Galaxy: 51-49 to Labor in Newland and Mitchell (SA)

Two new electorate-level polls suggest an intriguing election night looms in South Australia on Saturday.

The Advertiser has published two of Galaxy’s electorate-level automated phone polls from samples of about 550, and they have produced the very interesting findings that Labor holds 51-49 leads in its key marginal seats of Mitchell and Newland. The Liberals need six seats to form a majority government, and with respective margins of 2.5% and 2.6%, the seats in question are Labor’s fifth and sixth most marginal. We will evidently have to wait until tomorrow’s hard copy of the paper for full results, but it appears the poll will show that Kris Hanna, a former Labor member for the seat who held it as an independent in 2006 but was defeated by Labor’s Alan Sibbons in 2010, is at the very least competitive.

UPDATE: GhostWhoVotes relates that the poll in fact has Kris Hanna a fairly distant third on 19%, with Labor on 38%, the Liberals 36%, the Greens on 4% and Family First on 3%. For Newland, the results are 44% Labor, 42% Liberal, 8% Family First and 6% Greens. With both sets of primary votes, I would have thought Labor would have been further ahead than 51-49 on two-party preferred.

UPDATE 2: The Australian reports provisional results from a Newspoll survey to be completed today gives the Liberals further cause to fear they may not make it over the line:

But with results from the first 1000 voters polled showing a two-party-preferred vote of 53-47 per cent to the Liberals, Labor Premier Jay Weatherill may still have a chance of forming minority government if swings are contained in key marginal seats.

With two thirds of voters polled for an exclusive Newspoll to be published in The Weekend Australian, Labor’s primary vote has fallen from 34 per cent to 33 per cent over the past month while the Liberal Party’s primary vote has dipped slightly from 44 to 42 per cent.

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.

122 comments on “Galaxy: 51-49 to Labor in Newland and Mitchell (SA)”

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  1. Spur, I am told that Colton and Florey are 50-50 in internal polling. If ALP keep one, hung parliament, if not, good night nurse.

    I think Mawson is safe, Light will be OK, and public polling is showing Mitchell and Newland very tight but on the Labor side of tight.

    Wright is the unknown as no polling just gut feeling – I have nothing against the MP or anything but just a negative vibe amongst people I know in the area.

  2. Thanks IT

    I spoke to a person on Liberals campaign in Mawson about 5 months ago. I said that I thought they’d win the seat comfortably. She said that was doubtful because she said Bignell is a strong local candidate and there were internal issues with their campaign down there. Looks like she was right!

  3. I still believe the only scenario in which the ALP can retain government is by winning Adelaide. I’m writing off Bright and Hartley. After that you can roll your dice.

    It’s obvious that this election has been getting tighter in the last week especially, and this means Adelaide has to be considered in play. It’s doubtful labor can win it, but I wouldn’t completely rule it out.

  4. I think the effect of the Habib pamphlet will be negligible, TBH. Still, if Labor lose that seat, I expect everybody will just blame it all on the pamphlet because commentators like to believe in simple answers.

    [Why is everyone writing off Bright? I though Chloe Fox had a reputation as a formidable vote-getter.]

    Because it’s ultra-marginal and Fox has earned herself a worse reputation as a presiding minister over some bad transport problems – many of which aren’t necessarily her fault but she’s been successfully painted as completely incompetent. That will brush off on her as an MP too and, with a razor thin margin, will be fatal.

  5. [ I though Chloe Fox had a reputation as a formidable vote-getter.]

    Because Chloe Fox is a complete idiot and has managed to demonstrate that comprehensively as an inept minister.

  6. Psephos

    As a resident of the electorate, it’s not so much her reputation as a minister but the fact the Liberals have been heavily bombarding this seat since 2010 on pretty much everything transport related (which just happened to be her ministerial portfolio). Most of it has been really trivial petty stuff but that’s politics. The Liberal candidate also has been active for them in the electorate for awhile now and he’s been shit stirring as much as possible.

  7. Basically, since 2010, the Liberals goal was to knock off Grace Portolesi, Chloe Fox and Pat Conlon. The thinking would have been if they knocked them over, the ALP would lose their majority and then it’s just a matter of gaining 3 seats to win government, which is made easier if they win Mf Gambier. If you include Ashford (which borders Elder), that brings it down to one. The problem for them after that is that one seat could prove notoriously difficult to find.

  8. Liberals will win this in their own right, but a solid and consistent campaign from local ALP members will avoid a blowout and put them in good stead in 2018. Marshall is the definition of a lightweight.

  9. At the 2010 election, Labor won a majority of 5 (comfortable in a 47 seat house) on a 2pp of 48.4%. The general assumption is that there will be a swing to the Libs but there is also the possibility that either major party may end leading a minority government. It is possible that Jay Weatherill could end up premier on about 45 or 46% of the vote. If this was the case, would there not be a general question over the legitimacy of both his mandate and the electoral system – almost a playmander in reverse?

