WA election minus 28 days

Joe Spagnolo of the Sunday Times reports that the Liberal internal polling that persuaded Troy Buswell to go showed that even with Buswell as leader the party would have retained Bunbury (Liberal-held but notionally Labor post-redistribution) and won the notionally knife-edge new eastern suburbs seat of Kalamunda. However, they were trailing slightly in the must-win seats of Albany (Labor-held but now notionally Liberal) and Kingsley (northern suburbs, Labor-held, notionally line-ball). A report from Robert Taylor of The West Australian suggests the poll showed them winning all four if Barnett was leader, by a margin of 60-40 in Bunbury. However, Taylor also reports Labor polling is believed to give them a “nice buffer”.

• Independent Churchlands MP Liz Constable has been included in the new shadow cabinet, with the public sector management and government accountability portfolios: smartly chosen in the context of an election campaign that will emphasise Brian Burke and ministerial sackings, but potentially very dangerous thereafter. The formerly estranged Rob Johnson and Graham Jacobs (members for Hillarys and Roe, with the latter set to contest the new seat of Eyre) are back on the board.

• It now seems likely the Liberals will be unable to accommodate Deidre Willmott, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry policy adviser who had to abandon Cottesloe so Colin Barnett could shelve his retirement plans. This leaves the Liberals with a grand total of four female lower house candidates out of the 43 nominated so far: Liza Harvey in the marginal Liberal new northern suburbs seat of Scarborough, Andrea Mitchell and Milly Zuvella in Kingsley and Joondalup further north (respectively line-ball and marginal Labor) and Ruth Webb-Smith in long-shot Kimberley.

• Today’s West Australian reports that outgoing Carine MP Katie Hodson-Thomas is ruing her decision to retire, made on the day Troy Buswell became leader. Hodson-Thomas complained Buswell had made “inappropriate comments” to her in front of male colleagues.

• The West Australian’s Gary Adshead reports that Sue Walker, the Liberal-turned-independent member for Nedlands, is yet to have nominated for the election, prompting speculation she was “throwing in the towel”. Walker responded by telling Adshead that a man had come into her electorate office to say her “life was in danger”, but that “providing there’s nothing that stands between me and the close of nominations, I intend to nominate”.

• Alan Carpenter has announced a re-elected Labor government will spend $160 million rebuilding Albany Regional Hospital, after earlier committing only to a $55 million redevelopment. Albany was won by Labor in 2001 and retained by a 1.4 per cent margin in 2005, but the one-vote one-value redistribution has turned it into a 2.3 per cent Liberal seat by expanding it into rural areas beyond the city limits.

• In other policy news, the Kimberley canal is officially off the agenda of a first-term Liberal government. Word is that the once-bitten twice-shy Barnett will pursue a “small target” strategy.

• If you’re a Crikey subscriber, you can my read quick overview from today’s email. The upshot is that the Liberals are a better chance than the $4.25 being offered by Centrebet suggests.

UPDATE (9/8/08): The Sunday Times reports Labor polling conducted after the Liberal leadership change shows Labor leading 56-44 in the new seat of Jandakot, which has a notional Labor margin of 3.6 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.

340 comments on “WA election minus 28 days”

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  1. Not nit pickin Stace at 233, but I know both Matt Keoghs, (there are two) the one that works for Carpenter is over fifty a bit of a duffer and is hardly young Labor, the other one is a very talented labor lawyer type, young, they are not related.

  2. Tonight’s ABC News coverage.

    btw, re Barnett’s whinge about not being allowed access to a Public School may I quote from the Caretaker provisions.

    13. Visits by Members of Parliament and Political Candidates to Government Facilities

    13.1 Where Members of Parliament or political candidates wish to visit
    government facilities for campaigning purposes, the Chief Executive Officer must be notified and that officer, or a nominated representative, will accompany the Members or political candidates during the visit.

    It is believed the Libs didn’t seek permission from the School Principal to attend.

    http://www.abc.net.au/reslib/200808/r282157_1198843.asx

  3. Ron I said my source was very unscientific, it wasn’t a poll, it was just feedback from a community person, who has feedback from a number of community groups in a safe labor seat, not so far from Frank.

    Frank is welcome to write my gossip off, it was always gossip and therefore less reliable than a westpoll (if that is possible), bit crude and cruel of him to write me off as well, but whatever floats his boat.

    As for Adam in Canberra and his rather narrow view of linguistic expression I can only recommend mythologies by Roland Barthes, or getting out more often.

