D-day plus 1

As you can see by the threads below, there are five seats still in doubt as far as I’m concerned, though it’s not unknown for outsiders to emerge on the radar late in the count. In post-redistribution terms, Labor has lost Bennelong, Macarthur, Macquarie and Gilmore in New South Wales; Bonner, Dawson, Dickson, Flynn, Forde, Herbert, Leichhardt and Longman in Queensland; Solomon in the Northern Territory; and Swan in Western Australia. In Victoria, Labor gained McEwen and La Trobe and lost Melbourne to the Greens. Also in Western Australia, as a notional count conducted late in the evening has made clear, Wilson Tuckey has lost O’Connor to Tony Crook of the Nationals, who has promised to sit on the cross-benches rather than join the Coalition party room.

This produces a base result of 70 seats for Labor and the increasingly complex beast known as the Coalition (42 seats for the Liberals, 21 for Queensland’s Liberal National Party, six for the NSW and Victorian Nationals and one for the Northern Territory Country Liberal Party); one seat for the non-Coalition Nationals WA; one for the Greens; and three independents. Of the five seats in doubt, as many as four could go to the Coalition (three to the Liberals and one to the LNP), with the other being the contest between Labor and an independent in Denison. Labor’s best case scenario involves an independent in the Speaker’s chair and a bare majority on the floor (with Adam Bandt of the Greens as a further safety buffer). At the other end of the scale, a loose arrangement with Tony Crook could allow the Coalition to achieve something similar. In between are various scenarios involving a collective kingmaker role for Tony Windsor, Bob Katter and Rob Oakeshott. The best guess at this stage is that the four Labor-versus-Coalition undecideds will break two-all, while Denison is impossible to read.

One imagines the independents’ most pressing concern would be the deep conservatism of the electorates; however, Labor has in its hand the prospect of Labor-Greens Senate majority that would complicate any Coalition claim to offer the greater stability. If a minority Coalition government eventuated – and this intuitively seems the most likely outcome – it would presumably be keep to set up some double dissolution triggers with an eye to another election about 18 months down the track. For the time being it would have available to it the existing Senate configuration until the middle of next year, in which it could pass legislation provided it had the support of Steve Fielding and Nick Xenophon.

Which should give you all plenty to chew on. This thread is for general discussion of the situation: I ask, more in hope than expectation, that emotional and rhetorical overkill of one kind or another be kept to a minimum. If you wish to discuss late counting, please do so in the thread below.

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.

2,480 comments on “D-day plus 1”

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  1. Brizoz: Yeah, it’s probably true. But they did the same for Howard and Kruddy trumped em.

    Labor behaved like craven political cowards, and got what I suppose they deserve.

    They made it easy to be attacked.

  2. Just admit it, GP. This was a stellar result for Labor! Better than anyone could have hoped for a few months ago, when they were leading the polls 55-45 every week! A truly remarkable effort by them, to only lose their majority by 2-3 seats (when they had looked like they were heading for 100 seats), to only lose one Prime Minister, to only have two State Premiers openly arguing with the rest of the Party, etc, etc.

    You just don’t get it GP.

  3. [In 1998 The Howard government entered the campaign with a 40-seat majority. The government suffered a nationwide swing of approximately 5% against it and the loss of 19 seats in the House of Representatives.]
    But Tony was on tele telling me that no 2nd term government had ever had such an unprecedented swing against it. i believe everything Tony says.

  4. [Labor made political and strategic mistakes, but their policies are sound.

    The coalition’s policies were non-existent or extremely suspect, but politically, they play the game with a single-minded nastiness that is beggars belief.]

    That Jen, is spot on. Whats interesting is that in the Hung parliament situation that we now look like finding ourselves in, the policies should become more important that the theater. The influence of the Media has been huge over the last 9 months since everybody knew we were headed to an election at any time. All were in campaign mode.

    Now, IF a stable govt can be formed, the people in that Govt will ALL have a seriously vested interest in AVOIDING elections for some time so that they can build credibility in the “new” political landscape.

    All this crap about Gillard being on borrowed time is just that. If she can form a Govt, then anyone in the ALP who has any interest in winning the next election will line up behind her and let the Tories chewing on the furniture in the HOR while everyone else gets on with being statesperson like and does the business of Govt be the story for the media.

