Tag: new zealand herald

Dodgy Poll

Not all what to seems


[Please note I am not taking aim at Digi-Poll in any shape or form and I do respect their credibility as a polling company highly. I do however, take aim at the NZ Herald for their “reporting” and not laying out the fall statistical facts about the poll clearly in their article]


I did notice the Herald Digi-Poll out this morning citing a poll about Mayor Len Brown. You can read the article here: Thumbs down for Len Brown – poll

What the online piece did not show was the actual graphs which can be seen below from Twitter earlier today:

The Herald Digi-poll subsequently brought a stinging rebuke from Stats Chat which said:

Beyond the margin of error

Now, the Herald-Digipoll is supposed to be a real survey, with samples that are more or less representative after weighting. There isn’t a margin of error reported, but the standard maximum margin of error would be  a little over 6%.

There are two aspects of the data that make it not look representative. Thr first is that only 31.3%, or 37% of those claiming to have voted, said they voted for Len Brown last time. He got 47.8% of the vote. That discrepancy is a bit larger than you’d expect just from bad luck; it’s the sort of thing you’d expect to see about 1 or 2 times in 1000 by chance.

More impressively, 85% of respondents claimed to have voted. Only 36% of those eligible in Auckland actually voted.


So, how could the poll be so badly wrong? It’s unlikely to just be due to bad sampling — you could do better with a random poll of half a dozen people. There’s got to be a fairly significant contribution from people whose recall of the 2013 election is not entirely accurate, or to put it more bluntly, some of the respondents were telling porkies.  Unfortunately, that makes it hard to tell if results for any of the other questions bear even the slightest relationship to the truth.


You can read the full Stats Chat piece here: http://www.statschat.org.nz/2014/03/20/beyond-the-margin-of-error/


The bits in bold is what gives suspicion the poll was slanted to produce a “story” that was not truly there. Then again check this:

Thumbs down for Len Brown – poll

By Bernard Orsman 5:30 AM Thursday Mar 20, 2014

The journalist running the story is not known to be “objective” from time to time and has been pulled up before for either slanting or giving a misrepresentation (that is his opinion rather than a claimed fact).

So I would be very careful in trotting out this poll which has misrepresentations and a bad case of slanting as proof of fact against the Mayor. Using such a poll in that method will not do your credibility any good – although two of the oppositional five Councillors had (although expected).


Back to City Building we go as there is nothing to see from that Orsman piece.


Final Governing Body Meeting of 2013


Annual Plans

The Mayor


Today is the final Governing Body meeting of Auckland Council for 2014. I have the agenda and Annual Plan draft in the respective embeds below.

While I expect Skaypath to move on to the next stage today (13-8 should be the vote pattern) it is the Mayoral issues that are taking the limelight today (and most likely a good portion of the meeting).

I will be running live commentary and Tweeting today from Town Hall of the Governing Body proceedings. All About Auckland by Kane Glass will be running a live video feed as well for the open session.

In my final piece on the Len Brown saga before the Governing Body this morning I have seen this from the NZ Herald:

Deputy mayor Hulse refuses to speak up for boss

By Bernard Orsman 5:30 AM Thursday Dec 19, 2013

Deputy says councillors focused today on doing what’s best for Auckland as mayor fights for political survival
Ms Hulse would not say if she backed Mr Brown to stay on as mayor, only that councillors were focused on doing what was best for Auckland. Photo / NZ Herald

Auckland Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse is refusing to back her boss as councillors gather today to publicly censure Mayor Len Brown, whose extramarital affair has left him fighting for political survival.

Ms Hulse yesterday would not say if she backed Mr Brown to stay on as mayor, only that councillors were focused on doing what was best for Auckland.

She said councillors had clearly expressed to him the disappointment and concern about the reputational damage to Auckland arising from his behaviour and were left wondering how to address matters.

It was the second time in three days that Ms Hulse – Mr Brown’s deputy for three years – has not stood by him as he battles the fallout of a two-year affair with Bevan Chuang.

You can read the full article here: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11174750


After I returning from the Governing Body today I will run a nice piece of long commentary into the saga and my own thoughts about it. It should show some interesting insights most likely to some mechanics of Auckland’s Governance.

Vote wise this is how I expect the votes to go down today:

  • Skypath: 13-8 in favour
  • Censure Motion: if not unanimous the vote will be 15-5 in favour
  • Quax‘s No Confidence Motion: two ways that can end up going (both failing mind you): either 5-15 or if a couple more jump on board then 8-12
  • Any attempts for an oversight committee will most likely pass 11-9

Will see how those predictions pan out today