D-day minus 35

• Galaxy has released further findings from yesterday’s poll, which can be viewed through this nifty graphic.

• Writing in The Age, Rod Cameron notes a particular concentration of the part-time working mothers targeted by the Coalition’s tax policy in the important Victorian seats of Deakin, La Trobe, Corangamite, McEwen and McMillan. Cameron also includes Solomon on his list of marginal Coalition seats which Labor can’t take for granted, which I had only previously heard suggested by Matthew Franklin and Brad Norington of The Australian.

Greg Roberts of The Australian reports that both parties’ polling has Nationals incumbent Paul Neville holding a 55-45 lead over Labor candidate Garry Parr in the Bundaberg-based seat of Hinkler. Roberts’ article paints an unflattering picture of Parr’s campaign efforts which recalls the media-shy performance of Ed Husic, Labor’s disastrously unsuccessful candidate for Greenway at the 2004 election. Anecdotal evidence is also presented of strong local feeling over the council amalgamations issue.

• Shortly after dumped Labor member Gavan O’Connor announced he would attempt to hold his seat of Corio as an independent, Labor has promised to add $45 million to its existing funding plans for the Geelong Ring Road.

Joe Hildebrand of the Daily Telegraph notes that the need to respond to the Coalition tax package caused Kevin Rudd to scrap “early rough plans” for “a sweep across the country from Brisbane to Sydney to Adelaide and Perth”. The only Liberal marginal seat he has found time to visit so far has been the Adelaide electorate of Kingston, reckoned by most to be a certain Labor gain.

• The Sky News Election 07: Agenda program last night broadcast a debate between Joe Hockey and Mike Bailey, the Liberal and Labor candidates for North Sydney, which you can hear as a podcast.

• George Megalogenis of The Australian notes that the behaviour of the major parties indicates they believe “working women are fibbing when they tell opinion pollsters they prefer increased public spending over another round of tax cuts” (can’t find the article online but I’m sure it’s there somewhere).

• After some invaluable advice from readers last month on reducing bandwidth costs, this vehicle is running a good deal more efficiently than it used to. Nonetheless, the announcement of the election has brought a further surge in traffic, so I am again having to shell out extra for the privilege of staying online until the end of the month. Please click on the PayPal button on the sidebar if you would like to make a contribution (I should acknowledge that whenever I make this plea, the resulting influx is enough to cover my costs with a fair bit to spare). To clear up a common point of confusion: you do not need a PayPal account to donate, you simply have to click “continue” where it says “Don’t have a PayPal account?” at the bottom left.

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.

274 comments on “D-day minus 35”

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  1. Derek,

    I did not mean to chastise, in fact you raised a serious issue. What happened to “relaxed and comfortable” ?

    What have we become, when people who have different politics are seen as people to piss on?

    When politics is reduced to Hair Styles, Beards and Smirks?

    This is a result of Howard’s divide and spin, It is the reason we need a different path.

  2. Ruawake. Thanks. That was my point. Ineptly expressed, however …
    (I’m a first-aider, by the way).

    Do you think Howard can last the distance?

  3. I think Labor’s primary is rock solid at about 45% maybe a point or two higher.

    Add the greens 6-7% and FF 2% then it has to be at least 53% minimum TPP.

    The only preferences Howard is going to get is from the Nats in 3 cornered contests.

    The only seats the Coalition will win are ones that they poll >50% primary (maybe one or two at 48-49) they are miles off this.

    They cannot win. 🙂

  4. Scorpio

    Just read your post and the link to Annabel.

    “There is a secret appeal to red-blooded dads; after the kids are in bed, Jack and Briony’s educational online superhighway becomes a high-speed porn pipe, subsidised to the tune of 50 per cent by the taxpayer. ”


    This is the sort of thinking that Ruddock and Howard esposed, no broadband because it will mean more porn downloaded.

    But if Annabel has a problem with her husbands or fathers hobby the kids should not be penalised, she should talk it thru with them, this attitude is getting very close to the Exclusive Brethren way of life who apparently have a ban on all technology.

