Idle speculation: mid-March edition

An ACNielsen poll conducted between Thursday and Saturday has Labor leading 61-39, with 83 per cent saying the Brian Burke affair had not affected their opinion of Kevin Rudd. The accompanying Sydney Morning Herald report also says "internal Labor polling had shown the Coalition’s relentless attacks on Mr Rudd’s judgement and character had hurt the Coalition more than Labor". Perhaps one might go so far as to venture that there are signs of a trend emerging.

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.

204 comments on “Idle speculation: mid-March edition”

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  1. At the Midhurst booth, which we had not previously manned, we got, from memory, 30 per cent of the vote. I thought this was the beginning of new triumphs for the DLP. There were even articles in the press about the DLP winning House of Reps seats because there were places where we had outpolled the Libs. In fact, this was the last hurrah.

  2. I do not regret my involvement in the DLP or my candidacy for it. It was a valuable learning experience. We were treated like lepers by the press, lied about, abused, etc, etc. We were labelled right-wing, fascist, etc, etc, when we were a progressive party. Even today the ALP is adopting DLP policies, probably unknowingly. There are still people around today who say the most idiotic things about the DLP. But that’s politics. You have to get used to it.

    The Greens are the third party of choice, just as the DLP once was and then the Democrats were – but I do not think the Greens will ever be any more than that. Even so, being the third party of choice gives you some influence.

  3. I was so excited that I rushed down to the Greensborough booth and held up a sign for the DLP scrutineers to see through the window to show our success.

  4. Chris, this site has been set up so that it automatically rejects any mention of J*ck K*ne.

    C-Woo, that would depend on which two ministers they were. The laws of defamation and good taste preclude any further comment. 🙂

  5. Chris I was always under the impression that the DLP were the right of the ALP- Catholic anti communists and became a preference machine for the Liberals. Can you tell Chris what the DSP were all about? I love learnibg and this site is great for that

  6. A new phenomenon i have seen in Kingston is the “Union Wives” There seems to be an increasing trend for Union wives and even ALP wives becoming Green voters and even members

  7. I said it some time ago but the governments problem is that it has too many bushfires to put out – David Hicks, Iraq, IR Laws, Climate Change, Howard seen as too old etc. In 2004, everything was relatively smooth and they just had to wait until Latham self imploded, which he did – Rudd won’t do that and thats the problem. He isn’t out there in everyones face like Latham was. Its only strength is the economy however the down side is that interest rates went up 3 times in the past 12 months and the RBA has put it on the record that it may yet have to move. Thats important coz it constrains Howard and Co in the May Budget – too many giveaways and the RBA puts them up and that will be the final nail in the Coalition coffin. Its amazing how a change in leader can the dynamics of politics.

    I still reckon if things aren’t on the improve by end of April, Howard will retire. He won’t be able to face the prospect of 1) losing his seat and 2) losing government.

    The opinion polls have been showing trends for the past 15 or so months and the Lib/Nat primary vote has been stagnating around the 40% mark whilst Howards approval ratings have barely been above 50% (only 6 Newspolls in 15 months). It has all been there but the key difference is that the ALP with Beazley at the helm didn’t offer hope to the voters, Rudd has and the polls are a reflection of that.

    The old adage – “Governments lose elections, Oppositions don’t win them” – is playing out yet again, it seems.

  8. I believed that Rudd would have obtained a swing of approx. 6% in Qld when he took over. Given whats happening in Qld, I reckon 8% is now on the cards in Qld.

  9. The Democratic Labor Party was formed by anti-communists “expelled” by the ALP in 1955 (Victoria), 1956 (NSW) and 1957 (Queensland). It recommended preferences to the Liberals ahead of the ALP in order to keep the ALP out of office till it reformed. While to the right of the ALP of 50 years ago, it would be on many issues (IR, privatisation, deregulation, PPPs) to the left of the ALP today.

  10. I would like to reply at great length, but it would really take the discussion away from the topic of this thread and, based on past experience, it would encounter the computer problems of my previous attempted response to you. I have put a lot of material on the upperhouse site under the thread about the DLP and on this site under various threads related to the 2006 Victorian election. I also recommend The Split, by Robert Murray, The Pope’s Battalions, by Ross Fitzgerald, and The Great Labor Schism, by Brian Costar et al.

  11. As a Green, you may be interested to know that I got the DLP to add an environmental principle to its basic objectives in August 1974:
    ‘The protection and conservation of the natural environment and the planned use of natural resources in recognition of the close relationship between man and nature and the finite nature of the earth’s resources.’

