Nine News has results of post-budget polling of three federal marginal seats, these being automated phone polls conducted by YouGov Galaxy.
• In the seat of Robertson on the central coast of New South Wales, the Liberals are credited with a 52-48 lead on two-party preferred, little changed from Lucy Wicks’ 1.1% winning margin in 2016. Primary votes are Liberal 44% (44.7% at the election), Labor 37% (38.4%), Greens 6% (8.4%) and One Nation 7%. Twenty-four per cent rated the budget would make them better off, 20% worse off and 48% no difference; 42% supported the government’s company tax cuts, and an equal share opposed the. The sample for the Robertson poll was 514.
• In the seat of Chisholm in Melbourne’s south-east, which was the one seat gained by the Coalition from Labor in 2016, the score is 50-50, compared with a 1.2% winning margin for Liberal member Julia Banks in 2016. The primary votes are Liberal 44% (45.3%), Labor 38% (35.9%), Greens 9% (12.3%) and One Nation 3%. Twenty-six per cent said the budget would make them better off, 23% worse off and 43% no difference; 32% supported, and 50% opposed, the company tax cuts. Sample: 539.
• In the Townsville-based seat of Herbert, which Cathy O’Toole gained Labor by a handful of votes in 2016, the Liberal National Party is credited with a 51-49 lead, from primary votes of Labor 34% (30.5%), LNP 38% (35.5%), One Nation 19% (13.5%) and Greens 3% (6.3%). Sample: 554.
I also offer the following by-election news. If you would like to leave a comment on the by-election that’s not going to get lost in the flow, I can recommend this thread. See also the links to detailed guides for all five seats featured on the sidebar.
• The West Australian reports Labor’s federal executive will today anoint the party’s candidate in Perth, which will almost certainly be its state secretary, Patrick Gorman. Prominent lawyer and former Cottesloe mayor John Hammond has also nominated, but it may be presumed that Gorman has the numbers. It was reported that an alternative scheme might involve Senator Louise Pratt contesting the seat, and her Senate vacancy going to Gorman. However, Latika Bourke of Fairfax reported yesterday that the plan had not found the favour of the Australian Manufacturing and Workers Union, the Left faction union that has long been Pratt’s power base.
• The Courier-Mail reports the Liberal National Party preselection in Longman is likely to be contested by Trevor Ruthenberg, who held the state seat of Kallangur from 2012 to 2015 and is now chief executive of the Mosaic Property Group’s philanthropic foundation, and Jason Snow, a disability support worker. One Nation has endorsed Caboolture small businessman Matthew Stephen, despite the controversy that attended his run for the state seat of Sandgate, in which it emerged he had repeatedly had his trades licence suspended, narrowly avoided bankruptcy, and was prone to politically incorrect utterances on social media.
• The Mercury reports that a Liberal internal poll gave the party a 53-47 lead on federal voting intention in Braddon. However, it was also noted that the poll had a small sample and, as Kevin Bonham observes, the result may have been contaminated by the Liberals’ easy victory at the March state election. (UPDATE: Kevin Bonham explains in comments that I don’t have the right end of the handle here. “The 53 for the Liberals in Braddon in their internal poll sample is the primary not the 2PP. Labor was on 20 and the Greens were on 15. Hence (and there are other reasons too) my rubbishing of it whenever I have been asked. And that was the seat sample from a state sample of 756, so probably only about 150 voters.”)
• The Australian today stirs the pot on the eligibility of Cowan MP Anne Aly, who has only been able to provide a letter from the Egyptian embassy acknowledging its receipt of her application to renounce her citizenship dated two months before the 2016 election (UPDATE: Aly has today produced a letter from the Egyptian embassy that would appear to put the matter to rest).