Essential Research: 61-39

The latest weekly Essential Research survey shows Labor’s lead moderating slightly to 61-39 from 63-37 in the previous two surveys. In other findings, 54 per cent approve of the government’s national broadband network, while 62 per cent think Australia’s economy “better than most countries” in the current global financial crisis. For this, equal credit is given to “the actions of the Rudd government – including the stimulus packages” and a well-regulated finance and banking sector. “The Howard government’s handling of the economy” ranks somewhat lower. Also featured are questions on potential budget measures, the role of human rights in international trade, and China’s human rights record.

What’s more:

George Megalogenis of The Australian charts the rise of the centre left with reference to long-term Newspoll trends.

Glenn Milne of The Australian has written a skeptically received article which speaks of plotting against Julie Bishop partly motivated by Senator Mathias Cormann’s designs on her blue-ribbon seat of Curtin. Andrew Bolt has published Cormann’s denial.

• Electoral Commissioner Ed Killesteyn advises the government to get hip by allowing voters to enrol online.

Rick Wallace of The Australian notes the Victorian ALP is struggling to meet its affirmative action quota of 35 per cent female candidates in winnable seats, making it “almost imperative that a woman replaces a retiring woman, and that at least one in two of all retiring men are replaced by women”. While little action is expected ahead of the next federal election, speculation is said to surround the state seats of Craig Langdon (Ivanhoe), Peter Batchelor (Thomastown), Lynne Kosky (Altona) and John Pandazopoulos (Dandenong). More substantially, “former speaker Judy Maddigan has confirmed she will retire and she is expected to support former Labor staffer Natalie Sykes-Hutchins to replace her in the seat of Essendon”.

• Adelaide’s Independent Weekly reports on Malcolm Mackerras’s tip for next year’s state election: Labor to be comfortably returned, with the loss of only Norwood, Mawson and Light. The report notes something I had neglected to relate previously: SA Murray Irrigators Association chair Tim Whetstone was preselected in November as the Liberal candidate for Nationals MP Karlene Maywald’s seat of Chaffey, ahead of Citrus Growers of SA president Mark Chown and businessman Brian Barnett. Mackerras tips Whetstone to win.

Ben Raue at The Tally Room has a post on whether the federal parliament should be enlarged, with reference to international practice.

Possum notes the cubic polynomial distribution of two-party electorate results, and its implications for interpreting marginal seat exit polls.

Courtesy of the April edition of the invaluable Democratic Audit Update:

• The Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters will hold a “roundtable public hearing” on submissions to the green paper on campaign finance at Parliament House on Thursday, from 9.30am to 1pm.

• The Greens’ “parliamentary contract” with Labor’s minority government in the Australian Capital Territory is reviewed by Jenny Stewart in the Canberra Times.

• Brian Costar examines Electoral Commissioner Ed Killesteyn’s demolition of the spurious justifications for the Howard government’s 2005 electoral “reforms” at Inside Story.

• The Australian Parliamentary Library has published a research paper on the electoral demise of the Australian Democrats by Cathy Madden.

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.

1,454 comments on “Essential Research: 61-39”

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  1. [If the Libs are hoping to rattle Rudd it’s going to be one more failure in an ever increasing list.]

    Vera, they sat around for twelve months watching Rudd reduce Howard to a trembling wreck of a man and in the process, destroying him and his “legacy” at the November, 2007 election.

    They have sat around and watched as he records poll after poll at stratospheric levels, all the while throwing everything including the kitchen sink at him and nothing has worked.

    I can’t see anything changing in this respect as it is becoming clearer that the Libs enjoy failure and irrelevance. If that summation is incorrect, then they better hurry up and develop a strategy that actually works for them and not to enhance the standing of the Rudd Government.

  2. No 1400

    Diogenes, in 1788, the Europeans were more scientifically advanced than the Aborigines. Is that to say that Aborigines were incapable of the same scientific development? No.

    But let’s not kid ourselves by saying that the Aborigines were the scientific equals of Europeans at the time of settlement.

  3. GP

    The distinction I’m drawing is a fine one and probably not very important. I’m saying that European culture was more scientifically advanced than Aboriginal culture, and has been for hundreds if not thousands of years. That’s a little bit different from saying Europeans are more scientifically advanced.

  4. Adam said a few pages ago:

    [They were coming to Australia because they want to live here and not in their country of first asylum, Pakistan.]

    This doesn’t apply in this circumstance for two reasons:

    a) Pakistan is not a country that you would consider being safe enough to seek asylum into.

    b) Pakistan has expelled refugees.

  5. [“It is not my view that the Government has gone soft. The Government has continued with the Howard government’s program of border protection. There are more movements of refugees throughout the world and Australia is getting a tiny proportion of what is happening,” he told The Age, adding that there should be a bipartisan policy on the issue.”
    Before reading below, who said this?

  6. We didn’t need this bit of news. How long before we hear about “hordes of boat-people”?

    [SIXTY-EIGHT migrants from Afghanistan have been arrested in Indonesia as they were planning to enter Australia, a report said on Friday.

    The migrants were arrested in a hotel at the beach resort of Anyer, near the capital Jakarta, and are due to be handed over to immigration authorities, state news agency Antara said.