    But prodded by his snobbery I did look up the Dear Leader / Great Leader North Korean stuff and I’m a bit stunned even having read the contextual stuff that he couldn’t stretch his mind to the point I was making.

  4. [Frank is welcome to write my gossip off, it was always gossip and therefore less reliable than a westpoll (if that is possible), bit crude and cruel of him to write me off as well, but whatever floats his boat.]
    But you did NOT name the seat in question, which I’m assuming is Midland by your description.

    And depending on the community group involved, I’d take anything they say with a grain of salt.

    As I said, you need to back up your allegations with some sort of factual basis, or you end up looking like a goose, and it is not crude or cruel, in fact I could’ve used the F word which wouldn’t have been fair to William, or anyone else.

  5. Community groups dear Frank a number of traditionally labor community groups, and I told you to take it with a grain of salt so you don’t get points for brilliance taking my advice; based on your attitude to me you’d clearly deserve swear words of abuse for taking my advice.

    And it is West Swan not Midland, not that it matters much, IF, and I say IF, the mood sensed is real and illusory it wont matter what seat it is.

    And the Swan Hills polling you speak of is pathetic, they didn’t leak the TPP just the ‘ready for government’ and I’ll ask possum what stats he has linking the two next I meet him in a tree but till then I’ll assume the link is relatively weak.

    The other seat you talk of, what was it, is consistent with a sound Labor win, but inconsistent with serious liberal brand damage.

  6. Frank,
    At 140. Yeah, you’re probably too bright to be a labor staffer, maybe an academic ?(who else would have the time). I pop in from time to time, but too busy to make too much of a nuisance of myself. Keep going good read anyway.

  7. Community groups dear Frank a number of traditionally labor community groups, and I told you to take it with a grain of salt so you don’t get points for brilliance taking my advice; based on your attitude to me you’d clearly deserve swear words of abuse for taking my advice.

    Let me guess are these “traditional Labor Community Groups” in parts of the electorate which used to be in Ballajura ?

    To quote from Antony Green’s Election Guide for West Swan.

    Over half of the voters in West Swan have been transferred from the northern end of the abolished seat of Ballajura. These areas recorded a Labor two-part vote of 65.4% in 2005

    Of course they’d be upset if their MP is the flip flopping on again/off again John D’Orazio, whose creative branch recruitment methods did more damage to the “ALP Brand” than any pre-selection stoush.

  8. At 140. Yeah, you’re probably too bright to be a labor staffer, maybe an academic ?

    Bzzt, wrong again, just a humble Disability pensioner with an obsession with politics 🙂

  9. Interesting theory on John D’Orazio, but as uninteresting as this election is, that is a theory we’ll have a pretty good idea of following the result in Morley. So on your view of Mr D’Orazio you’d be expecting him to poll 5-10%? Less?

    But no the gossip I get uses just one name as the problem.

  10. Jasmine

    Thanks for advising seat “West Swan” and th context of where info came from

    Will be interested on Electon nite on that area , and booths

  11. Omodei to quit politics.

    The former state Liberal leader Paul Omodei has announced he is retiring from state politics.

    Mr Omodei has been in Parliament for almost 20 years.

    He was dumped as Liberal Party leader late last year and had threatened to stand as an Independent.

    Mr Omodei says he has decided to step away from politics and return to his farm at Pemberton.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/08/15/2336726.htm

  12. The L/NP would have more seats than Labor with a uniform swing of 4.4%. A much smaller swing is required if they pick up Joondalup (4.4%) and Jandakot (3.6%). A mere 2.1% swing plus these two would give it to them. Closer than you might think.

  13. Paul Omodei’s doing same as Shelley Archer… retiring after making a lot of noise. Back to the farm in Pemberton he goes… not challenging Buswell in Vasse, although the ABC thinks Bernie Masters might. I hope he does.

    It’s interesting that of the 3 most vocal “independents” in the current parliament, only D’Orazio has the balls to contest the election, though in reality he may poll well, but he won’t get over the line.

  14. It’s interesting that of the 3 most vocal “independents” in the current parliament, only D’Orazio has the balls to contest the election, though in reality he may poll well, but he won’t get over the line.

    And I should add that according to the West’s website, Sue Walker has nominated to run as an independent in Nedlands, which should she win will be a real embarrasment for the Libs.

  15. I know nominations only closed at 12pm, but the draw for ballot positions should now have taken place…any idea when they will be on the WAEC website?

  16. I know nominations only closed at 12pm, but the draw for ballot positions should now have taken place…any idea when they will be on the WAEC website?

