Executive Summary: New Zealand received an overall score of 54.75 percent for electoral fairness. The score means that New Zealand's constitutional and legislative basis for its democracy is unacceptable. Despite many elements of fairness such as the distribution of public electoral monies based on popular support and proportional electoral mechanisms, New Zealand has extreme unfairness in laws and regulations on the media's and broadcaster's political content. Private media and broadcasters have no restrictions on their political content, and the state broadcaster (TVNZ) and radio (RNZ) were privatized on July 12, 2011. The political content issue impacted negatively the other electoral fairness sections. New Zealand needs to progress beyond unrestricted freedom of the media to restrictions on the freedom of the media in order to promote democratic plurality (like in France) and complete and balanced electoral coverage (like in Venezuela).
2011 FDA Electoral Fairness Report on New Zealand