Late polling

Via Robert Merkel at Larvatus Prodeo, figures from a Benambra electorate poll in the Border Mail which do not appear to be available online: Liberal 45 per cent, Labor 31 per cent, Nationals 17 per cent, Greens 4.5 per cent. This strongly goes against my earlier suggestion that the seat might be an outside chance of an upset Labor win; no idea of the sample size though (UPDATE: Zoom in comments says it was just over 300). For more on late polling, see two entries below.

UPDATE (25/11/06): Newspoll paints the rosiest picture for Labor of any of the polling agencies, with a two-party lead of 56-44. It is interesting to see how this has shaped The Australian’s coverage, which reaches markedly more negative conclusions about the Liberal campaign than The Age, where an ACNielsen poll has Labor’s lead at 53-47. More details forthcoming as hard copies come to hand.

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.

21 comments on “Late polling”

  1. The Border Mail polled just over 300 people (I think 320). Remember thinking when I read it that it was statistically too small to be much use.

  2. Just Completed the Glug contest…After adding it all up my predictions are: Libs gain Evelyn, Hastings, Gembrook, Mt Waverley, Forrest Hill & South Barwon. Greens to get Melbourne & Richmond. That makes it 54-23-7-2-2.

    Only chance of a Lib gain from Nat seems to be Rodney where the sitting member is retiring. Commentary about Shepparton & Swan Hill forgets that these were, as the Americans say “open seats” last time. The benefit of incumbency is magnified in intra-conservative contests….probably worth at least 10%.

    For the upper house I predict the ALP will maintain control with 21 seats.

    Nth: 3-1-1
    West: 4-1-0
    Sth: 2-2-1
    East: 2-2-1
    SE: 3-2

    West: 3-2-0
    Nth: 2-3-0 (incl 1 nat)
    East: 2-3-0.

    Thats 21-16-3. 15 Libs & 1 Nat. I think an extra seat in Eastern Metro (at the expense of the Greens) is the Libs only real chance to improve on this.

    Western Victoria, despite the name, consists (in the current electoral context) primarily of ALP strongholds around Ballarat & Geelong. Only two Western seats (Polwarth & Lowan) leaned significantly to the conservatives in 2002, so the 3rd seat here should be Labor easily.

    Overall, for 2PP, I’ll go for a higher than expected swing of just over 4%…53.5%-46.5%. I think it will be higher in the country and safe Labor seats – lower in the eastern suburbs – say around 2-3% there.

  3. Peter KI is about sport on apart from the two Western seats.,21985,20816072-2862,00.html

    I fail to see how and where the greens can win four seats and think that they should explain further how they come to this conclusion. If labor failed to win a fourth in Western Metro then the Libs will collect the fifth seat. The jury is still out in West Vic.

    Apart from North Metro where labour ins 3 seats all other paper-house seats they will win two.

    People Power and Family first have not show up in any of my what if,,, The DLP has a chance in West Vic, it can pick up ALP surplus if the surplus ahead of the Greens, if the surplus is lower then the DLP after preferences from minor parties, but it is dependent on a number of factors which are possible. Greens do not win South Eastern Metro thanks to the liberals prefernce deal which hands it to the ALP.

    VEC Appears to have already counted some of the e-center votes in the absence of scrutiny… mor on my blog…

  4. The laest Newspol is in line with my assessment of teh minor parties and would put the reulst of teh upper-house back to my earlier prediction of teh Greens winning two seats only. This meas that the ALP will loose around 9-11 seats. Prahran and Eltham are two to watch as is teh seats around outer geelong. I wonder what information was extracted by teh VEC’s preliminary analysis of e-voting centers and who had access to this illegal highly questionable pre-poll analysis?

  5. Surprise Surprise Family First are back down at the expected 2.5 to 3% level… Over rated and overstated. They are effectively a religious sect and not supported by the main stream christian churches who are wise to keep religion separate from politics. Poeple Power will not rise above 1.6% and the Democrats vote will half from the 2004 Senate vote. That leaves the DLP as the only non top four players with a chance in the finals.

  6. Update; VEC is still stalling and either unwilling or unable to provide information on the number of postal ballt papers that have been issued.WHY? Thurday was the last daty for issuing postal votes and teh VEC should have provided a detailed count well and truely by now.

    The last thing we want to see is a bundle of 50 votes turn up unaccounted for. Millions of dollars spent on a computerised election management system and information on the number of ballot papers issued outstanding. does not do much to instill confidence in the computer system or the administration of the election.

