The day after

A more lucid analysis will have to wait for tomorrow. For the moment I can only offer some swing breakdowns: 5.6 per cent in Sydney, 5.5 per cent in the rest of New South Wales; 5.4 per cent in Melbourne, 4.7 per cent in the rest of Victoria; 7.8 per cent in Brisbane, 8.5 per cent in the rest of Queensland; 1.4 per cent in Perth, 4.1 per cent in the rest of WA; 5.8 per cent in Adelaide, 9.2 per cent in the rest of SA (Mayo, Barker and Grey); 2.5 per cent in Tasmania; 1.7 per cent in ACT; 2.8 per cent in NT.

I think I can also manage an overview for the Senate, which has produced a surprisingly strong result for the Coalition and a number of disappointments for the Greens. Kerry Nettle is gone in NSW, with three seats each for Labor and the Coalition. It’s looking like the same result in Victoria, although Greens candidate Richard di Natale might yet take the final seat from the third Liberal candidate Scott Ryan. The Greens also seem to be falling short in Queensland, their candidate 2.4 per cent behind Labor’s third for the final seat. Better news for the Greens from Western Australia, which turned in its expected result of three Liberal, two Labor, one Greens, and South Australia, where their candidate looks likely to just keep ahead of Labor at the second last exclusion and win the final seat on their preferences. Tasmania is a clear three for Labor, two for Coalition and one for Greens, and Australian Capital Territory and Northern Territory split one Labor and one (Country) Liberal as normal.

Assuming the Greens don’t get up in Victoria, and unless my late night/early morning arithmetic leads me astray, that points to 18 seats out of 40 for both Labor and the Coalition, three for the Greens and one for Nick Xenophon. Combined with ongoing Senators, that means 37 for the Coalition (one short of a blocking majority) and 32 for Labor, with the balance consisting of five for the Greens, one Family First and one Nick Xenophon. The Greens will thus not hold the balance of power in their own right, with the Coalition being able to stitch together a blocking majority with Fielding or Xenophon or an absolute majority with them both. Interesting times ahead.

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.

1,248 comments on “The day after”

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  1. The knives are out:

    “Costello is tied to all the right-wing stuff on immigration and WorkChoices, he supported it and no one believes otherwise.”

    Another senior Liberal said Australians should remember that the next inevitable interest rate rise will be the doing of Costello.

    Many Liberal insiders were pointing to a number of poorly or, in some cases, “politically corrupt” local campaigns run by the Victorian State Liberals.” (

  2. “Howard would need to win 67.5% of the postals to win the seat.” That solidifies it for me Swing Lowe. Bennelong has fallen. Cheers.

  3. Re Stirling vote. There is a significant ethnic community, including Africans, including Sudanese. There may have been some voters who heard the dog whistle and voted for Keenan for that reason, but it wasn’t an issue in the electorate at large. However, Keenan did verbally abuse the President of the Ethnic Communities Council over a community forum the council was organising, so that would/should have cost him votes.

    At least WA keeps on electing Green Senators so its not all bad news from over here. Also, Greens have the balance of power in the State upper house.

  4. Great results particularly in Vic NSW Tassie and of course QLD, it is worth noting now the hype has dies done some facts about the much reported liability associated with the so called “evil union official and the party hacks”, and the South Australian experiment with Peter Garret like star candidates nicole and Mia in Boothby and Sturt both failed the test. Nicole was more visible failing in the media with some significant help and underming from local pro mia ALP elements (you know who you are) Mia was well promoted in the media but failed badly on the ground. Fact [1] both received swings under the state average [2] Interstate similiar seats just over the state averages were won easily by the evil union official and hack. Give me a hack or an experienced union official any day, at least know when the grovel shamelessly and when to shut up.

  5. George @ 1152,

    If Bennelong was any other seat, Labor would have claimed victory already. It’s because it is Howard’s seat that they’re being ultra-careful about claiming victory. IMHO, Labor has won Bennelong reasonably comfortably.

    P.S. Betfair is currently offering odds on Bennelong with Labor at $1.04, with the Coalition at $6. The market is still open…

  6. Swing lowe
    That 67% might be achievable – didn’t A Robb on Ch7 last night say something about an advantage they knew they had in postals in Bennelong – I remember the figure of something like 1100 but not sure what the figure meant – did anyone else see it who was sober enough to understand?

  7. rossco, WA has elected a minor party candidate for each election for the past 20+ years. As an ex WAer I full know how it feels to feel like you’re living on another planet.

  8. “P.S. Betfair is currently offering odds on Bennelong with Labor at $1.04, with the Coalition at $6. The market is still open…”

    The betting Market makes 90% of it’s money from the mugs SL – they’re still hoping some out there would be willing to take the plunge on $6 – if I was running a betting company, I’d have Howard on at $10+ at the moment.

  9. thought it was much more than 1100, but I reckon howard doesnt want it to draw back with postals or recounts, its cleaner this way

  10. The tories wont win back in WA unless the Nats and Libs sort out their s&*t together cooperatively and the Liberals can get rid of Paul O. Unless this happens no, the tories wont get back WA, maybe we can get back ACT who knows?

