NSW election minus 7 days

Seven days before the axe falls, to the extent that the commencement of pre-polling at the start of this week hasn’t lowered it already. Local level intelligence from around the place:

• The Illawarra Mercury has published two more IRIS Research polls of local electorates, which I presume had samples of 400 and margins of error approaching 5 per cent. In Wollongong, Labor’s Noreen Hay is found to be headed for defeat at the hands of independent Gordon Bradbery, who leads her 54-46. In Keira however it’s 50-50, which compares with a 52-48 Liberal lead in the previous poll conducted early last month.

• Informed local observer Oakeshott Country relates in comments that a new publication by the name of The Port Paper has published a poll of 373 respondents in Port Macquarie conducted by Strategic Marketing. This found independent incumbent Peter Besseling on 34 per cent, Nationals candidate Leslie Williams on 40 per cent and Labor on 14 per cent, which panned out to 50-50 after preferences (although skepticism has been expressed about the methodology used here). Oakeshott Country notes the Nationals are putting a lot of effort into the seat with an emphasis on negative advertising, which is presumably not a sign of over-confidence.

Imre Salusinszky of The Australian on the Nationals’ hopes:

The rural and regional-based party is looking to add six seats to its kitty next Saturday. Three presently belong to Labor: Bathurst, in the state’s central west, held by popular retiring MP Gerard Martin; Monaro, on the far south coast, held by Emergency Services Minister Steve Whan; and Cessnock, held by another popular retiring MP, Kerry Hickey. Those would be sweet victories, but not nearly as sweet as defeating three popular rural independents whom the Nationals regard as interlopers: Dawn Fardell in the western seat of Dubbo; Peter Draper in the northern seat of Tamworth; and Peter Besseling in the north coast seat of Port Macquarie. Independent MPs will not feel the full force of the anti-Labor swing. What they might feel instead is their conservative constituents’ wrath at the actions of federal independent MPs Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor, whose seats of Lyne and New England overlap the state seats of Tamworth and Port Macquarie. Stoner plans to leverage Oakeshott’s and Windsor’s support for the minority Gillard government for every vote it’s worth.

Imre Salusinszky of The Australian further reports that Labor strategists are “cautiously confident” that Monaro MP Steve Whan can defend his 6.3 per cent margin, which would be an enormous achievement under the circumstances.

Sean Nicholls of the Sydney Morning Herald reports a heavy duty campaigning effort has Labor increasingly confident that John Robertson can defend the 22.4 per cent margin in Blacktown.

• Stephen Bromhead, the Nationals candidate to replace the retiring John Turner in their safe seat of Myall Lakes, is in a stable condition in John Hunter Hospital after a car accident.

• Centrebet has issued a breathless press release saying its betting points to a result of Coalition 69, Labor 17, independents five and Greens two.

• Latest additions to the election guide have focused in inner and southern Sydney: Vaucluse, Cronulla, Coogee, Maroubra, Heffron, Drummoyne, Strathfield, Canterbury, Rockdale, Kogarah, Oatley, Parramatta, Sydney and Marrickville.

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.

285 comments on “NSW election minus 7 days”

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  1. Evan 14

    If they win one in the Georges River area, it will be Kogarah. I am also very interested in Balmain and Marrickville, and whether neither of them will go Green

  2. Evan – If Whan does not survive, I hope he is offered some meaningful employment in Emergency Services by the incoming government or finds space federally. Rees will hold on and deservedly so. Robertson winning Blacktown for Labor will feel like a win for the Coalition.

    Alan Jones will target Liberals he does not like in government. He did so in the early days of the Greiner Government.

  3. Not sure about Borger – Granville is a tad less safer than Blacktown or Toongabbie.
    Another bloke Labor would like to get over the line is Dr Andrew McDonald in Macquarie Fields – good quality local MP.

  4. Is McDonald in a faction do you know? I too have heard very good things about him.

    Interesting isn’t it that both Rees and Borgeer are of the left and if they survive we could see a very different style of operation in the NSW ALP.

  5. Frankie V
    The developer’s other mates include Arbib, Costa and Roozendaal. It is an extremely lame attempt by the government to distance itself from their latest rort on Currawong. It emerges into the public arena a bit earlier than expected so Keneally just says, ‘Oh, we didn’t authorise the CEO of the Department to buy the property back, just to negotiate on it. We’ll send this to the ICAC.’
    What a joke. Who do they think they are kidding?

  6. In the event of a total wipeout, some of these new Liberals MPs will be “oncers”.
    Antony Green on ABC radio yesterday said this is very reminiscent of an election in the 1930s, when every middle class electorate voted for the conservatives, and Labor was reduced to a rump of seats in Western Sydney/Hunter/Illawarra.

  7. McDonald’s brother told me that he was told by Joe and company that he was in the Right faction if he wanted the seat.

  8. I’ve just made it back to Canberry after a night of driving through what appeared to be the Tasman Sea to find scandal upon scandal heaped at the government’s doorstep. TYyhis will not help.

    Mind you, people’s eyes tend to glaze over at corruption. Any student of the Wran and A Askin governments knows that corruption shifts very few votes – as long as services are competent. Given that services in this state are hell expensive and crap to boot (my third party for an ’84 Ford Laser is $499!)

    Forget Laffer curves, logic or even sanity (after all, this is an election campaign) – the cheaper fares will prick up ears, especially in the west and southwest. I think that announcement has got Doyle over the line in Campbelltown and will squeeze Borger’s nuts as well.

