Morgan: 58.5-41.5

Unpredictable Roy Morgan has violated the laws of nature by publishing a face-to-face poll on a Thursday (which surely makes more sense than its normal practice of placing it in the news cycle dead zone of late Friday). This has Labor’s two-party lead up 1.5 per cent on the rather unusual previous face-to-face poll, which was half conducted before Christmas and half after new year, from 57-43 to 58.5-41.5. The figures show a pretty straightforward exchange between the two parties on the primary vote, with Labor up two points to 45.5 per cent and the Coalition down 1.5 to 35.5 per cent and the Greens steady on 10.

Elsewhere:

• After 22 years in parliament, Bob McMullan has announced he will not contest the next election, opening a vacancy in his safe Labor ACT seat of Fraser. Susanna Dunkerley of AAP reports that McMullan denies having been pushed, “despite recently declaring his intention to stick around for another term”. Furthermore, James Massola of the Canberra Times reports Annette Ellis is under pressure to make way for new blood in the other ACT seat, Canberra. Constitutional lawyer George Williams, who recently moved to Canberra and was reportedly Kevin Rudd’s choice to contest the safe Sydney seat of Blaxland in 2007, was said to be planning a preselection challenge against McMullan last October. However, a number of reports have identified the front-runner as Nick Martin, the party’s assistant national secretary. Other possible starters named by Massola are Andrew Leigh, Australian National University economist and prolific blogger, and Chris Bourke, a dentist of Aboriginal heritage who ran in Ginninderra at the 2008 ACT election. Both are factionally unaligned, which might be an asset as they seek to succeed the similarly placed McMullan. Another Canberra Times report mentions Michael Cooney, chief-of-staff to ACT MP Andrew Barr and former adviser to Mark Latham and Kim Beazley. Those whose names were floated but have since ruled themselves out are ACT Chief Minister Jon Stanhope, Deputy Chief Minister Katy Gallagher and prime ministerial chief-of-staff Alister Jordan. Jonathan Pearlman of the Sydney Morning Herald reports an ALP national executive meeting on February 12 is likely to decide whether the candidate will be chosen locally or imposed externally.

Samantha Maiden of The Australian reports Malcolm Turnbull is “being urged by supporters and business leaders to make a run for New South Wales premier in 2011”, firstly by replacing Peter Debnam in Vaucluse, which is located entirely within his existing electorate of Wentworth. Debnam has now confirmed what he describes as an “open secret”, that he won’t be contesting the seat at the next election. It had already been established that University of NSW deputy chancellor Gabrielle Upton would contest preselection, and numerous others have been named in connection with the seat: former John Howard chief-of-staff Arthur Sinodinos, restaurateur Peter Doyle, barrister Mark Speakman, UNSW Deputy Chancellor Gabrielle Upton and barrister Arthur Moses. Also mentioned was Paul Fletcher, before he landed his federal gig in Bradfield. There have also been suggestions, reiterated in Samantha Maiden’s report, that Joe Hockey might assume the seat with Turnbull’s support as an entree to the premiership.

• A couple of Labor national executive preselection determinations that had sliipped through the net. Michelle Rowland, a former Blacktown councillor and member of the Right faction, will contest Greenway, which the redistribution has transformed from 4.5 per cent Liberal to 5.8 per cent Labor (the sitting Liberal member, Louise Markus, will contest Macquarie). Holding Redlich lawyer Laura Smyth, whom Andrew Landeryou at VexNews links to the “Andrew Giles/Alan Griffin sub-faction of the Socialist Left”, will run in the outer eastern Melbourne seat of La Trobe, where Liberal member Jason Wood survived a 5.3 per cent swing in 2007 to hold on by 0.5 per cent. Human Services and Financial Services Minister Chris Bowen will contest McMahon, which is effectively a reincarnation of his existing abolished seat of Prospect.

• Chas Hopkins, 60-year-old former Perth Lord Mayor, has nominated for Labor preselection in the marginal Perth seat of Cowan, where the party has admitted it is struggling to find a replacement for Wanneroo mayor Jon Kelly who doesn’t share his connections with Brian Burke. Other confirmed starters are party state executive member Alex Banzic and political staffer Sam Roe.

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.

2,647 comments on “Morgan: 58.5-41.5”

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  1. On way home heard on newsradio the mayor of Chritmas Is (think it was the mayor) give Morrison and Fielding a serve over their statements while on CI.
    Fielding thinks they are being treated too good.
    Mayor said their comments were sickening and divisive.

  2. Also on the radio Swanny was saying how Abbott has been running around making all these promises that he says won’t cost anything. No new taxes etc.
    Swanny was giving the “magic pudding abbott” a try out before QT next week πŸ˜‰

  3. Odes to Lady Vera

    Oh Vera there was , and is
    a saint a scholar a Lady ,
    but there is more much mores
    to th Vera th lady of PB ,
    a soul a consiense a care
    for plain ordinary aussies

    and as time passeth to nites
    a glow of th Vera th Lady ,
    shines ever so much brighter
    on th spell males of PB ,
    a hart message is mesage
    no matter how mis spoke ,
    of Vera for fair and equity
    and for Labor th only hope

    by humble admirer

  4. [Mayor said their comments were sickening and divisive.]