    If it is a close result and the election comes before a court of disputed returns I am sure this fact will be raised.

    Also outstanding is information on the VEC’s analysis of the results from e-Voting centers. Seriuous questions remain anaswered as to under what conditions and legal rights the VEC process results of the election without public scrutineers… We are waiting for a response.

    November 24th, 2006 at 8:47 pm

    The table below is the latest information on Postal votes provided by the VEC.

    What’s missing, again, is that the number of postal votes that have been issued.

    The VEC reports a vague figure of over 200,000 votes issued but for some unknown reason is unable to provide a detailed breakdown figure on each District. Which is surprising as you would have thought that all postal voting applications would have been checked off the electronic voters list before being sent out and as such statistics on the number of postal; votes should be readily available.

    The VEC has spent millions of dollars on IT support and this important information cannot be relied on. I understand that postal returns are still being processed (even then they are electronically bar-coded) but the number of postal votes issued should have been available. We had trued to request this information daily but without success. This information should be on the VEC’s web site

    More information on my web site. Click my name above

    November 24th, 2006 at 8:50 pm
    Reports coming from the VEC indicate that they have already undertaken analysis of results form e-Voting Centers which in itself raises a number of serious issues related to the probity, security and public scrutiny of e-Voting. When questioned about the analysis the VEC went quite. More on my blog. Lost in e-Space.

  7. Newspoll is even predicting a swing to the ALP in country Victoria – if so, South Coast West will be one seat to watch this evening.
    The Weekend Australian – very critical of Ted Bailieu over the error in the Liberal costings.
    I’m predicting a net 5-7 seat gain for the Liberals, and the Greens win the seat of Melbourne. Bracks comfortably returned.

  8. Extract of emnail sent to all media…

    A late update to all regarding the votes taken at our 6 E Centres and Melbourne Airport. Each centre mentioned will be taking votes for all Districts in the State, additionally each of these centres will be counting all votes taken on election day.

    After analysing the number of voting centre results entered last night for 1st prefs (District and Region) and 2 CP we have realised that everyone could be waiting around all night for what would be dribs and drabs that we do not anticipate would make an impact on the result. Because of this we have decided that we will not be entering these small results on election night. These will be entered on Sunday during the day.

    It appears that the VEC has already undertaken an what could be illegal preliminary count.. Question have been asked and more will follow.

    How secure was the data and information and on what basis did the VEC have to undertake a preliminary count in the absence of scurtineers.

  9. I think one thing you’re not taking into account in Western Victoria is the Elaine Carbines factor. The first two seats are easily safe, and Carbines, who occupies the death seat, is a very popular incumbent. There’s quite a lot of local resistance to Labor’s decision to drop her to the third position on the ticket in favour of a couple of unionists from Melbourne, and the local paper has also been running quite strongly on this issue. I would expect a larger than normal below-the-line vote for Carbines, which – except in the event of a unexpectedly large swing to the Liberals – should put both the Liberals and the Greens out of reach.

  10. I thought third was a bit generous. Maybe forth would have neen about right. The fact is maost people will vote above the line. If Labour falls short of 50% which is required to elect 3 members then depedning on the size of the surplus ie the amount above 33.34% then she is in with a chance or she will feed the DLP. If the DLP do not survive then the NP are next in line. The greens are out of reahc already. INternal opolling indicates that teh ALP vbpte is not as strong in the regional centers (Bendigo, Ballarat, Gellong) Geelong has been the focus of a number of corruption inquries the outcome of which will not be known untol after the election. Good or bad it leaves a bad smell. I would not be holding out for a third spot and would nopt place a bet on the outcome. Analysis indictaes it’s the closest of all the regions.

  11. My prediction, the Labor party only losing a handful of seats to the Liberals. The Greens do not win any lower house seats, although pick up a few upper house ones. The Nationals lose Rodney to the Liberals.

    The upper house could be interesting, depending on the results and preference flows.

  12. A tally of the Postal votes issued is still outstanding in site five e-mails and one ohine call (As of 2:00PM). Ity appears that the VEC is not wanting or is unable to provide a total tally of the number of ballot papers they have issued. Quite extrodinary really.

    More questions raised as to teh appropiateness of teh VEC undertaking a preliminary tally of e-polling results in the absence of scrutineers. Informatoon available indicates that no candoadtes have been informed or invited to appoint scrutineers. Serious questions go unansered as the closes ranks knowing that this could become an issue if the election is close and an applictaion for a review is made to the court of disputed returns. Victoria faces an inquiry along the lines of problems associate with the US electonic voting system.

