BludgerTrack: 52.3-47.7 to Labor

Two new polls for the week cancel out the slight gain Labor made in last week’s reading of the BludgerTrack poll aggregate.

After recording a slight spike to Labor last week on the back of the Ipsos result, the latest results from Newspoll and Essential Research have brought the BludgerTrack two-party trend reading to about where it was before. This has happened without any changes in the seat projection, in any seat. Newspoll and Essential also both provided leadership ratings, which cause Malcolm Turnbull’s net approval result to improve a little, and Bill Shorten’s to worsen a little. This will be an off week for both the regularly reporting pollsters, but Sky News may step into the breach with a ReachTEL on Sunday morning. We’re also due for Newspoll’s quarterly poll state and demographic breakdowns. Full results from BludgerTrack by clicking on the following:

Preselection news:

• A preselection for the Queensland Liberal National Party Senate ticket has dumped incumbents Ian Macdonald and Barry O’Sullivan in favour of Paul Scarr, described by Jared Owens of The Australian as a “low-profile mining executive”, and Susan McDonald, managing director of a chain of butcher’s shops and member of a Queensland grazing dynasty. The third position goes to Gerard Rennick, a finance executive. Macdonald will have to make do with number four, which was last productive in the freak result of 2004 than delivered the Howard government a Senate majority during its final term. Also frozen out was Scott Emerson, the former minister in Campbell Newman’s government who lost the seat of Maiwar to the Greens in the state election last November.

• The first of two retirement announcements this week from federal Labor MPs in Victoria was that of Michael Danby, who has held Melbourne Ports since 1998. Danby insists the decision was wholly his own choice, which reflects suggestions his pro-Israel outlook may have been contributing to the pressure Labor has increasingly faced in the inner city electorate from the Greens. Three names that have long been mooted as potential successors for Labor preselectionn are Josh Burns, an adviser to Daniel Andrews and former staffer to Danby; Mary Delahunty, a Glen Eira councillor and former mayor (not to be confused with the former state member for Northcote); and Nick Dyrenfurth, executive director of the John Curtin Research Centre. The latter reportedly ruled himself out in February, but has been rated a potential starter in media reports following Danby’s announcement.

• The second was that of Jenny Macklin, who had held Jagajaga since 1996. According to Noel Towell of The Age, the vacancy could finally provide Labor with a solution to its dilemma of how to accommodate Jane Garrett, who refuses to defend her existing state seat of Brunswick from the ever-rising threat of the Greens, and was rebuffed in her bid for a berth in the state upper house. It was earlier suggested that Garrett might get the safe Labor federal seat that was predictably produced by the recently finalised redistribution, but Bill Shorten is now considering taking it instead, as it takes much of his existing seat of Maribyrnong. The redrawn Maribyrnong is perhaps not of interest to Garrett because, as Fairfax recently reported, it was “tipped to turn marginal in the coming years”, although I have my doubts about that personally.

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.

887 comments on “BludgerTrack: 52.3-47.7 to Labor”

  1. Pegasus @ #97 Saturday, July 7th, 2018 – 10:41 am

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/jul/07/neoliberalism-is-a-disease-charity-chiefs-pitch-to-be-labors-new-star

    Neoliberalism is a “terrible disease” and the government’s proposed income tax cuts would “rip the guts out of what remains of a progressive taxation system”.

    So says John Falzon, the chief executive of the St Vincent de Paul Society, who has launched his bid for Labor preselection in Canberra, the third and newest federal seat in the Australian Capital Territory.

    So John Falzon endorses Labors trickle down tax cuts while at the same time decries neo-liberalism. Funny.

  2. WeWantPaul @ #94 Saturday, July 7th, 2018 – 10:35 am

    “Neumann as shadow immigration and Burke as shadow multicultural affairs should be out there promoting compassion and inclusiveness rather than allowing Dutton the megaphone of divisiveness and cruelty.”

    I agree they could and should do more, a lot more, but it is the local fox affiliates and bad journalism that give Dutton the megaphone, not Labor.

    Labor’s problem is that it doesn’t actually have a very credible population policy. You can be inclusive, compassionate and humane in your migration and refugee policies if you also point out that there is a natural limit to the population Australia can support, and also to the rate of growth we can support in getting there, and that all migration must be subject to that limit.

    Without that, any attempt to differentiate yourself from the divisive, heartless and cruel policies of your opponent is just disingenuous folderol. As the Greens have found out, it opens you up to the “let them all come” type of ridicule for which there is no sensible answer.