    Would Annabel propose banning libaries or magazines, what about newspapers, Daily Tele had a nice picture of Umma that would have got her dad’s/ hubbies pulse racing.

  5. [Just read your post and the link to Annabel.]

    Paul Murray in The West hinted the similar thing in his article on the tax refunds for puters, and also mentioning whether the kids will actually use the things.

    Bunch of luddites.

  6. 220
    Lose the election please Says:

    October 20th, 2007 at 5:05 pm
    Matthew Sykes I agree, if the ALP can secure a preference deal with Family First it will make it extremely hard for the Libs to win this election.

    That statement suggests to me that LTEP is actually batting for the conservatives and all the while pretending to be anti Coalition.

    Having said that, I read in the Courier Mail BB claiming he is close to finalising a preference deal with Labor in all States except TAS who will be running an open ticket.

    The AMWU and other union heavies up here in the Peoples Republic of Queensland are demanding no preference deal with FF and good old Mr. Dick is keeping his cards close to his chest so I suppose BB is grandstanding again.

    It would actually work for Labor to run with FF up here in the Peoples Republic of QLD since (a) they are expected to have more clout in marginal PROQ seats than the Green machine: the same might be said of other States or at least marginals in those seats and (b) 75-80 percent of Green preferences traditionally float to Labor anyway.

    LTEPs suggestion that it would do Labor a favour to by doing a deal with FF on a national scale is not a good idea in seats like Wentworth (NSW), for example, where the Green vote will have much more influence than the FF vote. FF have been known to do State wide deals with both major contenders and also claim to have a good look at individual candidates at times too.

    I can see the sense of an ALP-FF preference deal in the Peoples Republic of Queensland, but in other places like Taswegia with the Greens already unhappy with Labor, doing an ALP-FF preference deal there would tick some off further, enough to keep Bass away from Labor, no, but enough to scare the beejees out of the Labor candidate.

    All of this won’t matter much , who preferences who, people say, but I do remember at least 2 SA seats and 1 QLD seat that would could well have gone to Labor with FF preference direction support – Could be the difference between governing on your own numbers or having to play house with Katter, Xenephon et al.; particularly if Westpoll’s notion that Hasluck and Stirling are out of the frame and Cowan actually be lost.

  7. Arbie Jay and Frank Calabrese;

    Did you happen to read the full article at all?

    If that was her attempt at humour on a crucial issue in probably the most crucial and hard fought election campaigns in a generation, then she is off with the fairies and probably sampling some of the substances that Cousins has got in the habit of using.

    Not a good look for a supposedly creditable journalist employed by a supposedly creditable newspaper.

    At this time in the electoral cycle, I think the public deserve a bit better than dribble like this.

  8. PS: Unless Howard can keep the 2 percent bump he got on the tax package in his pocket AND pull back another 2-3 percent before election day, my prediction for what it is worth is a 27 seat net gain for Labor at this election, effectively reversing the 2004 result, give or take a seat or 2.

  9. Frank Calabrese Says:
    October 20th, 2007 at 7:53 pm
    It seems News Ltd have corrected the earlier error about the Ex PM’s at Beazley Snr’s Funeral.}

    Yeah, but not on the main News Ltd site.

    {Four former prime ministers – Gough Whitlam, Bob Hawke, Paul Keating and Bill Hayden – were among those paying their respects. }


    Are they getting kids on “work experience” to write and edit this stuff?

  10. For the last time Bluebottle, I am not a ‘conservative stooge’, I am not a ‘concern troll’ or any other stupid label people wish to throw at me.

    What I’m trying to do is look at things objectively and think about what strategies would end up with Labor in government. Personally, I find FF a silly party. I mean Steve Fielding has made himself whip of a party of one. Any legislation he introduces is merely for the press it can generate.

    I also don’t imagine them getting a huge primary vote at the election. I’d say they’ll manage, at most, 5%. Of course the Labor Party would be looking at securing a deal with them if they thought it would help them. In key seats having preferences directed to you by both the Greens and Family First would make things tough for the Liberal Party.

    I don’t believe the ALP will win Wentworth, and I don’t think I’m crazy for thinking that. From what I’ve seen around the place neither Labor insiders nor Liberal insiders think the seat is likely to fall at this election.

