Galaxy: 50-50 in Wentworth

The ABC reports that Galaxy’s poll of Wentworth, which we first heard about on Thursday, shows Malcolm Turnbull and George Newhouse locked at 50-50 on two-party preferred. The only further detail provided is that Turnbull leads by 8 per cent on the primary vote, and that the sample size was 800. All will be revealed in tomorrow’s Sunday Telegraph.

UPDATE: Sunday Telegraph article here. Primary vote figures are Liberal 44 per cent, Labor 36 per cent and Greens 14 per cent.

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.

423 comments on “Galaxy: 50-50 in Wentworth”

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  1. Turnbull won’t lose it.

    Even I would vote for Turnbull over that other idiot.

    Anyone catch him on the 7:30 report the other night. When asked about the pulp mill decision his response was: “Malcolm Turnbull has made his decision, and we will stick with that position and thats the Labor parties position.” Then asked again if it was his personal belief he goes on “Turnbull has made the decision, and thats our position and the pulp mill will be built… blah blah blah”

    A true idiot with no position.

  2. Doubt it. Johnny’s not a Grammar boy. He’s not from the right part of town.

    It is still blueblood. The Dinks at Coogee and Bondi are mostly greenies and the Gays would mostly hate Howard.

  3. Will be interesting to see how the Green prefs flow in the HOR in this seat. Might be a fair few Bluebloods tossing up the idea of a protest vote.

  4. “Would we be discussing Wentworth if King was still the member?”

    If the same redistribution that gave the division Potts Point and those other suburbs from the Division of Sydney still were to apply, then yes.

  5. I believe the Greens will do better than the polls show and I suspect that a lot of younger voters are missed in opinion polling.
    Did the pollsters mention the candidates names when asking for opinions? They’d need to do that to get an accurate reflection of voters’ intentions. If they merely asked by party, it’s likely that Malcolm Turnbull will do better than this poll shows.

  6. I’ve been tipping a landslide to Labor this election for a long time, but i have always thought Turnbull would hang on in Wentworth.

    It is not the Malcolm Turnbull’s of the Coalition that the public are rebelling against.

  7. King got 13,000 votes last election as an independent. 40% of preferences went to Labor.

    Turnbull had a 15%+ lead on primaries now he has 8% – a swing of 7% on primaries to Labor.

    There in a feeling that Turnbull “bought himself a seat”. I think King would have won easily this year even accepting the redistribution.

  8. If last time is any guide (when I lived there), Turnbull will absolutely swamp the electorate with personally-financed direct mail in the last 2 weeks. I doubt that he’ll lose it. Nice that it’s close though – like Bennelong, it’s more resources dragged away from the seats they really need to retain…

  9. Turnbull will win Wentworth easily.

    The Newhouse challenge is nothing more than a gaggle of Young Labor ring-ins wearing their tired looking Kevin 07 t shirts.

    The odds of $1.41 (yesteday) for Turnbull are a bargain.

    He will increase his margin on November 24 – just watch.

  10. The SMH reported today both Labor and Liberal insiders conceding that in the last 2 weeks, Labor’s vote in Wentworth has picked up markedly, due to concerns about Work Choices and climate change.
    Labor is said not to be too confident about winning Wentworth, due to Turnball’s massive campaign resources and finances, so a 50:50 result is a little stunning!
    Go George Newhouse!

  11. Turnbull will lose Wentworth easily.

    The Turnbull campaign is based upon him buying the seat with his own wealth and the electorate knows it. Democracy is not for sale.

    Make some easy money and get on Newhouse at $2.70 – a great deal.

    He will have a winning margin on November 24 – just watch.

  12. Turnbull could cover the whole electorate knee-deep in literature over the next two weeks, and it wouldn’t make any difference. The voters have made up their minds. If it’s 50-50 now, it will still be 50-50 on 24/11, and the Wentworthies will have a late night. I predicted that Turnbull would hang on, and I’ll stick to that prediction, but it will obviously be very close and an ALP win is still possible.

