Galaxy: 53-47 to Labor in Queensland

The Brisbane Sunday Mail today carries a Galaxy poll of 800 respondents, which disappointingly for the conservatives shows no improvement following last weekend’s merger. Indeed, Labor has slightly increased its two-party lead to 53-47 from 52-48 in the outfit’s last such survey in June. Labor’s primary vote is up one point to 44 per cent while the LNP is on 40 per cent, down two points from the combined Nationals and Liberal vote last time.

The unreliability and/or Coalition bias of Galaxy is apparently taken for granted by most commenters on this site, so perhaps an overview of its track record is in order. The following list shows its primary vote findings in the final poll before each election it has covered, followed by the actual result in brackets (with Labor shown first each time).

Federal 2007: 42.5-42.5 (43-42)
NSW 2007: 40-38 (39-37)
Victoria 2006: 42-39 (43-40)
Queensland 2006: 48-38 (47-38)
Federal 2004: 39-46 (38-47)

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.

179 comments on “Galaxy: 53-47 to Labor in Queensland”

Comments Page 3 of 4
1 2 3 4
  1. 96 Moose – “I am 35, too old for the Young Anything.” Well, you’re out of excuses then. How about acting your age.

  2. Moose is really just a subtle whisper marketer. Pretty soon Queenslanders will all suddenly realise how great Mr Springborg is and question why they didn’t vote for him in 2006. I’m sure the reason they’ll all reach is because there were 2 conservative parties rather than 1.

  3. Possum Comitatus you are old fashioned. Gary Bruce go away you are a twit. LTEP you are correct. They did not want Quinn or Flegg as Premier. Thank you.


  4. Moose reminds me of a newly married couple just back from a great honeymoon and looking forward to a great future. Everything is rosy. The glow of a successful union is still present. “We can do and achieve anything”. Trouble is the glow fades and pretty soon the “we can do anything” hits the reality brick wall.
    There is really no use arguing with anyone in this frame of mind. Reality has to hit first.

  5. Moose, you call everyone here that dares disagree with you “freaks,” you are unable to interpret even the simplest of statistics related to previous elections and your strongest (and let’s face it) only argument for the LNP is to hysterically scream “GO THE BORG!” at the end of every post.

    If you are truly representative of your “new” party, then I would think Anna Bligh has far more to worry about from the Greens than the LNP and Lawrence “Two Time Loser” Springborg.

  6. “Special interest agrarian socialism is completely incompatible with most of South East QLD”

    That’s how it was before the merger, with the Liberals suffering a backlash in Brisbane due to the Nationals’ dominance of the Coalition So any resentment is probably built in to how people voted last time. If One Nation was still a force I would agree with you about losing votes to the right, but apart from an odd independent here and there I doubt we’ll see wholesale defections like 1998/2001. So there is scope for the LNP- if they’re smart- to move toward the centre-right and target the Southeast, which is of course where most of the key seats are.

    “If they’re smart” that is…..

  7. Snoopdoggie B, Mike Rann was also opposition leader for 8 years before just winning his first election (after a former Liberal supported him) Punters usually want to get to know the opposition leader first and Borg was only 35 when he first became leader and had only been the leader for 12 months. In 2006 we all now that had the Liberals not rolled Quinn for Flegg he was in with good chance. The polling was neck and neck and after the election a poll revealed that 66% of voters did not believe the Beattie-Bligh Government deserved to be re-elected and it was the Liberals vote that crashed in 2006 because of that twit Flegg not the Borg. He ran a slick campaign.

    SNIP: Insult deleted – PB

  8. The polling was neck and neck and after the election a poll revealed that 66% of voters did not believe the Beattie-Bligh Government deserved to be re-elected and it was the Liberals vote that crashed in 2006 because of that twit Flegg not the Borg. He ran a slick campaign.

    Huh? In 2006 Lib vote increased 1.6% over the 2004 result while the Nats only increased 0.86%.

    In 2006 about 50,000 more people voted Lib than Nat.

    That’s a fact Jack.

  9. Snoopdobbie B, the simple fact is that the Nationals & Liberals did not each run candidates in any seats. So The Borg did not have a chance with Flegg as Liberal Leader. Once people worked out he was a bumbling fool voters that only had a choice of ALP or Liberal did not want the slight possibility of Flegg as Premier. This scenario no longer exist with the LNP. Go the Borg….

  10. Oh and BTW, while you are technically correct – Rann was opposition leader for 8 years – remember he gained a 9.5 TPP swing at his first election and won office in his second.

    Compare and contrast with Springborg at your leisure.