    Unless you can point to a more specific reason why anything I’ve stated makes me a Liberal Party stooge I’d appreciate it if you could stop labelling me that.

  11. The weekend GG had some interesting responses to Labor’s tax policy.

    I don’t mean Dennis Shenanigan’s usual crap – his pieces should come with a warning box about truth in advertising. How can he call the policy “me-too” and “never-never” at the same time? What a buffoon.

    The other lightweight coverage included similar “me-too” and “copycat” BS but the heavy hitters took the opposite line:

    Paul Kelly (“a Labor reply that is safe, simple and smart”) was pretty balanced AND he gave credit to Swan: “Swan was correct yesterday in saying that he had long advocated these two initiatives [raising LITO & 15% margin] that guided the Howard-Costello approach”.

    And the leader (no I don’t mean Rupert): “Mr Rudd should not be ashamed of adopting the Government’s plan for tax offsets for low-income earners because it is an issue on which the Opposition – notably shadow treasurer Wayne Swan, finance spokesman Lindsay Tanner and small business spokesman Craig Emerson – have spoken out for some time”. In other comments pretty clearly gave them much credit for the “other” tax policy.

    George Megagenius climbs down a bit from recent critcism of Rudd winging it on tax – doesn’t matter anyway George, as Swan, Tanner, and Emerson are the economics engine here. Calls it “bipartisan” and points out that this is just what the rodent did in ’96.

    The other GG columnists don’t really count… and I only really get it for the cryptics and sudoku anyways 🙂

  12. Frank @ 256 you gotta love nick’s comments doncha?

    “We would be better off under Rudd’s tax package but he still won’t get my vote … as I have two young kids, I certainly do not need another Labour Party education revolution”

    D’uh? What are they putting in the water over there?

  13. I reckon Nick is a 6PR listener by those comments – and most likely an Eagles Fan who supports Ben Cousins 🙂

    Unfortunately, this is the quality journalism we get here thanks to The West, Ch 7 (both owned by Stokes) and Radio 6PR.

  14. 253
    ruawake Says:
    October 20th, 2007 at 8:27 pm
    I think Labor’s primary is rock solid at about 45% maybe a point or two higher.

    Add the greens 6-7% and FF 2% then it has to be at least 53% minimum TPP.

    I do believe Labor’s primary is in excess of 45 and probably 47. If it leaks it may leak to the Greens more than the LNP.

    Can’t imagine going through all this at every poll. 🙁

    Labor 20+ without media interference
    Labor 5 with media interference

  15. Full credit to LTEP for actually looking at things objectively, rather then blindly following the Labor lead, and and denouncing anything the libs do as ‘desperate’ and any positive report of them ‘not worth reading.’

  16. Kevin Rudd is doing a Makybe Diva over the 3200 metres of the Melbourne Cup. Jumped well, settled mid-field without raising a sweat. Cantering and saving himself for the run home. Johnny and Cossie have started like a frenzied quarter horse. Sprinting ahead…. the good news is there are several laps to go and Rudd will loom up in the next fw weeks and win running away.

  17. The betting odds on Hinkler started as too favourable to Labor and seemed to ignore the redistribution. Neville has a personal vote but maybe Labor should have run their 1998-2004 candidate who was very unlucky in 1998 and 2001.

  18. We need a new non-debate general thread 🙂

    I’m going to risk incurring Adam’s derision by mentioning Glen Milne’s article in the GG. However my interest is not in the transparent bias, but in the howler of an error made.


    If the Liberals do preference O’Connor, the former Labor member who has quit the party in disgust at factional heavying and union influence to run as an independent, he may be in with a chance of winning back the seat he’s already held for 14 years. And that will be one more on the list of 16 Rudd needs to take government that he will have to strike off. And it will be one more that he has to find somewhere else.

    Now if O’Connor wins Corio (which Milne essentially admits is near impossible despite premising most of the column on that scenario) then the ALP will certainly need to pick up an additional seat to govern in their own right.

    However there will be no “striking off” because Corio is not one of the 16 seats that the ALP need to pick up. It is already an ALP seat.

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