Morgan phone poll: 54.5-45.5

Roy Morgan has published results from a small-sample phone poll showing Labor’s two-party lead at 54.5-45.5, compared with 53-47 at the previous such poll early last month. Morgan’s phone polls consistently give Labor lower ratings than its headline face-to-face polls. The poll was conducted on the back of a survey of 659 respondents to ascertain views on climate change, which found support for the government’s carbon emissions trading scheme down four points to 46 per cent and opposition up five points to 36 per cent.

To demonstrate that those who believe nothing happens over the silly season aren’t looking hard enough:

• The federal government’s much ballyhooed plan to reform regulation of political funding appears to have ended with a whimper. Whereas former Special Minister of State John Faulkner said last year the reforms would “definitely be in place before the next election”, his successor Joe Ludwig is refusing to make any commitments regarding the timing or content of any legislation. It was reported in October that the government and the opposition were close to agreeing on a package including limits on campaign spending and donations, increases in public funding to parties to cover the loss, and restriction of political advertising by third parties including unions and lobby groups. As part of the deal, the Coalition would drop its opposition to slashing the threshold for public disclosure of donations, which it voted down in the Senate last year with the support of Steve Fielding, and Labor would include union affiliation fees in a ban on donations from corporations, third parties and associated entities. The latter measure crucially met opposition from union leaders concerned it would reduce their influence. Furthermore, a leaked memo from Labor MP Michael Danby argued a move from private to public funding would be a bonanza for the Greens which they could use to target Labor-held inner-city seats. The scheme’s opponents have a handy weapon in the grave political difficulty involved in increasing public funding to political parties, which Danby argues would need to increase by a factor of 10 to keep them operating at their current level. In response to the obvious objection that the proposed package included spending caps, Danby argues that such mechanisms are untested and possibly unconstitutional.

• Meanwhile, Brian Robins of the Sydney Morning Herald reports NSW Electoral Commissioner Colin Barry has told a parliamentary committee that state legislation to introduce public funding was “close to unworkable”, making it very unlikely the measure will be introduced before the next election.

Loretta Johnston of the Launceston Examiner reports that a decision by the Right faction not to challenge the Left over the succession to Duncan Kerr in the federal seat of Denison indicates a deal has been struck which will leave Bass clear for confirmed starter Geoff Lyons, a staffer to Right faction Senator Helen Polley and former manager at Launceston General Hospital. However, it’s also noted that the Prime Minister has been “tipped to take particular interest in the seat”, and will be able to direct the national executive to take action if a candidate he prefers comes forward. The report names state Bass candidate Michelle Cripps as a potential alternative if she does not win a seat in the state election. However, Danielle Blewett of The Examiner surprisingly offers that the Prime Minister has “made it clear he wanted a man to run for Bass after the recent distress experienced by incumbent Bass MHR Jodie Campbell”, according to “Labor sources”.

• Robert Taylor of The West Australian reports the Western Australian ALP is struggling to find a federal candidate for Cowan to replace Wanneroo mayor Jon Kelly, who stood aside a month ago because he was too closely linked to Brian Burke, as almost everybody in local politics suffers the same problem. Two names mentioned as possibilities are Karen Brown, former West Australian deputy editor, current chief-of-staff to Opposition Leader Eric Ripper and unsuccessful candidate for Mount Lawley at the 2008 state election, and Sam Roe, an “ALP staffer”.

• Contrary to earlier reports that they were pushed as much as jumped, Paul Toohey of The Daily Telegraph reports Fowler MP Julia Irwin and Throsby MP Jennie George were offered extra terms due to the Prime Minister’s determination to avoid factional conflicts over who would succeed them.

• The Camden Haven Courier reports there are three candidates for Nationals preselection in Lyne, which was won at a 2008 by-election by independent Rob Oakeshott after Mark Vaile’s retirement: Port Macquarie medical specialist David Gillespie, Taree legal practitioner Quentin Schneider and Port Macquarie electrical contractor Jamie Harrison.

Antony Green lays out possible federal election dates, noting when double dissolution and half-Senate elections are due as well as the complicating factors of school holidays, long weekends and sporting events.

• The Australian Electoral Commission has published the final report for the Queensland federal redistribution, complete with individual maps for the redrawn seats.

• The Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters is conducting an inquiry in the New South Wales automatic enrolment scheme, legislation for which was enacted last month. The closing date for submissions is next Friday; the committee is schedule to report on February 25.

