New Zealand general election, 2017

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New Zealand general election, 2017
New Zealand
2014 ←
No later than 18 November 2017
outgoing members ←

All 120 seats (plus any overhang) in the House of Representatives
61 seats needed for a majority
Opinion polls
  Bill English September 2016.jpg Andrew Little, 2016.jpg Metiria Turei and James Shaw.png
Leader Bill English Andrew Little James Shaw / Metiria Turei
Party National Labour Green
Leader since 2016 2014 2015 / 2009
Leader's seat List List List / List
Last election 60 seats, 47.04% 32 seats, 25.13% 14 seats, 10.70%
Current seats 59 32 14
Seats needed Increase2 Increase29 Increase47

  Winston Peters, 2011.jpg Te Ururoa Flavell, 2012.jpg David Seymour at ACT Selection Announcement for Leader and Epsom.jpg
Leader Winston Peters Te Ururoa Flavell /
Marama Fox
David Seymour
Party NZ First Māori ACT
Leader since 1993
(party foundation)
2013 / 2014 2014
Leader's seat Northland Waiariki / List Epsom
Last election 11 seats, 8.66% 2 seats, 1.32% 1 seat, 0.69%
Current seats 12 2 1
Seats needed Increase49 Increase59 Increase60

  Peter Dunne outside Parliament.jpg
Leader Peter Dunne
Party United Future
Leader since 2002
(party foundation)
Leader's seat Ōhāriu
Last election 1 seat, 0.22%
Current seats 1
Seats needed Increase60

Incumbent Prime Minister

Bill English

The 2017 New Zealand general election will be held after the current 51st New Zealand Parliament is dissolved or expires. The current Parliament was elected on Saturday, 20 September 2014. The last possible date for the election to be held is Saturday, 18 November 2017.


Election date[edit]

Unless an early election is called or the election date is set to circumvent holding a by-election, a general election is held every three years. The last election was held on Saturday, 20 September 2014.[1]

The Governor General must issue writs for an election within seven days of the expiration or dissolution of the current Parliament.[2] Under section 17 of the Constitution Act 1986, Parliament expires three years "from the day fixed for the return of the writs issued for the last preceding general election of members of the House of Representatives, and no longer." The writs for the 2014 election were returned on 10 October 2014, a day late due to a judicial recount of the Te Tai Tokerau electorate.[3] As a result, the 51st Parliament will expire, if not dissolved earlier, on Tuesday, 10 October 2017. Consequently, the last day for issuance of writs of election is 17 October 2017. The writs must be returned within 50 days of their issuance (save for any judicial recount or death of a candidate), which will be Wednesday, 6 December 2017.[4] Because polling day must be a Saturday[4] and two weeks is generally required for the counting of special votes, the last possible date for the next general election is Saturday, 18 November 2017.

Electorate boundaries[edit]

Electorates in the election will be the same as at the 2014 election. New boundaries are not due until early 2019, after the 2018 census.

Marginal seats in 2014[edit]

At the 2014 general election, the following seats were won with a majority of less than 1000 votes.

Electorate Member of Parliament Incumbent party Majority Second place Second party
Auckland Central Nikki Kaye National 600 (2.20%) Jacinda Ardern Labour
Hutt South Trevor Mallard Labour 709 (1.83%) Chris Bishop National
Ōhāriu Peter Dunne United Future 710 (1.91%) Virginia Andersen Labour
Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis Labour 743 (3.36%) Hone Harawira Mana

Retiring MPs[edit]

Thirteen existing Members of Parliament have announced that they will not stand for re-election.

Name Party Electorate/List Term in office
Steffan Browning[5] Green List 2011–present
Catherine Delahunty[5] List 2008–present
Clayton Cosgrove [6] Labour List 1999–present
David Cunliffe[7] New Lynn 1999–present
Chester Borrows[8] National Whanganui 2005–present
Craig Foss[9] Tukituki 2005–present
John Key[10] Helensville 2002–present
Sam Lotu-Iiga[11] Maungakiekie 2008–present
Murray McCully[12] East Coast Bays 1987–present
Jono Naylor[13] List 2014–present
Hekia Parata[14] List 2008–present
Lindsay Tisch[15] Waikato 1999–present
Maurice Williamson[16] Pakuranga 1987–present

List-only MPs[edit]

