Advertiser: 60-40 to Liberal in SA

The Advertiser has published one of its occasional self-conducted polls of South Australian voting intention, and while the sample is small (442, with a margin of error of over 4.5 per cent) and the pollster probably not the most expert going around, it adds to an impression of a government in terminal decline and a Premier long past his use-by date. Labor’s primary vote is at a New South Wales-ian 24 per cent compared with 50 per cent for the Liberals and 11 per cent for the Greens, with the Liberals leading 60-40 on two-party preferred. Liberal leader Isobel Redmond has a thumping 56-28 lead over Mike Rann as preferred premier, and Education Minister Jay Weatherill is favoured over Rann to lead Labor to the next election 34-26.

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.

295 comments on “Advertiser: 60-40 to Liberal in SA”

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  1. Well what an amazing 24 hours for SA Labor: the Poll, the Minister, then Foley’s attack on Bignell!

    Yet this only reinforces waht the answer is: Don must now swing his clout behind Weatherill and be done with it. He’s still got the numbers, and Weatherill will know that. New Premier. New Deputy. Foley out of Parliament (majority still 25/47). Ministerial reshuffle. Move on. Focus on 2014

    There’s still 3 years to go and the Liberals remain as dire as they have ever been. Don’t give up. Rejuvenate. Get on with governing – getting the Oval and RAH projects underway will be a good start.

    (Worried about the Oval though – just submitted my “in favour” proxy to SACA – fingers crossed it will go ahead – I just don’t understand the opposition? It has always been a lovely oval but times move on – the oval has evolved in the past and must continue to do so to meet modern demands. A 100 year old kitchen might look beautiful but sure as heck a brand new modern kitchen is better for cooking food in!!! Or a bathroom…. Friday night footie in the city centre? You bet!!! Footie Park was a mistake 40 years ago and nothing has changed.)

  2. Somehow the media has to report two big stories from SA – the investigation and the resignation – without explicitly saying they are connected. The World Today piked out by not even reporting the resignation. Maybe they’ll do it later, which would be farcical.

  3. Diogs,

    You might like us all to forget your election performance, but you live and die by the silly comments you make. This time you die.

  4. [South Australia’s acting police minister Bernard Finnigan has resigned, Premier Mike Rann says.]

    FARQing Hell, i am INNOCENT 😡

  5. Kevin Foley – “Aspiring backbenchers who wish to be ministers, and those aspiring to be MPs, have about as much political genius as I do in my left toe,”

    I believe as Mr Foley is obviously so talented the SA ALP should make him Premier.

  6. [So what needs to happen for their to be a coup in SA?]
    Basically my understanding is that either the right powerbrokers need to accept that Rann is kaput and that they can’t afford to wait long enough for any of their chosen successors to be electorally palatable, or a right affiliated union needs to jump ship, at least on the leadership issue.

    From the right’s perspective surely it wouldn’t be such a bad thing to let a competent left leader have power for a couple of years and then go down with the ship at the inevitable wipeout at the next election?

  7. [From the right’s perspective surely it wouldn’t be such a bad thing to let a competent left leader have power for a couple of years and then go down with the ship at the inevitable wipeout at the next election?]

    A left-leader in NSW was untenable. He wanted reform- which meant kneecapping the right powerbrokers.

    Is there no other options on the right?

  8. bg,

    Head down, bum up and work as hard as possible for your electors is always the best strategy. Leadership will take care of itself.

    Reacting preecipitously to the latest poll is a recipe for disaster.

  9. Foley attacks Bignell by saying “I wouldn’t want to rely on Mr Bignell’s judgment on the politics of how you win elections” …

    Bignell won his seat on a margin of about 3% with a swing towards him last year with double digit swings all around him

    Foley had his margin halved in one of the safest ALP areas in not just the state but the country

    Stupid comment Kevin!

