History of MMP results

I have created a report to show the party vote results for all nine MMP elections up to 2020, using a consistent format. The information comes from the official site electionresults.org.nz where the results of each election are provided but in various different formats. It provides for each party at each MMP election the number of party votes they received, the number of electorates won. My report shows which parties passed one or other of the thresholds (electorate seat won, at least 5% of party votes), and thus how many votes were wasted because parties did not pass either threshold.

The report can be seen here mmphistoryreport.pdf I believe that I have interpreted and transferred the data correctly.

From the report one can see:

  • That the wasted votes vary between 1.3% (2005) and 7.8%(2020), with an average of 5.4%.
  • The rate of wasted votes is very variable. It was very low in 2005 when there were many minor parties in parliament, many having won just one electorate seat. It was high in 2020, small parties having benefitted from a reduced National Party vote, without crossing a threshold.
  • The 2008 election would have been extremeely close between left and right leaning parties, had the threshold been 4% instead of 5%.
  • The larger numbers of wasted votes have generally been associated with a party gaining about 4% of the party vote, and thus having its votes wasted.
  • This suggests that the two choice system could reduce wasted votes from the present 5% to less than 1%. This is useful, but the main value of the two choice system is to reduce the risk of wasted votes, which is commonly seen as a real obstacle to voting for or working with small parties.