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PacNet #36B – New Zealand goes to the polls

New Zealand’s triennial general election, the fourth held under the Mixed Member Proportional Representation (MMP) system first introduced in 1996, will be held Sept. 17. Whereas Helen Clark’s Labor-led coalition (in office since 1999) easily won re-election in 2002, this time the center-right National Party (led by former Central Bank Gov. Don Brash) is mounting a strong challenge, foreshadowing what the Australian Financial Review suggests will be “the liveliest election campaign for many years.”