Road to nowhere

The past few days have seen a lot of discussion in the media about the state of play in all-important Queensland. On Monday, Michael McKenna of The Australian reported that the Liberals’ internal polling was worse in blue-ribbon Ryan than in any other Coalition-held Queensland seat, apart from Bonner. Liberal member Michael Johnson reportedly blames this on the government’s determination to solve western Brisbane’s traffic problems by building the Goodna bypass rather than upgrading the Ipswich Motorway, a decision made with a view to shoring up the Ipswich-based seat of Blair. As Graham Young puts it at Online Opinion: “People in Ipswich refer to the current motorway, which serves as their major link to Brisbane, as a carpark, and people in the western suburbs of Brisbane are happy to live in a quiet cul-de-sac and don’t want another link road with connections to them put through their area”. The Australian report also brings us the surprising news that Liberal polling has Gary Hardgrave leading in Moreton, held on a margin of 2.8 per cent.

Elsewhere, Labor strategists quoted by Dennis Atkins of the Courier-Mail say polling in regional Queensland points to “two party preferred votes north of 55 per cent”. Presumably this refers to the target marginals of Blair (5.7 per cent), Herbert (6.2 per cent), Flynn (7.7 per cent) and Hinkler (8.3 per cent). Also in the Courier-Mail, Madonna King says Liberal insiders “struggle to dispute” Labor talk that Bonner, Moreton, Blair, Herbert, Flynn and even Leichhardt (margin 10.3 per cent) are “in the bag”, although Labor is apparently less confident about Longman and Petrie. King says three-cornered contests in Leichhardt and Flynn are an “electoral gift to Labor”, while Lisa Allen of the Financial Review quotes a Liberal source lamenting the departure of Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch and his “98 per cent name recognition in that electorate”.

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.

378 comments on “Road to nowhere”

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  1. Adam, i know of lots of Liberal voting gays (not so many lesbians) and it would seem that a party based on individualism and freedom (though not necessarily practising it) would be the natural home for gays and lesbians.

    A lot are very green although so many on the left support regimes that treat gays and lesbians so badly such as Cuba.

  2. Thasnks Blackbird,

    If I have to wait until next Tuesday, I’m going to suffer some withdrawal symptoms before then

    I’d better buy some single malt, help make the time pass

    Adam – leftoids rule in Ports!!!

    Leftoids are the natural demographic of “The Age” and judging by today’s headline, theyve finally started to fall out of love with Kevin Rein.

    Ports’ leftoids will forgive the visit to the strip club, forgive the wife who expolits workers in the UK, and forgive the $5million offer for a beach house. After all, don’t all union officials want these things?

    But the public me-tooism over the death penalty???, hoo-boy ….it was time for a big headline

  3. roy Orbison, Remove the glasses mate. the fact is people are voting against workchoices. they dont care if Belinda Neal is the Labor candidate. Sometimes the most undeserving get lucky.

  4. Presenting this site’s top 40 most frequent commenters. First bracketed number shows their ranking from the top 20 I did in March. Gone from the charts but not from our hearts: Ben Raue, Geoff Robinson, “Ray” and “tom”.

    1 (1) * adam (2176)
    2 * Simon Howson (1135)
    3 * Glen (1020)
    4 (12) * Gary Bruce (993)
    5 (2) * Melb city (848)
    6 * Kina (725)
    7 (6) * bill weller (721)
    8 (3) * William Bowe (662)
    9 * Paul K (622)
    10 * Call the election please (572)
    11 (17)* Edward StJohn (568)
    12 * STROP (566)
    13 * Frank Calabrese (515)
    14 (4) * Antony Green (440)
    15 * ruawake (439)
    16 (8) * Chris Curtis (434)
    17 * jasmine_Anadyr (421)
    18 (15)* Hugo (398)
    19 * Julie (374)
    20 (14)* bmwofoz (363)
    21 * Scorpio (362)
    22 * The Speaker (358)
    23 * Pi (353)
    24 * Richard Jones (343)
    25 (16)* Evan (333)
    =26 * Martin B (331)
    =26 * howard hater (331)
    28 * Lord D (318)
    29 (7) * Sacha (306)
    30 (19)* oakeshott country (289)
    31 * Derek Corbett (288)
    32 (11)* David Walsh (279)
    33 * Will (268)
    34 * Possum Comitatus (265)
    35 * Arbie Jay (261)
    36 * blindoptimist (253)
    37 * blackburnpseph (251)
    38 * Blacklight (243)
    =39 * marky marky says (242)
    =39 * Greeensborough Growler (242)

  5. Michael P, I agree that if there was a liberal party based on individualism and freedom, gays and lesbians would vote for it. Sadly there’s only a conservative party based on Bill Heffernan slandering a gay judge.

  6. Should there be truth in advertising laws or what?

    “Belinda has lived in Woy Woy Bay with husband John for over 20 years. Together they have raised their two sons on the Central Coast.

    Belinda has experience as a Gosford City Councilor and as a Senator. Her priorities have always been local jobs, roads, services and infrastructure. She has a practical working knowledge of government to offer the electorate of Robertson.

    Belinda established and ran a small business in Erina. Belinda knows that viable local businesses and a strong economy mean more local jobs.

    She was a Foundation Board member of Central Coast Mariners, and is deeply committed to the Umina United Soccer Club. Belinda has been involved in many local groups including the Community Tenancy Scheme, the Central Coast Women’s Health Centre and Child Abuse Prevention Services.

    Belinda’s work and life experiences will provide fresh thinking for the Central Coast. She will be a strong local voice and a vital part of Kevin Rudd’s team. “

  7. [ top 40 most frequent commenters ]

    Clearly some of us have way too much time on our hands. I hope many of the most frequent commenters ( is there such a word ) are contributing to William’s kitty to help pay for the bandwidth. I’m in the top 10 and so I consider it only fair that I help out financially. I hope others feel the same way.

