Who can pull off the decisive second half move?
With three-and-a-half days of voting left, Ephesus Collins’ campaign for Oakland mayor has hurled the kitchen sink and overwhelmed his leading opponent in the polls, Wayne Brown.
Brown, on the other hand, won’t shy away from celebrity endorsement flashiness or go out to kiss crowds or babies to solidify the lead he built in the campaign’s final poll.
Brown has polling momentum built over the past six weeks, when first Leo Molloy and then center-right rival Bibb Beck declined, leaving money largely spent on social media targeting. I have.
He managed to be seen as someone who would shake up the establishment, manage congestion and chaos, work endlessly, and cut Congressional spending.
Brown led by 34% to 29% among voters in a TVNZ Q&A poll released 10 days ago, and was trending up in other polls.
He apparently did not directly seek help from the National Party-aligned Community and Residents (C&R) groups that previously supported Beck.
Collins has the Labor, Green Party and City Vision Operations political structures throughout Auckland.
After Phil Goff and Wren serve four terms, can the center-left get enough votes to keep mayor? Brown?
Ardern posted a photo on social media with the candidate and another in which she voted for him. She described his “wonderful team of volunteers…they’ve campaigned together for many of the same things we’ve done.”
Collins’ team on Tuesday also welcomed social media support from singer Lorde and business-based support from entrepreneur Derek Handley.
Collins’ campaign has made public that a team of volunteers called up to 5,000 people last weekend and is calling again in front of the prime minister.
The modest turnout so far – 19.8 overall, down from 22.6% at the same point in 2019 and a significant departure from 24.4% in 2016 – often poses additional challenges for left-wing candidates. considered.
Ward-wise figures show relatively high rates of return in wealthier and rural districts such as Orakei and Rodney, and lower responses in the south (Otara, Manurewa) and locations such as Henderson-Massey and Maungakiekiye Tamaki. increase.
Relatively low voter turnout may be something that candidates with strong party machines behind them can take advantage of.
A Campaign Veteran’s Perspective
Former Alliance member, regional chairman and Auckland council member Mike Leigh, who is running as an independent on the Waitemata and Gulf councils (albeit with rare support from the centre-right C&R), believes Collins will have a party. He said that could be an advantage. organization behind him.
“Conventional wisdom [low turnout] Probably not good for Ephesus,” Lee told The Newsroom.
“But even when voter turnout is very low, there are techniques. The big parties know how to manipulate them, go through their electoral rolls and databases, and get people to vote. Flipping it can change things.”
Political commentator and Unionist Matt McCarten, Leo Molloy’s campaign manager, agreed that low turnout favored Collins and high turnout favored Brown.
“The field labor and green team cannot be underestimated. Ephesus stands on the shoulders of 150 candidates running for council and local committees.”
At this stage of the campaign, the time for persuasion was over and it was all about getting people to vote.
McCarten is thinking about a third vote in Oakland.
He believed that people basically understood that Brown was leaning towards the blue side, so he would have won a national voter base and had many in the bag already. Back in the day, Collins had a lot of red-hot voters and had to focus on breaking out of the wider group.
People were overestimating the value of votes mined south of Auckland and Pacifica, he said. “More votes from Howick than most of Auckland South..”
Brown didn’t have the machine on site, but he did have a very sophisticated team of social media and spending his money.
McCarten said he doesn’t ignore endorsements by “celebrities” and that those people won’t persuade people to change their votes, but they can encourage them to go out and vote.
He already voted for Collins, who led former candidate Leo Molloy in the early stages of the campaign.
“I am a tribe,” he said. “I vote for Ephesus. In my opinion, it’s not a contest. Ephesus is friendlier.”
“I supported Leo because I thought they needed someone to shake things up, someone as mayor to take on the elite and the bureaucracy. I think it’s something.”
C&R President Kit Parkinson said the close race for mayor could boost eventual voter turnout.
But he questioned that a major candidate’s campaign had removed roadside signs as early as Tuesday.
