New Zealand general election, 1969

New Zealand general election, 1969
New Zealand general election, 1969
New Zealand
1966 ←
29 November 1969 (1969-11-29)
→ 1972

All 84 seats in the Parliament of New Zealand
43 seats were needed for a majority
Turnout 1,340,168 (88.94%)
  First party Second party Third party
  Keith Holyoake (1960).jpg Norman Kirk.jpg No image.png
Leader Keith Holyoake Norman Kirk Vernon Cracknell
Party National Labour Social Credit
Leader since 1957 1965 1966
Leader's seat Pahiatua Lyttelton Hobson
Last election 44 seats, 43.6% 35 seats, 41.4% 1 seat, 14.5%
Seats won 45 39 0
Seat change increase 1 increase 4 decrease 1
Popular vote 605,960 592,055 121,576
Percentage 45.2% 44.2% 9.1%
Swing increase 1.6% increase 2.8% decrease 5.4%

Prime Minister before election

Keith Holyoake

Elected Prime Minister

Keith Holyoake

The 1969 New Zealand general election was a nationwide vote to determine the shape of the New Zealand Parliament's 36th term. It saw the governing National Party win a fourth consecutive term, under Prime Minister Keith Holyoake.

The Election

The election was held on 29 November. Turnout was 88.94%. The total number of MPs had increased to 84,[1] with at least 3 of the 4 new seats likely Labour seats.


National pulled off a cliff-hanger victory. National won 45 seats, and Labour won 39 seats, though Labour's share of the vote was only 1% behind National. The Social Credit Party lost its only seat in Parliament.

Despite the hopes of a reinvigorated Labour party under Norman Kirk, Labour was over-confident, started too late, and did not win in Auckland. Relations with the Federation of Labour and the unions were not good, and an industrial dispute on the ship Wainui cost Labour three Auckland seats according to Kirk.

Party Leader Total votes Percentage Seats won
National Party Keith Holyoake 605,960 45.2% 45
Labour Party Norman Kirk 592,055 44.2% 39
Social Credit Party Vernon Cracknell 121,576 9.1% 0
Country Party 6,715 0.5% 0
(including Dr Barry Dallas and Kevin Ryan QC)
8,457 0.6% 0
Others 5,405 0.4% 0
Total Valid Votes 1,340,168 84


  • Election ’69 by Ian Templeton & Keith Eunson (1969)

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