New Zealand general election, 1960

New Zealand general election, 1960
New Zealand
26 November 1960 (1960-11-26)

All 80 seats in the New Zealand Parliament
41 seats were needed for a majority
Turnout 1,170,503 (89.8%)
  First party Second party
Leader Keith Holyoake Walter Nash
Party National Labour
Leader since 1957 1951
Leader's seat Pahiatua Hutt
Last election 39 seats, 44.2% 41 seats, 48.3%
Seats won 46 34
Seat change Increase 7 Decrease 7
Popular vote 557,046 508,179
Percentage 47.6% 43.4%
Swing Increase 3.4% Decrease 4.9%

Prime Minister before election

Walter Nash

Elected Prime Minister

Keith Holyoake

The 1960 New Zealand general election was a nationwide vote to determine the shape of the New Zealand Parliament's 33rd term. It saw the governing Labour Party defeated by the National Party, putting an end to the short second Labour government.


The Labour Party had won the 1957 elections by a narrow margin, beginning New Zealand's second period of Labour government. However, the new administration soon lost its narrow lead in public opinion, with its financial policies being the principal cause of dissatisfaction. The so-called "Black Budget", introduced by Arnold Nordmeyer, increased taxes substantially, with particularly large increases for alcohol and tobacco taxes; Labour became widely seen as both miserly and puritanical. The government defended its tax increases as a necessary measure to avert a balance of payments crisis, but the opposition, led by Keith Holyoake, made substantial gains out of the issue.

The election

The date for the main 1960 elections was 26 November. 1,310,742 people were registered to vote, and turnout was 89.8%. This turnout was slightly lower than what had been recorded in the previous elections. The number of seats being contested was 80, a number which had been fixed since 1902.


The 1960 election saw the governing Labour Party defeated by a twelve-seat margin, having previously held a two-seat majority. National won a total of 46 seats to Labour's 34 seats, and formed the second National government.[1] In the popular vote, National won 47.59% to Labour's 43.42%.[2]

The Social Credit Party won 8.62% of the vote, but no seats.[3] Three of their candidates missed the nomination deadline, and the opening address of the party leader P. H. Matthews was not noteworthy.

Three new National members of parliament were called the Young Turks: Peter Gordon, Duncan MacIntyre and Robert Muldoon.[4] The other new National MPs were Esme Tombleson, Bill Brown, Harry Lapwood, Logan Sloane, Bert Walker, and Dan Riddiford.[5]

Paddy Blanchfield, Ron Bailey, Norman Douglas and George Spooner entered parliament for Labour.

Election results
Party Candidates Total votes Percentage Seats won Change
National 80 557,046 47.6 46 +7
Labour 80 508,179 43.4 34 -7
Social Credit 80 100,905 8.6 - ±0
Communist 18 2,423 0.21 - ±0
Others 7 1,950 0.2 - ±0
Total 269 1,170,503 80

Votes summary

Popular Vote
Social Credit
Parliament seats

The table below shows the results of the 1960 general election:


