Highlights of day five

With just 31 days left to go:

• Two pieces of polling intelligence have emerged today on what appears to be a widening electoral gender gap. The Australian reports the weekend’s 55-45 Newspoll had Labor leading 44 per cent to 33 per cent on the primary vote among women, but trailing 39 per cent to 42 per cent among men. We are also told that the gender gap in Tony Abbott’s personal rating is now at nine points, up from four in April. As George Megalogenis noted last week, this is likely to hit the Liberals in seats with a high concentration of working women, of which Cameron Stewart of The Australian identifies four: Bennelong, Franklin, Brisbane and Deakin. The Herald-Sun also reports that the weekend’s 50-50 Galaxy poll had Julia Gillard’s preferred prime minister lead at 58-31 among women and 51-40 among men.

• The Herald Sun further informs us that 59 per cent of respondents from the Galaxy survey supported a levy on bank profits similar to that of the mining tax, not that either party is advocating such a thing. Only 28 per cent of respondents said they were opposed.

• Leisa Scott of the Courier-Mail reports that Jen Sackley, unsuccessful LNP preselection hopeful for Leichhardt, will run as an independent. Sackley has complained of a “bullying culture” in the party, and proclaimed Labor’s Leichhardt MP Jim Turnour to be of superior “stature” to Warren Entsch, the former Liberal member who is coming out of retirement to run again for the LNP.

Possum calculates the electoral impact of Labor’s decision to lock in an election date that gave voters only one weekday to get their enrolment in order. This is found to be in the order of fractions of 0.1 per cent, but might be a bit higher in seats with a particularly high concentration of young voters. The most marginal of these are identified as Melbourne, Ryan, Swan, Herbert, Macarthur, Solomon and Cowan.

• Verona Burgess of the Australian Financial Review notes the electoral impact of public service cuts not just on the Australian Capital Territory, where they might make life difficult for Liberal Senator Gary Humphries, but also in Eden-Monaro. As well as housing many of Canberra’s public servants in Queanbeyan, the famous bellwether electorate also encompasses Batemans Bay on the south coast, which Burgess tells us is known as “little Canberra-by-the-sea” due to its concentration of public agencies.

• Three cheers to Matthew Landauer of the Open Australia Foundation for instigating the most excellent ElectionLeaflets.org.au site, a repository for user-contributed scans and photos of electoral material.

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.

1,112 comments on “Highlights of day five”

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  1. Ron@1112 on Highlights of day four – The Poll Bludger

    Posted Thursday, July 22, 2010 at 1:17 am | Permalink

    “It looks to me as if the Liberal campaign is in tatters”

    well as I said for abov reasons, a mere under FOUR weeks ago labor’s (and therefore Liberals internal poling was dire….witness public polls in late June on EIGHT Labor marginal seats of which 7 were clear losers)

    so natural they expected Rudd to wait till Oct for polls to improve , which is when he’d indicated anyway…hey presto ! over nite there is Julia facing them !!! , a different opponent , a poll short term , and all there anti Rudd “interim” plans out door !!

    and now with julia saying “look move forward” , its not a good loook for Libs yto look back , to someone Kevin who is not even th contender at all

    now had they had they faced Kevin now , they had these ’stategy plans’ in place , but they were ALL based on anti Rudd and NONE on pro Liberel

    What Julia has done is negate there anti Rudd plans and forse Libs to both come up with some anti Julia ones (failed miserable so far) , and to ‘fill in’ some pro Lib polisys…well aint many good lib polisys to fill space with is there ??? , so a shamble , well for th moment anyway ….lets hope for th next 4 wks as well

    This reminds me of the WA State Election in 2008 – the ALP were more or less ready to campaign against Troy Buswell, then he gets replaced by Colin Barnett and Alan Carpenter calls the election the very next day – with the result that was that there was a hung parliament and the Libs got in thanks to Brendon Gryls and Roylaties for Regions, plus a few independents.

    We are now seeing a simlar situation here.

  2. Another big spendup planned by the LNP to prop up another of their has-been candidates. Good to see that the election pork is still there to be distributed despite the debt and deficit crocodile tears we’ve heard from Hockey and co for three years.

    The only other way to see it is the LNP are back on the bandwagon of unfunded promises and need another 20 years in opposition to learn how to match dollars to their promises.

    [But the vision comes without any commitments of cash to fund it, in a bold move that could set the scene for a major cash pledge from the Coalition, or leave Mr Entsch red-faced if one is not forthcoming.

    The LNP has so far been largely silent, at least publicly, on the cultural precinct plan.

    Mr Entsch said a 20,000 seat rectangular football field, a 5000-seat hockey facility, a netball stadium, a maritime museum, an aquarium and the refurbishment of Tobruk Memorial Pool would represent wiser spending.

