleby, Michael Britnell, Judy Daniels, Paula Lambert, Irinka Britnell, Kevin O'Connell, Paul McMullan, Steven Wilkinson, Judy Matangi, Jason Baker-Sherman, Peter Green, Neville Yates, Phillip Pophristoff
Christian Heritage Unsuccessful: Ewen McQueen, Derek Blight, Nicholas Barber, Betty Jenkins, Mark Jones, Joy Jones
Alliance Unsuccessful: Jill Ovens, Paul Piesse, Andrew McKenzie, Julie Fairey, Kane O'Connell, Leonard Richards, Jim Flynn, Victor Billot, Margaret Jeune, Robert van Ruyssevelt, Thomas Dowie, Christopher Ford, Quentin Findlay, Kelly Buchanan, Joseph Hendren, Gail Marmont, Alexander Protheroe, Gregory Kleis, Sandra Ethell, Colin Pounder, Robert Harrison, Peta Knibb, Marvin Hubbard, Shirley Haslemore, Norman MacRitchie, Eric Gamble, Lynda Boyd, Jocelyn Brooks, Nicholas Corlett, Nicolas Scullin
Family Rights Protection Unsuccessful: Tafe Williams, Tapu Po-Wihongi, Christine Reid, Lale Ene-Ulugia, John Ulberg, Anne Kerisome Zekaria Strickland, Siniva Papali'i, Amelia Fepulea'i, Tangata Greig, Te Paeru Browne-Knowles, Papali'i Malietoa, Edward Ulberg, Etevise Fuiava, Souvenir Sanerivi, Manogitulua Livapulu-Head, Kearlene Ulberg, Christie Greig, Rafaele Vaifale
Democrats for Social Credit Unsuccessful: Stephnie de Ruyter, John Pemberton, David Wilson, Richard Prosser, John Steemson, Katherine Ransom, John Kilbride, Graham Atkin, Heather Smith, David Tranter, Edgar Goodhue, Malcolm Murchie, Ross Weddell, David Espin, Ross Hayward, Bruce Stirling, Karl Hewlett, Ronald England, Kelly Pemberton, Robert Warren, David Wood, Mary Weddell, Allen Cookson, Barry Pulford, Hessel van Wieren, Alida Steemson, Edward Fox, Coralie Leyland, John Rawson
Libertarianz Unsuccessful: Bernard Darnton, Julian Pistorius, Timothy Wikiriwhi, Susan Ryder, Peter Cresswell, Colin Cross, Helen Hughes, Russell Watkins, Peter Linton, Michael Webber, Robin Thomsen, Philip Howison, Michael Murphy, Faustina White, Andrew Bates, Richard Goode, Luke Howison, Christopher Robertson, Peter Osborne, Barry Cole, Donald Rowberry, Willem Verhoeven, Elliot Smith, Nikolas Haden, Terence Verhoeven, Keith Patterson, Kenneth Riddle, Robert Palmer
Direct Democracy Unsuccessful: Kelvyn Alp, Paul Teio, Dilip Rupa, Patrick Fahy, Michael Francis-Roberson, Simon Guy, Gary Burch, Kevin Smith, Kevin Moore, Kyle Chapman, Rex Newey, Gregory Trichon, Alona Covich, Eugene Opai, Seira Perese, Tin Yau Chan, Helen Koster, Craig Stratton, Alastair Anderson, Anton Foljambe, Robert T Atack, Leanne Martinovich, Grant Burch, Howard Ponga, Edward Sullivan, Colin Punter, Mel Whaanga, Jason Anderson, Jason Orme, Barry Scott, Scott Burch, Craig Guy
99MP Unsuccessful: Margaret Robertson, Ramasmy Ramanathan
One NZ Unsuccessful: Ian Brougham, Richard Fisher, James White, John Porter, Janet Walters, Lanya Murray
Republic of NZ Unsuccessful: Kerry James, Wayne Hawkins, Debra Potroz, Jack Gielen, Steven Hart, Gilbert Parker
  1. These party list members later entered parliament in the term as other list MPs elected resigned from parliament.
  2. These party list members later resigned during the parliamentary term.