• Business SA has published a wish list of state constitutional and electoral reform. This includes two features the government hoped to put to an all-or-nothing referendum in conjunction with the next election: cutting upper house members’ terms from eight years to four, and introducing a double dissolution mechanism. Also recommended are the introduction of compulsory enrolment, which I actually thought had been done a couple of months ago; optional preferential voting (which has always seemed to me a no-brainer – but then has so has its logical corollary, optional voting); abolition of ticket votes in the upper house with a requirement that voters number only as many candidates as there are vacancies (which raises problems if that number is 22, as it would be if you abandoned eight-year terms); abolition of South Australia’s unusual mechanism to “save” informal lower house votes by deeming partially completed ballots to have followed the relevant party’s registered how-to-vote card (which would be logical, perhaps even necessary, if optional preferential voting was introduced); a strengthened “truth in advertising” clause (a cure worse than the disease, as Democratic Audit has noted – the government got it right when it made misleading advertising grounds for declaring a result void if it may have affected the result); and by-elections when sitting members resign from their party (not entirely sure what I think about this). Among the recommended reforms for parliament is appointing outsiders as Speaker and President.

• Hobart’s Taste food festival turned ugly just before new year, following what Matthew Denholm of The Australian calls a “heated arm-waving confrontation” between Elise Archer and Sue Hickey, respectively current and former state Liberal candidates for Denison. Two witnesses pointed the finger of blame firmly at Archer: festival director and unsuccessful Liberal preselection aspirant Marti Zucco, who subsequently quit the Liberal Party over parliamentary leader Will Hodgman’s failure to act against Archer, and Hobart deputy mayor and Greens candidate Helen Burnet. The latter was allegedly told by Archer’s husband, former state party president Dale Archer, to “f*** off” when she intervened on Hickey’s behalf. Hodgman ordered Archer to apologise to Hickey, which she did by email. At issue was whether there were too many lawyers in parliament: Hickey had argued there was, and Archer – a lawyer and, like Zucco, a Hobart alderman – expressed a strong view to the contrary. Matthew Denholm further notes that Archer is associated with the Right, whereas Hickey is a moderate. Various reports in the aftermath of the incident have focused on a rift in the party between moderates and the Right, with the latter evidently having gained ascendancy. Hickey had withdrawn as a candidate a fortnight previously as she did not wish for her business to forego government contracts, as required of parliamentarians by an onerous provision in the state constitution. She was replaced on the Liberal ticket by Richard Lowrie, a manager with Hobart catamaran manufacturers Incat.

• Further upsetting the previously smooth-travelling Tasmanian Liberal applecart is news that Franklin candidate Jillian Law – described by Sue Neales of The Mercury as “delightful Huon Valley Liberal candidate and grandmother” – received an email purportedly from a party insider which said Right powerbroker Senator Eric Abetz was “very, very angry” with her, and would “be doing what he can to see you are not elected”. The email also informed Law she was “offside” with Will Hodgman, the party’s sole member for Franklin, as she had been “running about the Huon Valley telling everyone he is second to you” in terms of local support.

Peter van Onselen of The Australian reviews the 2010 electoral landscape.

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.

757 comments on “Morgan phone poll: 54.5-45.5”

Comments Page 15 of 16
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  1. Ratsars:

    I just caught this bit:

    [hose GHS were limited to (in my example above 112 Mil Tonnes) to the total GHG prior to such a restriction then there is a de facto reduction in omissions or in other words an increase in efficiency to produce the necessary power.]

    You appear to think that coal fired power stations could somehow miraculously increase their efficiency to produce more power without a concomitant increase in GHG.

    If that is the case, you’re dreamin’. You better call in Mary McKillop.

  2. [what the hell are “comment previews” anyway, and why do we need it?]

    Exactly. Just post your thoughts and the other PBers will tell you what you really meant to say.

  3. Grog@700:

    Obviously you have never used them.

    How many times have you seen someone post, and I think you have too, something like:

    “in my previous post, “yes = no”

    “night = day”

    “if you can’t see the full stop at the end of the last sentence you need your eyes fixed”

    “William can you please edit out those bold tags I inadvertently forgot to close, making the whole post after the first few words bold?”

    You usually don’t have to use the preview function on most boards, though I think there is a case for making them obligatory, in the sense that having pressed post, you get the preview, then you press post again, hopefully after reading your previewed post for errors, and it appears on the page.

    A preview shows you what your post will look like on the board before actually posting.

    It makes a huge difference if you care what your post looks like.

    If you don’t care, of course it makes no difference. Some people don’t care what they write or how it looks, that’s up to them.

  4. [Diogenes
    Posted Monday, January 18, 2010 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

    Finniss Firebomb

    I am not an expert in such matters but I’m pretty sure Ron has dyslexia. He is highly intelligent and I don’t think criticising his English is appropriate.]

    Being dyslexic myself and having two children with the problem I’ve seen it all before. In my view Ron is a classic case. Life has got a lot easier, we now have spell checkers and Ron should dam well use one. You can’t overcome dyslexia without writing a lot and putting in the effort to get things right.