    The proposal also includes an
    $80 million, 1500-seat performing arts centre, on the Hartley St site now occupied by the Ports North office building, as an alternative to that planned for waterfront land at Trinity Inlet.

    Mr Entsch said he was “hoping” his party would put forward a funding promise during the campaign, and he had won support from Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey and deputy leader Julie Bishop.]


  3. From last night
    [This Liberal trickery with Work Choices is dynamite – Kerry O’brien had the story half nailed tonight but should be fully prepared for Abbott next week.]
    Julia will speak on this during Sunday’s debate. I agree that this is trickery and will cause the Libs big problems.

  4. Tony kept on looking sideways at the diminutive gay man sitting next to him last night, unsure if he would keep his hands to himself. And the gay man had probably the same concerns

  5. and what is it with Abbott’s emaciated look? Is he after the ex-POW vote? It’s all so extreme, and there’s a lesson there as well….all austerity and self-flagellance, like the monks of old.

  6. 991
    Frank, previous thread

    Candelori’s Restaurant & Bar The business lunch with NSW Opposition Leader on Tuesday was a success! Lots of great feedback by all attendees.
    23 minutes ago via Facebook for iPhone · Comment · Like]

    Frank, what does he mean. Is he saying lots of customers refused to eat his food so he got lots of Feed back to the kitchen for recycling?

  7. [This Liberal trickery with Work Choices is dynamite
    A constitutional law expert has backed Tony Abbott’s claim that the Opposition does not need to change industrial relations laws to honour a $25 million savings promise.
    The director of the University of Sydney’s Gilbert and Tobin Centre of Public Law, Dr Andrew Lynch, has backed the Opposition’s position.
    Dr Lynch has told ABC Radio’s The World Today program that changes to the Electoral Act will override provisions in the Fair Work Act.
    “That’s not technically a change to the Fair Work Act, but it does bring about an alteration,” he said.
    “If there’s two pieces of legislation that are inconsistent with each other, then the one that’s more recent in time is the law.”]

    Its Howard style trickery, not a core promise, that was a policy of the previous parliament, this is a new parliament.

    Abbott sent out a dog-whistle to business saying he would bring back Workchoices and didn’t’ think others would hear it.

  8. From the last thread:

    That was when it (hey hey) was popular Mexi. And the humour worked.

    Now the humour is tired. Daryl is past it. And it shows no innovation.

    Wow that last line just sums up the Rabbot for me!

  9. More from last thread:

    Whether it was a wasted opportunity or not will be determined tomorrow on the happy clapping breakfast shows

    All the happy clapping breakfast shows led with “Abbott BOOED on hey hey appearance”

  10. On the ‘Hey Hey’ appearance…

    surely if you wanted to counter the ‘Moving Forward’ slogan (with the implication that your party is moving backwards…) then the absolutely last thing you would do would put your candidate on a show which had been dead, buried and cremated before being exhumed?

  11. [Federal Liberal candidate for Ballarat Mark Banwell has apologised for comparing Labor’s school building program to the Holocaust.]

    Quick Glen :p condemnation time.

  12. Herald Sun Headline:

    A TWO-to-one majority of Australian voters want the super profits tax extended to big banks, an opinion poll has found.

    Some 59 per cent of voters wanted an extra levy on giant bank profits similar to the Government’s proposal for a tax on mining gains, the Galaxy survey found. Just 28 per cent opposed the idea and 13 per cent had no view.

    Kind of puts Pay to the Fibs “Stop Labor’s New Taxes” Strategy:


  13. [Federal Liberal candidate for Ballarat Mark Banwell has apologised for comparing Labor’s school building program to the Holocaust.]

    It seems the Libs want to invoke Godwin’s law at every election now!

  14. Another Jeff Fenech classic…

    Heard The Man interviewed on ABC 702 this morning about the match last night (29 seconds to a K.O.). In answering a question as to how someone could be knocked out in 29 seconds with a glancing blow to the head, Jeff replied with a new Fenechism:

    “Well, he did what he done, and he’ll have to answer for that.”

    Right up there along with,

    “I love youse all”.

    Go Jeff!

    My old Mum, when she was alive, used to get tips from Fenech at Rosehill Racecourse. She loved the guy because he always called her “Mrs. Bushfire”, but she used to chortle afterwards at his colorful turn of phrase. She’d have loved the latest.

    “He did what he done”. Perfect.

  15. If this situation is as reported (poor condition of the recently upgraded Melbourne Albury rail line) then it is bad. It implies there was a problem with the ballast and drainage when the timber sleepers were replaced with concrete. If that is so, the work will need to be redone or it will only get worse over time. This sort of error defeats the purpose of putting in new sleepers.