Changes during parliamentary term[edit]

Party New MP Term started Seat Previous MP
Green Nándor Tánczos 6 November 2005 List Rod Donald1
Labour Charles Chauvel 1 August 2006 List Jim Sutton
National Katrina Shanks 7 February 2007 List Don Brash
Labour Lesley Soper 15 February 2007 List Georgina Beyer
NZ First Dail Jones 15 February 2008 List Brian Donnelly2
Labour Louisa Wall 4 March 2008 List Ann Hartley
Labour William Sio 29 March 2008 List Dianne Yates
Green Russel Norman 26 June 2008 List Nándor Tánczos
National (vacant) 31 August 2008 Rakaia Brian Connell3

1 Rod Donald died before being sworn in as MP.
2 Brian Donnelly was appointed as New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands.
3 Brian Connell retired from Parliament effective 31 August 2008, leaving his seat of Rakaia vacant.

Taito Phillip Field, Labour MP for Māngere, quit the Labour party after being threatened with expulsion on 16 February 2007. He continued to serve as an MP, and formed the New Zealand Pacific Party in January 2008.

Gordon Copeland, a United Future list MP, left the party to become an independent MP in May 2007, and contested the 2008 election as a candidate for The Kiwi Party.

Party vote by electorate[edit]

Analysis of results[edit]

Going into the election, Labour had assurances of support from the Greens (six seats in 2005, down three from 2002) and from the Progressives (one seat, down one). This three-party bloc won 57 seats, leaving Clark four seats short of the 61 seats needed for a majority in the 121-seat Parliament (decreased from the expected 122 because the final results gave the Māori Party only one overhang seat, after it appeared to win two overhang seats on election night). On 5 October the Māori Party began a series of hui to decide whom to support. That same day reports emerged that a meeting between Helen Clark and Māori co-leader Tariana Turia on 3 October had already ruled out a formal coalition between Labour and the Māori Party. Māori Party representatives also held discussions with National representatives, but most New Zealanders thought the Māori Party more likely to give confidence-supply support to a Labour-dominated government because its supporters apparently heavily backed Labour in the party vote.

Had Turia and her co-leader Pita Sharples opted to join a Labour-Progressive-Green coalition, Clark would have had sufficient support to govern with support from a grouping of four parties (Labour, Green, Māori and Progressive). Without the Māori Party, Labour needed the support of New Zealand First (seven seats, down six) and United Future (three seats, down five) to form a government. New Zealand First said it would support (or at least abstain from opposing in confidence-motions) the party with the most seats. Clark sought from New Zealand First a positive commitment rather than abstention. United Future, which had supported the previous Labour-Progressive minority government in confidence and supply, said it would talk first to the party with the most seats about support or coalition. Both New Zealand First and United Future said they would not support a Labour-led coalition which included Greens in Cabinet posts. However, United Future indicated it could support a government where the Greens gave supply-and-confidence votes.[8]

Brash had only one possible scenario to become Prime Minister: a centre-right coalition with United Future and ACT (two seats, down seven). Given the election results, however, such a coalition would have required the confidence-and-supply votes of both New Zealand First and the Māori Party. This appeared highly unlikely on several counts. New Zealand First's involvement in such a coalition would have run counter to Peters' promise to deal with the biggest party, and Turia and Sharples would have had difficulty in justifying supporting National after their supporters' overwhelming support for Labour in the party vote. Turia and Sharples probably remembered the severe mauling New Zealand First suffered in the 1999 election. (Many of its supporters in 1996 believed they had voted to get rid of National, only to have Peters go into coalition with National; New Zealand First has never really recovered.) Even without this to consider, National had indicated it would abolish the Maori seats if it won power.

The new government as eventually formed consisted of Labour and Progressive in coalition, while New Zealand First and United Future entered agreements of support on confidence and supply motions. In an unprecedented move, Peters and Dunne became Foreign Affairs Minister and Revenue Minister, respectively, but remained outside cabinet and had no obligatory cabinet collective responsibility on votes outside their respective portfolios.