  5. [So give Ron a break he is doing fine.]
    Except that he has a nasty streak that makes Finns look like a sweetheart.

    As another who has dyslexia, I agree with fredn.

  6. Ratsars

    I was saying that if we use wood burnings health concerns as a reason for banning it then we should ban cigs well before then. But we won’t.

    I certainly am not advocating banning coal which would be catastrophic.

    On the topic of useless industries, I heard Fielding on radio this morning saying that Rudd has the power under the Corporations Act to reduce pokies in clubs and pubs. He said that Rudd has said he is concerned about pokies gambling but has failed to do anything about it.

    I’m surprised Mr X hasn’t been talking about the pokies issue.

  7. William@703:

    [You get a panel beneath your comment showing you how it will look when you hit submit, so you can see in advance if you’ve stuffed up your bold tags or what have you.]

    That would be the best of both worlds, if it did the preview on the fly. I’ll have one of those, thanks.

    Google Translate has started doing that, it is brilliant.

  8. [Bilbo

    this could move me to the dark side

    Oh gussy boy,The anti filterites are calling

    😉 ]

    Wash you mouth out or else drastic action WILL be taken 🙂

  9. [I am not an expert in such matters but I’m pretty sure Ron has dyslexia. He is highly intelligent and I don’t think criticising his English is appropriate.]

    If you read Ron’s comments phonetically there isn’t much problem. Forget the shadow and go for the substance … (mine is shiraz).

  10. Don @ 689

    You are making this more complicated that it is

    All the discussion was that IF there was an ETS and IF emission from urban wood burning was treated in a particular manner what would be the result.

    Also please take the post in the manner in which it was offered. It is clear from my post that you original argument was very unclear and I made some assumptions. At no time did I state that these assumptions were set in concerts. Does not words like If I follow your argument and appears you are saying enough qualifications for you. I also explained what I meant by a de facto reduction but you choose to ignore that as well. If you don’t know what an increase in efficiency is I would be very surprised.

    Simply put it means doing more with less.

    To then deconstruct that much qualifies post based on many assumptions and using very simple example is more that a bit excessive.

  11. Actually Grog their not bad (comment previews, i.e.). They do it on some ABC sites – 7.30 Report is one. It makes it easier for you to correct before hitting ‘post’

  12. [I try to say what I mean and mean what I say.]

    Or as in Alice;

    [`When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, `it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.’

    `The question is,’ said Alice, `whether you can make words mean so many different things.’ ]

  13. [`The question is,’ said Alice, `whether you can make words mean so many different things.’]

    Not too hard, just listen to a response by Mr. Tony Abbott

  14. [That’s what the one at Larvatus Prodeo does. You can go to the bottom of any comments thread and play around.]

    OK, it does look quite good. Now I just need a spell check (yeah I know don’t use IE)

  15. poly and fredn

    I hear what you are saying but there are different degrees of dyslexia (my daughter has a mild form).

    I tried putting a couple of Ron’s posts through a spell and grammar checker (and remember Ron usually has quite a bit to say). I don’t think a standard spell checker would help much; it was all red and green. So I think it would be very time-consuming for Ron to clean up his posts which are enjoyable as they are.

  16. Hmmmm, looks like there are some “features” that work on this board I didn’t know about!

    The tags from LP when used here turn text green, or bold and green, or black and italics, but you have to wear the fact that all text is strike through!

  17. [you mean they would stop people writing “their” instead of “they’re”? :D]

    Exactly!! smartie. lol I hung my head in shame the moment I saw it in full bloom on the page. Mark it down as another senior moment.

  18. [but you have to wear the fact that all text is strike through!]

    It is just god’s way of saying that you shouldn’t post at all

  19. [Exactly!! smartie. lol I hung my head in shame the moment I saw it in full bloom on the page. Mark it down as another senior moment.]

    aint it grand being a human as opposed to a regimented persona

  20. The useless industry that you talk of Diogs funds public transport and hospitals for state governments, and provides many thousands with a form of entertainment.

    Another reason Rudd won’t act on curtailing gaming machines, although they may be a problem to a few which should be adressed, is that their harmful affects are exagerated by some like X for purely opportunistc purposes.

    And just for you and your wowser mates Diogs. Aristocrat Leisure Limited. They are going to fair dinkum explode (share price) when the effects of the GFC are over. 😛

    Don’t worry Gus, you could never qualify for the Dark Side 😉

  21. Diogenes, I wasn’t, and I don’t think fredn was either, referring to effort just in a single post. Overcoming dyslexia takes a sustained effort over time, but it is doable.

  22. Centre

    The “funding” is just another way of saying “losses”.