C&R believed more than 50 city and local committee candidates would benefit from a switch to wise spending and opposition to incumbent city council structures, as well as strong social media play so far. .
Parkinson believed that the centre-right could reach 14 of the 20 proposed seats with independents and allies.Phil Goff
Former Labor leader Mike Williams, who campaigned for Cass Tizard to defeat Colin Kay for mayor in 1983, felt that Brown had a slight advantage during the final days of the campaign.
“Right now it’s up to voter turnout. If Labor and the Greens can get their votes in, low voter turnout overall doesn’t necessarily make it harder for them.”
Unlike McCarten, he believed Collins needed to continue targeting his South Oakland home base, prompting the church to urge Pacifica to vote.
Conversely, Brown “needed desperately to get hold of the National Party email list. They have more reliable voters in local elections.”
It was obvious that the Labor Party had provided Collins with the database, which was an advantage. “I got what he got from that database. Labor Machines targeted me and even offered to come pick up and deliver my votes.”
Prime Minister’s Blessing
The machine was in action this afternoon when Ardern visited Collins Telephone Bank in Henderson to offer support for the mayoral candidate.
A day after an Instagram post endorsing Wellington’s center-left candidate Paul Eagle, many CityVision candidates were in attendance to confirm their support for the prime minister.
Collins said it would show Oaklanders that he supports the values he shares with the prime minister.
“We are extremely honored and humbled to have her join our phone bank,” he said. We’re all about being inclusive, being cautious about the kind of vision we’ve set for our city, being climate resilient…that she stands with us We and the Labor Party have very similar values and principles that will drive us to achieve our vision for Auckland.”
Ardern voted for Collins and headed to the new office of Brooke Lauder, a member of the Henderson-Massey Local Committee of District Attorneys, where City Vision candidates Rolodex, including Shane Henderson and Redd Tsonga, delivered the Prime Minister’s address. gathered to hear.
With just days to go before the polls close, Collins’ campaign is gearing up for the final sprint. He said he had 50 to 100 people at the phone bank in Penrose over the weekend, and he expects to have 20 to 30 people on Tuesday night.
Collins said the focus will be on people who have voted before and who tend to vote left, and in areas such as Henderson, Sunnyvale, Roskill Mountains and parts of the South. I was knocking on the door, but before that, I was in the town of Birkenhead.
“I really love phone banking,” he said. “My favorite campaigns are phone banking and door knocks.”
As for Saturday, “I’m really excited,” Collins said. “I’m going to have a gin and tonic or maybe more, but regardless of the outcome, it’s an opportunity to thank my team and, of course, my family for all the sacrifices they made to get me on this journey. is. “
back to the well
In the Wayne Brown campaign, the focus is on uniting the networks the former mayor of the Far North was already in contact with during the campaign.
Brown spokesman Ben Thomas said the campaign’s goal at this point is to return to the networks and associations it has previously pitched.
“The mail-in ballot is gone, so we’re not looking for new markets or anything like that. When we ran the campaign, Wayne spent a lot of time going back to his supporters, touching where they were supported, and saying, ‘Your Please tell my family.” Friends, did you all vote? ”
In an election with low voter turnout, Thomas says it’s important the campaign focuses on where Brown is already working, as early numbers suggest. .
Advice from Auckland City Council and the NZ Post is that while countdowns, special votes and booths at libraries and community centers are still going on, mail in your completed ballots by Tuesday to ensure they are counted. is.
Footnote: Celebrity endorsements by Tuesday evening
– Jacinda Ardern
– Sir Bob Harvey
– Dick Hubbard
– Philip Mills
– David Farrier
– Guy Williams
– Lucy Lawless
– Oscar Kitley
– Penny Hulse
– David Tua
– Tau Henare
– Derek Chandler
wayne brown (Who said last week: “Why would I want them?” and “I didn’t need celebrities to ask for help…”)
– Leo Molloy
– Judith Collins
https://www.newsroom.co.nz/brown-momentum-vs-collins-machine Brown Momentum vs Collins Machine