  11. Moose, the difference between the times spent in Opposition from Mr Springborg and Mr Carr and Mr Rann is that both Carr (in 1991) and Rann (in 1997) had better than expected showings at their losing state elections. To put this in perspective in NSW in 1991, the Liberal Party Government went from having an 18 seat majority to having to rely on the votes of 2 independents. In SA in 1997 the Liberal Government lost 14 seats (Labor gaining 11 from a low of 11 seats) and there was a 9.5% swing to the ALP.

    Comparing this to Queensland, the ALP Government in 2006 only lost 1 seat and almost no swing (I believe). It’s an extremely poor performance and I’m surprised they’re giving him another shot. The best that can be said is it’s hard to believe he can do worse the second time around.

  12. #111

    I think the point is that the disarray in the Liberal camp hurt the Nationals as the senior partner. It couldn’t really hurt the Liberals much because with only 5 or something seats (before 2006) they could hardly do any worse. From what I understand that is the conventional wisdom- that Springborg was a nice enough guy, ran good campaigns, and would have made a decent Premier, but was defeated by his own Coalition partner as much as by Labor.

    And although I wouldn’t put it as…um….”enthusiastically”… Moose does, I do think that without the endless distractions of three-cornered contests, One Nation, dud Liberal leaders, and debate over who the Premier would be, a Springborg-led LNP could be competitive this time around.

  13. MDMConnell that you for your sensbile fair & balanced comment. Everything you pointed out is spot on.

    This election is going to be interesting and competetive for the first time in a long time.

  14. Nah, you’ve got it backwards Mooseman.

    The reason neither Flegg nor Springborg would admit who would be premier if they won was that the truth was unpalatable.

    Everyone knew the Nats were the senior member of the coalition and that Springborg would be premier and nobody in SEQ wants a National party premier.

    We remember Joh. We remember the gerrymander.

    They wouldn’t admit it because it was a vote loser.

    So what’s changed? The name? It’s the same dude in charge.

    We’re not stupid Moose, we remember.

  15. To give him his due Springborg has precided over a small swing to the conservatives in each election. I do think he’s a damn good campainer but he’s a National and that’s poison is SEQ.

  16. MDM at 108,

    I agree that’s how it was before the merger, and the Libs and Nats had real issues being able to negotiate around sensitive areas when they were separate parties working in Coalition – being the one party now makes even the very small ability they had to tread carefully through these issues almost impossible.

    One of the big problems for the conservatives in QLD isnt so much that they will lose votes from the right (although that can happen in the regions in a blink of an eye and the merger will probably lead to conservative independents in some seats taking a bit of the vote) but that they have really struggled to regain all of the One Nation vote they lost. Without gaining all that vote back or finding another voting demographic to make up for that group, it’s almost impossible for them to win.

    I’m currently hunting around for some more complete polling data for QLD to go through this point comprehensively at the state level, but the One Nation Effect in QLD politics was almost identical to the One Nation Effect that the Coalition experienced Federally. I’m working up a piece on this at the moment, so I have a fortuitous graph available to highlight the size of the effect on the Coalition primary vote at the Federal level to give an idea:

    One Nation cost the conservatives 6 points which they’ve never gotten back at the Federal level – at the State level it seems to be about the same, maybe a tad less.

    If the LNP in QLD makes a play on the right to get them back, they’ll write themselves out of the game in the SE corner.

    That forces the LNP to make a play to the center to get them back, but on ALP issues (which, surprisingly, is where about half of the One Nation vote has ended up). The membership of the Nats arent going to be happy if the LNP makes a play to the centre – and every time they try it, the ALP will lob a grenade like land clearing into the mix, stirring up the membership and the LNP party in the process, with the fallout making a mockery of their play to the centre. They might get a bit of the now ALP ex-One Nation vote back, but they’d also lose some metro Liberal vote in the process. Net result – an election loss because they need both the old One Nation vote and the metro Lib vote to win.

    It’s a game they cant win because the the twin support bases of the Liberal/National party fundamentally disagree with each other over many issues, and most of SE QLD disagrees with the Nats over nearly everything. The merger has placed a straitjacket on how the conservative side of politics can play for votes in QLD and has effectively killed their chances of being electable, let alone actually elected.

    The merger was an idea so profoundly stupid that only the QLD Nats could come up with it.

    At least in Coalition the two parties could disagree with each other, but more importantly position themselves to their own unique demographcis – now they cant do that because The Borg has assimilated the Libs into one giant agrarian socialist collective .

  17. No SnoopydoggieB, you are incorrect. Do the Math Smart Boy, The Liberals were running in more seats than the Nationals. If the Coalition won in 2006 it would have met the Liberals held more seats in the Parliament and Flegg would have been Premier.