  5. No 2350

    Dude, that’s only a relevant comparison if Gillard still commands a majority after the fact. She didn’t and now has to beg for support.

  6. To anyone who thinks Bandt could genuinely back Abbott, and is not just playing coy to extract maximum concessions, here’s some numbers:

    Votes: 17,643
    Percentage: 0.17%

    That’s the Democrats’ nationwide performance this election. And that’s what the Greens will look like in ten years time if they go down that road.

  7. scorps,

    I don’t know if anyone else will think like this, but for me (even as a Lib voter) it wasn’t the knifing of Kevin Rudd as Prime Minister.

    it could have been the cookie monster as prime minister and I still would have been outraged.

    Its the assumption by the ALP leaders that the Australian voter was irrelevent to the outcome, that’s what is still smouldering for many people

  8. This one is interesting also. A few hours ago it was 53/47. I wonder if there are a few voters who now regret putting in a protest vote for the Abbott. 😉

    [Poll: Which side deserves the support of the independent and Green MPs who will decide the balance of power?
    Poll form

    1. Please select an answer. Labor
    2. Coalition
    3. View results

    Labor

    56%
    Coalition

    44%

    Total votes: 72411. ]

    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-election/labor-leads-race-for-minority-government-20100822-13akb.html

  9. @GP/2355,

    Didn’t Abbott promise earlier today on keeping the NBN ? Isn’t that begging ?

    Coalition will need to do alot of begging including environmental issues, which Abbott’s party outrightly rejected.

  10. This one is interesting also. A few hours ago it was 53/47. I wonder if there are a few voters who now regret putting in a protest vote for the Abbott

    And the young libs have taken the day off to drown their sorrows at another lose . 🙂

  11. [Coalition will need to do alot of begging including environmental issues, which Abbott’s party outrightly rejected.]

    Both sides are going to be doing a lot of begging.

  12. That’s what we need! Newspoll, Galaxy, Nielsen etc. doing polls about who should form a government. Then we can all come back here and write 2,874 posts about it. It would be like the election that keeps on giving!

  13. [Dude, that’s only a relevant comparison if Gillard still commands a majority after the fact. She didn’t and now has to beg for support.]

    And what will Abbott have to do? Trouble is, begging is not in his make-up — once a bully ….

  14. scorpio 2360

    Eh, it’s an online poll. I wouldn’t put much stock in it. Regardless, it doesn’t matter what the opinion polls say.

  15. No 2362

    You’d only construe Abbott as begging if you were a Labor supporter. Assuming he wins the necessary seats, the three independents are natural allies in many respects.

    If Abbott doesn’t get across the line, he won’t be seen as a failure by the party or the electorate. The Liberal party are already shocked at how well he has done.

    If Gillard loses, she is gone.

  16. [That’s what we need! Newspoll, Galaxy, Nielsen etc. doing polls about who should form a government. Then we can all come back here and write 2,874 posts about it. It would be like the election that keeps on giving!]

    And that leads to the inevitable question … when is the next poll due out???!

  17. [And what will Abbott have to do? Trouble is, begging is not in his make-up — once a bully ….]

    jen, just keep underestimating Abbott. Works fine for me if you do.

  18. knifing a prime minister; why wasnt there so much confected outrage at faceless men, when Keating knifed Hawke…?

    Was it just because that knifing was more protracted; rather than the surgical precision of the midnight knock on the door by the faceless men?

  19. [And the young libs have taken the day off to drown their sorrows at another lose]

    No, they’re planning their “Concede, Julia!” rallies, if by midweek there is no result. This election has been playing out like the 2000 US presidential election rather closely.

  20. [when is the next poll due out???!]

    We’ll probably get the sms morgan I was polled on today that asked who I’d vote for if we had to have a 2nd election.

  21. [If Abbott doesn’t get across the line, he won’t be seen as a failure by the party or the electorate. The Liberal party are already shocked at how well he has done.]

    Exactly right.

  22. No 2362

    You’d only construe Abbott as begging if you were a Labor supporter. Assuming he wins the necessary seats, the three independents are natural allies in many respects.

    If Abbott doesn’t get across the line, he won’t be seen as a failure by the party or the electorate. The Liberal party are already shocked at how well he has done.

    If Gillard loses, she is gone.

    Smmoking the pipe still I see. Just give it up, no good will come of it.

