BludgerTrack: 53.6-46.4 to Labor

New poll this week from Newspoll (better for the Coalition), Essential Research (worse) and YouGov (about the same) add up to no change at all on the BludgerTrack poll aggregate, except that the Coalition is up a seat in Victoria and down one in Western Australia. The leadership ratings from Newspoll cause Malcolm Turnbull to gain a little ground on preferred prime minister, but lose it on net approval. Full details at the bottom.

First though, some news on forthcoming by-elections, which will get dedicated pages and threads soon enough:

• A date is yet to be set for the by-election in the Victorian state seat of Northcote following the death of on August 23. There will presumably be no Liberal candidate, but the Greens are highly competitive in the seat, having fallen 6.0% short of unseating Richardson at the 2014 election. Clare Burns, a political organiser with the Victorian Trades Hall Council and former speech pathologist, has been preselected unopposed as Labor’s candidate. The Greens will hold a preselection ballot today.

• There are now three state by-elections looming in New South Wales, and the date for them has been set at October 14. Cootamundra and Blacktown were already on the cards, following the respective retirements of Nationals MP Katrina Hodgkinson and Labor MP John Robertson, and Murray was added to the list earlier this week after Nationals MP Adrian Piccoli announced his retirement.

And some localised polling snippets:

• There was a rare Northern Territory opinion poll a fortnight ago, conducted by MediaReach for the Northern Territory News and encompassing a sample of 1400. On the primary vote, the poll has Labor on 43%, compared with 42.2% last year; the Country Liberal Party on 38%, recovering from 31.8%; and “others” on 19%. The respondent-allocated preference result is 50-50, compared with 58.5-41.5 to Labor last year, which implies a near-perfect reversal of the 63-37 preference split in favour of Labor last year.

(UPDATE: I had a report here on Tony Windsor’s prospects on New England, but I wasn’t looking closely enough and it was actually from before the last election.)

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.

795 comments on “BludgerTrack: 53.6-46.4 to Labor”

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  1. It’s The Racism, Stupid: New Study Shows Racial Animosity Linked To Support For Trump

    Shocking no one who pays attention, it wasn’t the economy or the imaginary claim that Hillary Clinton didn’t talk about economic issues for white voters that drew Trump supporters to the reality TV show star. It was racial animosity. Yes, there is yet another study proving this.

  2. Al Franken Perfectly Explains Why Donald Trump Is A Disgrace To The Presidency

    Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) took apart Trump for being lazy, refusing to learn about policy, or put in the work that is expected of a president by the American

    There is no bigger sign of disrespect to the American people than a president who is lazy and refuses to do the basics of the job that he was elected to do. Franken was correct. Outside of being in show business, and reality TV is the lowest form of show business, he and Trump are complete opposites.

    Sen. Franken’s message is clear. If Donald Trump is unwilling to do the work, he doesn’t deserve to be president.

  3. Trump Holds Secret White House Meeting With New Putin’s New Man In The US

    According to the Russians, Trump held a White House meeting with Russia’s new ambassador to the US. The meeting was kept off of the President’s schedule and was not made publicly known.

    If the meeting happened, it is another red flag about the Trump/Russia relationship. Even while he is under investigation for the Russia, Trump can’t quit Putin. Something is very wrong with this picture, and if this White House is hiding meetings with Russians, it will give Special Counsel Bob Mueller a new area to explore in the Russia investigation.

  4. Trump Has A Big Joe Biden Problem As The Former VP Is Considers A 2020 White House Run

    Joe Biden’s daughter said in an interview that the former vice president is considering a 2020 run against Donald Trump.

    Any Democrat worth their salt should be lining up to run in 2020. Trump is viewed as weak and beatable. The primary field could be very crowded on the Democratic side, but if Joe Biden runs, he will have a built in level of support from Democratic primary voters that few other candidates will be able to match.

    Joe Biden could cause a world of headaches for Donald Trump.

  5. Rush Limbaugh Runs For His Life When Faced With The Fury Of “Liberal Hoax” Hurricane Irma

    The conservative broadcaster accused the media of intentionally “creating fear and panic” with hurricane coverage, but he will apparently heed the warnings of scientists and government officials.

    “I’m not going to get into details because of the security nature of things, but it turns out that we will not be able to do the program here tomorrow,” Limbaugh said Thursday on his syndicated radio program. “We’ll be on the air next week, folks, from parts unknown.”

  6. GOP suffering from ‘Stockholm syndrome’ and are twisting themselves in knots to justify Trump: report

    Republicans are furious and baffled after President Donald Trump struck a deal with Democratic leaders Sen. Chuck Schumer (NY) and House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (CA) to raise the debt ceiling for three months, keep the government open and provide funds for hurricane disaster relief.

