Home About Chat Users Issues Party Candidates Polling Firms Media News Polls Calendar Key Races United States President Senate House Governors International

New User Account
"A historical political resource." 
Email: Password:

CountryNew Zealand
Last EditedIndyGeorgia - May 01, 2020 08:59pm
DescriptionThe New Zealand Labour Party formed as a political party in 1916, bringing together socialist groups advocating proportional representation and "the Recall" of Members of Parliament, as well as the nationalisation of production and of exchange. Its origins lie in the British working-class movement, heavily influenced by Australian radicalism and events such as the Waihi miners' strike.

The leadership, generally UK-born colonial immigrants to New Zealand, sufferred widespread imprisonment for opposition to conscription in World War I, but the Party survived to grow during the 1920s. The rigours of the Great Depression brought Labour (fronted by Michael Joseph Savage) to power in a landslide election in 1935.

Vigorous programmes of social and welfare reform, aided by political pacts with the Maori Ratana movement, kept the Labourites in Government in the 1938 election, despite internal disputes and the ultimate expulsion of John A. Lee.

Peter Fraser succeeded Savage as Prime Minister after the latter's death in office in 1940.

Labour lost office in the 1949 elections, failed to capitalise on the Waterfront Strike of 1951, and remained in the political wilderness of opposition until (barely) winning the election of 1957 under the leadership of Walter Nash, the last foreign-born head. Arnold Nordmeyer's [in]famous Black Budget dashed any hopes of a second term at the election of 1961, and the Party had to await the advent of Norman Kirk (Big Norm) before regaining the Treasury benches in the 1972 elections. Kirk's death in office left the Party (subsequently led by Bill Rowling) unable to win against the Muldoon landslide in the election of 1975.

After a long period in opposition, with politics dominated by an increasingly authoritarian Muldoon, David Lange restored Labour's fortunes in the 1984 elections. The resulting period was tumultuous, with Labour's controversial ministers Roger Douglas and Richard Prebble driving rogernomics, a rapid introduction of "free market" reforms and privatisation of government assets. However a widely popular anti-nuclear-ships policy gave something to the left wing of the party. Constant economic upheavals eventually saw the retirement of Lange from the Prime Ministership and his replacement first by Geoffrey Palmer in 1989, then by Mike Moore in 1990. However the changes could not save the party and it lost the election in 1990 to National's Jim Bolger.

During the period in opposition, Helen Clark as Labour leader achieved a measured repudiation of rogernomics and (eventually) engineered a return to office in the election of 1999, and subsequently reelection in the election of 2002

In early 2004, the Labour Party came under attack for its policies on the foreshore and seabed controversy. There were significant internal tensions within the party, eventually culminating in the resignation of a junior minister, Tariana Turia.

The New Zealand Labour Party of 2004 has less socialist militancy, sparser Trade Union support and a broad agenda of centre-left co-operation with the Progressive Coalition while toying with notions of the Third Way and of Social Democracy. It remains by far New Zealand's largest electoral bloc, but under MMP electoral law seems less likely to govern alone than in coalition.

Title Purchase Contributor

Start Date End Date Type Title Contributor

Date Category Headline Article Contributor



09/19/2020 NZ Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern ???
09/19/2020 NZ House of Representatives New Zealand Labour Party ???
09/19/2020 NZ MP - Auckland Central Helen Ione White ???
09/19/2020 NZ MP - Waiariki Tamati Coffey ???
09/19/2020 NZ House of Representatives - Popular Vote New Zealand Labour Party ???
10/12/2019 Wellington Mayor Justin Lester Lost 49.94% (-0.11%)
07/03/2019 NZ Minister for Community and Voluntary Sector Poto Williams Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
06/27/2019 NZ Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
06/27/2019 NZ Minister for Government Digital Services Kris Faafoi Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
06/26/2019 NZ Minister of Housing Megan Woods Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
09/07/2018 NZ Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Kris Faafoi Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
06/09/2018 NZ MP - Northcote - By-election Shanan Halbert Lost 44.45% (-6.29%)
11/07/2017 NZ Speaker of the House of Representatives Trevor Mallard Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
10/26/2017 NZ Minister for Whānau Ora Peeni Henare Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
10/26/2017 NZ Minister for Youth Peeni Henare Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
10/26/2017 NZ Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
10/26/2017 NZ Minister of Consumer Affairs Kris Faafoi Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
10/26/2017 NZ Minister of Commerce & Consumer Affairs Kris Faafoi Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
10/26/2017 NZ Minister of Education Chris Hipkins Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
10/26/2017 NZ Minister of Finance Grant Robertson Won 100.00% (+100.00%)