    Hopefully they should be on the website by close of business.

  17. Don’t hold your breath. the names have to be tripled checked, as they go straight into the system that typesets the ballot papers. Any stuff up there and they have to re-print the lot, as occured in O’Connor at the 2007 Federal election. Full list unlikely before 5pm western time.

  18. If that sounds like an odd priority, the Electoral Commission has to give priority to the process that sets the printing in train. They have to start pre-poll next week and so need ballot papers by then. Turning around a couple of million ballot papers over a weekend is always tight. As well, all parties have to be given full lists of LC candidates today so they can lodge group ticket votes on Monday. The WAEC will dot all the i’s and cross all the t’s before they release the names.

  19. Had the Libs kept Buswell as leader, Labor would have won in a landslide. IMO, giving Barnett the leadership gives the Libs a better chance than the bookies currently give them. Labor hasn’t exactly been great in the West, what with all the scandals involving Brian Burke. The change to Barnett may now may the Libs electable; if Labor’s on the nose, the Libs could well win.

  20. Had the Libs kept Buswell as leader, Labor would have won in a landslide. IMO, giving Barnett the leadership gives the Libs a better chance than the bookies currently give them. Labor hasn’t exactly been great in the West, what with all the scandals involving Brian Burke. The change to Barnett may now may the Libs electable; if Labor’s on the nose, the Libs could well win.

    Doubt it, the policies released by the Libs so far have been lowest common denominator Talkback inspired rubbish.

    Plus as I’ve said before, The Nats are going alone, and the libs won’t be able to rely on their seats being part of a coalition.

    And Brian Burke – Meh, The Libs can’t claim the moral high ground when Noel Chrichton-Browne has still got his hand in the liberal cookie jar as a supporter of Buswell – Carpenter got rid of/forced them to resign from both the Parliament and the ALP those associated with Burke, while the Libs have kept Buswell as Shadow Treasurer.

  21. Frank what about Mark McGowan?

    The Libs are running ads on CCC stuff, so their research is saying it is a line worth running.

    The link from Burke to Buswell is a bit tenuous.

  22. Frank what about Mark McGowan?

    The Libs are running ads on CCC stuff, so their research is saying it is a line worth running.

    The link from Burke to Buswell is a bit tenuous.

    Jasmine,

    Honestly you have no clue whatsoever, NCB WORKS for Burke, was with Buswell in the carpark of Parliament House with Buswell COACHING him on what to say to the CCC and you say it’s a “Tenuous Link”

    It’s all realitve and hypocritical of the Libs to carry on about Burke, when Burke has links to the Libs via NCB – in fact Senator Ian Campbell was forced to resign from Federal Cabinet when it was revealed he was a t a meeting with Burke.

    Like I said, they’re mad to refer to it, it WILL backfire.

  23. Frank what about Mark McGowan?

    If you had bothered to keep up with what was reported, McGowan” was politely telling Burke to Piss off, when he replied to the emails they way he did – it’s called using tact and diplomacy.

  24. NCB WORKS for Burke, was with Buswell in the carpark of Parliament House with Buswell COACHING him on what to say to the CCC and you say it’s a “Tenuous Link”

    That should read” NCB WORKS for Burke, and it was revealed that NCB was with Buswell sitting in a car in the Parliament House Carpark on the day of the Omodei leadership challenge COACHING Buswell in how to respond to Questions in relation tothe Smith’s Beach Development in the CCC.

  25. There is an old saying, “Better to be ruled by one Lion than a thousand Rats”.

    That is what I think the betting markets are continuing to reflect.

    People will just not vote for an infighting, disorganized rabble, who’s main spokespersons are the editor and the jaundiced hacks of the West Australian, who’s apologists and principal supporters are far right sturmtroopers such as Armstrong and Murray, who’s policies are promulgated by half witted shock Jocks and agenda merchants, and who stand for nothing other than a pathetic but unshakable belief in their superiority and dIvine right to rule us all.

    No, give me Carps any day of the week, rather than an insipid, empty polystyrene cup like Barnett, surrounded by soiled goods such as Buswell, and the stench of death emenating from the likes of Maumill, Sattler and Henderson. Add Ken Court and the cast of evil muppets at the West Australian and we have the entire talent of the WA Liberals paraded before us in all their glory.

  26. Labor Launches Attack Ad over Liberals’ lack of female candidates.

    The Labor Party has launched the first negative advertisements of the West Australian election campaign with a series of radio commercials that attack the Liberal Party’s attitudes towards women.