    “It’s just a betrayal of everything we’ve been talking about for years as Republicans,” complained former Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC).

    “The president of the United States just handed a loaded gun to Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer,” said a Republican aide to Politico.

  7. Mueller to interview Spicer and Priebus as special counsel probe targets Trump’s inner circle: report

    Special counsel Robert Mueller has set his sights on six current and former Donald Trump advisers in his ongoing investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, the Washington Post reports.

    The special counsel is planning to interview interim White House Communications Director Hope Hicks, former Press Secretary Sean Spicer, former Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, White House Counsel and Assistant to the President Don McGahn, McGahn’s deputy James Burnham and White House spokesman Josh Raffel as part of the probe, according to a list Mueller’s team sent the White House several weeks ago.

  8. Russia’s Facebook Fake News Could Have Reached 70 Million Americans

    Facebook acknowledged that Russian propagandists spent $100,000 on election ads. It neglected to mention how many millions of people those ads reached.

    Russian-funded covert propaganda posts on Facebook were likely seen by a minimum of 23 million people and might have reached as many as 70 million, according to analysis by an expert on the social-media giant’s complex advertising systems. That means up to 28 percent of American adults were swept in by the campaign.

  9. The government has dusted off a series of stalled infrastructure projects in Barnaby Joyce’s seat of New England, prompting claims by Labor that the Deputy Prime Minister is bracing for a byelection should he be disqualified by the High Court.

    Opposition infrastructure spokesman Anthony Albanese told Parliament on Wednesday that three local road projects, the funding for which had been made available by the former Labor government, have all been put out to tender in recent weeks.

    “These important projects should have been delivered years ago,” Mr Albanese said.

    “But it is only now, under political pressure and facing a possible byelection that the Coalition government has attempted to create the impression that it is acting.”

    Read more:
    Follow us: @FinancialReview on Twitter | financialreview on Facebook


    Labor’s fibre-based NBN was implemented through an integrated policy and pricing architecture designed around the technological and economic characteristics of fibre. This approach took a 40 year view and preserved the flexibility to respond to evolving demand.

    This is why the $45 billion fibre NBN delivered a modest but workable 7.1 per cent rate of return.

    Would the project have challenges? Sure, all significant and complex projects do. But it also meant Australians would enjoy a world-class fibre network capable of standing on its own feet and powering the digital economy for decades to come.

    Enter Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull and a purely political agenda to sabotage fibre at any cost.

    Recall that NBN pricing is broadly set to recover the costs of building, maintaining and upgrading the network over its life.

    If we take a 10, 20 or 30 year view of the Coalition’s multi-technology mix, it unequivocally fails the tests of engineering and economics.

  11. GOP strategist Rick Wilson rips into Trump !!!

    Week of Lessons

    Donald Trump Betrays Everyone. Somehow, Republicans Still Seem Surprised.

    He’s not just new to the game, or inexperienced. He’s genuinely, catastrophically terrible at politics.

    The Navy SEALs have a saying that should be familiar to the Trump team by this point; “The only easy day was yesterday.” Given that Monday was a holiday, the past three days have been filled with betrayal, pain, and humiliation for Trump’s supporters, enablers, and media cheerleaders that have been a delight and a vindication for those of us who told you all along that everything Trump touches dies.

    Pain is the truest teacher, and after months of pretending that Trump was “new at this” or that his administration was just a little rough around the edges, House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell walked out of the Oval Office Wednesday feeling the sting of betrayal. The greatest dealmaker in history got rolled like a rube before their very eyes. Donald Trump sold himself to Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi without a blink, giving the hapless Democrats a powerful political lever by agreeing to their terms on the debt ceiling.

  12. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    Richard Dennis really takes the government and the right wing to task in this good article. He likens them to a bore at a dinner party.
    Jack Waterford says that Thursday’s High Court decision seemed to affirm that Parliament, normally the representative of that people, is more and more the tail wagged by the executive dog, with the judiciary standing by clapping. He’s not happy.
    In another very good contribution Paul Bongiorno says Coalition tensions and jealousies aren’t far below the surface at the best of times. Turnbull fears they are about to erupt spectacularly as he confronts the need to come up with a credible energy policy.
    Crispin Hull suggests that we should be prepared for the High Court to rule that politicians are not in breach of section 44.
    Support for same-sex marriage has crashed ahead of the Turnbull government’s postal survey, and only two-thirds of voters are inclined to take part, according to the latest polling from same-sex marriage advocates.
    Christine Forster has another swipe at her “Machiavellian” brother in this piece.
    In typical Howard fashion to muddy the waters he calls for SSM legislation to be released before the close of the postal survey. Google.
    Mike Seccombe takes us inside the YES case.
    Australia’s human rights commissioner says holding people to account for what they say during the same-sex marriage postal survey campaign will be “really important”, and parliament needed to strike the right balance between protecting freedom of speech and protecting against the most harmful language. Another commissioner for the government to abuse?
    The outgoing boss of the Department of Environment and Energy has called for a fundamental reorganisation of the public service hierarchy, with fewer management levels to enable more effective decision making. But how much of their work is based around covering ministers’ arses?

