Galaxy: 55-45

It seems Galaxy has settled into a three-week polling pattern, compared with Newspoll’s fortnightly, ACNielsen’s monthly and Roy Morgan’s weekly (usually – they seem to have taken last week off) UPDATE: Sorry, it’s actually been four weeks since the last Galaxy – the previous three were three weeks apart. Today’s Galaxy survey has Labor leading 55-45 – still narrower than other recent polls, but a slight correction from its quirky 53-47 of three weeks ago. Despite the flak Galaxy copped last time, respondents were again asked a question about Labor’s union connections. They were also asked if the Prime Minister was “addressing problems in Aboriginal communities because of the upcoming federal election or because he really cares about the problem”. All revealed here.

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.

314 comments on “Galaxy: 55-45”

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  1. King and Leigh found that the attractiveness of female candidates was less electorally valuable than that of male candidates. And that it helped new candidates more than incumbents. In any seat where there are two or three attractive but little known female candidates, you would expect any marginal benefit to be cancelled out.

    The former finding is interesting. The latter seems explicable by the fact that once you someone enters the category of ‘politician’ you aren’t inclined to sexualise them.

    Mind you any study that put Julie Bishop in the top 10 of anything, let alone attractiveness, may have its flaws.

  2. Graeme,
    I’m surprised they found it more powerful for chaps than chapettes.I was surprised that Peta Kaye Croft not only won her seat on the Gold Coast in the state parliament, but managed to hold onto it. In the same way I was surprised that the Sunshine Coast ex-One Nation lass managed to hold onto her seat (although she’s not my cup of tea, but a neighbour of mine keeps telling me she’s a hottie… go figure)

    And I will not for the life of me accept any other answer as to why Kate Ellis sits directly in camera shot behind Rudd in parliament if it isn’t to cash in on the fact that she’s better looking than the political wallpaper that’s makes up the rest of the chamber.

    I can understand why people aren’t inclined to sexualise politicians – in that relationship, there’s only one that does the rogering.

    As for Julie Bishop, some funny bugger called her “cover girl for Hypnotism Monthly magazine” .Considering those eyes of hers, I still laugh at that.

  3. Psephos was overseas for seven weeks and is now working through the backlog. National elections take priority over second-level elections.

  4. My assessment is that people are spooked about Labor’s prospects in Victoria, because of the atypical result in 2004. Latham plus interest rates plus a vigorous campaign against tolls on the Scoresby/East Link freeway contributed to Labor’s worst result in Victoria since 1990 (and iirc 2nd worst since 1977). So the margins in a lot of seats – especially mortgage belt and other outer eastern Melbourne suburbia – are misleadingly exaggerated. If the swing is anything above 3% nationally, there will be plenty of seats in Victoria where it is likely to be over 5%, which is the minimum required for Government members to be ejected.

  5. The 7 (very little) and 9 (nothing at all) news services didn’t want to know about “Coalition of the drilling” comments.

  6. I think Morgan, maybe tomorrow and Newspoll on Tuesday will both have Lab TPP at around 58 to 42.
    I don’t think the Libs Support will improve much over the next couple of Months and will most likely drop in Sept. early Oct.
    I’m predicting a RuddSlide

  7. 7.30 report is making a topic about the “Coalition of the drilling” comments. The ad said “confusion in government ranks about the reason about going to Iraq”. I think this is Rudd’s rabbit out of the hat – but it was puuled out by Howard/Nelson.


  8. what rot,heres the good OIL
    the GiST of it is this
    The children were thrown OVERBOARD after being TAMPA’d with IRAQ

  9. First up, thanks to Charlie, Chris Curtis, Mr Speaker and others for encouraging me to stick with this; you may regret doing that. So I stay-

    Mark Says:

    July 5th, 2007 at 8:18 am

    …. My SA mates reckon Sturt is very gettable…… Mark I was at the Magill Primary school handing out HTV for Labor when Mr. Pine first put his hand up for Sturt. We had no chance then and no chance now-unless the blue ribbon band has shifted out of the area in the past 5-6 years and made way for ALOT of also rans.

    If Sturt goes Ill fly home to Adelaide and personally ‘moon’ Mr Pine all the way down to Devils Elbow where a few of his mates will land after they toss cars over the barriers at Windy Point (ie. that would take one hell of a swing away in votes and sentiment in the city of Churches and sleepers).

    Dobell is at $1.63 for Ken Ticehurst and the ALP is at $2.20. Cool; Im going to take some of that action (hardly anybody else is calling Dobell for Labor).

  10. My crystal balls says Makin, Wakefeild, Kingston and Boothby will go, but Sturt ? NA. I HOPE I am wrong-wouldnt be the first time.

