New results for the poll aggregate this week from Ipsos, Essential Research and Roy Morgan, with the Ipsos result being the pollster’s first since the leadership change. It’s this result that’s resposible for a solid 0.7% shift in favour of the Coalition, since the other two pollsters both produced results consistent with their established Turnbull era form. I’ve now changed the state-level calculations from a weighted average to a trend measure, the effect of which is to boost considerably the Coalition’s score in New South Wales while reducing it somewhat in Queensland and Western Australia. The Coalition is accordingly up two this week on its seat tally in New South Wales but down one each in Queensland and Western Australia, adding up to no net gain despite the improvement on voting intention. Ipsos provided new leadership ratings this week, giving Malcolm Turnbull a big boost on his already strong personal approval. Ipsos’s numbers for Bill Shorten were similar to what he’s been getting from other pollsters but well below his past form from Ipsos, and his net approval rating accordingly takes another hit.
The Herald-Sun reports that Helen Kroger, who won a Victorian Senate seat in 2007 but lost it in 2013 after being demoted from second to third on the party ticket, will seek preselection for the lower house seat of Bruce in south-eastern Melbourne. The seat is to be vacated at the election by the retirement of Alan Griffin, who has held the seat since gaining it for Labor on the back of a favourable redistribution in 1996, but retained a margin of just 1.8% in 2013. However, Kroger is said to face a bitter preselection battle from the party’s candidate for the seat in 2013, Emanuele Cicchiello, a former Knox councillor and teacher at Lighthouse Christian College. Labor’s new candidate for the seat is Julian Hill, an executive with the Victorian government’s Department of Economic Development and former mayor of Port Phillip, who won preselection earlier this year uncontested.
David Johnston of the Border Mail reports that two candidates will contest the Nationals preselection for the northern Victorian seat of Indi, which independent Cathy McGowan won from Liberal MP Sophie Mirabella in 2013: Wangaratta businessman Martin Corboy, and former Yackandandah publican Gregory Lawrence.
The South Australian government has introduced a number of electoral and constitutional reform bills to parliament, the latter of which will require passage at a referendum to be held in conjunction at the next election. The electoral bill proposes an end to preferential voting for its Legislative Council, with the existing system to be replaced by the straightforward Sainte-Laguë closed list system for allocating seats in proportion to aggregate vote shares. The constitutional bills propose removing the Legislative Council’s power to block the regular annual supply bills, and introducing a double dissolution mechanism very like the one in operation federally.