  13. Section 2 . . .

    Another managerial masterpiece from Potatohead’s outfit.
    Tony Wright says that Dutton’s language test is doomed by history.
    Politicians must get serious about gambling reform. The root of the problem is that Australia has the best politicians that the gambling industry can buy says Dr Michael Bird.
    Stephen Koukoulas explains why the RBA refuses to cut interest rates further.
    Refugees and asylum seekers on Manus Island will be moved to an abandoned building and live in tents on malaria-infested swampland, sources have exclusively told The New Daily.
    Michael West with another lash at tax avoidance ny multinationals. He says that without a word of explanation, and barely legally if legally at all, dozens of multinational companies have given “the bird” to regulators.
    Paul McGeough on how the Republicans got ambushed by Trump and the Democrats. But what are Trump’s motives?
    Jonathan Freedland writes about the perilous situation exits over Brexit.
    Within the political class there is a low level moral panic about low wages growth. The irony is that those lamenting this situation are simply witnessing the ultimate outcome of policies they have long advocated. Exactly!

  14. Section 3 . . .

    Karen Middleton writes that in joining the High Court case examining Barnaby Joyce’s eligibility for office, Tony Windsor will argue for a countback that could see him win the seat.
    Peter van Onselen writes that today the political class is represented by a narrowing gene pool of ex-staffers and insiders who haven’t spent time working in the wider economy they now manage. And he goes after the “opinionistas”. Google.
    Today’s local government elections are being seen as a litmus test for Gladys.
    Government-led changes to the operation of a domestic violence hotline are placing vulnerable women at even greater risk
    The directors of the RSL’s major charity nursing home provider voted to pay themselves generous “consulting” payments despite advice they may have breached the law and as the organisation was teetering on financial collapse. What a mob!
    Anne Summers says that Shorten’s biggest challenge now is to make himself more likeable. (It begs the question of how likeable is Turnbull.)
    The SMH editorial talks about how the extremes are diverting attention from the centre.
    Mistrust of Australia’s banks will continue unless the “drip feed” of industry scandals ends and banks own up to problems rather than hoping bad news can be kept from the public eye, regulators have warned.
    Pauline Hanson, sought to charge taxpayers nearly $3,000 to fly to Norfolk Island last year, then told the Senate she had travelled there at her own expense. But at the time she made her statement to the Senate, government officials were chasing her for a reimbursement. It took her four months to repay the debt Classy lady!

  15. Section 4 . . .

    Julia Baird goes after loudmouthed sexist Piers Morgan.
    A Victorian woman who was sexually abused as a teenager says the process of getting compensation from the Catholic church was “unnecessarily agonising” and sent her to “an absolute state of unwellness”. The woman’s revelation adds weight to calls for an independent redress scheme, the final framework of which is expected to be released in the coming weeks, following a proposal put forward by the federal government last year.
    Adele Ferguson with another retirement industry disgrace.
    Are we seeing a divergence in home lending?
    Recruiters are now looking at one’s propensity to texting addiction.
    Another bad day for Clive Palmer.

  16. Section 5 . . . Cartoon Corner

    John Shakespeare on Shorten pondering his image.

    Alan Moir with the genesis of the Coalition’s energy policy.

    Mark Knight with some fake news for Trump.
    Mark David and Turnbull’s tactics. Note the rubber stamp on the desk.

    Ron Tandberg entreats voters to do the right thing over the SSM survey.

    The Statue of Bigotry.

    Peter Nicholson and Turnbull’s energy problem.

    Glen Le Lievre.

    Jon Kudelka – would you buy a used power station from this salesman?
    David Pope goes after Turnbull’s approach to climate change,

  17. Cartoon “Alan Moir with the genesis of the Coalition’s energy policy.” @7:48AM

    I don’t think their energy policy is that well organised. Also, the coal part doesn’t look big enough.

  18. It would appear rather than “throw” the Repugs under a bus Trump has done the right thing. The squawking Repugs would have been happy to see the government “shut down” when it hit the debt limit. Lovely excuse to slash spending.