  11. Re Boothby Bill- what about the Grey vote (5th highest) tendency to stick with pretty boy conservative Dr this and that types and the ‘if it aint broke dont fix it mentality’ of that generation I hear you say.

    Some of those grey voters arent as cheap to buy ($500 at last budget) as Costello thinks [and he should have waited till AFTER the election to hand that money out,duhh !!]. They wont all automatically vote for Southcott this time around: Pollsters are suggesting some vulnerability in the grey vote for JWH and (talk of Testosterone voters) Mrs Cornes isnt too bad on the eye; she looks young and fresh compared to dreary old Southcott. Im sticking to Boothby going to Labor (despite reservations about her lack of political fibre beyond football club change rooms). Cheers.

  12. Watching the news tonight I am thinking they will be waiting a bit on the paedophile arrests -its nicely organised I think they can turn the tap on and off as needed.

    My guess is they need a circuit breaker they just go in and arrest a few black paedophiles. They will probably wait and see next weeks polling first.

    How’s the weather tonight – in where is it Vladivostok or maybe Harbin Lol!

  13. This is certainly an interesting election year.

    Bryan’s graphs on the quiet site are still showing Labor ahead in all areas and above trends for previous 3 elections for Labor at this time of the year. I think, understandably, Australians do genuinely love Kevin.

    I agree with posters that have wondered whether it will translate into votes and may well save my wager for Wednesday of election week. I am very much looking forward to a debate. Both men can speak well but both can also get flustered under pressure.

    I am not entirely convinced that this far out any one issue will galvanise the electorate one way or another. In terms of probability, it is more likely a close election with a reduced Coalition majority and no senate majority.

  14. First the reasons for being in Iraq were weapons of mass destruction (WMD ) and chemical weapons which they never found, then came Saddam Hussein, then Al Qaeda and terriorism, then it was staying the course and helping Iraq defend for itself and now low and behold its Oil.. what next?
    It was lies, lies and more lies and look at Iraq today what a mess.. and what a disgrace.. Bush, Howard and Blair should all be jail for this pathetic lie and murderous mayhem that has resulted..

    This Government is falling apart and is trying every possible means to survive but it is to late it is about to be exterminated.. Just watch it pass some hostile bills in the coming months which will be hard for new government to change without a majority…

  15. I thought at the time and I’m more sure now that the real reason for iraq (and now Iran) is the State of Israel.
    If you can remember “The Wall” was becoming an issue,and embarresment, the invasion and occupation of Iraq eclipsed one scandel with another.

  16. The really bizarre thing about Nelson’s comment is how totally wrong it is – just as the endless claims from the left that the invasion of Iraq was “all about oil” were wrong. Neither Nelson nor the left have explained HOW invading and occupying Iraq made either the West’s oil supplies more secure or made the oil companies’ profits bigger. If the West wanted Iraqi oil all it had to do was cut a deal with Saddam. He was happy to sell: after all, Iraq has nothing else to sell apart from dates. Getting rid of Saddam has actually made oil supplies LESS secure, which is why the oil companies, despite all the left’s slogans, were never very keen on the invasion – they have always prefered to do deals with whatever dictator or sultan has the oil and can supply it with the least fuss. Nelson must have had a complete brain-spasm to have made such a dumb comment, which apart from being factually false undercuts five years of Bush-Howard denials that the invasion was about oil. No wonder Howard is furious. But of course it was Howard alone who appointed and promoted Nelson, despite his towering ego and vanity and his notoriously suspect judgement.

  17. Adam

    I would have to agree with you that it was a dumb comment by Nelson, it made world headlines on CNN who report that the Australian defense minister said that one of the main reasons that Australia were in Iraq was to secure the oil supplies. But Nelson also made blunder after blunder on the Koscovo death also. Would also agree with you that it was not a reason for invading Iraq as Saddam kept oil supplies secure but it is now a reason for staying due to the instability of the country.


    Agree with your point of view re Israel being a reason, Saddam was financing suicide bombers in Israel, promising US$50,000 to their families.
    The matter of Saddams payments was raised in relation to the $300 million that AWB paid to Saddam and how much of this went to financing those payments.
    There are articles on how Bush and his religous right supporters view Israel as special to their beliefs, regardless of this it does support the invasion on the grounds of stopping Saddam’s financing and encouragement for the bombers.

  18. Adam

    After Desert Storm in 1991, Saddam was a toothless tiger. NATO forces had him under complete control. He had nothing to do with 9/11. He was not exporting terrorism, he had no weapons of mass destruction. So why did ‘Dubya’ invade?