  12. Thanks Chris can you give me the link to I have put a lot of material on the upperhouse site under the thread about the DLP and on this site under various threads related to the 2006 Victorian election. As for the DSP i meant to say DLP as i did flirt with the DSP/SA many years ago but they were too dogmatic, no chance to have a personal say. As i think you would have experienced being involved with a small party has many pluses. The involvement at a higher level, The chance of being a candidate, members listen to you more, job satisfaction and what others would class as small wins in elections are in fact huge if the parties were even. At this stage i doubt many Greens, FF , DLP would think they could win a lower house seat but i believe that will come. As the major parties lean further and further to the right it allows for lefty type parties and independents to gain votes in a wide range of seats. I think the chances of FF ever gaining a lower house seat is minimal considering their base is supermarket Christians where churches in the electorate bulge and sag due to them having the latest miracle fad ( how do i know this? I was a member for 4 years of a pentecostal baptist church ). The closest AOG type churches near me have grown moved grown again fallen apart and moved back to grow again. People actually will move house to be close to this type of moving church. What is another negative for FF is their belief that God will do what needs to be done so just pray and believe. This goes against being in parliament and making things happen yourself. I have witnessed and reported to the authorities the attempted stoning of native birds guarding their young by Christian youth as church leaders looked on laughing. The FF party is a contradiction

  13. Bill,

    If you look at the right-hand side of the pollbludger homepage you will find a heading for the Victorian election. The other link is At the side of the homepage is a list of topics. The most relevant is “An original DLP take on the new DLP”. I have no other comments as I do not intend to spend my life splitting posts into phrases.

  14. Makin.

    After reading the paper and seeing Bob Day’s “Interest rates aren’t the problem”, I think it’s goodnight to the Liberals in this marginal.

  15. bill, if you were part of the DSP/SA you would have no chance of influencing public policy whatsoever. As a member of the Greens you might have much more ability to do that, even if it’s hardly any say.

  16. My spies tell me that the Liberals have endorsed the former MP Ken Aldred, a well known crackpot and LaRouche sympathiser, for the marginal seat of Holt.
    This will be a fairly large-sized scandal. It also shows how little chance the Libs give themselves of winning a key marginal like Holt, where the demographics are moving in their favour and where they got a big swing last time.

  17. Not able too say too much without compromising my anonimity, but Aldred’s victory was more to do with two rather big cock-ups by the Kroger forces (who were hoping to get Emmanuel Cicchiello preselected, and should have easily had the numbers) in the final week of campaigning which seemed to annoy many people in their own faction, handing victory to Aldred.

  18. A “fairly large-sized scandal” it may turn out to be. But as yet there is zero coverage of this in the mainstream media.

    You won’t find any mention of it in today’s Crikey either.

  19. The media are probably exhasuted from covering the mud fights of the last two weeks. It’s probably reaching the stage where ministerial resignations are no longer news!

  20. It really doesn’t matter what Aldred’s victory was “due to,” he is now the Liberal candidate, and this will no doubt be brought to Howard’s attention in Question Time tomorrow. Since it was Howard who got Aldred disendorsed in 1996, after his slanderous attack on Mark Leibler (a Liberal donor), this will be a bit awkward for him.

  21. The Advertiser reports today that Bob Day, the multi-millionaire businessman who is the Liberal candidate for Makin, has so far spent $100,000 even before the election campaign has begun. The builder and businessman is sending packs containing mini-rulers, notepads, calendars and eight-page glossy brochures to each of Makin’s 95,000 voters and is taking out half-page advertisements in local newspapers. His Labor opponent, described by Day as a “fantastic Salisbury mayor”, has spent a few hundred dollars on business cards and a fax machine. Political analyst Haydon Manning said it wouldn’t be surprising if the Liberals retained Makin against a national trend.

  22. You took my thunder Phil. I brought the paper home just to write it. What is interesting to look at is the answers the 3 people they interviewed on the question How much is the way you vote influenced by political advertising? person 1: “No political advertising wont influence me at all. I already know who i am going to vote for in the election. advertising wont change the way i am going to vote” person 2: “I don’t think it would influence who i vote for. Bribery’s not going to win me over. i haven’t made up my mind who im going to vote for yet. I don’t even know who’s running.” person 3 ” If ones advertising and the other is not, i guess they’re the ones you will know. Ill probably decide on the day. If they’re giving away free stuff it could change my mind”

  23. What is said is not the first couple that give out gifts its the snowballing affect where everyone will try to out do each other. I suppose i could give out native tree seedlings but could only afford one little street

  24. from the ABC just to show my point

    A Democrats candidate on the New South Wales north coast is giving away free beer in the lead-up to next week’s state election.

    Ben Smith is standing in the safe Nationals seat of Ballina.

    He says distributing stubbies of beer with his name and picture on the label is a novel way of raising his profile.

    Mr Smith says the stunt would make the party’s founder, the late Don Chipp, proud.

    “We’re a good commonsense party and this is basically just about the promotion of Australia values,” he said.

    “Also I guess having a bit of a laugh and not taking yourself too seriously.”

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