    But with emergency accounts running out of money and Hurricane Irma barreling toward the East Coast, the measure appears set to easily pass. Trump will sign it.

    The must-do legislation would also provide money to government agencies through Dec. 8, eliminating the threat of a government shutdown when the new fiscal year starts next month.

  19. Phoenix

    In the Cuban crisis the Kennedys met secretly with Russian envoys. We applauded that act of wisdom and courage.

    The present NK crisis is similar and it is right and proper that the president meet with enemies/intermediaries. Sure it may be that Trump is too much of an idiot for this to be useful but it is still not wrong or improper.

    Has it occurred to you that Trump (or indeed any President) may not fully trust his advisors. I know that if I were president of the USA (or indeed PM of Australia) I would bloody well want to meet the ambassadors/secret envoys of significant nation states without the military and only the FM if truly-ruly trusted. In every country, but especially the US these days, the military and the national security advisors have different agendas.

    In the time of Kennedy the military were advising him to go to war. They thought it winnable but gave an estimate of 4 million dead and Kennedy balked at the loss of life. What was acceptable as a death rate for the military did not sit happily with the President.

    We now know that the US military got it terribly horribly wrong and if Kennedy had followed the advice of his military/security personnel those 80 nukes that Russia has ALREADY set up in Cuba would have landed across the USA and probably Russia would have won the encounter, or more likely the cockroaches.

    Every President of the USA comes into office with this knowledge and history as a warning and only a fool of a President would NOT meet quietly and privately with envoys of other significant nations. In this case Russia, China, Iran and NK are the four nations that the President SHOULD be meeting with in secret without the military present. He/she should lso meet with alterntive voices in friendly states eg UK and Europe, because of the informationthey may provide that is usually screened out via the official sources. Ideally of course the President would have with him at east one competent trusted advisor (Kennedy had Robert) but who does Trump have that he can really trust. Ivanka probably. His sons are too thick and I would not trust Kushner further than the font door. Essentially he has NO ONE else.

    It is sad that Trump is a weak fool, but that does not make his meeting with the Russians improper.

    Mind you I stand alone on this site in not believing Trump is as big a fool as he pretends. Nor I suspect is Kim. Perhaps this is wishful thinking.

  20. Mueller’s interest in the aides, including trusted adviser Hope Hicks, former press secretary Sean Spicer and former chief of staff Reince Priebus, reflects how the probe that has dogged Trump’s presidency is starting to penetrate a closer circle of aides around the president.

    Each of the six advisers was privy to important internal discussions that have drawn the interest of Mueller’s investigators, according to people familiar with the probe, including his decision in May to fire FBI Director James B. Comey. Also of interest is the White House’s initial inaction after warnings about then-national security adviser Michael Flynn’s December discussions with Russia’s ambassador to the United States.

    The net tightens.

  21. On a different topic. Olivia Newton John has done an interview with 60 minutes. It will air tomorrow night. She will be discussing go her recurrences of cancer and using cannabis oil to treat it.

    I am very interested in what she has To say. When my dear departed BIL was diagnosed a few months ago, we sourced cannabis oil to assist him with managing his pain symptoms.

    No easy task.

    Cutting a very long story short. We were able to get it via a medical specialist interstate who specialises in cancer treatment. The hospital here in Melbourne where my Bil was being treated, told us that whilst their hands were tied, gave my BIL blessing to take the oil.

    He was able to take the oil for a few weeks before he passed away. He was able To ditch the countless pain meds, as the oil did the job beautifully. I wish that this oil was readily available. It is an absolute crying shame that to it is nowhere near this stage of availability.

  22. Victoria:

    In addition to Priebus, Spicer and Hicks, Mueller has notified the White House he will probably seek to question White House counsel Don McGahn and one of his deputies, James Burnham. Mueller’s office has also told the White House that investigators may want to interview Josh Raffel, a White House spokesman who works closely with Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner.

    White House officials are expecting that Mueller will seek additional interviews, possibly with family members, including Kushner, who is a West Wing senior adviser, according to the people familiar with Mueller’s inquiry.

  23. lizzie @ #19 Saturday, September 9th, 2017 – 8:09 am


    Thank you for your roundup. I hope it didn’t make you feel too depressed!

    This made me laugh, lizzie:

    Sandy Perry wrote on Twitter, “during labor, the pain is so great that a woman can almost imagine what a man feels like when he has a fever.” (Some like to call this “man flu”).

    (from BK’s “Julia Baird goes after loudmouthed sexist Piers Morgan.”)