    Isabella, you’d know all about ring-ins wearing bogus teeshirts, wouldn’t you? I photographed you in one in Melbourne Ports in 2004.

  13. Anyone catch him on the 7:30 report the other night. When asked about the pulp mill decision his response was: “Malcolm Turnbull has made his decision, and we will stick with that position and thats the Labor parties position.” Then asked again if it was his personal belief he goes on “Turnbull has made the decision, and thats our position and the pulp mill will be built… blah blah blah”

    LaborVoter @ 3 – stunning example of message discipline…

  14. I still think Turnbull will win. The fact that a high profile Independent ran in 2004 makes Wentworth more marginal than what it would normally be. Having said that, the general swing toward Labor, especially in affluent socially liberal inner city suburbs will mean that Turnbull will hold Wentworth by a very narrow margin like 51-49 or even 50.5-49.5.

  15. LaborVoter @ 3. Couldn’t the same be said about Turnbull? Didn’t Peter Cundall say Turnbull told him he hates the pulp mill?

    I don’t recall Turnbull having the courage to publically air that view, so I think its a bit much to criticise Newhouse.

  16. In your dreams Dr Carr, in your dreams. I may be rather photogenic but quite frankly I think we both know that I’m not your type.

    That said, the behaviour of Team Danby on election days is well known across the political spectrum.

    Tantrums, dummy spits, intimidation of young female campaign workers, aggressive and crass behaviour.

    Thumbs down for that approach Dr Carr.

  17. The high profile independent was the former friggin member who got rolled in a Turnbull branch stack.

    I am sick of the not real margin frog poo. The margin was real. We have a preferential voting system and the swing against Turnbull was 2.4%

    Turnbull is line ball in a seat that has been held by the Libs for 106 years.

  18. LTEP @ 12

    just a gut feel. they might not be impressed with Malcolm but they don’t hate him.

    a substantial amount of Lib supporters have to turn to Labor for Wentworth to go.

    this will happen in plenty of other seats but not quite enough in Wentworth.

    If Hockey or Abbott or Ruddock or Andrews or Costello or Downer or Alex Hawke etc etc were the candidate in Wentworth then it would fall.

    i’ll be happy with the 40 or so other seat pick ups.

  19. I think the only dream Isabella would appear in would be a nightmare. And shame on you for making a veiled gay joke. That’s the Liberals all over – sly references and dog whistles. Really, I think most Australians are too mature for that kind of garbage.
    Turnbulls minions will be enough to convince the good electors of Wentworth that it’s time for a change. Labor is going to win the election overall and will pick up seats they’ve never won before. Who in their right mind would have predicted a Liberal victory in Lindsay or Labor losing Oxley prior to 1996?
    Interesting times ahead.

  20. [slartybardfast: I think (though I stand to be corrected) that 1983 was Labor’s highest ever TPP with around 53%]

    Whitlam and Hawke both got around 53.

    Then you have to go back to Curtin, who got about 55 in 1943.

    I doubt either party will ever get 55 ever again.

  21. 50/50 is a pretty good poll for Labor, considering the general opinion is that Turnbull will hold Wentworth, confirmed by the betting markets. If I was Turnbull I’d be worried.

    I think Wentworth will hinge on how the rest of the campaign goes. If the Libs rally then it’s likely safe, if the train really falls of the rails it may go with the tide. If Howard plays a dog whistle or something else very right-wing anything could happen (including I imagine Turnbull throttling him).

  22. Some people seem to think that the Wentworth electors will put off by Turnbull’s persona (or whatever). To me, his persona is that he’s money-hungry, successful in his career, socially (fairly) progressive, and pushy.
    And these attributes are thought to be out of place in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney???!
    He’ll win.

  23. Mmm, I wonder what the Labor Party could do to get John Howard over there for a bit of a “meet and greet” ? Maybe a bit of a leak that Turnbull had paid that poor woman in Penrith to fall down when the PM came near?