 National    Labour    Social Credit  

[] Electorate results for the New Zealand general election, 1960[6]
Electorate Incumbent Winner Majority Runner up
General electorates
Ashburton Richard Gerard 2,558 G Glassey
Auckland Central Bill Anderton Norman Douglas 1,846 R J Presland
Avon John Mathison 4,216 Herbert Pickering
Awarua Gordon Grieve 3,000 J P Wyatt
Bay of Plenty Percy Allen 2,411 T G Santon
Buller Clarence Skinner 1,546 Ernie King
Christchurch Central Robert Macfarlane 1,935 T D Flint
Clutha James Roy Peter Gordon 3,863 J Fahey
Dunedin Central Philip Connolly 842 N D Scurr
Dunedin North Ethel McMillan 2,475 Miss M B Bell
Eden Duncan Rae John Rae 1,902 R G Penney
Egmont William Sheat 3,933 J W Watson
Fendalton Jack Watts Harry Lake 2,722 Bill Rowling
Franklin Alfred E. Allen 5,197 H T Preston
Gisborne Reginald Keeling Esme Tombleson 291 Reginald Keeling
Grey Lynn Fred Hackett 4,596 B T Zouch
Hamilton Lance Adams-Schneider 2,583 Basil Arthur
Hastings Edwin Keating Duncan MacIntyre 300 Edwin Keating
Hauraki Arthur Kinsella 2,635 A C Tucker
Hawkes Bay Cyril Harker 3,682 J G Woolf
Heretaunga Phil Holloway Ron Bailey 2,576 V E Hampson-Tindale
Hobson Sidney Walter Smith Logan Sloane 1,401 Vernon Cracknell
Hurunui William Gillespie 2,731 A A Adcock
Hutt Walter Nash 2,349 G L Barker
Invercargill Ralph Hanan 1,926 O J Henderson
Island Bay Arnold Nordmeyer 1,791 F F Curry
Karori Jack Marshall 4,313 Olive Smuts-Kennedy
Lyttelton Norman Kirk 260 J B Hay
Manawatu Blair Tennent 3,120 L T Fischer
Manukau Leon Götz 245 C D Stamp
Marlborough Tom Shand 1,747 R W Hope
Marsden Donald McKay 4,351 J S Reid
Miramar Bill Fox 467 B L Lyons
Mornington Walter Hudson 2,246 G R Thorn
Mount Albert Warren Freer 1,676 Mrs C M Anderson
Napier Jim Edwards 1,405 W J Gunn
Nelson Stanley Whitehead 1,767 C W Martin
New Plymouth Ernest Aderman 1,693 Ron Barclay
North Shore Dean Eyre 1,817 P L Smith
Onehunga Hugh Watt 4,705 P B Phillips
Onslow Henry May 790 Miss M J Clark
Otago Central John George 4,344 Brian MacDonell
Otahuhu James Deas 2,774 T J L Tucker
Otaki James Joseph Maher Allan McCready 2,044 T W Cameron
Pahiatua Keith Holyoake 4,934 K D T McKane
Palmerston North Philip Skoglund Bill Brown 133 Philip Skoglund
Patea Roy Jack 2,304 D C Valley
Petone Michael Moohan 2,918 R M Martin
Piako William Goosman 5,376 H J Uttinger
Ponsonby Ritchie Macdonald 4,744 N F McLaughlan
Raglan Douglas Carter 1,371 Alan Baxter
Rangitikei Norman Shelton 3,889 S A Cameron
Remuera Ronald Algie 6,109 Barry Gustafson
Riccarton Mick Connelly 2,022 Mrs Deena V. Sergel [7]
Rodney Jack Scott 4,157 Phil Amos
Roskill Arthur Faulkner 1,374 G G P Taylor
Rotorua Ray Boord Harry Lapwood 358 Ray Boord
Selwyn John McAlpine 2,839 J Palmer
St Albans Neville Pickering Bert Walker 298 Neville Pickering
St Kilda William Fraser 835 Jim Barnes
Stratford Thomas Murray 4,388 H M St George
Sydenham Mabel Howard 4,793 Derek Quigley
Tamaki Bob Tizard Robert Muldoon 1,148 Bob Tizard
Tauranga George Walsh 5,239 D C Goodfellow
Timaru Clyde Carr 357 R E White
Waikato Geoffrey Sim 3,041 A J Ingram
Waipa Hallyburton Johnstone 3,241 R D Reese
Wairarapa Bertie Cooksley 2,088 A G Goldsmith
Waitakere Rex Mason 3,709 J H Wilkinson
Waitaki Thomas Hayman 1,972 Les McKay
Waitemata Norman King 1,249 J R Firth
Waitomo David Seath 3,951 D B McLaren
Wallace Brian Talboys 5,736 Mrs E Harris
Wanganui Joseph Cotterill George Spooner 160 E J Crotty
Wellington Central Frank Kitts Dan Riddiford 381 Frank Kitts
Westland James Begg Kent Paddy Blanchfield 3,844 D A Hogg
Māori electorates
Eastern Maori Tiaki Omana 3,025 Arnold Reedy[8]
Northern Maori Tapihana Paikea 3,372 G R Harrison
Southern Maori Eruera Tirikatene 3,947 N W Tutaki
Western Maori Iriaka Matiu Ratana 4,666 Pei Te Hurinui Jones

Table footnotes:




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