Monday miscellany

Passing observations on the Batman by-election, the Cottesloe by-election (look it up), and the state of the Senate after Section 44.

I don’t believe we’ll be getting any sort of a federal opinion poll this week, with Newspoll presumably holding off through South Australian election week to return before the resumption of parliament next week, and Essential Research having an off-week in their fortnightly schedule. You can find a post updating progress in late counting in South Australia here; other than that, for the sake of a new general post, I relate the following:

Ben Raue at The Tally Room has a very illuminating map showing the pattern of swings within Batman, showing a largely status quo result north of the Bell Street curtain, but a quite substantial swing to Labor in the presumed Greens stronghold area in the south. I’ll have more on the Batman by-election in today’s Crikey, if you’re a subscriber.

• Lost in the excitement, the weekend’s other by-election has entirely escaped mention on this site. It was held in the blue-ribbon Western Australian state seat of Cottesloe, to replace Colin Barnett. This produced the predicted walkover for Liberal candidate David Honey, an 59-year-old Alcoa executive and former state party president. Honey finished the night on 59.8% of the primary vote, and 70.2% on two-party preferred over the Greens. At the time of Barnett’s resignation in January, it was generally assumed the party could not let pass an opportunity to add a woman to a parliamentary ranks, but Honey nonetheless won a preselection vote by twenty to eight ahead of BHP Billiton lawyer Emma Roberts. The Liberals elected only two women out of thirteen to the lower house in 2017, along with one out of eight to the upper. At the 2013 election, the party’s lower house contingent included only four women out of thirty-one in the lower house, along with five out of seventen in the upper house, two of whom suffered preselection defeats going into last year’s election.

• A reallocation of Senators’ three-year and six-year terms has been conducted after the Section 44 disqualifications, affecting every state except Victoria. This involved allocating six-year terms to the first six elected candidates in the recounts conducted to fill the vacancies, and three-year terms going to those elected to positions seven through twelve, who will be facing re-election (almost certainly) at the next federal election.

There are two pieces of good news for the Liberals, who gain a long-term seat in New South Wales at the expense of the Nationals, and in Tasmania go from two long-term and two short-term seats to three and one. Fiona Nash’s long-term vacancy in New South Wales goes to Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, whose short-term vacancy has been filled by splashy newcomer Jim Molan. The vacancies in Tasmania, Stephen Perry of the Liberals and Jacqui Lambie of Jacqui Lambie, were both long-term, and have both gone to lower order Liberals, Bushby and Duniam. The one short-term Liberal position goes to Richard Colbeck, returning to parliament after his (provisional) defeat in 2016.

In Western Australia, the Greens order shuffles after Scott Ludlam’s departure with Rachel Siewert taking his long term, and Jordon Steele-John filling Siewert’s short-term vacancy. The loss of Skye Kakoschke-Moore in South Australia has cost the Nick Xenophon Team a seat because the successor to her short term, Tim Storer, has become estranged from the party since the election. It’s a similar story for One Nation in Queensland, where Malcolm Roberts’ short-term vacancy has been filled by the party’s number three candidate, Fraser Anning, who has eventually resolved to sit as an independent after a dispute with Pauline Hanson.

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.

3,004 comments on “Monday miscellany”

  1. briefly @ #2991 Thursday, March 22nd, 2018 – 11:04 pm

    Nicholas says:
    Thursday, March 22, 2018 at 10:50 pm

    My view of the Greens is that they are more progressive than Labor on industrial relations, fiscal policy, environmental policy, and social policy. All the big items.

    Yah yah….’cept as we know, these positions are just decoys. They are, along with all the rest, simply Faked Up. They are for decorative purposes only.

    How do we know this? Because whenever there is a substantive choice to make between Labor and the Blue Tories, the Fakes align themselves with the Blues. They have done that again on the Coral Sea Marine Parks. They have declared they are willing to vote on an environmental matter with the Real Adani Party; to vote against Labor and then try to blame Labor for their treachery.

    They have shown they cannot be taken seriously.

    Yep.

  2. This article
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/shorten-picks-his-battles-to-win-war-against-coalition-20180322-p4z5o0.html?btis
    Is excellent.

    Shorten picks his battles to win war
    An excerpt:
    It appears that Shorten, and his team, have decided that he needs to pick a substantial fight to define himself more vividly and shore up Labor’s base against the Greens. He has chosen his terrain for the fight shrewdly. The tendentious attempts of self-styled outsiders and other, assorted cloth-capped horny-handed sons of toil in neo-liberal think tanks to portray Shorten’s policy as plundering the poor are risible.

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