    Alternatively, perhaps, someone from Labor could stick up campaign posters for Turnbull which have a photo of the PM and the words HOWARD LIBERAL GOVERNMENT in large letters, all over the electorate, just to remind the punters what they are really voting for?

    I reckon that either of these approaches should score a few percent for Newhouse or the Greens! 😉



  24. Turnbull’s not going to get a primary less than 46%. Do your sums based on this.
    For non Sydney observers this seat is home to many of the wealthiest people in Australia. This just shouldn’t be even discussed as a Labor win. To get where they are, Labor and Newhouse have exposed the real trouble LNP are in.
    Win or lose Wentworth, the Coalition is gone.

  25. Turnbull will hold Wentworth. Despite the margin, the historical odds are in his favor, and his high profile and low baggage (unlike Howardm, who has a very high profile and very high baggage) will mean he is in the box seat. Also, as noted elsewhere, his opponent seems reasonable enough, but is not Maxine McKew, which will also help. Put Maxine in Wentworth and Newhouse in Bennelong and then I think we’d all be saying Howard will hold on.

  26. After 3 decimating polls the bookies haven’t really moved what gives. Labor is expected to win 79 seats with the sum of all the bookies odds. They obviously don’t take Morgan, or ACN online seriously.

  27. Don’t know if this one has been posted or not:,25197,22733696-5013945,00.html

    I thought the following lines were rather interesting:

    ALAN Amo is proud of his five-bedroom house, he’s proud of the street he lives in and he’s proud of his three children.

    And if John Howard wins on November 24 by one vote, it could well be thanks to this Iraqi refugee, from the outer-Sydney marginal seat of Parramatta, who credits the Prime Minister with his family’s economic prosperity.

    Amo arrived in Australia in 1995, just as the economic boom was beginning.

    It’s a good thing he didn’t arrive as a refugee six years later, or he’d still be on a remote island somewhere in the Pacific Ocean.

    The rest of the article is somewhat revealing, though.

  28. Too close to call folks.

    From what I’ve been told, the guy is a bit of a megalomaniac.

    If he does lose I hope he does not revert to his childhood habits.

    Plastic sheet anyone???

  29. Yes, sadly, The Anointed One will win in Wentworth (in my view). However, the leadership contest between him and the only other Liberal candidate to win a seat in the lower house (Bronwyn Bishop) will be thrilling. I suspect the ballot will be drawn, in which case The Anointed One will have the casting vote (coz he’s wealthier and better connected than poor old Bronny).

    On another thread, Derek Corbett asked what I plan to be doing on election night. Well, I’m going to a party with friends in Melbourne (I live in Sydney), all of whom:

    (a) Are Greens voters (except James, who’s voting Labor this time coz he reckons the Greens are “incoherent and a bit of a rabble”);

    (b) Will be eating barbecued the-next-brand-up-from-generic-pork sausages (or tofu patties), and swilling vast quantities of the-next-brand-up-from-the-cheapest cask wine;

    (c) Will be buoyant beyond civil limits of behaviour at the unutterably exciting prospect of a thumping-a*sed Howard demolition

    (d) Will enjoy their first day of The New Sun in bed, recovering from a long night of euphoria, catalepsy and laughter, laughter, laughter.

    But seriously, it’s going to be the best night of my 35 year life (assuming the unmentionable doesn’t occur, in which case I’ll be packing my bags for Turkmeistan).

  30. Turnbull will win here easily on the the doctors’ wives vote, because they all wish he was their husband.

    And seriously, I will be dancing in the street when Howard loses, but Turnbull is not tarred with the same brush and I’m thinking about voting for him. He’s the kind of liberal you want in the liberal party in opposition, who can lead a real break from the howard era, and who will have at least some moral standing to say something about human rights when Labor start mailing out fridge magnets and playing the race card as well.

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