Poll puts the pressure on

From TVOne yesterday David Cunliffe was the clear favourite in a poll asking which of the Labour leadership candidates was most likely to win next year’s election over John Key. Mr Cunliffe came out ahead of his running mates, with 39% of the vote in the latest ONE News Colmar Brunton poll. Thats up since the week before. He’ll be pleased.

Shane will be pleased at his second spot (18%) while Grant received just 15% of the vote.

Grant and his supporters keep saying that these aren’t the people who matter- they are not the ones voting. But they are the ones who will be voting – and who Labour want ticking their box next year. So their opinion does matter. And imagine the senario if the caucus use their superior voting power to trump the membership and the affiliates – John Key and National will have a field day poking fun at the third ranked contender being elected. And those first impressions matter. For example:

The poll of 510 eligible voters also asked who was most likely to win a television debate with Mr Key, with 36% opting for Mr Cunliffe, 27% for Mr Jones and just 11% for Mr Robertson.

Over at The Daily Blog Tim Selwyn has examined the range of options (and coverage).

For all these faults Cunliffe is still a more savy communicator than the rest and is ahead on TV presentation at the very least. He looks the most prime ministerial – he already looks like an Australian state premier, if that’s a look (and if you’ve seen Phil Goff’s mate Mike Rann, the former South Australian premier, it is a look and Cunliffe has it).

In the TV stakes, and on which monkey can take it to the gorilla in the house, it’s got to be Cunliffe over Robertson and Jones.

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