BludgerTrack: 52.7-47.3 to Coalition

Meet the new BludgerTrack, same as the old BludgerTrack. Also featured: a quick squizz at the Australian Electoral Commission’s petition calling for the High Court to declare void the Western Australian Senate election result.

The BludgerTrack aggregate is updated this week with Essential Research and Morgan, plus Galaxy with respect to the Queensland result (see full results on the sidebar). None of these results has made a noticeable difference, with two-party preferred and the seat projection entirely unchanged on last week. The one exception is that the Palmer United Party is now being granted a smaller share of the “others” vote, which is down to a relatively weak result in the Morgan poll. Since Morgan and ReachTEL are the only pollsters specifically publishing results for the PUP, the aggregate is highly sensitive to individual results on this measure.

Another point worth raising is that Morgan seem to have dropped the online element from their “multi-mode” polling, which leaves the face-to-face and SMS components and results in sample sizes of about 2000 rather than 3000. Kevin Bonham is excluding Morgan from his poll aggregate on the grounds that the change might be causing the series to lean more to Labor than it used to, given the long-evident Labor bias on the face-to-face only polling which Morgan used to run. Nonetheless, I am continuing to use bias adjustments for Morgan based on the earlier multi-mode series, which might be introducing a slight pro-Labor bias to the model. This will be accounted for when enough poll results are available to meaningfully determine the series’ deviation from the other pollsters.

There should be a bit more polling activity to take care of with next week’s update, with the fortnightly Newspoll due on Sunday or Monday evening and, I believe, a ReachTEL national poll to be conducted for the Seven Network this coming Friday (UPDATE: See bottom of post).

In other news, two developments in the Western Australian Senate election saga: the Australian Electoral Commission has filed a petition with the High Court calling on it to have the result declared void, which has helpfully been put online by technology issues website Delimiter, and officials from the AEC have appeared before Senate estimates to face the music on this and other matters. The key point in the petition is the Electoral Act’s requirement that once a recount is directed by the relevant authority, it must proceed through “a re-count of the ballot papers”. The AEC contends that in the known absence of 1370 ballot papers that this cannot be said to have occurred, and that the matter cannot be remedied by instating non-recounted results from the affected polling booths. The error further clears the statutory hurdle of having been likely to have affected the result, or at least that such a consequence cannot be excluded.

UPDATE: Channel Seven reports a ReachTEL automated phone poll conducted overnight found 53% saying the Prime Minister should deliver the explanation for spying activities demanded by Indonesia, while 34% say he shouldn’t; and 38% support Australia’s bugging activities with 39% opposed.

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.

1,846 comments on “BludgerTrack: 52.7-47.3 to Coalition”

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  1. [But here is the greatest risk to our country. What if Indonesia elects a new leader of the same quality as we regrettably did.]

    This has now become the most important issue from here on. In the lead up to the Indonesian presidential election next year, every candidate will be vying to be seen as having the hairiest chest on dealing with Abbott.

    The fool, for his own vain purposes, has inadvertently opened the flood gates and from here on will have to suffer the consequences. Unfortunately Australia as a whole will suffer as well.

  2. Australia’s relationship with Indonesia is at its darkest hour since the East Timor crisis, with Tony Abbott facing demands that he either apologise for espionage or risk a new surge of boat people.

    President Susilo Bambang Yudho-yono last night raised the stakes in his stand-off with the Prime Minister, suspending all co-operation on combating people smuggling and military exercises.

    He is demanding Mr Abbott apologise for Australian spies eavesdropping on his personal telephone calls and those of his wife and close advisers in 2009.

    Sorry. Not a word in the Abbott/Liberal vocabulary

  3. Victoria # 45


    One can only imagine the pejorative and probably very ribald private comments made about Abbott and his henchies by the Indonesians every time he comes to mind.

    They have many scores to settle as a result of intemperate, indulgent and disrespectful comments from the FA trio of Abbott, Morriscum, and Silly Bishop over the last year or so.

  4. Well, if Textor’s twitter timeline is any indication he seems to realise that his foolish tweets served only to compound matters.

  5. [In the lead up to the Indonesian presidential election next year, every candidate will be vying to be seen as having the hairiest chest on dealing with Abbott.]

    That thought occurred to me as well.

  6. confessions

    I would say textor’s tweet likening the Indonesian FM to a filippino porn star with ethics to match is a tad more than foolish. It is like pouring petrol on the fire. Imagine if an Indonesian counterpart had said this about JBishop in a tweet?

  7. We should not forget that Indonesia has its share of rabble rousing bigots like Bolt and Jones, as well as religious extremists. Abbott has inadvertently given these characters a common cause for stirring up trouble within Indonesia.

    As Abbott would know, there is nothing like having a common enemy to unite normally squabbling political types into a chorus of hatred directed at some outside influence. It is a tragedy that Australia is now regarded by many Indonesians as that common enemy.