    I have observed this sort of problem elsewhere recently: old rail lines that have not had proper maintenance funded for years are to be upgraded with new concrete sleepers. Good. But the cost of the upgrade is underestimated because planners without much background in rail engineering assume that the existing track ballast is OK. It almost certainly isn’t. A lot of old rail tracks in Australia are worth little more than scrap value.

    This is pretty basic stuff, and shows the sad decline of rail engineering in Australia in the past 20 years. We are behind China. This is a technical failure, due to past political failures to fund the system till the point where skills and asset values are lost.

    Sorry I know this isn’t relevant to the election policy debate, but whoever is looking after transport funding will need to consider it in future. Parts of our rail system are falling apart.

  16. Caught this comment on a SMH blog:

    “Saw some of Tony Abbott on ‘Hey Hey Why Do We Even Bother’ last night. They should have put a kid’s table at the end for him. He looked tacked-on. Barely said anything. Maybe he was uncomfortable and feeling threatened sitting next to A Gay Man. I doubt it was intentional ala Mr Burns and Blinky the Three-Eyed Fish (NOT a reference to Callum), but if it was it would have been clever had Tony had a pulse. Fail.
    If Julia can contain the urge to appear on ‘The Matty Johns Image Rehabilitation Spectacle’ she should be okay.” (sic)

  17. Mark Latham criticises Gillard on the link between population growth and immigration.

    On this one I think both Gillard and Latham are partly right, partly wrong. Gillard is right to separate border security from population – the contribution of boat arrivals to overall numbers is tiny. But Latham is right that overall imigration means we are headed for a bigger population,whether voters like it or not. I suppose it means more work for infrastructure buides like me, but there will be many negative consequences.

    Where BOTH Gillard and Latham are wrong is thinking that reducing immigration now woudl solve the population pressure problem. It won’t. We are not building enough houses or infrastructure, and pricing the houses we do build so that many can’t afford them. Past planning has not allowed adequately for current population, let alone likely future numbers. So in the short term there is no easy fix, and it would be unwise to promise one. A lot of the blame for this rests on Howard, but also NSW and Vic state governments.

    In the long term it will get WORSE. That is because, even if we stopped all but the most essential skilled immigrants tomorrow, we are still headed for a much larger population, over 30 million. If you check ABS forecasts, even the LOW growth series projects 32 million by 2050. That means Sydney and Melbourne wll be the size of San francisco, and Brisbane will be bigger than Sydney is now. That is because a lot of the people who have moved here in recent years are young, and will themselves have children. Australia’s population is not as aged now as many OECD countries. Fertility has also taken a big step back up in the last decade.

    A lot of policies need to be changed to alter that, some of which will be unpopular, because Howard got a whole generation of families used to middle class welfare.

  18. [ This DICK has no limits of Stupidity left in him

    He should just stay in Afghanistan. The problem is of course our soldiers having
    to hold his hand when they have enough to do already.

  19. Pretty lacklustre campaign so far from Julia, but that’s all she needs to do, because her opponent and his team are a shambles.
    Rudd pretty well trumped both of them yesterday – very stage managed event at the school. That silly Liberal candidate is whining because he refused to meet her – oh dear! 😆

  20. from wikipedia:

    San Francisco is anchor to the 13th-largest metropolitan area in the country, containing 4.3 million

    Sydney Already exceeds that by 200,000!

    Try 6 million plus equivalent to US forth largest metro Area! Dallas-Fort Worth

  21. Interesting story about Fielding in Afghanistan. It is not his fault that he was there when the election was called. But the obvious question was – why did he go there in the first place? He has no roll in foreign policy. The only possible answer is – another desperate publicity stunt. Remember, this guy will dress himself up as a bottle if it gets his face on TV. He has no shame.

  22. [The head of the advertising agency hired by the Coalition to improve Mr Abbott’s image with women said the perception that female voters had a problem with Mr Abbott had been overblown.

    Amanda Stevens, managing director of Splash Consulting Group, said: “Tony is a leader surrounded by women, he has a female deputy leader, a female media adviser, three daughters and there is a lot for women to look favourably on in the Coalition’s policies,”]


    You cant make a silk purse out of a pigs ear!

  23. Try 6 million plus equivalent to US forth largest metro Area! Dallas-Fort Worth

    One international PBer wrote in last week from a Chinese city I’ve never personally heard of. He works there.

    Although (to me) it’s just another dot on the map in China, its population is 6 million people!

  24. Big Nose

    Wikipedia is quite misleading on population because many cities have overgrown their original boundaries. The urban area around San Francisco (the “bay area”) is about 6-7 million.

  25. ABC Radio news this morning has been full of unsubstantiated Coalition spruiking. Every bulletin so far has opened with wtte, “The Opposition (says, is demanding, has condemned…” etc., or the musings of one or other of the Oppos front benchers.