    In 2000, Iraq converted all its oil transactions under the Oil for Food program to Euros. When the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, it returned oil sales from the euro to the USD. One of the first goals of US forces was to secure the Iraqi oil ministry building in Bagdhad, which had miraculously escaped damage.

    Obviously the US was keen to protect the oil supply from Iraq. But the key strategic goal was to return the sale of oil from Iraq (the second largest oil reserve) to US dollars. Read Petrodollar Warfare by William R Clark for an insight. Basically, the US dollar (and the US economy) depends on oil being traded in US dollars not euros.

  19. General Oracle

    If the Coalition hold on to Government as you predict, they will most certainly keep their Senate majority.

    It would only be under a Ruddslide that the ALP might prize seate control from the Coalition.

    I predict a Labor win with an obstructionist Senate unless they do preference deals with Family First.

  20. It was a serious gaffe from Nelson, coming at a time when Australians are pretty cynical about the Howard Government (see the 58% who think the NT intervention is an election stunt).

    ‘Neither Nelson nor the left have explained HOW invading and occupying Iraq made either the West’s oil supplies more secure or made the oil companies’ profits bigger. ‘

    It’s somewhat off-topic, but – I don’t think anyone can reduce the war to the oil factor, however, it’s hardly likely Iraq would’ve been invaded if they only exported dates. Also, whilst oil companies are normally quite happy to deal with despots, there were various restrictions imposed on Saddam’s oil – firstly, by the UN, and secondly, by the fact that the oil was tied up in contracts to France, Russia and China, but not the US. I think a fair summary of the situation is that oil supply was one of several motivating factors for the CoW.

    In any case, it all reinforces the assocation in voter’s minds between ‘dubious war’ and ‘oil’. I think the Iraq war has failed to be an election-deciding issue, but cynicism toward Howard on this issue is pretty widespread across the community, and is compounded when viewed through the unflattering prism of Workchoices inter alia

  21. I dunno, I hope that the ppl here that say Rudd will make it happen are right . I am dubious though about the reasons you think that people switch their votes. I remember long ago (the one Keating won) and I was a recently disabled/ unemployed visitor from Darwin in a house on the North Shore of Sydney (Killara), The only “Keating guy there” and two amazing things happend that have forever hardened my thoughts towards the way Aussies vote.

    1. I managed to scare a life long Liberal anal retentive into voting for Labor with drunken claims of the elimination of Medicare( I made it up on the fly, but hey, It worked) 🙂 (Took 3 beers and about an hour) 🙂

    2. The only other person to change their vote out of that group was a highly educated, quite decent and nice lady. Wealthy but with a social concience. (Tutured “special kids” for free for 30 yrs so… ) She voted Howard cos “I hate the way Keating leaves his mouth open when he finishes speaking) !!!

    These are the type of things I think are probably what decides our elections

    Silly Silly things

  22. Opps, soz, she didn’t vote “Howard” she voted for that other guy the Libs had on the flag then (Hewsen) mebbe?

  23. Mr Chris

    There are issues that will decide peoples vote in this election and IR is a main issue. IR is not just about Work Choices and the loss of workers rights to collectively bargain, the loss of penalty rates, public holidays annual leave and other conditions.

    Aside from the stories of people being sacked because they are union members or will not sign AWAs, of restaurant workers being paid $8 an hour and the 457 visa workers being brought in as cheap labor to work as vritual serfs, as the United States government agency reported there is also the issue of OH&S.

    Howards takeover of OH&S from the states lessens employers obligations and coupled with his Work Choices amkes for more unsafe work sites. I was quite suprised that Hockey said in connection with a recent matter that it was up to the state governmetn to resolve the issue as ultimatley Howard OH&S laws override the state laws.

    There is an interesting story here about OH&S.

    Falling concrete has prompted workers to walk off the job at a Perth building site where union hard man Joe McDonald was caught on video abusing a construction manager over safety.

    When peoples lives are at risk it does focus attention.

  24. I dont care whether the Iraq war was motivated primarily from the oil issue or not, though I would have put it in the top 3 reasons along with getting a foothold over there, somewhere, for Israel’s sake. What I do care about is public/voter perception-

    If Nelson’s gaffe rekindles some voters memories about objections to Australian involvement in Iraq (past and/or present) and the AWB scandal, it may get to a point where some find another reason to NOT vote for JWH this time.

    However, for the life of me I dont understand why so many were prepared to ‘overlook’ (eg. Tampa: Babies Overboard) issues that I would have thought would put JWH into retirement in 1998,2001 and 2004. It has almost gotten to the point where it seems to me that the majority are prepared to forgive anything so long as it dosent rattle the individual persons world too much.

