Super size me

I guess we’re not getting a Morgan poll tomorrow, so a stand-alone post is required to note recent developments. To wit:

Antony Green has crunched the numbers from the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ latest state and territory population figures and concluded that yet another new seat will need to be created in Queensland next year, again at the expense of New South Wales. Queensland will thus have boomed from 26 seats to 30 in little over a decade, having earlier gained Blair in 1998, Bonner in 2004 and Flynn in 2007. New South Wales lost Gwydir in 2007.

• The Australian Electoral Commission has announced that the finalised new federal boundaries for Western Australia will be gazetted on December 18, and maps published henceforth.

• Possum reckons “it’s time to rethink political demographics&#148, and explains why across a two-part epic here and here.

• A constitutional crisis is brewing in Canada that has some excited observers invoking the example of Australia in 1975. The election on October 14 saw Stephen Harper’s Conservative minority government re-elected, but again requiring the support of Bloc Québécois. However, Bloc Québécois has now signed an accord with the Liberal Party and leftist New Democrats due to dissatisfaction with the government’s handling of the financial crisis. Harper reportedly plans to ask that Governor-General Michaëlle Jean prorogue the parliament so it will not sit until the budget is presented in January. This would avert a sitting on December 8 at which Harper’s government would likely be defeated on a no-confidence motion, and allow him time to pick apart the Liberal-Bloc-NDP deal. This raises the question of whether Jean ought to grant a prorogation to a Prime Minister who might not have the confidence of the House.

UPDATE (5/12/08): Jean agrees to prorogue parliament until January 26. Ben Raue at The Tally Room expresses his displeasure, and proposes reforms to the appointment of prime ministers (citing the practice in the Australian Capital Territory), the scheduling of parliament and the timing elections. I am a little more sympathetic to Jean’s decision, on account of the Liberals’ evident state of disarray – although I can buy the idea that it’s not the Governor-General’s role to make such judgements.

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.

1,278 comments on “Super size me”

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  1. I think it was Menzies, when an MP shouted to him “PM, what about the Prostitution Bill?”. “pay it, dear boy, pay it”.

  2. If i had a choice between him and Turnbull id pick Brough anyday.
    Brough is different to many politicians in that the man is not a phoney…

    Yes but would we want a leader a man who used a vulgar word on national television.

    Slipper or Somylay should go for Mal Brough in 2010.

    Perhaps he could stand in Dawson and run over that Christian Democrat nutter.

  3. Just finished watching the Howard Years.

    The best part was at the end. Watching Kiribilly Removals clearing out the refuse from Kiribilly House.

  4. Wasn’t it Billy Hughes who had been a memebr of the ALP the UAP and a collection of Conservative Parties during the 20’s and 30’s, who was asked why he had not ever joined the Country Party and said,

    “You have to draw the line somewhere”.

  5. [Best one-liners by Australian PMs competition:]

    Surely PJK’s of Fraser:

    [You look like an Easter Island statue with an arse full of razor blades.”]

    deserves gurnsey.

  6. wow
    [KEVIN Rudd’s spend-a-thon stimulus package is a big hit with voters, according to Newspoll, with the Labor Party’s two-party preferred support leaping to six-month high of 59 per cent.

    But there’s a nasty surprise for Malcolm Turnbull in Newspoll’s Christmas stocking, with support for the Coalition falling to 41 per cent on a two party preferred basis and the Liberal leader’s rating as a better prime minister also taking a hit.],25197,24771879-601,00.html

  7. [Newspoll reveals that Mr Rudd’s rating as better PM has increased three points from 63 to 66 per cent.

    Mr Turnbull’s rating has dropped by two points from 21 per cent to19 per cent, with fewer than one in five voters surveyed preferring his leadership. This is his worst performance against Mr Rudd since becoming Opposition Leader in September. ]

    19%????? Why does this man bother? 🙂

  8. [Why can’t one Liberal MP in a safe seat give it up for Mal Brough, if he’s not in the next Parliament the Queensland Liberals are a disgrace]

    Selflessness is against the principles of the Liberal Party.

  9. Love this from Samantha Maiden:
    [Despite the success of Mr Rudd’s “sugar hit” economic stimulus package, Mr Turnbull is arguing that tax cuts, not cash handouts would have been a better way to go. ]

    err success?? oh, we’re only caring about political newspoll sense. dopey.

  10. Some people have short memories:

    Wednesday, 14 May 2008

    Treasurer Wayne Swan has delivered on the Rudd Government’s promised tax cuts as part of a $55 billion package for its core constituents, working families.

    The tax cuts, worth $46.7 billion over the next four years, will cut the tax paid by a worker on $80,000 a year by $21.15 per week from July 1, 2008. That saving will rise to $24.04 on July 1, 2009 and $29.81 on July 1, 2010.

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