  24. The case for Trump-Russia collusion: We’re getting very, very close

    We now know the motives. In backing Donald Trump, Russia’s oligarchical class sought not only to disrupt U.S. politics but also to reverse sanctions, both those applied in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and those connected to the Magnitsky Act

    Along with the motives, we know the methods. As the New York Times has just graphically demonstrated, professional Russian Internet trolls, probably operating out of St. Petersburg, set up hundreds of fake Facebook and Twitter accounts during the election campaign. The trolls then posted thousands of fake stories, memes and slogans, supported anti-Clinton hashtags and narratives, and linked back to DCLeaks

    We know what happened next: The fake stories, memes and slogans moved from the network of Russian-sponsored “American” accounts into the networks of real Americans.

    Now here is a piece of the story that we don’t know: How did the Russians behind the fake “American” accounts know which real Americans would be most excited to read conspiracy theories on Facebook? How did they know how to target their ads?

  25. Lizzie

    No doubt about it. Cannabis has been demonised for decades. Although! It was used for centuries as a natural remedy. You gotta ask why?

    Alcohol and nicotine are legal. Yet cannabis was made a prohibitive substance.

    In my view, it has been a crime against humanity. Mind you I have never used cannabis myself for any purpose. But if I am diagnosed with an ailment, that will be my first port of call.

  26. Now here is a piece of the story that we don’t know: How did the Russians behind the fake “American” accounts know which real Americans would be most excited to read conspiracy theories on Facebook? How did they know how to target their ads? Perhaps they just got lucky. Perhaps they just happened upon broad networks of people who were willing to click on their conspiracy theories and pass them on. Or perhaps they had some help. Certainly the Trump campaign had this kind of information — recently, one of Trump’s online campaign managers bragged to the BBC about their ability to “target” on Facebook and elsewhere.

    Here is another piece we don’t know: How did Trump happen to use the same conspiracy theories that were proliferating on Russian media, both real and fake? Again, this could be coincidence. Or, again, there could have been coordination. Messages tested by Russian trolls might have been passed on to the Trump campaign — or vice versa.

  27. phoenixRED

    The case for Trump-Russia collusion: We’re getting very, very close

    Now here is a piece of the story that we don’t know: How did the Russians behind the fake “American” accounts know which real Americans would be most excited to read conspiracy theories on Facebook? How did they know how to target their ads?


    Victoria is right into this part – but I dare say that Cambridge Analytica – Jared Kushner and Giles -Parscale have their fingers in the pie …… Brexit knows a few answers ….

    The company, SCL Elections, went on to be bought by Robert Mercer, a secretive hedge fund billionaire, renamed Cambridge Analytica, and achieved a certain notoriety as the data analytics firm that played a role in both Trump and Brexit campaigns.

  28. Katharine Murphy lays the blame for the energy “crisis” firmly where it should be,

    ABBOTT and the Coalition.

    Also has a nice dig at the CPG,

    [Firing up the old Green-left conspiracy on climate change is a morale booster, particularly when that version of events is amplified loyally by news outlets apparently too truthy or too dumb to care about basic facts.]

  29. **Can’t help wondering whether it is the influence of Big Pharma that is fighting the legality/availability of cannabis oil.**
    I have flicked thru a reproduced copy of the Merck doctors manual from 1899. Cannabis is mentioned as a medicine for a very large number of ailments.

  30. Barney in Go Dau @ #39 Saturday, September 9th, 2017 – 9:02 am

    Katharine Murphy lays the blame for the energy “crisis” firmly where it should be …

    “Having watched the climate and energy debate run in diminishing circles for the best part of two decades, a little part of me dies every time stupid makes a reappearance on the national stage. “

    Having watched Katharine Murphy and other journalists completely fail to do their job for the best part of two decades, a little part of me dies every time a conniving journalist makes a reappearance on the national stage.

  31. **But if I am diagnosed with an ailment, that will be my first port of call.**
    Well, if you infuse butter and chocolate with it then you can make a yummy and medicinal chocolate cake.

  32. victoria


    Team patriot have been telling us from the get go!!


    Yep – and every day we hear of something else that they told us about weeks or even months ago. They may not be perfect but they have been *spookily* accurate …. ( I use the term because I am sure they are getting fed a lot of information from past and present *spooks* in MI 5/6 , 5 eyes, Intelligence community etc etc who want the truth out there )

  33. Simon Katich

    Yep. A natural and very effective herbal therapy. as I said, the demonising of this plant has been a crime against humanity.

  34. Lizzie, I will have to try to find it again. But I recall it was used for many different types of ailments – pain relief was just one.

    Mind you, I seem to remember coca leaf was mentioned a few times too. I am thinking Coca Cola at this point in time still used the cocaine part of the leaf.

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