    Have we created such a frightening dog-eat-dog social and economic system that giving a damn about your next door neighbour (‘the other’) is a convenience most of us can no longer afford to make some sacrifices to acknowledge ?

    If we have, the incumbent will once again win an election they probably should have lost. Im not suggesting the Opposition are much better, but bad Government (Workchoices etc) should be penalised at the ballot box. Will it this time, I bloody hope so.

  25. 2004 was quite a disaster for Labor, who should probably have gained some ground, rather than gone backwards.

    Almost all of the issues of 2004 remain recent or current – interest rates, housing costs, Hicks, environment, Iraq, plus the accumulated baggage of the Liberal’s lesser moments (AWB, children overboard, etc).

    The so-called ‘tipping point’ that is generating the poll results we have consistently seen must be IR, since so little else has changed.

    ‘Have we created such a frightening dog-eat-dog social and economic system that giving a damn about your next door neighbour (’the other’) is a convenience most of us can no longer afford to make some sacrifices to acknowledge ? ‘

    In terms of Iraq, at least, Australia has gotten off fairly lightly, sustaining minimal casualties whilst making a symbolic contribution. We’ve sent in elite troops rather than grunts who are getting killed in urban warfare. I thnk that may be why voters have let the Liberals off the hook – in the US, plenty of voters seem pretty incensed about Iraq, no doubt due to the significant loss of (American) life, and the idiotic sums of money involved.

  26. In my opinion 2004 went the way it did because of the Interest Rate scare campaign. Latham himself certainly helped, but it was the hip pocket nerve that told at the ballot box. That card has been well and truly torn up now that we have had 8 interest rate rises in a row, and more are on the way.

  27. Dario,

    there is no evidence that interest rate rises will rise anytime soon, there will be no adjustments made this year

    Happy Revolutionary,
    There has not been significant loss of American life in Iraq. In proper wars armies lose more than 2000 soldiers a day rather than over the course of four years. The loss of life in Iraq is massively overblown compared to other conflicts

  28. ‘There has not been significant loss of American life in Iraq. In proper wars armies lose more than 2000 soldiers a day rather than over the course of four years. The loss of life in Iraq is massively overblown compared to other conflicts’

    This may be quite true, relatively speaking, but the loss appears significant when one considers how unpopular the war was even before it begun. It took years for serious protest to get happeneing in the case of Vietnam. With Iraq, thousands took to the streets before it started.
    In any case, I was just speculating that Iraq probably played a much bigger role in last year’s Congressional elections than it did in our 2004 election. If loss of life isn’t the distinguishing factor here, what is?

  29. “I managed to scare a life long Liberal anal retentive into voting for Labor with drunken claims of the elimination of Medicare( I made it up on the fly, but hey, It worked) 🙂 ”

    Howard has implemented almost every other policy from Future Directions, and after all we “all know what he stands for” 😉

  30. Andrew – you appear to have overlooked the significant loss of life of Iraqi citizens (minimum 200,000, more like half a million) who are paying the price for an invasion it’s not clear many of them wanted in the first place. Part of the reason that US casualties are so “low” (and your appreciation that every life is precious is truly touching) is that for the most part they are holed up in the Green Zone, where insurgents can’t get close to them.

  31. the lancet study was plainly wrong, this is because they took the number of known dead and extropolated using the formula used for contagious pandemics. Which since getting blown up isnt contagious means the study was flawed.

    also i was only making comment to put the iraq war in perpective comparatively

    and what makes Iraq different from vietnam is conscription. These people are volunteer soldiers, who signed into the defence forces willingly, knowing the dangers involved. which is sometimes a point that is lost in this debate

  32. Just a humble girls view, but I think some are reviewing the decision to go invade Iraq through evidence accumulated since.

    Even if you assume that Howard and Bush are dangerous fools, look for a moment at Mr Blair. Blair did not got to Iraq because he needed to obey Bush, he thought it was going to be a cakewalk. Murdoch, official publisher to the Liberal Party, actually said the invasion would get oil prices down to $20 a barrel quickly. There was always a key oil driver and only Mr Murdoch was honest enough to admit it up front.

    With a government in such disarray it can’t even agree on what truth and what lies to tell bring on the Ruddslide.

  33. Iraq won’t make a difference in the election.

    It’s far far away and doesn’t affect anyone’s life.

    In 2004 I’m sure most of you thought it was a big deal, but the public didn’t, still don’t and won’t.

    This is a one-week wonder.. a bit like Howard’s Obama comments a couple of months ago, remember them ?