  8. Pressure is mounting for a change to penalty rates, with State Minister for Small Business Joe Francis believing it is time to look at scrapping the higher hourly rates for up to 100,000 people.

    “Anything you can do to increase the profitability of small business, they generally put back into their business, and they will grow from a small to a big business,” Mr Francis said.

    Penalty rates are an important part of the income of low paid workers. They make the difference between being able to pay the bills, eat and scratch enough to pay a mortgage.

    But penalty rates aren’t only paid in hospitality and retail. Police, fire services, nurses, ambulance drives, prison officers, mining workers, train drivers, transit guards and bus drivers are among the workers who are paid penalty rates.

    The impact of removing penalty rates would be far greater than the Liberals are spinning.

    Business would suffer as people spend less in shops, go out for meals less, buy less new cars, buy/build less housing etc.

    The damage to the economy is massive

  9. victoria

    Love the image of Mesma as a porn star. Dominatrix, one imagines 😆

    But her robotic image sitting beside Kerry this morning spoke of failure. A Foreign Minister needs to appear worldly, sophisticated, with enough imagination to communicate with foreigners of all kinds. She came over as a non-thinking parrot, repeating the same lines that meant nothing.

  10. victoria:

    Yes indeed. His attitude smacks of the old way of regarding developing nations, ie that they should be bowing and scraping to us.

    Given the coalition’s megaphone diplomacy in opposition, you have to wonder if there are any Liberals with contemporary thinking on foreign affairs issues.

  11. Credit where credit’s due…

    [MEMBER for Indi Cathy McGowan will today vote in the Federal Parliament against legislation to repeal the carbon tax.

    Ms McGowan last night reiterated her stance in favour of a market-based approach to climate change.

    “I think in the end the market is the more effective and efficient way to take carbon out of the atmosphere,” she said.

    “The carbon tax had its faults but I see it as one of a number of steps.

    “We need to be on a journey to a low carbon emitting society and the market has a key role to play.”]

  12. Meanwhile, on Abbott’s other major front, climate change. Even if Abbott ‘believed’ in it, I don’t think he’s got the moral courage to go against his backers.

    [And so the smoke clears: just 90 companies produced two-thirds of the greenhouse gas emissions that have been smothering the planet since the dawn of the industrial revolution. The new research is a landmark because knowing exactly who caused global warming is a big step towards knowing how to stop it.

    It is tempting to see the list as a rogues gallery, full of familiar names such as ExxonMobil who have lavishly funded campaigns to deny the role of fossil fuels in climate change. The prospect of legal challenges to extract damages from the titans of the extractive industry looks attractive, particularly as scientists get ever better at attributing extreme weather events to the heat trapped by carbon dioxide.

    But the pollution belongs to all of those whose lives have been transformed over the last 250 years by cheap energy. Instead, the value of the work is that it has produced a power list, in every sense.

    It is now clearer than ever before that a just few dozen companies and cartels have presided over the mass pollution of our planet, unknowingly for many years but no longer. Energy fuels the world economy and the list shows just how that power has been concentrated in astonishingly few hands. There are few more terrifying threats a government faces than the lights going out or the petrol pumps running dry.

    Energy companies are the biggest corporations the world has ever seen and this concentration of immense power makes them the biggest vested interests ever to do battle with the public good.]

  13. lizzie/confessions

    Mesma failied when she said these words after winning the election

    [Incoming foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop says she is confident the Coalition will be able to implement all of its asylum seeker policies regardless of how Indonesia views them.

    [“We’re not asking for Indonesia’s permission, we’re asking for their understanding.]

    Now how did she expect the Indonesians to respond?

  14. [Marcus Strom ‏@strom_m 19m
    Lib pollster @markatextor breaks PR’s golden rule and himself becomes the news … via @smh

    Mark Textor ‏@markatextor 4m
    @strom_m @smh only in Mark Kenny’s Canberra bubble. The real world moves on while the SMH bleeds into irrelevance, and debt.]

    Has Textor not seen the Indonesian media this morning?

  15. victoria:

    JBishop continues to demonstrate she is out of her depth on the front bench.

    I really do think that a circuit breaker to all this, and an act of goodwill towards the Indonesians would be for JBishop to sacked as FM.

  16. As per the article I linked above

    [Mr Abbott says the Coalition’s new border protection policy will take effect from Wednesday, when his new frontbench is officially sworn in.

    As well as the plan to purchase boats from Indonesian fishermen, Mr Abbott’s policy involves turning boats around when it is safe to do so.]

    The coalition need to tell us and the Indonesians if fhis policy still stands

  17. BK

    “Fish out of water” indeed. And showing that she has been living until now in a very small pond, which has given her an exalted opinion of her own ability.

  18. How can Murdoch (via the Telegraph) possibly claim to to stand up for the Western Suburbs battler when this sort of money is involved?