    The Ruddster made quite a bit of noise about gambling before the election until the gambling heavies had a quiet chat with him and he became more “reasonable”.

  23. Centre

    [However, after a Productivity Commission report yesterday found Australians lose $18 billion a year on gambling, the Greens, key independent senators and experts urged the Prime Minister to step in and tackle the problem, saying the states were hopelessly compromised.

    As opposition leader, Mr Rudd said he would come up with solutions to reduce the states’ reliance on poker machine revenue if elected.

    “I hate poker machines and I know something of their impact on families,” Mr Rudd said at the time.]

  24. Didn’t take any Grog. Just had a laugh about it. Not a bit worried about anyone else doing the same but when I (a notoriously smartaleck, good speller since forever) does something like that I cringe.

    It seems to come out of nowhere so it has to be the brain getting a bit old and worn after so many years of smartaleckyism!!

    [Another reason Rudd won’t act on curtailing gaming machines, although they may be a problem to a few which should be adressed, is that their harmful affects are exagerated by some like X for purely opportunistc purposes.]

    Centre – altho not a player I agree with that. Have friends who love a little play on the machines when we pop down the Pub for a quick meal but most playing them there seem to know when to quit. It seems a pity to hurt the majority for a few who have a problem.’

    And the Pub is the biggest sponsor of sport and everything else in the area. the Publican always puts his hand in his pocket and never asks for the publicity.

  25. Scarpat717:

    [Use the preview facility at another site and then paste it into the Crikey comment section.]

    That would not work for tags. They are specific to a particular board, or series of them such as crikey.

    But you can type on a word processor and check for wrongly spelled words. One thing that is good that on my browser, Camino, I’ve set it up (somebody here suggested it) so that misspelled words are underlined. It’s a help for typos.

    As an example of copying and pasting not working, this is copied from the preview box at LP and pasted here:

    1. Anonymous Says:

    Quoted Text



    Linked text

  26. [BH and Centre

    I’m not talking about banning them all; I’m suggesting reducing their numbers.]

    Or they can do what happens in WA – restrict them to the Casino.

  27. [That would not work for tags. They are specific to a particular board, or series of them such as crikey. ]

    Don, yes agreed. I was thinking more about what one had written and if there were any spelling horrors that one would like to delete before sending.

  28. Diogs you can call it funding, losses or spend. That’s what people do when they spend their money on entertainment. As for your post 734 -it’s a popular form of entertainment.

    Hi BH. I was short by about 180 points on the ASX. So I devastatingly and reluctantly must admit that I was wRONg. 😐

  29. Frank – that would eliminate a lot of entertainment in rural areas. The local pub is the only source in some places.

    Perhaps in small places the responsibility could be on the owner to make sure that the same people are not spending all their dosh every week on the machines. It could also be incumbent on the owner to point someone in the right direction for help if a problem exists.

  30. Gawd, Centre. I was about to go out tomorrow and pick on your advice.

    Neighbours bought into AL years ago for fun – did very well, too.

  31. Although I still shudder when I walk through a room filled with pokies, I’m a lot more tolerant of them than I used to be.

    My spouse had a couple of years running the bingo (a fundraiser for the local school) – totally against any moral he had, but the school was desperate for someone to take it over. The ladies (and they were, mostly!) were also pokie players. They budgetted a set amount each week, expected to lose, loved it when they won, and regarded it as a cheap afternoon’s entertainment.

    It was available locally, whereas for any other kind of entertainment they’d have had to travel for over half an hour out of town, not always possible for some of them. And it was cheaper (or could be) than an afternoon at the movies, anyway.

    When pokies were banned in Victoria, busloads of little old ladies used to travel half the day to clubs in NSW, sending their money over the border.

    My mother in law, a notorious stinge (she used to save all the little bits of soap and scrunch them together…) religiously puts a couple of dollars into the pokies when she eats at the RSL club and regards it as a way of supporting the club.

    I still find the whole thing faintly evil, but that may just be the leftovers of a Methodist upbringing!

  32. [650 TheTruthHurts…….Can you please stop calling me redneck and racist, I have shown you the respect to not call you childish names, I expect the same in return.]

    I do believe I’ve never clled you a redneck, mostly out of respect for those mythical creatures, the rednecks. But, HTT, you are an unreconstructed, disingenuous and completely fraudulent bigot. These are not childish accusations. They are the un-spun truth.

  33. Keep on giving me advice Centre – eventually I’ll take it. Can always add the scrip to the other stuff in the bottom drawer called the ‘parents’ follie the kids can sort out’. Only wish I was going to be around to see their dear little faces when they find the goodies. lol.

    I’m trying to stay awake to see if there is a newspoll but can’t imagine why they would do it this week and not next after Kev’s been on deck for a week or so.

Comments are closed.

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