    Work Choices matters because it affects people’s jobs.

    WIIFM – “What’s in it for me ?” – the mind of the mug voter.

  34. Actually Andrew, the Lancet people did no such thing.The 2 Lancet studies simply used cluster sampling.Hardly a radical methodology.

    The only thing radical about the whole shebang seemed to be the extraordinary lengths that some in the political cheersquad went to misinterpret the findings [sounds familiar – just like the polls!] which might have been effective if any of them (from what I saw) actually had any basic numeracy skills.

    [Again – just like the polls!] 😉

  35. Come on Andrew we have your assertion against a respected peir reviewed article. Oh and you have Andrew Bolt on your side. The lancet study is clearly one of the most reliable independent estimates we have. The defence rest M’laud.

    The coalition of the drilling (loved that when I first saw it yesterday) need to trivialise the death toll both of US soldiers and of civilians because Iraq was a stupid reaction to 9/11. Exactly how many died in 9/11? How many innocents must be killed to avenge each of those deaths?

    Given it is a ‘war on terror’ when are you going to start trivialising the fatalities from 9/11 and subsequent attacks? Say compare and contrast it to Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan?

    Oh you wouldn’t do that would you because in the war every vote (opps I mean life) is precious isn’t it?

    I honestly don’t understand how anyone can sit back and rationalise such massive loss of life.

  36. “..The so-called ‘tipping point’ that is generating the poll results we have consistently seen must be IR, since so little else has changed.”

    You are right about Work Choices, a policy Pimpmobile if ever there was one. But the punters might well have piled into the back seat, knees tightly together, except for one thing. There is now, for a change, a highly credible alternative means of locomotion – the grey Volvo chauffeured by the nice, intelligent, and articulate Mr Rudd. Not to everyone’s taste, sure, but unquestionably safe and robust.

    IMHO when the history is written of what, just conceivably, could turn out as a bloodbath for the Federal Liberals, the tipping point will be seen to be their leaders’ hubris in destroying Good Ol’ Predictable Kim.

    Smarter strategists would have gone lightly on him, even helping out him out with a few deliberate mistakes, knowing that they could floor him in the run-up to an election.

  37. I am not sure that here is the place to consider the merits of the lancet study – however two points – the journal and authors conceded that they had a political aim in publishing the story – which I have a problem with.
    – in conducting the survey (from which they extapolated the figures) the survey people asked for proof and in x% of cases, they were shown death certificates. This was the proof they needed. However, when this figure was then expanded out over the population, it meant that there should be x% of death certificates and there weren’t.
    The study was flawed

    BUT this does not mean that thousands of people haven’t died in Iraq – they have – this debate is about whether 100,000 civilians or 500,000 civilians have died. Whatever figure, the question to ask is whether more or less would have died under Saddam.

  38. re: Andrew & Iraq war deaths: do check out for what is admitted as a very partial civilian death count. Some notes about the Iraq war – the 1,000 contractor death was marked this week this includes 3 Australian contractor deaths – something the media has generally missed), so the reality is that approaching 3900 soldier/contractor deaths have been recorded. As well, the death toll is reduced due to the prevalence of body armour and close proximity of battlefield medication (check the wounded/death ration from Vietnam to Iraq – 5:1 compared to 12:1). If we had “conventional war” rates of death (WW2 was 3:1, Korea 4:1) we would start seeing at least double this. And then we should consider the numbers deployed – 130,000 reported compared to the maximum US deployment in Vietnam of 540,000 to get the scale of deaths.

    All that aside, Iraq remains a shootin’ war Australia is involved in, so will remain somewhere in the news, and thus a reason for people to remember. Nelson’s comments highlights that. Not a great vote decider but one that will sit there and remind people of Howard’s legacy.

    On seats to fall to the ALP, I don’t think Wentworth is one of them for the reasons people have given in previous discussions re this. I’m not convinced that Turnbull will lose (or allow himself to lose…).

  39. Or Labors stupidity in axeing Kim was the moment when Howard’s 2nd great escape became more likely than not.

  40. The latest Morgan Poll is out. Good for Labor, not for the coalition. Morgan says “Soft ALP voters are defined as those who said Australia is “heading in the right direction” as well as saying they would vote Labor if an election were held today.” Which is 20 percent by the way. However I believe this definition to be very questionable. I think overall Australia is heading in the right direction but in some areas it is not. I certainly wouldn’t consider myself a “soft” ALP supporter. Hell would freeze over before I voted for Howard.

  41. That’s two polls now showing a slight drop in coalition support and an increase in Labor’s support since the National Emergency. Does Howard have a credibility problem? Will the question of trust do him in in the long run?

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