  11. The death of Matt Price should be a lesson to us all about what really matters in life. We argue back and forth about politics, like it is the be all and end all of life, but an event like this puts it into perspective. It shows how fragile all we take for granted really is. By God, I hope the next big medical advances will center around non-toxic treatments for cancer. I don’t know the particulars of Matt’s case, but the regular cancer treatments of surgery, radiation and chemo (slash, burn and poison) can kill the patient faster than the cancer would.

  12. 1162 As promised the issue of hospital funding will be one of the first issues seriously tackled by the new government. The tories have underfunded hospitals for years.

    THE state premiers have pledged to work with Kevin Rudd to fix the public health system, one of his first key tests as prime minister-elect.
    Labor went to the election with a proposal to take financial control of Australia’s 750 public hospitals if the states fail to reach benchmarks to be set down under a $2.5 billion incentives and infrastructure package.

    Under the plan, the Labor Government would assess the states’ performance in mid-2009, and go to the 2011 election asking voters for a mandate to take over public hospitals if the targets were not being met.

    Mr Rudd promised to convene the Council of Australian Governments within his first 100 days in power and establish a reform commission, which would be tasked with developing the benchmarks and the next five-year state federal funding deal.,23739,22818597-5003402,00.html

  13. JV,

    Howard picked up 64% of the postals in 2004, so he has an outside shot.

    It must be noted, however, that there has been a 5-6% swing against him this time around, so it is not unreasonable to expect that the percentage of the postals that favour Howard this time around will be less than that in 2004.

  14. [thought it was much more than 1100, but I reckon howard doesnt want it to draw back with postals or recounts, its cleaner this way]

    Good point. Even if he does win he will resign immediately, and McKew would win anyway.

    A by-election would just waste $1 million.

  15. I see Stephen K is still in the denial phase. The enormity of the public rejection clearly hasn’t sunk in.

    Only the 2nd PM ever Embruced. How humiliating! 🙂

    Oh dear, biggest ALP 2PP EVER!

    It really is hard to put a positive spin on.

    Take it like a man, Stephen. Look at Glen, he’s focussing on the few positives, like WA, and generally maintaining his dignity.

    A role model for Tories in defeat!

  16. Swing Lowe – 1149 – While watching Tv last nite, I heard Robert Ray say that on past experience, Howard would pick up only a small proportion of the postals in Bennelong. Don’t know how Labor know that, may be from previous election figures. Importantly, it means Howard is gone (either way) which is great news. When we selected the winning number a couple of weeks ago, I picked 88 – I always thought it would be much closer than some of our fellow posters talking 95-100. Rudd is still relatively unknown, so he was never going to get a huge number. But what he did get was equal to just about any other federal Labor effort.

  17. Sinic

    I run a cancer support site – I have lost 37 friends worldwide in the past 3 months.

    If you wish to comment on cancer treatments this is not the place – but your comments are ill informed. 🙁

  18. [I always thought it would be much closer than some of our fellow posters talking 95-100. ]

    Most people guessed 85, the average guess was 87.

  19. Shows on yes the bi -election costs would be a waste and also I thought you got a bonus on your parliamentary pension if your defeated- that may have changed but it was the case at one time

  20. Well guys, I may not be seen much here from now on. (Does anyone care? 🙂 )
    This place has become an obsession bordering on addiction. But it sure was fun.

    I wanted to see Howard gone. More than that I wanted to see the end of everything he stood for. There is now hope.

    I have some very personal scores to settle with Mr Howard. As a treasurer he cost my family a home. He’s made decisions time and time again that have negatively impacted in my adult life. He’s played people off against each other, but always at the expense of the most vulnerable – myself included. I am nearly blind and have been so since birth. And I truly sympathise with all those people in society who are for no fault of their own “uncompetitive” and thus invisible to the Liberal philosophy.

    He’s gone. He’s gone. He’s gone! It’s a beautiful day here. It really is 🙂

    I’m glad my prediction of 83 seats was a bit low. But, as I’ve said before what we needed most of all was, like the proverbial Judges summary “let this be a warning to those who might consider committing these crimes..”. The absolute annihilation I wanted, didn’t happen. But for the sake of history, Howard getting bruced is symbolic enough.

    As to all the discussions as to who will lead the LP, let me say. I don’t care, beyond hoping they will stay in the wilderness for 20 years. A week is a long time in politics and a year is an eternity. It isn’t worth worrying about just now.

    I will never be interested in the Liberal party so long as it has as a central tenet the words “self reliance”. It’s ultimately an appeal to all that is base and selfish in human nature. I have no problem with ‘hard work’, but I do have a problem with a society that concludes that if you are poor, then you deserve it.

    Let me make one personal observation. We live in a society where you are a social outcast if you don’t drive. I don’t get that choice. Nor do I get the opportunity or sense of social inclusion that comes with physical contact. So when I tell people I cannot drive, they rush to judge me. I’m weak, I’m unintelligent. I just don’t have the right ‘attitude’. Don’t laugh, I get told this, to my face, after I’ve explained to them exactly what is wrong with my eyes. You see, being visually impaired is a ticket to invisibility in our culture. And why I bring all of this up? Because in the Liberal world there is only individuals and competition. And those who don’t fit that mold, are simply invisible.