Possible government setups


Election billboards advertise the parties and candidates standing nationwide and in each electorate

The governing Labour Party retained office at 2002 election. However, its junior coalition partner, the Alliance, lost most of its support after internal conflict and disagreement and failed to win parliamentary representation. Labour formed a coalition with the new Progressive Coalition, formed by former Alliance leader Jim Anderton. The Labour-Progressive coalition then obtained an agreement of support ("confidence and supply") from United Future, enabling it to form a stable minority government. The National Party, Labour's main opponents, suffered a major defeat, winning only 21% of the vote (22.5% of the seats).

The collapse of National's vote led ultimately to the replacement of its Parliamentary party leader Bill English with parliamentary newcomer Don Brash on 28 October 2003. Brash began an aggressive campaign against the Labour-dominated government. A major boost to this campaign came with his "Orewa speech" (27 January 2004), in which he attacked the Labour-dominated government for giving "special treatment" to the Māori population, particularly over the foreshore and seabed controversy. This resulted in a surge of support for the National Party, although most polls indicated that this subsequently subsided. National also announced it would not stand candidates in the Māori electorates, with some smaller parties following suit.

The foreshore-and-seabed controversy also resulted in the establishment of the Māori Party in July 2004. The Māori Party hoped to break Labour's traditional (and then current) dominance in the Māori electorates, just as New Zealand First had done in the 1996 election.

A large number of so-called "minor" parties also contested the election. These included Destiny New Zealand (the political branch of the Destiny Church) and the Direct Democracy Party.


Local regression of poll results from 27 July 2002 to 17 September 2005, with each line corresponding to a political party.

A series of opinion polls published in June 2005 indicated that the National Party had moved ahead of Labour for the first time since June 2004. Commentators speculated[citation needed] that a prominent billboard campaign may have contributed to this. Some said[citation needed] the National Party had peaked too early. The polls released throughout July showed once more an upward trend for Labour, with Labour polling about 6% above National. The release by the National Party of a series of tax-reform proposals in August 2005 appeared to correlate with an increase in its ratings in the polls.

Direct comparisons between the following polls have no statistical validity:

poll date Labour National NZ First Greens
One News Colmar Brunton 29 August 43% 40% 5% 7%
3 News TNS 1 September 39% 41% 6% 6%
Herald DigiPoll 2 September 43.4% 39.1% 6.6% 5%
Fairfax NZ/ACNeilsen 3 September 41% 44% <5% 5%
One News Colmar Brunton 4 September 38% 46% 4.6% 6%
3 News TNS 7 September 45% 36% 5% 7%
Herald Digipoll 8 September 40.6% 40.1% 7.1% 5.6%
Herald Digipoll 11 September 42.1% 38.5% 5% 6%
ACNielsen-Sunday Star-Times 11 September 37% 44% 5% 6%
One News Colmar Brunton 11 September 39% 41% 6% 6%
Fairfax ACNielsen 14 September 37% 43% 7% 6%
3 News TNS 15 September 40.5% 38.7% 6.8% 6.9%
TVNZ Colmar Brunton 15 September 38% 41% 5.5% 5.1%
Herald Digipoll 16 September 44.6% 37.4% 4.5% 4.6%

No single political event can explain the significant differences between most of these polls over the period between them. They show either volatility in the electorate and/or flaws in the methods of polling. In the later polls, the issue of National's knowledge of a series of pamphlets (distributed by members of the Exclusive Brethren and attacking the Green and Labour parties) appeared not to have reduced National Party support.


For lists of candidates in the 2005 election see:

Major policy platforms[edit]

Labour Party[edit]

The Labour Party platform[9] included:

National Party[edit]

The National Party campaigned on the platform of (National Party Press Release):