    You bewdy! Fielding and Morrison call themselves Christians. Wonder what they’re Maker would say to them if they fronted up right now – probably give them a couple of pitchforks instead of wings. lol hypocrites.

  5. Ron
    Why thank you :kiss:
    You’ve made me blush!

    BH
    I hope it’s on the news tonight, probably will only show Fielding and Morrisson’s comments. Try for another point or two for the libs in Newspoll πŸ™

  6. I think the government has erred (yes I am a Labor “hack” criticising the government!!) in going quite on climate change in recent months. It has let the deniers, invigorated by Abbott, take up far too much of the public debate. With Howard’s ETS, at least it appears we had gotten to “climate change is real, how to fix it?”, now we are heading back to “is climate change real”. Now I know that Rudd and Wong have given countless 7.30 report/lateline interviews on CC and the ETS, but joe public does not watch these shows. Time for a more high profile push, including ads (which Howie would have funded from the public purse, but I think should be paid for by Labor).

    Having said all this, the 2PP is fairly steady so need to panic, but need to hold the CC vote in what is going to be a scare campaign from the opposition

  7. We should take a bet on it. Do you ever watch that 7PM show on Ch10? Wondered whether Dave Hughes is the right person for that. Does he have pollies on or just celebrities and is it political or just topical.

  8. BH, I have never understood the christian-right wing thing. Surely Christ (and therefore Christians) would have a compassionate view on issues of disadvantage??

  9. BH
    I caught a bit of that 7pm show the other night and the had Julia on. She got lots of cheers from their audience. I don’t usually watch it though so I don’t know what other pollies have been on.

    Joe will be on another 10 show, Talkin bout your Generation in his pink fairy dress soon πŸ˜‰

  10. Andrew
    CC should get heaps of coverage from next week when the ETS is reintroduced. The govt might have a few tricks up their sleeve. We’ll see.
    Malcolm crossing the floor should get some publicity for us CC believers πŸ™‚

  11. [BH, I have never understood the christian-right wing thing. Surely Christ (and therefore Christians) would have a compassionate view on issues of disadvantage??]

    Andrew – glad you said that because when I was a kid it was Church 4 times a day on Sundays, youth groups through the week, Church sport on Saturdays and through it all the message was compassion for those less fortunate. There are a few limits to my compassion (as in abuse) but refugees, no. I don’t get it. Once they get here they have to be treated as human beings not scumbags. Fielding is NOT a christian in my book.

  12. [Odes to Lady Vera]

    Amigo Ronnie, are you trying to steal Amigo Vera from me? We were an item:

    That could be the end of the Amigoship you know πŸ˜‰

  13. [That could be the end of the Amigoship you know]

    Probably a good thing as Tony probably wouldn’t approve of this menage a trois with bestiality thrown in

  14. [Having suggested, inter alia, increasing the Australian annual rate of refugee intake by a factor of four and having suggested that we should provide 5-10% of our GDP to foreign aid I was attacked for being a Ha?sonite and a rightwinger and several other things besides.]

    Too cute, you also suggested a halt to immigration and the cutting of family support payments. Or did you forget? πŸ˜›

  15. ru

    It was a package. Still, can’t deny that the two elements identified, with their massive wealth-redistribution from Australia to less fortunate countries and their dramatic increase in Australia’s refugee intake, are hardly right-wing facist stuff are they?

    BTW, I would still appreciate some responses on the questions I raised.

  16. Andrew & BH

    There was a fascinating talk by Margaret Attwood on Christianity and redemption, and the links between redemption and debt. Religion shot through with money images. I don’t have a reference.

  17. [Do you support the BIG Australia of Rudd or disagree with the mechanisms which boerwar suggested?]

    Too cute as well, the “BIG Australia of Rudd” is inevitable. It is sustainable and may even help solve problems.

    The MD basin problems are not related to population, they are a result of improper water use. Could we have better public transport with a higher population at higher densities? Would our industries do better with a solid domestic market?

    Could we actually afford to do things with a higher population generating more revenue – thus reducing the per capita cost of infrastructure projects?

  18. Don@2544

    I did my teacher training at Uni, which is a federal concern. My parents did their’s at dedicated state-based teacer colleges. They took 1 year, today it’s 4 – and it definiately ain’t 4 times as good. Your right that the classroom is the best place to learn, the only way really. I wouldn’t say i didn’t learn anything at Uni, but not enough to justify the time (2 years as a grad student). They were lower middle class, as were most of the teachers they studied with, and many of their friendships endure now, 45 years later. Dad studied for 1 year, taught for 2, then was a principal for the next 30 years.

    I’ve seen some brilliant teachers (and i wasn’t one of them) and they did it because they were dedicated to it. Paying more would attract more educated and more competent people in general, but whether it would attract better teachers is uncertain. It needs to be tried though.

