If I was in power, I would secretly be hoping for covid-19 to spread accross the north island over the next 2 - 3 weeks.
That way the Auckland border could come down in early December, without me being blamed for giving 50%+ of the country (by population) Covid for Christmas.
Suggest that is why all the agonising about the border is going on. Saying travel is only for fully vaccianted & tested people makes it a touch more palatable for the rest of the country, avoiding a massive outcry right now.
In a months time the call can be made if they are going to get rid of the border. Potentially they could keep it, but if they did, it would need to pretty much just for show. - Wave through 100 cars, check 1 etc. (But that is not a great look).