    As Tabitha would have said (with a bit of recoding)
    Liberal is for competition
    Labor is for cooperation

    Some thoughts. Howard existed symbioticaly with a host of right wing personalities. They fed off each other and like criminals, hardened each other. I hope. Indeed, I predict that some of the most twisted, extreme and hateful voices in our society will be marginalised, purely for lack of a sense of acceptance. Howard may not have been the most extreme bigot or racist, but he encouraged those who were.

    As for Rudd, well may I say, I don’t trust his social conservatism. To be honest I don’t trust anyone with a religion. However. we’ve finally got a PM that is a technocrat. Someone who makes decisions based on evidence. So far he has yet to get people to understand his message. That we are now in the 21st century. That broadband really does matter. That the kids we bring up now will be adults at a time when the world is practically unrecognisable due to technology, due to seismic shifts in world demographics and due to climate change.

    I hope Rudd will *lead* not just follow. I hope he and his government will show Labor very capable indeed. I hope that they will undo some of the lies perpetrated over decades. I hope that they will encourage our society to be more inclusive, more caring. I hope that they will make our society one that embraces technology and higher learning.

    But, please, lets see what he actually does. Maybe a year from now you’ll see me here crticising him. But you can guarantee that if I do it will be for him not being radical enough.

    Finally. Thanks for the hope. I’m a lot happier now.

    And oh yes, I can buy a new computer now thanks to Maxine *kiss* 🙂


  21. Hello everyone a little house keeping, we have discussed how nice Kate Ellis is I think the MP for Sydney (Tanya) is perhaps nicer 😉

    Peter stepping down, gee I guess we now have Malcolm Turnbull as Liberal Leader interesting considering he has been in Parliament for only one term that my friends is indeed an L for Learner.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the ALP won La Trobe and McEwen and even Sturt but with that thanks everyone for a very interesting campaign.

    Someone asked about the Liberal Party future, let me start by writing that back in 2004 many ALP types sulked and blamed the voters for rejecting them.

    At the time I said the ALP needed to go away drop the class based envy driven policy crap come back with several positive policies and Govt was there for the taking, and that’s exactly what Kevin Rudd and Co did and guess what they now are in Govt.

    The Liberals lost it on several levels and while this may sound odd it boiled down to Economic Mismanagement, yes you have read that correctly now let me explain there are many Australians not benefiting from the so-called boom due to several factors.

    The Liberal Govt had 2 Million Australians on Welfare or underemployed, while Business are screaming for better skilled workers, what did the Govt do, did they audit the 2 million therefore moving those who wanted off Welfare to work though investing in Skills training.


    The Liberal Party failed to run a true Liberal Employment service system, then blamed those on Welfare, then introduced 1200 pages of over regulation which was every bit as bad for small business as it was for employees, Workchoices would have stymied Economic growth.

    Then there is Iraq, yes the world is better off without Saddam, but instead of doing the hard yards in Afghanistan the Liberals ran off to Iraq on what was a silly exercise in reactionial leadership.

    I’m sorry but the Liberal Party failed, sure many are doing well in the currant Economy, and while I don’t consider Howard a bad PM, I just consider him to be a lazy narrow thinking reactionary with a group of frontbenchers who I wouldn’t employ.

    I again congratulate the ALP, I for one voted for you to Govt in the national interest and will expect you to deliver a Govt that is Economically conservative but equally with commonsense which sadly the Liberals lacked.

    Lets sum up what is wrong with the Liberals, if you listen to the likes of Downer I’m a Left winger that shows they don’t even know there own Heartland therefore


  22. #1176

    Ruawake, I acknowledge that what I said is a generalisation. The regular treatments have worked, and continue to work for many people. The point I was trying to make is that they have adverse affects on healthy tissue too. I know of people whose immune systems have been so degraded by chemo, that they have succumbed to metastases or other infections. This is evidenced by the fact that “cancer” is listed as a possible side-effect of most chemo drugs. What my reading also tells me is that doctors seem reluctant to even look at alternative treatments to the big three. A clinical trial costs millions, and can only be funded by drug companies; hence any unpatentable natural treatments that may (i stress may) work won’t get a look in. I am not a doctor, so please go easy on me if I have made any factual errors.

  23. 1194 Alex, you might soon be able to add Abbott to the list because once the move to fix his hospital mess begins,I can’t see him enjoying opposition.

  24. There won’t be a by-election if Coonan retires – she’s a Senator.

    A Berowra by-election would be interesting if Ruddock retires – I’m sure Labor would put a massive effort into it, given how promising the swing was in Berowra (5.15%) and neighbouring Mitchell, which had a retiring member there (9.55%).

  25. It will be tight between Nelson and Turnbull.

    Nelson should have the numbers though, you’d expect after so many years in Parliament.

    Julie Bishop is a lock for the Deputy Leadership against Pyne now that Cossie is gone.

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