  • taxation: lowering income-tax rates. The party ran a television advertisement parodying the telethons aired by TVNZ in the 1980s, rewording the telethon theme song "Thank you very much for your kind donation" (itself a cover of the 1967 The Scaffolds song "Thank U Very Much") to "Thank you very much for your high taxation"[10][11]
  • removing references to the Treaty of Waitangi from existing legislation; and resolving all treaty claims amicably by 2010
  • by 1 April 2006, make student-loan repayments and $5000 of pre-school childcare costs recoupable to mainstream New Zealanders
  • "reworking" the New Zealand Resource Management Act 1991 to make development easier
  • "removing excessive bureaucracy" in the education system, in particular by overhauling the NCEA, and by re-introducing "bulk funding" of schools
  • abolishing early parole for violent criminals. (As of 2005 most prisoners became eligible for parole after serving one-third of their sentence)
  • a return to "market rents" for state-housing tenants, including a system of paying housing-subsidies (for the poorest tenants) directly to private landlords
  • increase Nationwide Maths and English standards
  • welfare Reform – reduce the waste of having 300,000 working age New Zealand adults on benefits and to ensure all of those on benefits really need the help
  • a "work-for-the-dole" scheme
  • abolishing the Maori electorates


Postal voting for New Zealanders abroad began on 31 August. Ballot voting took place on Saturday 17 September, from 9 am to 7 pm. The Chief Electoral Office released a provisional result at 12:05 am on 18 September.

Party funding[edit]

New Zealand operates on a system whereby the Electoral Commission allocates funding for advertising on television and on radio. Parties must use their own money for all other forms of advertising, but may not use any of their own money for television or radio advertising.

Party Funding in 2005 Election
Labour $1,100,000
National $900,000
ACT $200,000
Greens $200,000
NZ First $200,000
United Future $200,000
Māori Party $125,000
Progressives $75,000
Alliance $20,000
Christian Heritage NZ $20,000
Destiny NZ $20,000
Libertarianz $20,000
99 MP Party* $10,000
Beneficiaries Party* $10,000
Democrats $10,000
National Front* $10,000
New Zealand F.R.P.P.* $10,000
Patriot Party* $10,000
The Republic of New Zealand Party $10,000

*Must register for funding
Source: Electoral Commission


Police investigated six political parties for alleged breaches of election-spending rules relating to the 2005 election, but brought no prosecutions,[12] determining that "there was insufficient evidence to indicate that an offence under s214b of the Electoral Act had been committed."[13]

The Auditor-General has also investigated publicly funded party-advertising for the 2005 election, with a leaked preliminary finding of much of the spending as unlawful. Observers expected the release of a final report in October 2006.[14]


  1. ^ Levine & Roberts 2007, pp. 91, 92.
  2. ^ Levine & Roberts 2007, pp. 84, 85.
  3. ^ Levine & Roberts 2007, p. 87.
  4. ^ "2005 GENERAL ELECTION – OFFICIAL RESULTS AND STATISTICS". ElectionResults.govt.nz. Electoral Commission. 21 October 2020. Archived from the original on 17 January 2020. Retrieved 15 September 2021.
  5. ^ "General Statistics". Electionresults.govt.nz. Archived from the original on 22 January 2020. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  6. ^ "Party Lists of Successful Registered Parties". Electoral Commission. Archived from the original on 21 January 2015. Retrieved 26 August 2013.
  7. ^ "Party Lists of Unsuccessful Registered Parties". Electoral Commission. Retrieved 26 August 2013.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Thomson, Ainsley (19 September 2005). "United's 'Mr Reasonable' makes withering attack on Green Party". The New Zealand Herald. Archived from the original on 4 August 2011. Retrieved 30 October 2011.
  9. ^ Labour web site Archived 31 October 2005 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "New take on old jingle to push tax message". nzherald.co.nz. 5 August 2005.
  11. ^ Ward, Tara (19 August 2021). "Telethon was a glorious shambles that never slept". The Spinoff. Retrieved 20 August 2022.
  12. ^ Thomson, Ainsley (18 March 2006). "Labour escapes charges on pledge card but case found". The New Zealand Herald. Archived from the original on 5 August 2011. Retrieved 30 October 2011.
  13. ^ "No prosecutions for electoral complaints". New Zealand Police. 17 March 2006. Archived from the original on 19 October 2008. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  14. ^ Oliver, Paula (11 September 2006). "Report on election spending almost complete". The New Zealand Herald. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 30 October 2011.

Further reading[edit]

  • Levine, Stephen; Roberts, Nigel S., eds. (2007). The Baubles of Office: The New Zealand General Election of 2005. Wellington: Victoria University Press. ISBN 978-0-86473-539-3.

External links[edit]