    Macdonald is in the right faction like Nutri Grain is nutritious; technically it’s true, but it’s not a core quality.

    Thanks Jaundiced View as well. I like the cut of that man’s jib.

    I’ll file a full update when I get back from the alfoil hat rally at Parly House. I’m going up to spectate. I’ve got my sign: CLEANER PUBLIC TOILETS.

    Chat ya’s all later.

  9. I should park the truck up the front and paint ALAN JONES LISTENERS FOR CLEANER PUBLIC TOILETS on the side.

    But *sigh* gotta go south tomoz, so will miss the brouhaha.

  10. I still think its very close – I rarely watch commercial TV but when I do there are plenty of Nat ads – which makes me think their candidate is not as far ahead as some say. Certainly the shock jocks are trying to make this a referendum on Oakeshott but I don’t see the rationale. If, as they say, he is as popular as a f**t in a lift then the last thing he will do is change sides prior to the next election because the Nats will show him no mercy.
    However, I don’t think that more than 20% of the population views this election in those terms and most of those are rusted on Nats- rather it comes down to candidates and the Nats have picked a dud because all their former front runners are tainted by the Glasshouse scandal.
    I think it will be the Nats by a nose.

  11. It will be close in PmcQ but I predict Nats by a nose. I don’t think Oakeshott has much to do with it despite what the shockjocks are trying to promote – they are probably preaching to the converted. The caliber of the candidates is important and this may save Besseling as the Nats have been forced to pick a dud – all their front runners are still tarred by the Glasshouse scandal

    If I am wrong and there really is a backlash against RO, I can’t see how this can help the conservatives. Changing support and supporting Abbott would not improve his electoral chances – there is no way the Nats would give him a free ticket.

  12. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/03/22/3170086.htm

    Labor’s latest stuff up. It is really easy being the ALP in NSW at the moment, knowing that you can promise anything, without any intent of ever doing it.

    If I was KK, I would promise travelators along George St and Pitt St, so people can do shopping without walking and there would not be need for buses and bike lane either.

    And only Roozendaal could say the following with a straigh face

    “Labor insists its key policies have been costed, and Mr Roozendaal rejected the Parliamentary Budget Office report’s suggestion the party’s promises will send the state into a net operating deficit.

    He says there has been recent good news from the sale of electricity assets, and bad news in falling GST revenue, neither of which were factored in by Mr Harris.”

  13. Is Ms Byrne really the best the Greens could do


    Ms Byrne issued a statement last week saying she has never said that she will bring the Israel boycott to State Parliament, and she has no intention of doing so.

    But comments made by the Greens candidate on February 15 appear to contradict that.

    “I would suggest that the New South Wales Greens would be looking to bring that forward at State Parliament if we were elected,” Ms Byrne said then about an Israel boycott.

    Labor’s campaign spokesman, Upper House MP Luke Foley, says Ms Byrne has been caught out.

  14. I’d think Shoebridge is the best for the Greens – I like the cut of his jib!

    Mired as I am here in blue-ribbon Epping, (or really what was Northcott) the heart of ‘L’iberalism, and with a right-wing ‘L’iberal candidate who has yet to gain wide traction in the community, and a youngster getting blooded for the ALP, a disgruntled ‘liberal’ independent, a Call to Australia (Fred Nile) stand-in, similar Family First – I almost despair in my vote!

    As a former Australian Democrats candidate for the Eastwood end of the division the call of Emma Hyde’s Green candidacy is winsome – as were the Greens in the local Council elections among developer stooges – despite my sometime aversion to the NSW dark-green Greens. I wonder whether she hold their vote up.

  15. HA
    There’s now a good chance that the Greens won’t win any lower house seats.
    I’ll predict the Libs win Balmain, and Tebutt retains Marrickville for Labor.

  16. GG

    Ted does seem to be struggling. Hard to know if it resonating but on the other hand it is a long way to the next election. Best to get anything unpleasant out of the way early.

  17. If Steve Whan or Carmel Tebbutt fail to get up on Saturday (and they seem the ebst of the lot), the ALP could do worse than shoving aside one of the plodders that are still there and parachute them into the seat.

  18. blackburn,

    The Libs support Hoddle St gridlock. Can see the boarded placards from Clifton Hill to St Kilda.

    That’s not getting uglies out of the way, thats creating a cess pit of discontent.

  19. The story about Currawong and Robertson will play out big after the election. The developer who has sold out to Watkins is in deep financial trouble right now and had to get out in a real hurry and why would anyone purchase the site knowing that at this point of time. ICAC is going to be working overtime for the next eighteen months. So why is Labor so keen to put Robertson in as leader in the Lower House when he will no doubt be heading into ICAC every now and then and various other audit committees etc.
    Guys like Borger who appears to be both capable and honest should be in the running or for that matter Camel Tebbutt who will surely bet of the Greens now.
    Eddie your a bit light on the posts today any late mail from around the traps.
    Kevrenor your right about Epping the local Libs got stuck with Greg Smith against their will as the history of this seat formerly held by Andrew Tink is one for the moderates. Smith has tried to take over a number of the local branches with Opus Dei and Hillsong types. My hope is OFarrell wins enough seats to get rid of the egregious right wing troglodytes and the Clarke, Hawke factions once and for all.

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