  13. UPDATE:

    I have just recived a rather abusive phone call from the VEC Commissioner Mr Tully who was reposndng to my emails expressing concern at the failure of teh VEC to provide information on the number of postal votes that had been received and issues surrounding earlier reports and emails from Glenda Frazer iondicating that the VEC had unertaled a preliminary count of e-voting center votes. Mr Tully was wuit ausive and was in denial of the fact that the VEC has in fact counted the electonic ballots. When I pointed out tehemail that had been sent by Glenda Frazer which clearly indicated that the VEc had in fact counted the votes again he trued to avoid teh question and made false accuastions. Still outstranding is the number of postal votes that has been issued. My Tully assured me that this information was available but afyter having been told that it would be made available and five emails later on infmration has been forthcomming. I have had a number of candiadtes make direct contact seeking the same. I think somehpo0w the VEc may have erred in having accessed this informtation. The phone call came immediately after I lodged a formal complaint and notified the media.

  14. You be the judge…

    Below is a copy of the letter sent to all the media by Glenda Fraser.

    From: Glenda Frazer
    Sent: Friday, November 24, 2006 8:37 AM
    Subject: Late update to results

    A late update to all regarding the votes taken at our 6 E Centres and Melbourne Airport. Each centre mentioned will be taking votes for all Districts in the State, additionally each of these centres will be counting all votes taken on election day. After analysing the number of voting centre results entered last night for 1st prefs (District and Region) and 2 CP we have realised that everyone could be waiting around all night for what would be dribs and drabs that we do not anticipate would make an impact on the result. Because of this we have decided that we will not be entering these small results on election night. These will be entered on Sunday during the day.

    Many apologies for those people who I have misinformed this afternoon, as I said this is a late change. We do not anticipate large numbers of votes from these centres. I will keep in touch with progress reports.

    This email in my reading clearly indicates that the VEC had undertaken a preliminary count of the ballot contrary to the denial now given.

    Most unprofessional. Maybe they have something to hide..

    Regards – Glenda

    Glenda Frazer
    Manager, Election Services
    Victorian Electoral Commission
    T 03 9299 0590
    F 03 9621 1204
    M 0413 043 012

  15. opps the comment “This email in my reading clearly indicates that the VEC had undertaken a preliminary count of the ballot contrary to the denial now given.”

    “Most unprofessional. Maybe they have something to hide..”

    Is my additon.. Not part of the letter

  16. I’m with the Electoral Commissioner on this one. These E centre booths are like the Brisbane Town Hall or Sydney Town Hall booths at interstate elections. You don’t keep the system running all night to get those totals phoned through to returning officers and holding staff waiting for only a handful of votes. That e-mail just clarified discussions that had been going on for several weeks. And I actually rang the VEC last night to check what that meant.

    I’ve got to say, the tendency for people to be putting their thoughts all over the internet on system tests is not helpful. What the VEC is reporting is exactly the standard which has been used at elections all around the country for the last decade. And many of the procedures they are adopting are actually designed to assist in reporting the results. That e-mail last night has allowed me to remove 7 booths from every district, now we know they are not being reported.

  17. Sorry I am reporting a concverstaion I had with the Commisioner. My nconcvern is that teh VEC has counted e-voting votes prior to teh close of teh ballot and in the absence of scruineers. I ahve raised questions in relation to this issue and rather then consutrutive discussion Mr Tully went into denial mode. Maybe teh mistake was with Glenda Frazer’s email. If the VEC had in fact accessed this data then it raises more questions in relation to teh probity od security of e-voting. I aklso have tried unsucessfully to obatin information on teh number of postal vots that hav been issued. Th VEC said it woul provide that information and five emails later and one phone call teh information is still outstanding. So much for maitaing an open and transparent electoral system. Maybe I should publish more of the various emails that have been floating around…

    Open and YTranspaernt elctions systems is a must if we are to maintain public confidence. The inability of teh VEC to reson appropriatly and provide information as requeste is of serious concern.

    We do not want another Florida situtation.. There are a number of questions that need answers not denial and avoidance. Tell me do you have teh data on the number of postal votes issued for each district.

    QWe are looking at this election from two different aspects you are lloking at it from reporting teh results. I am interest in the scrutiny of the ballot and accessibility of information. More then happy to debate this further.

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