  8. William that chart is just going to promote entries that are done just to get onto the charts. I feel I need to talk more now so I can be on the billbowed chart with a bullet!.

  9. Whatever happened to Strop – I remember him yelling about how this was ‘his last msg ever’ for a time… but then… he would return… what happened? Come back Strop – all is forgiven. (You can see, I’m gunning for the next top 40 eh?!)

  10. Another truth in advertising case:

    Mike Symon is a proud member of Kevin Rudd’s Labor team. Mike lives with his wife and two daughters aged five and seven in Heathmont. Mike understands the pressures on working families, in his neighborhood and community.

    Mike’s local background has enabled him to witness the deterioration of health care and education since the election of the Howard Liberal Government. The attacks on fairness in our community inspired Mike to join the Australian Labor Party in 1997.

    Mike has been particularly proud to participate in the development of Labor’s policy on climate change, and making Australian workplaces fair again. He strongly believes that every Australian who wants to work deserves a job with decent pay and conditions.

    Mike has worked for 24 years as an electrician, starting as an apprentice and working his way up to a leading hand on sites across Victoria. Mike’s deep concern for social justice and a safe workplace led him to become an occupational health and safety representative and member of the Electrical Trades Union.

    Educated in Box Hill and Bayswater, Mike has undertaken post-trade training in electrical, telecommunications, data, and workplace training and holds a Diploma of Occupational Health and Safety.

    Outside of work, Mike’s interests are gardening, football, home renovations and spending time with his wife Cheryl and their young children.

  11. Australian PMs by days served

    1 Robert Menzies 6,740
    2 John Howard 4,230
    3 Bob Hawke 3,207
    4 Malcolm Fraser 2,678
    5 Billy Hughes 2,663
    6 Joseph Lyons 2,649
    7 Stanley Bruce 2,448
    8 Alfred Deakin 1,777
    9 Andrew Fisher 1,761
    10 Ben Chifley 1,621
    11 Paul Keating 1,544
    12 John Curtin 1,368
    13 John Gorton 1,156
    14 Gough Whitlam 1,072
    15 Edmund Barton 997
    16 James Scullin 807
    17 Harold Holt 693
    18 William McMahon 637
    19 Joseph Cook 451
    20 George Reid 322
    21 Chris Watson 113
    22 Arthur Fadden 40
    23 John McEwen 23
    24 Earle Page 20
    25 Frank Forde 8

  12. Labor Candidate CV writing guide

    1. Do not mention or only mention in passing a politically connected spouse with maybe a first name,

    2. Create a small business profile – easy just register something anything with ASIC – dont provide any detail just say I was involved with a business – no awkward questions that way.

    3. Downplay any union links – if you are union official dont say it just say something a deep interest in working people or something like that.

    4. Find any local links no matter how small – turn up at Lions Clubs, Old Peoples Homes, the local Milkbar, join them all -no one needs to know how many meetings or what you did for the group

    There that should be enough to get you started.

  13. Edward – sounds like you’ve been reading up about the Towke fellow – from Cronulla… the one that just got disendorsed – the one who changed his name! (You forgot to mention that on your list! [Darn! No. 5. – change name… if suspiciously ethnic!])

  14. Lol Mr Rocket v. good.

    I would drop the union stuff for a Liberal and put in its place an instruction about something soft and cuddly

    eg. John in his spare time likes to work with disabled kids or provides free plumbing services to local pensioners.

    But the ethnic thing would definitely go in.


    I’ve missed your wavelength tonight.

  15. [Edward – sounds like you’ve been reading up about the Towke fellow – from Cronulla… the one that just got disendorsed – the one who changed his name! ]

    Maybe he could be the new candidate for Banks? 😛

  16. Liberal Candidates Resume

    1: Mention that you are happily married with two lovely children, and have been for a number of years.

    2: That you a small business man who experienced problems when Keating was in government with high interest rates.. but came out of those when Howard was elected and even more so when workchoices was introduced.

    3: Was once a union member but discovered they were corrupt and nasty and were hiding things under the bed.

    4: State that you are a Church member, member of Amensty International and any other group in the area although you never attend meetings…

  17. Not sure how we got here from there… but someone menioned Dobell and Robertson.

    Labor haven’t done themselves any favours with candidates in either electorate. Jim LLoyd is regarded as a decent member, always seems to be in the local rag whenever something relevant needs attention. Not just every three years, either. He has a fair margin here and there are plenty of grey votes and self employed tradies (who’ve done very well from the housing boom, thank you).

    Ken Ticehurst is a decent bloke, not sure of his profile in Dobell, though. I’d put Dobell as safer than it’s spot on the pendulum would indicate but I think he will still be a casualty.

    Really bites when you have a good local member who’s part of a government I can’t support.

  18. HE,

    I am not suggesting any of the things are untrue in the bios.

    My comments are general and not in relation to any one candidate. The art of the political bio is to go up to the line to embellish without crossing it into a falsehood or something you cant defend and to skate potential negatives.

  19. 310 Edward StJohn Says: October 10th, 2007 at 11:17 pm
    Should there be truth in advertising laws or what?
    “Belinda has lived in Woy Woy Bay with husband John for over 20 years. (snip Mrs Della Bosca’s CV)

    Untruthful how? I’m kinda interested as it’s my electorate she wants to “represent”.

  20. [The art of the political bio is to go up to the line to embellish without crossing it into a falsehood or something you cant defend and to skate potential negatives.]

    So do you mean, for example, that Senator Heffernan could say he has for a long time had studied homosexuality, child abuse, and high court judges?

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