Galaxy: 51.5-48.5 to Labor in Ashgrove

The Courier-Mail yesterday published a poll of the all-important electorate of Ashgrove from a thumping sample of 800, which confirms the findings of Thursday’s ReachTel poll: that the two-party result is within the margin of error and Campbell Newman is in very serious danger of falling short. Indeed, the published figure has Jones in the lead with 51.5 per cent of the two-party vote, with both major candidates on 45 per cent and the Greens on 8 per cent. The two-party figure has been obtained using the preference splits from 2009, with the Greens vote going 50 per cent to Labor, 15 per cent to the LNP and 35 per cent exhausting, and the negligible “others” vote neatly divided 25 per cent to each party with 50 per cent exhausting. Of course, whether this pattern will be precisely replicated under the highly unusual circumstances of the looming election remains an open question. Galaxy has found 63 per cent of voters intending to allocate preferences, but since nine in 10 of these respondents are supporters of the major parties, this doesn’t tell us very much. The poll also provides a huge boost for Jones in finding that Labor supporters were a lot more likely than LNP supporters to nominate “liking for party/candidate” as the reason for their vote choice (70 per cent against 44 per cent), and correspondingly less likely to nominate hostility to the opposing party (27 per cent against 55 per cent).

• Katter’s Australian Party has predictably failed in its bid to have its full name listed on ballot papers after it was embarrassed to learn electoral rules provided for the use of its registered abbreviation, which is merely “The Australian Party”. So weak was its case that it has been suggested the court challenge was merely being used as an awareness-raising exercise. In related news, Dennis Atkins of the Courier-Mail turns out to be a hip-hop enthusiast.

• Yet more candidate trouble for the LNP on the Gold Coast, it having emergeed that Albert candidate Mark Boothman was the administrator of a website which “displayed soft porn”. The website was in fact a forum for motoring enthusiasts, and boys being boys, some participants had uploaded “adult content” to it. This follows the party’s loss of two candidates in the nearby seat of Broadwater, one over a drink driving charge and the other over his attendance at a swingers party function. For what it’s worth, my view is that parties in general, and the Queensland LNP in particular, have become a little trigger happy in dispensing with candidates over minor indiscretions. In this case it was not an option, as nominations have closed and ballot papers have been printed. Perhaps for this reason, Campbell Newman is standing behind a “terrific young bloke” and “family man”.

• Police are investigating the firing of a “large-calibre bullet” through the office window of Michael Crandon, the LNP member for the northern Gold Coast seat of Coomera.

• The Greens have launched their campaign with a promise to reinstate the upper house, an understandable objective given the near certainty that they will yet again fail to win any seats (their traditionally strongest seats are occupied by the two most senior figures in the government: Anna Bligh’s seat of South Brisbane and Andrew Fraser’s seat of Mount Coot-tha) Though personally, I would have thought a system of proportional representation in the existing single chamber both an easier sell (or at least, a less difficult one) and more in their interests in any case.

• Writing in The Australian, Peter Beattie predicts:

Bob Katter’s Australian Party will only win two to three seats at best … if Newman loses Ashgrove and the LNP wins government, Lawrence Springborg will be premier with Tim Nicholls as his deputy. Depending on who wins their seat, the opposition leader will be either Andrew Fraser or Cameron Dick. A Labor victory will see Jeff Seeney fall on his sword and Tim Nicholls as opposition leader.

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.

127 comments on “Galaxy: 51.5-48.5 to Labor in Ashgrove”

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  1. They could do worse William but based on their poor strategy shown to date they are not likely to think about the possibility.

  2. DavidWH,

    The first law of a PR disaster is to tell the truth.

    The candidate seems to have lied and now is about to cop a flogging. The LNP are collateral damage for not being able to manage their campaign (Again).

  3. GG agree. They should have done a more thorough investigation in the first place. They was they have handled a range of issues feels like they have taken the election win for granted. I am very disappointed.

  4. DavidWH,

    The way Mciver, Newmann, Seeney and crew have conducted their preselection shows a complete lack of respect for the voters. The word hubris has been used a lot, but these guys are pushing it to the limit.

    They demand transparency from Bligh and co but refuse to comply themselves.

    If they aren’t careful they could lose or fail to win an outright majority in another unlosable election.

  5. Now bluddy cantdo wants to “trial” Bootcamp for juvenile offenders. This has been proven to be an abject failure with no reduction in recidivism and hyper expensive. Costs more than standard detention!

    His brainfarts are closely rembling those of a Mr Rabbott.

    Unfunded unplanned policies and promises. Sheesh.

  6. I may be overoptimistically overanalysing, but on first thought it would seem that this latest news is no likely to help Newman win back any gender gap that has opened for him.