    And if Springborg comes close to victory but does not get over the line this time around then the general chatter in the LNP is that he can have a fourth shot at the title because as this is a “NEW” Party technically this is his first shot as Leader of the LNP.

  18. Re- Springborg and land-clearing. I see the fear soldiers are out on the job. Meanwhile the fact is we’ve got the AAP having Springborg last week saying:

    “That issue’s gone, the laws are in place, and the laws are staying there in place, there is no issue,” Mr Springborg told reporters.
    “It’s a furphy that some people have been dragging around based on previous statements of certain people. What’s done is done.”

  19. Possum Comitatus you are kidding yourself mate. The NT has had the CLP for a long time and was in Government and in the USA the GOP can win areas like New York City or South Dakota. They just have one strong conservative party for ALL America.

  20. Beautiful graph Poss and beautiful post.

    The crazy thing is that with Springborg the Nationals have a leader that could have firmed up their base and stopped the independents in their tracks. If the Libs had got their act together at the same time then we would have had a real opposition QLD.

    As it is the best thing I can see happening is another thrashing of 2001 proportions. At least that would break up this stupid merger and refocus the conservatives on the correct way to win government in QLD.

  21. SnoopydoggieB, again you are fooling yourself. The Borg has spent 7 years investigating the Merger. He knows what Lib voters want, he knows what the Bush wants and he knows what Queenslanders want. They want one strong anti-labor voice and they want THE BORG.

  22. Bludging Pollster – land clearing happens every election. The holders of regional Coalition marginal seats try to bolster up thier own vote by making noises about winding back land clearing regulation, the leadership has to confront the press and make a big song and dance about how it’s not true and that land clearing will not be increased, the metro voters see a farmer leading the National Party making promises on landing clearing and go “pull the other one sunshine” and the Nats lose a few percent of the vote in the regions to independent conservatives because they look like sellouts, and lose a few points in the metro area because the small “l” Libs dont believe a word of it.

    Moose, The NT and New York arent Qld. It’s not about some blissfully inane comparison of conservatives vs non-conservatives, it’s about the two different demographics of Liberal and National party voters, with the divide being particularly divisive in Qld compared to anywhere else in the country.

  23. “At least in Coalition the two parties could disagree with each other, but more importantly position themselves to their own unique demographcis”

    But they couldn’t. The Nationals’ decision to preference One Nation in 1998 and 2001 decimated the Libs in urban Brisbane, from which they haven’t recovered. Being an independent party didn’t help the Liberals much then.

    “If the LNP in QLD makes a play on the right to get them back, they’ll write themselves out of the game in the SE corner”

    Howard got away with this at Federal level for a decade. Although to be fair maybe that’s a game you can only play from Government, not Opposition.

    “the twin support bases of the Liberal/National party fundamentally disagree with each other over many issues”

    I think you’re reading too much into this. All parties are broad churches. Labor has to balance the trendy left with blue-collar conservatism. After Tampa everyone was claiming the ALP was doomed because they could never reconcile these two groups. Yet six years later they’re in government.

    I understand all your arguments. My point is that these were all issues the conservative parties were struggling with before now. So I don’t see the merger having any drawback from that point of view, but I DO see it having the advantages of no three-cornered contests, no uncertainty over the leader, etc (as mentioned #115).

  24. 129
    Moose Says:
    August 4th, 2008 at 4:26 pm
    Doggie, that was struck AFTER the 2006 election.

    You saying that the decision would have been different had they won the election?

    Pull the other one.

    All they had to do was come out and say ‘whoever wins the most seats is the senior partner’. They didn’t do that because they couldn’t. Because there’s no way on this good green earth that Lawrence Springborg would have been content with deputy.

  25. “The Liberals were running in more seats than the Nationals. If the Coalition won in 2006 it would have met the Liberals held more seats in the Parliament”

    Actually this is plainly not the case. While the Libs may have run more candidates, they also a much more disproportionate number candidates in unwinnable seats.

    By my (quick, and likely slightly off) reckoning: Of the 33 Queensland seats held by Labor before the 2006 election with 2PP margins greater than 60%, 24 of these were contested by Liberals and only 9 by Nationals candidates. I wonder how a National might have fared in Inala, South Brisbane, Woodridge or Nudgee?

  26. One last comment. If Queenslander are so overwhelming against this merger and “they will do worse than 2001” they how come in their first week as a merged political party 40% of punters are prepared to back them if an election was held last week? Time to go home and watch Kerry O’Brien smash some conservative.

  27. I don’t think they’ll do worse. I just fail to see how it really makes a difference. Even the name of the party is completely uninspiring, the Liberal-National Party… so essentially they are what they’ve always been, except under one roof. Why does this provide a voter with more incentive to vote for them?