    “The 68 Afghan citizens will be picked up by immigration officials this afternoon,” Cilegon district police chief Dwi Gunawan was quoted as saying.

    Gunawan said the Afghans planned to travel to Australia. ],22606,25346858-5005962,00.html

  7. GP, I would guess that the average convict -and the average overseer- were pretty much scientifically illiterate. And even Joseph Banks would have lasted less than a week in the Australian bush without help from the natives. These kinds of comparisons are entirely spurious. In the “science” of survival in the Australian environment, the aboriginal culture was immeasurably “superior”.

  8. Rudd also made mention of Broadbent’s comments and “his old mate Joe’s” (or similar words 😉 ), what a refreshing difference from the majority of the nasty hate filled Lib comments.

  9. #1331

    [Polyquats, it is indisputable that in all areas: art, language, science, civil development etc etc, Europeans had advanced beyond most of the rest of the world. That is not the same as saying that Europeans, by virtue of their race, are superior. And it is inherently wrong, offensive and obscene to suggest that I ever said that.]

    GP, I would dispute that everytime and everywhere. You are talking thru your arxse. And what is this “etc etc” bit, spell it our old boy.

    #1333 GG, i know. that’s where i got it from.

  10. GP
    you’re chosing the grounds on which to judge superiority in order to prove your own case.
    If the Aborigines defined what made a culture superior, then obviously they could do the same.
    That the Europeans were ‘more advanced’ in an area they invented and which the Aborigines were entirely unaware is fairly obvious.

  11. No 1419

    Zoomster, show me the groundbreaking scientific/technological progression in Aboriginal society. Even the Incas and Aztecs appear markedly ahead.

  12. 1396,

    I’m calling a spade a spade. If you think that’s racism, well I give up.

    Now we have the same as Howard’s non core promises. “I didn’t say ‘T H A T’. And because I didn’t say so, it isn’t so.” Sorry again, mate. That is the logic of the Emperor who has no clothes on. The rest of the pack sees your attitude for what it is. If you don’t see it, a la the Emperor, time to look in the mirror for a reality check.

  13. [Sorry Julie, I’m not a racist. ]

    Except, you are sounding exactly like Richard Nixon: “I’m not a crook”. And we know he was a crook.

  14. [Except, you know I’m not a racist.]

    I’m not currently posting on pollbludger.

    Just cause a person says something, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s true.

  15. GP
    name 200 different plants in your area. Identify which ones are edible and explain where you are most likely to find them, when they are best harvested and the steps you must take to prepare them.
    Gather enough food from your local area within 12 hours to feed yourself and your family for three days (gather, not hunt).
    This is all science – unless you don’t count people such as Banks etc as scientists.

  16. No 1432

    That is information that I could learn should I wish to reduce my standard of living to that of 40,000 years ago.

  17. [show me the groundbreaking scientific/technological progression in Aboriginal society]
    [reduce my standard of living to that of 40,000 years ago.]

    Right up there with Ruddocks “They hadn’t even invented the wheel”

    The oldest civilisation on earth GP, 50,000 years, some say 80,000 years.

    Your stance is similar to past excuses used, “They are just savages”.

    Could be used against Orstralia, undeveloped resources, oil in the Barrier reef, uranium in the ground, drugging infants with phernergen teens with malcopops and adults fixated on sort and pokies. Savages I say, savages.

  18. seeing the Libs (including the ones on here and commentators like Bolt) flailing around with their indignant rage at asylum seekers, it really drives home how LOST and OUT OF TOUCH they are. Brilliant powers of denial to ignore all these pesky polls and ratings

  19. Goodness, a person has a tech. malfunction ( the wretched connection into the wall fell out – how pathetic – takes us days to find – really. It’s like finding the “on” button eventually = massive humiliation), only to find huge fight about asylum seekers yet again, and whether or not GP understands anything at all about other cultures – nah, epic fail, does the Coalition understand anything at all about why they’re trailing so badly in the polls, nay, epic fail.
    Fabulous post from Possum.

  20. [But let’s not kid ourselves by saying that the Aborigines were the scientific equals of Europeans at the time of settlement.]
    G.P. on Thursday night (post 1141):
    [If they [Aboriginal Australians] have primitive lifestyles, they are by definition uncomplicated. ]
    But let’s not kid ourselves by thinking that Australian Aboriginal societies were primitive, simple, and uncomplicated.

    Only people who are primitive, simple, uncomplicated AND uneducated believe such nonsense.

    Only people who have no understanding of human nature, and who are willfully ignorant of it could make such a claim.

    Only people who have no idea how humans developed language, art, traditions and customs would propose such a ridiculous interpretation of human pre-history.

  21. [I’m confused to how those first preference votes turn into that 2PP.

    Did SA not have compulsory preferencing?]
    That’s easy to see, the Liberals got nearly all of the non-Democrat minor party preferences, and some of the Democrat preferences.

  22. [I added it up and makes sense. Just looked strange to me.]
    It should look strange, figures like that happen once every 40+ years! 😀

  23. [Julie Bishop says the government should change its policies on immigration but doesn’t explain to what.]

    That’s because they don’t know what they believe in, and are racked with division.

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