  10. I’m surprised Hill’s name isn’t coming up. He is unaligned but liked by the Right. Perhaps he doesn’t want to do it.

  11. GG @ 171. I agree and disagree. Certainly head down and bum up is right. But Rann is not the answer and has not been since the last election. He cannot stay til 2014. It is 12 months since the election. He can now retire gracefully to the backbench now and give a new Premier a fighting chance in 2014. Rann has done a great job for SA Labor. To finish the job he needs to go when the time is right. The clock is ticking. The Tiser poll yesterday is not the reason: it is the affirmation.

  12. Snelling has not even got the support in his own SDA faction-he is more a policy wonk than a PR genius and to boot, he is genuinely an extemely conservative Catholic who married into an equally conservative Catholic family and whose life revolves his religion and family, and whose job gets in the way at times. He is a great local MP, a lovely honest chap and is a role model as a father. Leadership material, not now, not ever.

    Weatherill is unacceptable as he is from the Left and has made enemies with everyone not in the Left, but that could change depending on desperation level.

    Rau is the best shot now but hasn’t the profile and is not seen as cool but has the abilities and the backing of the Right. If they last that long.

    There is no one else who has the required skills, background and other necesseties such as a safe seat. Remember some of the most experienced MPs will be retiring at the next election…Hill, Conlon, Foley, O’Brien, Wright, Atkinson and some in the Upper House too like Zollo and Holloway, and I am guessing too the newly resigned Leader of the Government in the Upper House. There may be others.

    I have no doubt that the ALP will lose the next state election, regardless of leader (subject to the Liberals not imploding, again) and that the next ALP Premier after that is not even in Parliament yet.

  13. Indo08,

    I always agree with what I write.

    Remember, Labor is just over one year in to a four year term. This is the time that Government’s implement change, new policy and generally peeve their clientele. As said earlier, there probably is a leadership transition programme. But, to hasten it purely for “polling” reasons is bad ploitics and will lead to trouble.

    That caterwauling you hear is the disorganised left whinging because that’s what they do best.

  14. [Diogenes
    Posted Thursday, April 21, 2011 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    Would Foley, as Police Minister, have known about the investigation?]

    And then make him acting Police Minister? Surely not.

  15. No one in the ALP (nor the wider community) was aware of the issue until it broke amongst his staff and senior ALP on Tuesday morning.

    Protocol is if the Police Minister, or someone acting in that role (and there are equivalent situations in other Ministries) cannot be informed due to a potential conflict of interest, then the Premier is informed. As Rann was interstate, Acting Premier Rau was informed by SAPOL, at the highest level.

    Dio, Hill also has unpublicised health issues. He is a good man, and I wish him all the best despite my disdain for the ALP.

  16. GG my concerns are not Left/Right factional concerns. I have no vested interest either way. But as a long-term Labor supporter my concern is about the party having the best shot of winning in 2014. I just don’t think anyone seriously believes that Rann will be leader then. So the issue becomes one of timing for a leadership transition. Regardless of yesterday’s polling, that time must come very soon. I’m happy that transition planning is well under way; I will be even happier when I see it implemented! SA Labor (and powerbrokers from all factions) MUST heed the lessons of NSW, and avoid the sad outcome we have seen there. But I full agree with you that poll-driven, knee-jerk reactions produce the worst outcomes of all.

  17. Indo8

    The lesson from NSW is not to change leaders too often. And not to put in people from the unsupported faction as leader. Amongst other things of course. 😉

    What do you take to be as the main lesson from NSW?

  18. I’d heard some time ago there were rumblings in Labor Unity, particularly amongst those who, you might say, joined them for political rather than ideological reasons.

    Most of the noise was around Farrell and whether he was still the best “go-to” person in the party. Increasingly he was being seen as a hinderance, rather than a help, to Labor’s prospects in both State and Federal politics.

    One person I was dealing with at the time of the state election last year was openly complaining that the most incompetent people – and the worse advice – was emanating from the Right and it was the Left that was holding the party together. When you look at the election results and where the swings were, you can see there was some evidence for that argument.

    My most trusted source close to the action told me yesterday evening that some people in Labor Unity – especially those who got there via the break-up of the Centre Left or more recent blow-ins who are actually miles away from the right philosophically – were frantically trying to distance themselves from the loony Catholic right section headed by Farrell.