  3. And with the greens I genuinely doubt they want this issue to go away. Labor would kill for a smoothly operating non-politicised refugee intake program, but neither the Greens nor the LNP would ever let that happen as they both harvest votes off the human misery.

  4. “You can be inclusive, compassionate and humane in your migration and refugee policies if you also point out that there is a natural limit to the population Australia can support, and also to the rate of growth we can support in getting there, and that all migration must be subject to that limit.’

    I don’t believe that natural limit rubbish, I am sure there are some who actually believe it and don’t just come to it through racism, but it is a small minded fearful view that is ignorant of both the successes and failures of thousands of years of human existence.

  5. Al Pal:

    Well we should have an idea in a few months time who the Democrat presidential nominees are.

    A black woman running against Trump would be quite something. I can just see the racist, sexist campaign it would spur the Republicans into running.

  6. WeWantPaul @ #105 Saturday, July 7th, 2018 – 10:47 am

    “You can be inclusive, compassionate and humane in your migration and refugee policies if you also point out that there is a natural limit to the population Australia can support, and also to the rate of growth we can support in getting there, and that all migration must be subject to that limit.’

    I don’t believe that natural limit rubbish, I am sure there are some who actually believe it and don’t just come to it through racism, but it is a small minded fearful view that is ignorant of both the successes and failures of thousands of years of human existence.

    Agree with WWP.

  7. @WeWantPaul

    I am inclined on the former, because of the inaccuracy of individual polling. Also I believe the party machines are facing the same problem with the inaccuracy of their internal polling.

  8. Either Rex has a comprehension problem or he didn’t read the whole story on Falzon.

    His conclusion is diametrically opposed to what Falzon said in the article

  9. The Greens are rarely heard from.

    I guess that’s got nothing to do with the Fox / Murdoch media empire that Laborites rail against every day, all day, as a major cause for Labor’s difficulties in getting its message out there.

  10. “Do you also not believe in global warming?”

    I can’t for the life of me work out why you’d ask such an unreasonable and unkind question, it is absurd, but rather than speculate further of weird ways you might have come to such a silly question I will answer that of course I believe in climate science and climate change.

  11. WWP

    And with the greens I genuinely doubt they want this issue to go away

    How very provocative of you.

    Are you talking about all greens supporters, all greens members and all greens parliamentarians here?

  12. https://theconversation.com/were-laughing-in-an-echo-chamber-its-time-to-rethink-satire-95867

    While enthusiasts of satire may celebrate, this groundswell is not necessarily a good thing. Satire and laughter can be therapeutic ways to orient ourselves in troubled, and increasingly polarised, times. But they are not guaranteed to prompt social or political change. That’s because humour is more likely to speak to ideological groups than across them.

    Since the transmission of humour relies on shared sets of knowledge, values and assumptions, bread-and-butter satiric devices like irony can fall flat when used beyond particular social groups. In many ways, this seems obvious. A John Oliver monologue critiquing US hostilities to refugees, for example, will only be considered funny by an audience sympathetic to their plight.
    :::
    Today, when our values and attitudes are more polarised than ever, satire can simply strengthen existing social groupings, even aggravating misunderstandings between them.

    “They hate your guts,” Donald Trump told supporters at a rally in Michigan, the day after Michelle Wolf’s searing monologue at the 2018 White House Correspondents’ Dinner. The ease with which satire can be twisted into propaganda entrenching political divides should give us pause. Combined with social media – which allow us to cherry-pick the exact ideologies we’re exposed to – much of today’s satire may be too busy preaching to the choir to proselytise to those outside the echo chamber.

  13. WWP

    I don’t believe that natural limit rubbish, I am sure there are some who actually believe it and don’t just come to it through racism, but it is a small minded fearful view that is ignorant of both the successes and failures of thousands of years of human existence.

    So there are no limits to growth on a finite planet. Wow!

  14. WeWantPaul @ #113 Saturday, July 7th, 2018 – 10:56 am

    “Do you also not believe in global warming?”

    I can’t for the life of me work out why you’d ask such an unreasonable and unkind question, it is absurd, but rather than speculate further of weird ways you might have come to such a silly question I will answer that of course I believe in climate science and climate change.

    I just wondered how you could so simply dismiss the science. If you believe in global warming then you should also believe in a finite carrying capacity. The two issues are both well-grounded in science, and are in fact linked, as documented (for example) here …

    https://www.livescience.com/16493-people-planet-earth-support.html

    There is some arguments as to exactly what that capacity may be, but the fact that there is a finite capacity is not in dispute.