    [The chairman of News Corp and 21st Century Fox and his wife of 14 years, Wendi Deng Murdoch, shook hands and briefly hugged after a brief proceeding in a Manhattan court. The terms of the agreement weren’t disclosed in court. The divorce is said to have cost Murdoch $1.7 billion, including a cool $100 million in cash. Deng Murdoch is expected to keep the couple’s home in Beijing and their Fifth Avenue apartment in Manhattan, purchased in 2004 for a then-record $US44 million.]

  19. victoria

    I really must thank everyone for their words of encouragement, but it’s early days yet.

    I know of several other people who are nominating, and given that I’ve been out of action for a couple of years, I probably don’t have the profile across regional Victoria that I had then.

    But if I don’t put my hat in the ring, I have no chance at all, so let’s suck it and see! (Mixing my metaphors so fran has a chance to chastise me later…)

  20. Former Indonesian vice president:

    [Kalla said the Indonesian government should take tougher action in protest at the alleged snooping activities, especially as the Australian government had refused to apologize for its actions. According to Kalla, a statement of apology from the Australian government was crucial to maintain bilateral relations.

    “The one and the only way out of this current situation is that Australia agrees to apologize for what it has done,” he said.]

  21. Bishop has done it again.


    In her presser in the US today she opined that the US and Australia were working together to restore order in the Philippines .

    What part of casually insulting arrogance doesn’t Bishop get?

  22. citizen

    [We should not forget that Indonesia has its share of rabble rousing bigots like Bolt and Jones, as well as religious extremists. Abbott has inadvertently given these characters a common cause for stirring up trouble within Indonesia.]

    100% right.

  23. [83
    Posted Thursday, November 21, 2013 at 9:02 am | PERMALINK

    We should not forget that Indonesia has its share of rabble rousing bigots like Bolt and Jones, as well as religious extremists. Abbott has inadvertently given these characters a common cause for stirring up trouble within Indonesia.

    100% right.]

    And that is why i am finding it difficult to comprehend why Abbott and his cohorts are inflaming the situation

  24. Downer, who weeks ago was publicly pouring petrol on the flames is now call for calm.


    He should, like Textor, like Morrison, like Abbott and like Bishop spend most of their time with their lips stitched together.

  25. It needs to also be stated that the AEC failed to recount the Below the line votes. There are over 2100 votes that have been identified that are worthy of a recheck.

    The AEC refused to provide scrutineers access to copies of the Below-The-Line preference data files. Without access to this data it is impossible to verify or effectively scrutinise the quality of the BTL preference vote data entry process.

    No justification has been given why a re-examination of BTL votes has not been undertaken.

    Accoring to Antony Green Green the recount came fown to less than 1 vote.

    Other issues that need review include the method of the calculation of the Surplus Transfer Value and the segmentation distribution of excluded candidates votes

    We need to adopt a weighted transfer value and a non segmented count. The Count should be re-set and restarted on every exclusion with a single transfer per candidate and weighted surpluses only distributed on each iteration. With the likely adoption of Optional Preferential voting a reiterative count would allow for the recalculation of the quota on each iteration.

    We should also rethink the use of the Droop quota.

    In the past under a manual counting system a reiterative count as outlined above would have been prohibitive but with the aid of computer technology this is no longer a limitation.

    We need to adopt a pure proportional preferential ballot or consider adopting a party list system similar to that used in Holland

  26. sprocket @ 33

    Hah!. Great post. I notice that Textor has decided to double up… the real problem is the Fairfax press and Australian journalists.

    Like the other anglobubblers in the Coalition, he just does not get it.

  27. Abbott has promised to reply ‘fully’ to Sudhoyono’s letter. The letter will ask for an apology and an explanation.

    So, how ‘fully’ can Abbott reply to that? Easy:

    ‘NO! NO!’

  28. Some on twitter are pissed off with Bill Shorten. They say he should be going hard on Abbott re the standoff with indonesia. I dont quite understand the logic of this to be honest

  29. Bishop has changed her vocabulary subtly. The spying stuff is now ‘allegations about spying’.

    In other words, the Indonesians who were getting their sarongs in a knot because of ‘media reports’ are not getting their sarongs in a knot because of ‘allegations’ of spying.

  30. Mike Carlton translates headline in Indonesian paper

    [@KnottMatthew It translates as “Australian Politician Calls Indonesian Foreign Minister A Porn Star.” Well done @markatextor.]

    Is textor going to blame fairfax for that too?

  31. victoria

    Those on twitter wanting Shorten to go hard thinkLabor can do what Abbott did.

    Of course Labor cannot. Things like facts, compassion and decency get in the way.
    The most Labor can do is get some cut through lines that the Greens have not already nabbed from having a head start.

    I thought the slug the poor to give tax breaks to world’s richest corporations was a good start.

  32. guytaur

    Our crappy msm are already implying that somehow Labor is being unhelpful. Imagine if Labor did indeed play politics with this issue. Labor need to keep repeating the line that the coalition need to repair the relationship asap

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