  • Trevor Mallard announced in July 2016 that he will not contest Hutt South, but will run as a list-only candidate, with the intention of becoming Speaker of the House.[17]
  • Annette King announced in December 2016 that she will not contest the Rongotai seat which she has held since its establisment in 1996. She will run in the 2017 general election as a list-only candidate.[18]

Contesting parties and candidates[edit]

Political parties registered with the Electoral Commission on Writ Day can contest the general election as a party. Each such party can submit a party list to contest the party vote, and can have a party election-expenses limit in addition to limits on individual candidates' campaigns. As of 15 December 2016, thirteen political parties are registered and can contend the general election.[19]

Party Leader(s) Party vote %
(2014 election)
(as of 15 December 2016)
Parties with seats in the 51st Parliament
ACT David Seymour 0.69 1
Green James Shaw / Metiria Turei 10.70 14
Labour Andrew Little 25.13 32
Māori Te Ururoa Flavell / Marama Fox 1.32 2
National Bill English 47.04 59
NZ First Winston Peters 8.66 12
United Future Peter Dunne 0.22 1
Other registered parties without seats in the 51th Parliament
Ban 1080 Mike Downard / Bill Wallace 0.21
Conservative 3.99
Democrats Stephnie de Ruyter 0.07
Internet 1.42
Legalise Cannabis Julian Crawford 0.46
Mana Hone Harawira 1.42

Opinion polling[edit]

Opinion polls have been undertaken periodically since the 2014 election by Fairfax Media, MediaWorks New Zealand, The New Zealand Herald, Roy Morgan Research, and Television New Zealand. The graph on the left below shows the collated results of all five polls for parties that polled above the 5% electoral threshold at the 2014 election; The graph on the right shows results for parties that polled between 1% and 4.9%, or won an electorate seat, at the 2014 election.

NZ opinion polls 2014-2017-majorparties.png NZ opinion polls 2014-2017-minorparties.png

See also[edit]

List of political parties in New Zealand


  1. ^ "New Zealand Election Results". Electoral Commission. Retrieved 21 September 2014. 
  2. ^ "Electoral Act 1993, Sec. 125". 17 August 2011. Retrieved 5 December 2011. 
  3. ^ "General election key dates". Electoral Commission (New Zealand). Retrieved 24 August 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "Electoral Act 1993, Sec. 139". 17 August 2011. Retrieved 5 December 2011. 
  5. ^ a b "Green Party MPS Catherine Delahunty and Steffan Browning not seeking re-election". Green Party. 15 December 2016. 
  6. ^ "Labour MP Cosgrove won't stand again". NZ Herald. 2016-04-10. Retrieved 2016-04-10. 
  7. ^ "David Cunliffe to retire from politics". 2016-11-01. Retrieved 2016-12-08. 
  8. ^ "In hindsight National's Chester Borrows says he "could have had more fights" as an MP". 29 November 2016. Retrieved 29 November 2016. 
  9. ^ "Craig Foss to step down from Cabinet as calls for rejuvenation claim another victim". 14 December 2016. Retrieved 14 December 2016. 
  10. ^ "John Key to resign as New Zealand Prime Minister and National Party leader". 5 December 2016. 
  11. ^ Jo Moir (13 December 2016). "Former Corrections Minister Sam Lotu-Iiga won't run in the election next year". Retrieved 13 December 2016. 
  12. ^ "Murray McCully quitting politics". 15 December 2016. Retrieved 15 December 2016. 
  13. ^ Galuszka, Jono (3 November 2016). "Palmerston North MP Jono Naylor quitting politics after one term". Retrieved 3 November 2016. 
  14. ^ Jones, Nicholas (19 October 2016). "Education minister Hekia Parata will not contest next general election". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 19 October 2016. 
  15. ^ "MP Lindsay Tisch not to seek re-election". 20 June 2016. Retrieved 20 June 2016. 
  16. ^ Jones, Nicholas (26 July 2016). "National and Pakuranga MP Maurice Williamson to leave Parliament". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 26 July 2016. 
  17. ^ Boyack, Nicholas (25 July 2016). "Labour MP Trevor Mallard vacates Hutt South electorate to apply for Speaker position". Retrieved 25 July 2016. 
  18. ^ Claire Trevett (17 December 2016). "Annette King stands aside for the younger generation in electorate". New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 17 December 2016. 
  19. ^ "Register of Political Parties". Electoral Commission. Retrieved 15 December 2016.