  15. “Are you talking about all greens supporters, all greens members and all greens parliamentarians here?”

    Excellent question peg and my apologies, yes my observation should have been, and is, expressly limited to the greens parliamentary leadership team, who I appreciate actually have a formal job and obligation to their party to maximise votes, I just think they have thrown the baby out with the bathwater on refugees and on climate change with an unwillingness to work on pragmatic solutions because they think there is more votes in an ‘all or nothing’ type stance.

  16. Re immigration/asylum seekers/social inclusion, the Greens are very proactive in social media and the limited space they are afforded in mainstream media.
    Labor is practically and deliberately mute on the subject.

  17. Peg,

    I see the Greens often sacrifice the chance of any change by demanding all change.

    It’s kind of like the argument ‘why should I not use plastic bags when it’ll make very little difference to the overall problem?’

    A green would jump up and down and say ‘you’ve got to do everything you can, no matter how small!’

    BUT

    When it comes to govt policy, a very tough thing to get across the line in any case, the Greens have tendency to demand an all or nothing position instead of doing everything they can, no matter how small.’

    This is where, even though I agree with many green platforms in a philosophical way, I cannot agree with their methodology. And whether you admit it or not, that attitude, the desire for purity, actually hinders progress.

    Now some here say ALP is a sell-out to progressive values especially in areas like asylum seekers and climate, but these politicians are more intend on making headway, even if a little slower than is desirable, than standing on principal and remain impotent to create real change in the long run.

  18. Which reminds us of Captain Hastie of the Chopped Hands Incident.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-07-11/afghan-files-shed-light-on-notorious-severed-hands-case/8496654

    What nobody seems to have questioned, then or since, is why a soldier under Hastie’s command would just happen to have had a scalpel with him on the battlefield just that once.

    IMO, the notion that this incident was not a war crime because fingerprints of corpses were required is one of the more tortuous acts of explaining legerdemain (pun intended) in the crowded history of war crimes.

  19. an unwillingness to work on pragmatic solutions

    The Greens legislated the greatest environment policy in this nations history.

  20. @Rex

    The greens destroyed the greatest environment policy, under Rudd Gov.

    As one would say, you don’t create policies in Opposition.

  21. The Greens legislated the greatest environment policy in this nations history.

    Which was?

    And I know you aren’t referring to carbon pricing because that was the Gillard Labor govt which achieved that.

  22. jenauthor

    ….more intend on making headway, even if a little slower than is desirable….

    I understand your need to hang on to the prejoratively applied “purity” meme.

    Apparently, when it suits either major political party, the Greens party are both “pure and impotent” and “sell-outs”.

    So what time frame on issues of life and death would be acceptable to you? 5 years? 10 years? 15 years? 20 years?

  23. “There is some arguments as to exactly what that capacity may be, but the fact that there is a finite capacity is not in dispute.”

    Sorry I was talking in a context and clearly it was too intricate a context for it to be nearly as obvious as i thought it was. So I apologise let me try to frame it more precisely to reduce both your confusion and the stupid things you are wrongly inferring.

    In the context of Australia and the existing global refugee framework, and the global situation as we now find it, wars and location of wars wise, the finite limits of this planet nor the finite limits on Australia as part of the planet, are not even remotely relevant to a decision on whether we honour our obligation to a genuine refugee that arrives in Australia and claims their refuge, or whether we dishonour ourselves and fail to meet our obligations.

    Having said that any of the existing science applied to the general question of a global carrying capacity and the assumptions one has to make and the focus one chooses to take in that undertaking is well problematic. When you factor in abundant extra ordinarily cheap clean renewable power, and hence abundant cheap clean desalinated water, your limits perhaps expand a little.

  24. I read somewhere that the Earth’s human population doubles about every 50 years.

    At that rate, in 500 years the population will be 7.6 billion * 2^10 = 7.8 TRILLION.

    Just 50 years after that it will be 15.6 trillion.

    Obviously this will never happen because, contrary to what some believe, there just won’t be room or resources enough to support such a high population.

    Which only goes to demonstrate that coping with the population growth pressures of the last 500 years is a different proposition altogether to coping with the population pressures of the next 500 years.

    Why?

    Simple.

    The Earth is a finite resource.

  25. On Monday morning i’m heading off for Gumeracha for a public meeting with Rebekha Sharkie. I Didn’t trust myself to attend a tea and scones afternoon tea with Goergina a couple of weekends ago.