    The fact that all the sex scandals/inappropriate behaviour in the party is being perpetrated by people who got to where they were on Farrell’s recommendation hasn’t exactly passed any of these people by and there was open talk yesterday of Unity splitting into two – effectively excising the Catholic hard right and letting them drift off by themselves.

  19. Syksie – I heard that at least 2 years ago!

    Kyam Maher moved into Lea Stevens’ electorate of Little Para with the intention of taking her seat when she finally resigned. However, when she moved to the Right and later still, convinced Farrell to retain the seat for the Right, they engineered for Lee Odenwalder (who had moved from the Left to the Right) to take the seat.

    Maher was rather unimpressed, but there was nothing he could do about it other than eye off another seat and move again to that area, which I understand he has done.

  20. [The fact that all the sex scandals/inappropriate behaviour in the party is being perpetrated by people who got to where they were on Farrell’s recommendation hasn’t exactly passed any of these people by and there was open talk yesterday of Unity splitting into two – effectively excising the Catholic hard right and letting them drift off by themselves.]

    It happened in the NSW Libs. The right split and the moderates stayed united and now O’Farrell has a moderate dominated cabinet.

  21. Danny

    [My most trusted source close to the action told me yesterday evening that some people in Labor Unity – especially those who got there via the break-up of the Centre Left or more recent blow-ins who are actually miles away from the right philosophically – were frantically trying to distance themselves from the loony Catholic right section headed by Farrell.]

    My source said there was a lot of anger in the party at those who had flipped to support the Labor Right for political expedience and who are now trying to run away.

  22. “DLP victory in SA”:

    [A raft of MPs has been shipped into upper and lower house State seats though the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA).

    Former Minister Michael Atkinson worked for the union, as did Tom Koutsantonis, Tom Kenyon, Bernie Finnigan and Jack Snelling.

    It’s no surprise that Finnigan found himself as Minister for Industrial Relations in the new cabinet.

    “It means there will be no change to shop trading hours anytime in the near future – not unless Don Farrell says so,” Ralph Clarke said.

    Power, of course, comes in many forms.

    While Labor Unity controls the party, it still hasn’t had one of its members in the Premier’s job.

    Mike Rann is unaligned and John Rau, the probable next Premier, shifted from the Left to Labor Unity, but doesn’t have the full support of its members.

    “That’s almost irrelevant,” Clark said.

    “Labor Unity isn’t as much concerned as to who is Premier, as to who isn’t. As long as it isn’t anyone from the Left.]

    http://indaily.wordpress.com/2011/02/09/dlp-victory-in-sa/

  23. Diogenes: Yep, exactly.

    Many of those who have been in Unity since the break-up of the Centre Left have always been a bit cliquey; keeping the others at arm’s length (and, in some cases, openly making fun of their “loony” brothers and sisters) whilst enjoying the protection that being a part of Farrell’s faction offered them. The reality is that these people should have either joined the Left, reinvigorated the Centre Left or opted out by being unaligned, but they allowed themselves to be convinced the future was in sticking close to Farrell and doing as you are told by him. Well, we all know how well that’s turned out …

    Syksie – To be perfectly honest, I was gobsmacked when I heard that a Farrell motion/amendment could be defeated, doubly so since it involved some people in Unity openly defying him. A few years ago that would have been unthinkable. I was only sorry I took a last-minute decision not to go; it would have been something to watch!

  24. [At the same time though in a different sphere, The Australian today reported Police Minister Kevin Foley, who is currently on a business trip to the US, as lashing Rann’s backbench.

    A bunch “immature political novices … Nervous Nellies and panickers”, said the former Deputy Premier, who has twice been assaulted in recent times on his many nights out on the town.

    “Aspiring backbenchers who wish to be ministers, and those aspiring to be MPs, have about as much political genius as I do in my left toe,” he said.

    This morning on Adelaide radio there were suggestions that his left toe should be preserved for posterity.]

    http://indaily.wordpress.com/2011/04/21/adelaides-gossip-mill-in-overdrive/

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