Over the next week the major TV and newspaper political polls will come out. And for Helen Clark this is now make or break on the back of the secret tapes saga.
The last round of polls across all media had Labour closing the gap on National. In a couple of those polls, the gap narrowed significantly.
So Labour is bracing itself. It desperately needs some good news. It's praying and hoping the 'secret tapes' saga dents National's support. Some National MPs told me earlier this week that they expect the party to take a hit in the polls. One very senior National MP told me he expected the party to lose up to 5 points.
But as the week has progressed I'm not sure so sure about that.
Now that's very interesting. But it was his next two paragraphs that caught my attention:
So much of the story has focused on the ethics of the secret taping. And National was quick to nail Labour and Helen Clark to the secret recorder. Key has no proof of course - but he didn't have to. It was a bit of a dog whistle - but it may have worked. I reckon National might just hold up in the polls due to be released over the next 10 days.
Labour got its internal polling in this week. It's gone very quiet. There's been no suggestion from Clark's office that this has hurt National.
You see, Mr Garner seems to have forgotten that HE was the TV Political Editor who broke the story. That HE was the Political Editor who kept the story going over five nights with serial leaks. Which suggests to me that not only does Duncan Garner know the identity of the taper and the leaker (who may not necessarily be one and the same), but that Duncan Garner also knows the motivation behind them, and maybe even who authorised them.
And is the 3News poll due out tomorrow? I'm not sure, but if it is, you'd expect that Duncan Garner would already know its contents - which makes this blog post even more fascinating, especially in light of Garner's closing paragraph
So Labour might not do as well out of this as it had hoped. Helen Clark was hoping the 'secret tapes' would be a turning point in Labour's fortunes. If it's not, what's her plan now? Does she have one? Labour's told people how dangerous the Nats are. But perhaps no one's been listening.