  23. [And what will Abbott have to do? Trouble is, begging is not in his make-up — once a bully ….]

    He won’t be at the table. It will be a Liberal powerbroker like Minchin.

  24. [If Gillard loses, she is gone.]

    True, what’s more, the strategists will need to have a good hard look at the way they have managed this.

    The sort of background that Joolya brings to the role can’t be replicated easily.

    Who else on the front brench could replace her in terms of appeal the the ALP base and wider appeal to the swinging voters?

    If joolya goes, Swan won’t fill the void, ALbo ain’t no statesman, Rudd?

  25. [If Abbott doesn’t get across the line, he won’t be seen as a failure by the party or the electorate. The Liberal party are already shocked at how well he has done.]

    Fine. Learn no lesson from this election. We will.

  26. [If joolya goes, Swan won’t fill the void, ALbo ain’t no statesman, Rudd?]

    Maybe they’ll move Bligh or Keneally across from State politics?

  27. I was also wondering when the next poll is out too.

    After all we have discussed Saturday’s one to death, haven’t we?

    Seriously though some new opinion polls could easily influence
    the current negotiations. If one side is thinking of pushing for
    another election soon they might be given second thoughts

  28. The disappointing thing for Gillard supporters is that if she does not form government she will have lost a lot of credibility from her very short stint as PM, whereas prior to her ascension she was virtually untouchable.

  29. [jen, just keep underestimating Abbott. Works fine for me if you do.]

    He won’t have the protection of the media in these negotiations … if you saw any of his pressers, then saw the media reports, you’ll notice that Abbott’s worst behavior was always omitted from the latter.

    Only the tragics saw them in full. I will admit, I was astounded by his general aggression. He looked decidedly uncomfortable every time he tried to be conciliatory … and his lack of memory when pressed with detailed question got him more aggressive. (flustered = aggression in his behavior patterns).

    Call me anal, but as a writer, I watch behaviour and body language very closely. Tony is transparent … he has a great deal of trouble lying convincingly to anyone of more than moderate intelligence.

  30. [Not if this thread is anything to judge by!]

    Yeah, arrogant boasting and subjective analyses by a right wing poster. Very evident.

    There are plenty of introspectives already going on, but whatever. Not my place to tell you how to run your party. I don’t need to prove anything.

  31. When rabbott gets a rabbitt killer to the neck, who next ?

    The sloppy one ? Or Robb ?

    Not much talent there at all.

    Maybe mesma – that will have the voters lined up. Not.

  32. Jenauthor – politics in a westminster democracy is about winning the majority of seats and we are the only first term government since the depression that has failed to do so.Sugarcoat it however you like after eleven years in the wilderness to at best be a minority government just three years later is soul destroying.

  33. The disappointing thing for Gillard supporters is that if she does not form government she will have lost a lot of credibility from her very short stint as PM, whereas prior to her ascension she was virtually untouchable.

    When abbott fails you all fail with him, yet again. Its coming, you know it is.

  34. [A bit of chicken counting going on here. Just crap honestly.]

    Fact is nobody knows what’s gonna happen. We’ll have to wait and see how it pans out. I, for one, hope for a speedy resolution. This election has gone on too long!

  35. [Yeah, arrogant boasting and subjective analyses by a right wing poster. Very evident.]

    Bit of a silly comment, considering (a) the fact that I’ve already said I think Gillard is more likely than not to hang on, and (b) that my comment was actually referring to the amount of “arrogant boasting and subjective analyses” by Laborites on here this evening!

  36. No 2386

    Geez, fancy calling Liberal supporters arrogant when for the last three years I’ve had to read the endless tosh about how superior Rudd was until “he lost his way” and Gillard got the top job.

    People like you need to have a long hard look in the mirror. Oh, and blowing up Sussex Street might be a good start too.

  37. GP2368, my party may not have won, but at least I am not you. I can wake up one day to see my party win but, on the other hand you…

  38. [Sugarcoat it however you like after eleven years in the wilderness to at best be a minority government just three years later is soul destroying.]

    Who’s sugarcoating. This is a devastating result. But I can’t begin a proper analysis until I know the full picture.

  39. [A bit of chicken counting going on here. Just crap honestly.]

    Gary, couldn’t agree more. (Though I suspect you and I might not be thinking of the same posters …)

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