    In the end it just looks like a marketing, rebranding tool which is the exact ‘spin over substance’ that many conservative commentators would be spitting chips about if it was Rudd.

    How exactly are they different? What do they stand for? Unless they can clearly articulate this or present the public with a more marketable leader I don’t see huge things on the horizon. The best that’s come out of it is that there’s one less party to have to worry about their infighting derailing electoral tactics.

  28. 137 Moose – ” Time to go home and watch Kerry O’Brien smash some conservative.” Go home? You mean you were at work? Why watch Kerry do it, stay here.

  29. MDM at 130

    The Libs and the Nats disagreeing over policy is a common currency with the Coalition across Australia. It’s only a recent phenomenum that any disagreement between the two in Qld is a “big public issue”. That just comes back to having poor political skills – it never used to be that way, even when the Coalition was in government. It also doesnt help that the things they disagree with are issues like who gets to be Premier – honestly, that was complete amateur hour.

    Dont forget that One Nation didnt just shift votes away from the Libs , it also took massive chunks of the vote directly from the Nats that they’ve never received back as well. It’s a bit of a misnomer to think that it was only the Libs that suffered the One Nation effect – both suffered, but with different demographics, which is the key problem with getting that vote back.Being a single party or a Coalition wouldnt have made much of a difference with the One Nation effect on the vote of the major parties on the conservative side – we saw that play out in all the Liberal held regional seats at the Federal level as well as the Nats seats.

    Howard kept the whole show together with the glue of incumbency and massive pork barreling is sensitive seats – usually starting about 12 months out from the election, running through the pre-election budget right through the campaign and on to election day, often delivering the money, or starting to deliver the money BEFORE the election itself.

    You cant do that from Opposition because you dont control the Treasury benches.And even Howard eventually succumbed to the same problem – even the glue of incumbency couldnt hold these twin support bases of conservative politics together.

    Each party being a broad church is true, but it’s not so much about the congegation, but the issues each party has available to speak with their congregation. While Labor can throw the left flank a bone every now and then, they know that the left will not desert them as preferences will flow back, allowing them to really pivot to the centre.

    But the Conservatives have a different problem, they need to throw more than a bone to their right flank or the right flank revolts (rural independents, One Nation etc). But the bigger bone they throw, the more distrust and revolt it creates in the metro Lib seats that dont share those values. As long as the Conservatives can use the macro-economy and defence as issues to keep the metro seats quiet, they can throw biiger socially conservative bones to the regions to keep them happy – but when the macro-economy spiel or the defence spiel breaks down (or the conservatives realise it’s broken down and cant throw bones as large as they like to the regions) – it allows the ALP to waltz in on their issues of education and health and services provision to pinch votes from everywhere.

    Which is what killed Howard, and has killed the NSW Coalition as well.

    I’m aware that after Tampa people were writing off the ALP as a force – I wasnt one of them though, I thought the whole exercise reeked of innumeracy. The big danger if the LNP cant juggle their demographics is that they dont just face three cornered contests in some seats, but 4 cornered contests where theres an ALP, an LNP, a rural conservative and a small L Liberal. The high growth tourism seats are open to that possibility. That would be the Pineapple Party’s biggest nightmare – all of the problems of the merger, but still three and sometimes four cornered contests with conservative rural independents and small L liberal independents.

  30. dogb: “Because there’s no way on this good green earth that Lawrence Springborg would have been content with deputy.” Well that may change my opinion of him then. He may be a leader afterall. I initially thought he wasn’t. Your statement should worry the Government, not bandaid them.

  31. LTEP: “I just fail to see how it really makes a difference. Even the name of the party is completely uninspiring” well that’s conservatives!

  32. #146

    Re Libs and One Nation: Sorry, mustn’t have made myself clear. I meant the Liberals lost urban votes not to One Nation, but to Labor because of One Nation. Urban voters perceived the Liberals as an appendage of some Nats-One Nation far-right alliance, and reacted by voting Labor in droves. From what I recall the Liberals did try to take a different line on ON, but being in Coalition with the Nats meant they were punished just as strongly. I stick by my point that being indepedent did them no good at all, as they were seen as just a lap-dog of the Nats (which, maybe, they were).

  33. MDM,

    The poor old Libs got hammered from both ends in the metro seats, they lost votes to Labor because of the way their country cousins were preferencing One Nation on the one hand, as well as actually having One Nation take votes off them in Liberal seats on the other hand!

    I agree with you that being independent did them no good regarding One Nation – but if they were a single party at the time, would it have been any different (assuming the Nat majority made the decision to preference for the entire LNP)? Or would it have risked having even more urban voters move to Labor?

Comments are closed.

Comments Page 3 of 4
1 2 3 4