  7. I’ve been trying to get records of Opinion Polls for Q State election 1998 -the Pauline Hanson one. This election is the one closest to the current Q election, with a possibility that Katter’s Australian Party, which appeals to the same groups + CSG electorates, might emulate Hanson’s One Nation result. My memory is that Hanson was still “under the radar” of Opinion Poll results until just before the election.

    All I’ve found so far is:

    [It is the 10th of June 1998, three nights before the 1998 Queensland state election. The opinion polls point to a surge in support for Pauline Hanson’s One Nation. Prime Minister John Howard appears on the Stan Zemanek radio show- broadcast on 35 stations in the eastern states and renowned for its pro-Hanson sympathies – to appeal to One Nation supporters to give their second preferences to the coalition.

    He seeks to convince listeners that the coalition is worthy of their respect. His government is determined to fix up the ‘Native Title mess’; it will not accept one law for Aborigines and another law for farmers and miners. It has reduced immigration to a ‘pretty modest level’ …

    A two-year waiting period has been introduced to limit immigrant access to welfare. And for the benefit of Queensland listeners, subjected to One Nation’s criticism of the United Nations, he states that his government had changed the approach to international treaties that would limit national sovereignty; he was ‘angry’ about the treaties that governments had entered in the past.]

    That last-week, late “Surge” would result in One Nation’s winning 11 seats (out of 89) 22.68% of the vote, some off Labor, but most off the National-Liberal Coalition. In Q’s Optional preferential system, there is no need for any KAP voters to nominate a preference.

    The LNP currently holds 31 seats & needs 45 to govern. 7 seats are currently in the hands of Indies (inc those retiring) and LNP defectors, and most are expected to elect the same/ similar candidates (eg Indie Dorothy Pratt replaced with local KAP candidate Carl Rackermann).

    I haven’t seen any significant canvassing of a hung parliament; yet if Katter wins 8-10 seats (with 3 defectors + Rackermann + NQ/CGS seats) with 3 Indies (2 ALP leaning, 1 LNP) and Labor holds most of its SEQ seats, a hung parliament is a likely outcome.

  8. Oz Pol

    I take it no one is running a line against Carl Rackemann about his deserting one of the finest sporting institutions the world (the Australian Cricket team) at its lowest ebb to take the filthy apartheid lucre in the mid-1980s.

  9. OPT, you can peruse all of Newspoll’s historic results on their website: click on “Opinion Polls”, then on “Political and Issues Trends”, then on Queensland state polling at the bottom. Personally, I’ll be extremely surprised if Katter’s party wins more than three seats.

  10. Ok, so prediction at this stage.

    I reckon optimistic for ALP is losing no more than:
    6 in Brisbane (so holding on not just in Ashgrove and Mt Coottha, but Everton, Pine Rivers, Yerongpilly and then some)
    6 in regions (so holding half of Cairns, most of Townsville and some of CQ)
    3 in Gold Coast
    giving them 35.

    I’d generously consider 4 for KAP – unless anyone wants to tell me that Peter Pyke has a chance in Toowoomba North 🙂

    2 indies leaves 48 LNP.

    So, unless the ALP can do a bit better than this, KAP would have to win ~8 seats to force a hung parliament, although even 7-8 KAP+Ind might be enough to kill off Plan C regardless.

  11. Well at least we may get the answer to one of the claims against Newman. The CMC has been investigating the DA for the developer who made the donations to the Lord Mayor fund. Apparently they started the investigation 12 days ago.

  12. Incidentally my understanding of the matter under investigation is that it involved land compulsorily acquired for the busway part of which was sold back to the developer by council. As the part sold back was smaller obviously the council approved a height relaxation as part of the DA to make the development viable.

    In any case hopefully we will get an answer before 24 March.

  13. Latest Reach Tel poll just released on Mt Cootha held by the DP Fraser on a margin of over 5 percent and shows the LNP leading by just under 4 percent. If that swing is consistent across the state it indicates that the LNP at this stage is holding onto most of the 10 percent swing shown in the latest Galaxy poll.

  14. The LNP is a schemozzle up top. And yes Qld elctoral politics is colourful, to euphemise.

    But the ALP is like a dying cowboy with one shot in its barrel: decapitate Newman in Ashgrove.

    Even in Yeronga, a modestly safe ALP electorate, the LNP were on the beat many months before Labor. On the ground they have something Labor lacks.

    All over SEQ, Labor campaigning has largely been shorn of ‘Labor’ or ‘Bligh’; with half hearted local campaigns and Labor red hidden in a maroony hue. The anti Newman ads and websites are amateur hour stuff: but they might just hel a popular locl MP with a big margin in a leafy suburb stave off Mr Direct Election…

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