  10. Well, if the Libs poll 55% of the 2PV and fail to win a majority, under a redistribution specifically designed to prevent that happening, there will riots in North Adelaide.

  11. Wait for the primary votes from that ReachTEL

    My feeling is it’s showing something on the “Better Premier” rating

  12. By that I mean that I think any movement is showing up on the Better Premier rating on ReachTEL. Maybe nothing changed except perceptions of Marshall

  13. Marshall’s closing words were repeated in full on tonight’s news.
    [“If people in South Australia want change,
    If they want a better future,
    If they want to grow our economy,
    Then they need to vote Labor tomorrow.”]

    Refreshing honesty from Marshall. I’m sure there will be no hard feelings in the Liberal party room if he falls short of majority government 🙂

  14. my thoughts……..last time 52/48 lib this time polls are showing a 1% swing……..normally 53/47 assures a change govt…….. but with an uneven swing may be a hung parliament…….then depends on what the independents do……….and do they combine or make separate decisions?

  15. The ABC news also mentioned that their analyst tomorrow would be William Bowe. Congratulations and may it be the start of a long career 🙂

  16. [Socrates
    Posted Friday, March 14, 2014 at 8:35 pm | PERMALINK
    The ABC news also mentioned that their analyst tomorrow would be William Bowe. ]

    Hey- what a coincidence! Our blog is run by someone with that name too.

    What is the chance of having two psephs with the same name?

  17. Everything

    [The ABC news also mentioned that their analyst tomorrow would be William Bowe.

    Hey- what a coincidence! Our blog is run by someone with that name too.]

    It can’t be our William or he would have let us PBers know he was coming to Adelaide so we could have a beer. Must be a different one.

  18. [It all depends on where the swings are. It’s not impossible.]

    Let me rephrase: 55-45 would result in a Liberal majority 99 times out of 100.

  19. If it was a hung parliament and the vote was 55-45, I really think the indies should put in whoever got the 55%. You have to have some respect for the will of the majority of the voters.

  20. @Diogenes 84

    That’s a good guiding principle, but at the end of the day, the independents are elected to represent their electorates, not the whole state, and will accordingly go with whoever presents the best outcome for their constituents.

    Still, a 55-45 2PP result to the Libs seeing Labor hold onto government would further underscore the general terribleness of the single-member representative system and add more fuel to the argument that we should look to shifting it (since redistributions are just a band-aid that often falls behind the times rapidly).

    I would personally favour an MMP system such as that employed by Germany and New Zealand.

  21. James J or Ghost:

    Any news on the Newspoll?

    It is a bit funny releasing a bit of a Newspoll one night and the rest on another night- is there a precedent for such mischief?

  22. If it’s 55-45 and Florey is on the line, look out for Torrens, Reynell, Wright, Giles and others.

    It could be a rout.

  23. Arrnea

    In the end, democracy is meant to represent the will of the majority of the people and you would seriously question the right to govern of a party which got 10% less votes than the other lot.

  24. @ TT 90

    55-45 is still only a 3.2% swing to the Libs. Even with uneven swings, suggesting Torrens (8.2%), Reynell (10.5%) and Giles (11.9%) are on the line is a bit too much, I think.

    I don’t think any ALP seat further up the pendulum than Wright (4.9%) is seriously in play here, myself. Still, that’s 11 seats.

    @ Dio 91

    True, but while our system does, in aggregate, generally represent the democratic will of the voting population, each seat’s representative is elected to represent their electorate alone.

    One of the independents (I forget which) made some noise about backing into government whichever major party did better in his electorate on second preference if he won. I’d say that’s a fairly good way to do it if you’re looking to respect the democratic will of the voters above any other concerns.

  25. @ Dio 93

    No, I’m not. The name is of my own synthesis, the former part selected from a dictionary of words in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Elven language.

  26. If I remember correctly, Newspoll released a partial poll then a full poll in the couple of nights leading up to the 2010 Federal election. That’s the only precedent I can recall.

  27. Anyone who thinks Frances Bedford is in danger of losing Florey either knows nothing about the electorate or is on drugs.

    She has a dud Liberal candidate standing against her and, if that’s not enough, the chosen photo on his corflutes make him look exceedingly shifty.

    Less kind people than me have used the phrase “he looks like a child molester” 😉

  28. [Arrnea Stormbringer
    …..No, I’m not. The name is of my own synthesis, the former part selected from a dictionary of words in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Elven language.]


    The Fellowship awards the status of dwarf to Arrnea Stormbringer

  29. Danny Lewis:

    You think you can tell that someone is a child molester by a picture?

    What a dill you are.

    ….and are you talking about this picture??????

  30. Danny Lewis

    As Penny Wong mentioned on twitter tonight, he’s a former state president of the National Civic Council. He’ a grouper!

  31. [No, I’m not. The name is of my own synthesis, the former part selected from a dictionary of words in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Elven language.]

    Oh, I thought it was a reference to Arrnea Rufus Stormbringer, 19th century US Senator from Alabama and 13th Vice President of the United States.

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