Highlights of the last day or so

With the ban on electronic election advertising to kick in at midnight tonight, the Australian Financial Review reports that Labor’s spending on television advertising has been "more than double" that of the Liberal Party, which has struggled to raise money from corporate backers due to the apparent certainty of its impending defeat. Nonetheless, the Herald Sun reports that Centrebet has cut its price for a Coalition victory from $9 to $6.50 following Ted Baillieu’s well-received performance on the campaign trail.

Melbourne (Labor 1.9% versus Greens), Richmond (Labor 3.1% versus Greens) and Northcote (Labor 7.9% versus Greens): Following Monday’s leak of alarming party polling regarding the threat from the Greens in Melbourne, Labor has attempted to shore up its environmental credentials by having Peter Garrett hit the campaign trail in the party’s endangered inner-city seats. Labor has also distributed a letter by prominent human rights lawyer Julian Burnside to voters in Richmond, in which Burnside praises member Richard Wynne’s stand on refugee issues. Interestingly, Richmond voters have been spared a letter from Garrett, which has instead been circulated in Melbourne and Northcote. The Australian reports that Garrett’s letter echoes the party’s questionable line that a vote for the Greens might deliver government to the Liberals, despite the certainty that any Greens members holding the balance of power would support a Labor rather than Coalition minority government.

South West Coast (Liberal 0.8%), Hastings (Labor 0.9%) and Morwell (Labor 4.9%): Labor has seized on the federal government’s review of nuclear power options to promise it will stop any move to build a nuclear power station in Portland, which left-wing think tank the Australia Institute identified along with Westernport Bay as one of the two best available sites in Victoria. However, Ziggy Switkowski’s report has stressed the need for any potential reactors to be sited near major population centres, so the most likely contenders would be either Hastings on Westernport Bay or co-location with existing coal-fired plants in the Latrobe Valley.

Gippsland South (Nationals 10.9%): Following yesterday’s report that Labor was "considering" reversing its decision to direct preferences to the Liberals ahead of the Nationals in Shepparton, the ABC today reports that the party has confirmed it will do likewise in Nationals leader Peter Ryan’s seat of Gippsland South. Labor registered two sets of cards with the Victorian Electoral Commission last Friday, and is keeping its opponents guessing as to which will be distributed on polling day. Nothing has been reported on the other potentially endangered Nationals seats, Rodney, Swan Hill and Lowan.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

23 comments on “Highlights of the last day or so”

  1. The highlight of the last few days or so was apparently the sight of the Leader of the Opposition taking a shower in front of the media, with the shower stall door open (The Oz, Wed).

    That gives the term “The Member for Hawthorn” a whole new meaning.


  2. Spoken to a few people in SW Coast and there is a feeling it is ‘tightening’. Liberals had a mailout this week on their plan for SW Coast, obviously a specific marginal seat product, has this gone out in all the marginals, and if so when?

  3. The way things are going, I’m expecting to see Ted doing a nude run down Spring Street before the end of the week. Is there anything that man won’t do to get in the media?

  4. Tom, I’ve yet to see anything from the Greens in Brunswick either, aside from a pamphlet we got a few months before anyone else was doing anything (I’m guessing it was just after Dawes was preselected). If the Greens get anywhere near a 9.3% swing in Brunswick I’ll eat my hat.

  5. Well Caro Carli must be desperate and more than anxious because he is foisting the preference lie in letterboxes around Brunswick – got one last night, Green Traingle and Howards face – what fools do the ALP think we are??

  6. I am part of the Brunswick ALP campaign. No green triangle with howards face are being distributed in this electorate. So I have no idea where ansteybranchopolous got his leaflet but it wasn’t from us.

  7. Tom, you must be on drugs if you think the ALP isn’t campaigning.

    I have received two leaflets and two direct mails in the last six weeks from Carlo Carli

  8. I’ve received quite a lot of stuff from Carli.

    However, I’ve got very little from the Greens. Either they’ve got me pegged as an opponent and aren’t prepared to waste a brochure on me, or they don’t think they can win Brunswick.

  9. With 2 days to go until election – is the PollBludger going to make his calls or is this election too tight in most of the marginals? It would be an interesting feat to see the greens gain a lowerhouse seat and hold it beyond the next election. I don’t think they’ve ever managed this [excluding tassie].

  10. The Greens have a chance of winning both Melbourne and Richmond, they came close last time, it depends on the flow of Liberal preferences.

  11. Bob, the ALP have placed green triangles with Howards face on poles in Brunswick and North Fitzroy – yuo are party to a desperate lie that reveals the true nature of the people you serve.

  12. I’m pretty sure that posting election material on poles, which are publicly owned, is illegal, unless express permission is given by the owner of the poles, which is usually the council or some state govt body.

    So either the Greens are breaking the law, or dodgy bureaucrats are letting them off the hook. I think the former is more likely.

  13. Councils allow those posters if you seek permission first. Individuals or groups have to abide by strict guidelines to put them on poles. They then have to promptly take them down after the election.

  14. Billy,

    Why would the Greens put these posters up attacking the Greens? pretty illogical no? I think it’s Labor flouting the law here (gasp!).

    Time for a bex?

  15. Correction: Southern metro… Whilst it is close the Democrats will deliver votes to the ALP which will see Thornley over the line. Southwick would need to opick up 75-100% of then 7000 jewish votes. We thing the spilit is more like 5000 to 2000…

    It looked interesting for a while…

  16. Tuesday 28, 11:37AM Western Victoria Update:

    The conjunction point between FF and the DLP is very close and a drift of preferences way from the DLP could see Family First rise above the DLP at present Family First (3.92%) and the DLP (4.06%) at the conjunction.

    That’s close.

    The ALP is comfortably ahead of the Greens at this point. But it is difficult to know A) what’s missing in the data and B) what the below the line preferences are doing.

    This is the first optional preferential ballot in Victoria and many of the Green and other parties below the line votes could exhaust.

    The other conjunction point between the National Party and the DLP is just as close with the DLP (8.0%) and the NP (7.9%). The DLP relies on preferences from the minor parties whose BTL vote could also exhaust.

    Its a question of who is voting for who below the line… The combined ALP (9.04%) and Green (8.41%) at the third conjunction vote should see the Alp overt the line but again it depends on the BTL voting pattern. With optional preferential voting we could see things either stay the same or a dramatically altered position.

    This is new territory and like mushrooms we are left in the dark and feed…

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