    What annoys me is the judgements made about teachers, and the number of people that join low school results with poor teaching, and the MySchool debate has brought them all out of the woodwork. Lets have league tables for everything, if they’re so damn good. Especially for journalists and politicians, perhaps even parents! Teachers need to be held to account, no question, and in an ideal world many current serving teachers would lose their jobs. But who exactly is going to replace them? Certainly not those who loudly condemn them, wouldn’t put my kid within a bull’s roar of them.

    If anything good is to come out of this issue, let’s hope that discussion is generated as to why some schools are better than others, why some teachers are better than others, and parents and students for that matter.

  19. Zoomster@2548

    Thanks for that information. Will be interesting to see if they are successful in any way. No doubt they’ll be releasing the information on a website for all to look at! For what it’s worth, i actually think the Australian education system is pretty good, and that this website is neither good nor bad to any significant degree, although i am concerned that Ms Gillard seems determined to institute ideas from the US system, rather than many around the world that have far greater track records, including our own.

  20. Glen

    [Just got newspolled, for fed politics and other social/marketing issues. Maybe for next week who knows??]

    I distinctly remember you saying you couldn’t vote for the Libs with Abbott in charge. So who did you say you’d vote for?

  21. bull butter Poss

    If I could have said undecided i would have said that for satisfaction ratings of Tony Abbott plus I dont think he should be PM or Rudd IMHO.

  22. [the β€œBIG Australia of Rudd” is inevitable. It is sustainable ]
    Really? Just like the stable or marginally reducing population in some European countries? Or China’s stabilised population? Do we simply rely on the four hrsemen of the apocalypse to keep populations under control?
    At what standard of living is 25M, 35M or 50M sustainable?

    [The MD basin problems are not related to population, they are a result of improper water use. ] The MD basin problems are exacerbated by trying to support larger domestic and overseas consumer numbers.

    [Could we have better public transport with a higher population at higher densities?]
    Why not just at higher densities? Why do we need to develop every piece of land between Brisbane CBD and Tweed Heads into suburban blocks to make public transport more efficient? We could restrict development to a high density ribbon and still have efficient public transport.

    [Would our industries do better with a solid domestic market?]
    Yeah, having a domestic market of 50M instead of 30M will make all the difference to exporters into US, European or Asian markets. [/sarcasm]

    [Could we actually afford to do things with a higher population generating more revenue – thus reducing the per capita cost of infrastructure projects?]
    Would it be even more cost efficient to avoid the cost of damming every coastal stream between Adelaide and Cairns to provide domestic water for 50M people? Or building a fleet of energy-hungry desalination plants. Or avoid duplicating every major urban road with an underground tunnel to accommodate twice as many vehicles?

    And how do we reduce our carbon footprint as a nation by 25-50% whilst doubling our population?

    And how do we avoid the degradation of our ancient thin topsoil and salination of arable lands in order to keep feeding Australians and also the millions overseas?

    Some people continue to think in terms of magic puddings despite the evidence that there are limits to all resources, even in Australia.

  23. I think a lot of Libs will be tactically voting Green at this election, if they conclude they can’t win. They will rightly calculate that this is the best way to damage Labor and increse their chances in 2013.

  24. An ALP member who publically advocated a vote for a non-Labor candidate would be expelled. I’m not sure about admitting a non-Labor vote after the event – probably not. It’s no secret that many ALP Left members vote Green in the Senate.

  25. Psephos went:

    [I think a lot of Libs will be tactically voting Green at this election, if they conclude they can’t win. They will rightly calculate that this is the best way to damage Labor and increse their chances in 2013.]

    Any thoughts about the types of seats where you reckon that might happen?

  26. [Your hyperbole is not a substitute for arguement. :P]
    ruawake
    It appears you don’t know the meaning of the word hyperbole. Perhaps you could point to some supposed examples in 2584?

  27. [It appears you don’t know the meaning of the word hyperbole. Perhaps you could point to some supposed examples in 2584?]

    “Would it be even more cost efficient to avoid the cost of damming every coastal stream between Adelaide and Cairns to provide domestic water for 50M people?”

    πŸ˜›

  28. [β€œWould it be even more cost efficient to avoid the cost of damming every coastal stream between Adelaide and Cairns to provide domestic water for 50M people?”]
    Which makes a point which you studiously avoid addressing.

  29. 2591

    Not only for the Senate.

    Anyway outside the seat of Melbourne a Green vote in the Senate (instead of an ALP vote) is more powerful against the ALP.

  30. [ I think a lot of Libs will be tactically voting Green at this election, if they conclude they can’t win. They will rightly calculate that this is the best way to damage Labor and increse their chances in 2013.

    Any thoughts about the types of seats where you reckon that might happen?]

    If anyone answers Melbourne I am going to personally ask a “dispute resolution expert” to visit them. πŸ‘Ώ

  31. [Which makes a point which you studiously avoid addressing.]

    There is plenty of water in Australia – and the world. If you did not know it is the most abundant molecule on the earths surface. About 70% is covered by it.

    Just because we have dud water infrastructure does not mean we have a lack of water.

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