Posted by alexandra_k on July 4, 2005, at 4:43:14
In reply to election year, posted by alexandra_k on June 29, 2005, at 18:34:29
The way it works... You vote for your local MP and they get a seat in parliament. So that is your local vote.
You also vote for the party that you want to have the majority of seats in parliament and they need 5% of the party vote to win one seat in parliament.
So the thought is that the people we want get there, and the ultimate proportion of the seats each party gets is determined by the proportion of the people who voted for that party.
With local votes there is typically a race between 2 (or possibly 3) candidates - so most people feel it wise to choose between the front runners. With your party vote you just need to get 5% of the country to agree with you and that party gets one seat.
I'm quite fond of the greens:
Labor has the majority vote at the moment. So they got to pick the prime minister (Helen Clarke). If labor and the Greens decide to join up and form an alliance (as they tend to) in parliament then they get to swing the vote their way and overthrow the conservatives. Labor is left wing and the greens are left again.
The next bunch are the main rival for labor. More to the right. They are trying the 'we will lower taxes and get the bums off welfare' line.
And these people are a riot. They are verrrrrrry similar to national - but Winston Peters is a very dynamic and controversial leader with a lot of support over in Tauranga (so he is guaranteed the local seat). Whether many of his cronies will get to join him is a different matter...
And here he is trying to do away with the Treaty of Waitangi! Ha!
There are others....
Relatively minor - but might get a seat or two!