    Particularly galling is Robb’s line that because the government “can’t do pink batts” then any comment it makes on Coalition costings must be automatically wrong, despite the factr that the Coalition refuses to back up those same costings with a reasoned rebuttal.

  26. Yes, I agree, but by Adding Wollongong & New Castle to greater sydney area (they’ll probably merge by 2050) Add over another 1 million to 7 million plus

  27. Bill

    Yes there are a dozen cities in China that size; at least 20 of the population of Brisbane or more. Almost every provincial capital has a population in the millions. They plan to provide services for them too. There is more road and rail construction activity in China than in Europe and North America combined.

  28. also

    the use of appears,suggests etc when reporting an ALP assertion and the use will,proves etc when reporting a Fib assertion.

    also the inflection and use of emotive voice on the radio

  29. Big Nose

    True. I suppose my point was that, despite our image of being a sprad out nation, our population is quite concentrated and our cities are becoming large by world standards. But we don’t plan for them the way other countries do.

  30. [Steve Fielding, MIA in Afghanistan ]


    Fielding is delusional. Try these comments for confirmation:

    [Liberal senator Guy Barnett and veteran Liberal MHR Philip Ruddock travelled with Senator Fielding to the Australian base at Tarin Kowt for a government-funded familiarisation of the campaign against the Taliban]

    [He said his absence for the crucial opening days of the campaign ”will probably damage my re-election”.

    ”We’re sending people here, you know … with their lives at risk to … make the world safer and the least that I could do was, you know, not to pull out for the sake of a couple of days with my own re-election campaign,” he said.

    ”I though it would probably be selfish doing that, selfish if I did come back.”

    Although claiming an early departure on his behalf from Afghanistan would have sent ”all the troops the wrong message”, he later conceded he had asked defence officials in Tarin Kowt ”about trying to get back and … is there any ways of getting back early”.]

    This guy is filled with his own self importance. Imagine suggesting that the troops would be demoralised if the great Senator Fielding was to return to Australia early. Can anyone imagine that the troops would even be aware or care that he was there? Looks like he told a porky about preferring to stay the distance and was actually trying to get back to Oz.

    What a tosser. The soon he’s gone the better government we’ll enjoy.

  31. I spent about 10 minutes this morning watching Virginia “Great Face for Radio” Trioli trying to talk up Abbott, and whining about Gillard. It was disgusting – I nearly replayed my Weeties in reverse.

  32. [I spent about 10 minutes this morning watching Virginia “Great Face for Radio” Trioli trying to talk up Abbott, and whining about Gillard. It was disgusting – I nearly replayed my Weeties in reverse.]

    Such a shame that Trioli has veered so far to the right and is now so biased. When she started on 774 in Melbourne 10 years ago in the 4 to 7 slot, she was extremely fair, and really a great ABC personality.

    When I heard Steve price call her a “talent” though, I knew she had turned right biased. Everything I have heard from her since doesn’t change that opinion.

    Extremely biased and not objective. These right wingers have a right to their opinion, but not using my taxpayer money to do it.

    ABC is so totally unbalanced now it is not worth listening to or watching.

  33. The Rudd issue has got fresh legs from at least four sources:

    (1) UN refusing to confirm or deny that he is getting an Climate Change job there.
    (2) ‘claims’ about double dealing by both Gillard and Rudd in the OO
    (3) Rudd’s little game with the media in Brisbane yesterday
    (4) Bishop making some claims based on a what appears to have been a leaked New Zealand diplomatic cable.

    Now, there’s a lot of media fluff in all that. But that does not matter. What matter’s is that it all damages Gillard.

    I posted earlier that I thought that Rudd was detached from reality if he thought that his behaviour was not going to affect his getting a senior cabinet job. It turns out that I may have been wrong – he already knew he was going to get a senior job at the UN. He will feel he owes Labor nothing and Gillard a return favor.

    Rudd is not going to go away, is he?

  34. The gotcha moment now being hunted by the pack is getting Gillard to name a number, any number, for the migrant intake.

  35. [Extremely biased and not objective. These right wingers have a right to their opinion, but not using my taxpayer money to do it.]

    She doesn’t strike me as right wing at all. I don’t think she’s the most effective media personality though.

    [I spent about 10 minutes this morning watching Virginia “Great Face for Radio” Trioli trying to talk up Abbott, and whining about Gillard. It was disgusting – I nearly replayed my Weeties in reverse.]

    Really? When I tuned it she was reading out a viewer email blasting her for being a Labor stooge for criticising Abbott for appearing on Hey Hey It’s Saturday. Perhaps she’d be better off if she used smoke signals.

  36. [Rudd pretty well trumped both of them yesterday – very stage managed event at the school.]

    Stage managed is about right. He proved once again how wooden and phoney he looks at these sorts of things. Good riddance.

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