Wellington, October 17: The counting of votes is over in New Zealand, and since the country follows a mixed proportional representation system, it can be concluded that Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's Labour party will form a single-majority government. With a vote share of 50.8 percent - which may rise after the final tally is released - the party will have at least 61 lawmakers in the 119-member Parliament. How New Zealand Defeated COVID-19: Timeline of The Kiwi Battle to Eliminate Coronavirus and Role Played by Jacinda Ardern.

The results were largely on expected lines, but few had predicted Ardern's showing to be strong enough to allow the Labour in foregoing coalition partners for forming the government. Unlike 2017, the second Ardern-led regime would not depend on the support of NZ First and Greens.

Five Takeaways From Jacinda Ardern's Super Poll Win

  • Ardern has scripted history with the poll results, as this would be the first time in over 50 years when the Labour secured such a high vote share. With 50.8 percent votes, the party has outperformed its performance of 1964 elections when it had bagged nearly 49 percent of the total votes.
  • This would also be the first time since 1996 when New Zealand will witness the formation of a single-party majority government. This would virtually unchain Ardern to march on with her progressive politics - considering that there would no pressure from NZ First which was part of the outgoing government.
  • Not only would NZ First not be part of the Ardern government, the party has also been evicted from the Parliament. With only 2.6 percent of vote share, it would not find a place in the National Assembly, as the minimum threshold for a party is 5 percent.
  • The humiliation was doubled for NZ First as its leader , 75-year-old Winston Peters who is also known as "Kingmaker" in New Zealand, would not be in the Parliament. Over the past three decades, he has been part of several governments due to his key support to reach the majority mark. He also served as the Deputy Prime Minister in the Ardern government.
  • The Ardern wave has also led to the eviction of other major Kiwi politicians from the Parliament, including Gerry Brownlee, the Deputy Leader of prime opposition party National.

Leader of the National, Judith Collins, who had projected herself as the prime ministerial candidate, was quick to concede defeat. She called up Ardern within minutes after the early trends arrived, and congratulated her on the "outstanding win". The Prime Minister reciprocated the gesture in her first remarks following the results, reiterating that she will be the PM of "every New Zealander" irrespective of their political or ideological affiliations.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Oct 17, 2020 05:12 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).