    The advertisements point out that the Opposition has only one female candidate in a winnable Lower House seat compared to 13 female Labor candidates for the Legislative Assembly.

    In all, the Liberal Party is fielding six females candidates in the Lower House

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/08/15/2336983.htm

  27. Frank,

    You’re getting more and more hysterical as the campaign progresses. Sensing the the possibility that your corrupt, born to rule union/politician lackeys might be in for a nasty surprise in several weeks time?

  28. You’re getting more and more hysterical as the campaign progresses. Sensing the the possibility that your corrupt, born to rule union/politician lackeys might be in for a nasty surprise in several weeks time?

    Are you sure it’s not your beloved Liberal POarty you are referring to ?

    See my response to Jasmine and Lord D.

  29. No, Calabs. I was referring to you.

    Stick to campaign updates. You appear to be much better at regurgitation as opposed to comprehension.

  30. “NCB WORKS for Burke, and it was revealed that NCB was with Buswell sitting in a car in the Parliament House Carpark on the day of the Omodei leadership challenge COACHING Buswell in how to respond to Questions in relation tothe Smith’s Beach Development in the CCC.”

    Doesn’t Noel Crichton-Brown also have an attitude problem towards women, what else has he been coaching Buswell in, unfastening womens underwear, sniffing ?

  31. No, Calabs. I was referring to you.

    Stick to campaign updates. You appear to be much better at regurgitation as opposed to comprehension.

    Typical Liberal Hack, you’ve got no clue on policy, so you attack personally.

    Get it through your petty little mind – Barnett will NOT win, just as myself and Fulvio have outlined why.

    The Libs have been caught on the hop, and only have policy based on populist media crap. THe ALP have reelased policies which build on infrastructure and the future – the Libs have only released failed policies from the 2005 Election.

    And Colin’s Nuclear Mining Policy is his Canal of 2008 – People will NOT vote for that.

    There is more to Public debate than what’s published in THe West, THe Sunday Times and 6PR.

  32. Doesn’t Noel Crichton-Brown also have an attitude problem towards women, what else has he been coaching Buswell in, unfastening womens underwear, sniffing ?

    Yes, indeed that is correct, something about grabbing breasts.

    Real champion of Women the Liberal Party are – full of Stepford Wives and Western suburb airheads.

  33. Apparantly Julie Bishop is an airhead then eh.

    Is there any doubt ? She’s shacked up with Peter Natrass – nuff said 🙂

  34. Frank hate to spoil your whole evening but I’m firmly in the Labor camp. I just happen to be one who doesn’t feel I’m obliged to believe everything the Premier says, merely because he is the Premier. At the same time I’m am sure the Liberals shouldn’t win this election, I’m just not sure they wont.

    I am pretty sure I have heard Ms Bishop say, that it is fortunate people aren’t judged solely on their life partners (there is something in that for all of us I’m sure).

    I can’t remember any stats but it is amazing how many you run into that are not only comfortable with nuclear power, but actually believe it is needed – but it is still contentious.

    I don’t think there is any rational opposition to uranium mining, and I’m pretty sure Western Australians with the highest per capita state taxes (last I saw figures), rising interest rates and falling house prices can rationally delay any longer an industry that even Labor supports in some parts of the country. It is just foolish not to have the industry.

  35. I’m sure my wife will take great comfort in the sentiment expressed in the second paragraph of your post Jasmine …

  36. Hey Frank, lifes cool. Chill a bit, mate. Just because we see things a little differently doesn’t make us enemies. Unless of course we vote Liberal…

    By the way, did I ever tell you why I argue bitterly with my elderly mother?

  37. Almost never buy the West, certainly haven’t read one since the election was called and I’m not sure I have ever listened to 6PR at all. Pretty much a PNN or 720 girl, even with that guy in the mornings sometimes (but not often).

    Shall we say as for our Premier given a choice between the west and what he says, it is going to take me a while to work out if either of them are telling a truth I’m buying.

    As for the State Secretary as dreadful and biased as the West is, I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t be stupid enough to try to tell me a cheque was cash or vice versa.

  38. As for the State Secretary as dreadful and biased as the West is, I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t be stupid enough to try to tell me a cheque was cash or vice versa.

    Still harping on about that I see, Build a bridge, it’s no big deal, it was designed to PREVENT Branch stacking, or are you in favour of what the former member for Ballajura did to damage the “ALP Brand” you are so concerned about.

  39. The reporter almost has a good name.

    So lying for political gain is fine in your book Frank, you are sounding lots like a Howard man.

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