  26. WWP,

    No worries. We will agree to disagree. It’s obvious you have a cynically entrenched view that’s not for shifting so I wont waste my time.

  27. Shifting Strategy, Trump’s Lawyers Set New Conditions for Mueller Interview

    President Trump’s lawyers set new conditions on Friday on an interview with the special counsel and said that the chances that the president would be voluntarily questioned were growing increasingly unlikely.

    The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, needs to prove before Mr. Trump would agree to an interview that he has evidence that Mr. Trump committed a crime and that his testimony is essential to completing the investigation, said Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s lead lawyer in the case.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/06/us/politics/trump-special-counsel-interview.html

  28. I’ve maintained all along Trump won’t be questioned by Mueller. But if Trump doesn’t have anything to hide, then why not get it over and done with? This prevarication bears all the hallmarks of someone with a large guilty secret.

    President Trump’s lawyers set new conditions on Friday on an interview with the special counsel and said that the chances that the president would be voluntarily questioned were growing increasingly unlikely.

    The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, needs to prove before Mr. Trump would agree to an interview that he has evidence that Mr. Trump committed a crime and that his testimony is essential to completing the investigation, said Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s lead lawyer in the case.

    His declaration was the latest sign that the president’s lawyers, who long cooperated quietly with the inquiry even as their client attacked it, have shifted to an openly combative stance.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/06/us/politics/trump-special-counsel-interview.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

  29. P1

    Are you talking about the carrying capacity of the earth or just Australia? As for global warming, migrants to Australia may increase their carbon footprint but it would be marginal for the categories we accept. Globally, the population is predicted to peak and then decline. Much of the growth is in very poor countries with small footprints, some first world countries are not breeding at replacement levels. The problem is not absolute numbers of people but their lifestyles.

  30. endless economic growth and lifestyles – the elephants in the room.

    George Monbiot:

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/apr/12/doughnut-growth-economics-book-economic-model

    Instead of growth at all costs, a new economic model allows us to thrive while saving the planet

    So what are we going to do about it? This is the only question worth asking. But the answers appear elusive. Faced with a multifaceted crisis – the capture of governments by billionaires and their lobbyists, extreme inequality, the rise of demagogues, above all the collapse of the living world – those to whom we look for leadership appear stunned, voiceless, clueless. Even if they had the courage to act, they have no idea what to do.

    The most they tend to offer is more economic growth: the fairy dust supposed to make all the bad stuff disappear. Never mind that it drives ecological destruction; that it has failed to relieve structural unemployment or soaring inequality; that, in some recent years, almost all the increment in incomes has been harvested by the top 1%. As values, principles and moral purpose are lost, the promise of growth is all that’s left.
    :::
    We cannot hope to address our predicament without a new worldview. We cannot use the models that caused our crises to solve them. We need to reframe the problem. This is what the most inspiring book published so far this year has done.

    In Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist, Kate Raworth of Oxford University’s Environmental Change Institute reminds us that economic growth was not, at first, intended to signify wellbeing.

  31. “I read somewhere that the Earth’s human population doubles about every 50 years.
    At that rate, in 500 years the population will be 7.6 billion * 2^10 = 7.8 TRILLION.
    Just 50 years after that it will be 15.6 trillion.
    Obviously this will never happen because, contrary to what some believe, there just won’t be room or resources enough to support such a high population.
    Which only goes to demonstrate that coping with the population growth pressures of the last 500 years is a different proposition altogether to coping with the population pressures of the next 500 years.
    Why?
    Simple.
    The Earth is a finite resource.”

    The logic is flawless its application is more problematic.

    I had originally referred to the successes and failures of humanity and frankly our failures directly and indirectly from time to time cull the population. The bigger the failure the bigger the cull.

    Almost all of our wars flow from resource constraint disputes. Not enough water we kill each other for the water and only those that survive and get the water survive.

    I don’t think we even necessarily learn from our mistakes we keep repeating them. And directly or indirectly, with or without assistance from the planet expressing its distress, we cull ourselves frequently.

    But back to the refugee context none of these realities or beautifully constructed logic, in the Australian context converts ‘fuck off we are full’ from a stupid racist chant to scientific logic.

    Perhaps if our population doubled in the next 10 years we might have to reassess our position.

  32. Peg

    Love it!

    In Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist, Kate Raworth of Oxford University’s Environmental Change Institute reminds us that economic growth was not, at first, intended to signify wellbeing.

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