Saturday smorgasbord

Details on two privately conducted polls, plus a stew of federal preselection news.

Two privately conducted ReachTEL polls from the past week to relate, followed by enough federal preselection news to choke on. Also note immediately below this the post on a new YouGov Galaxy state poll from Queensland. I should also observe that September 8 has been set as the date for the Wagga Wagga state by-election in New South Wales, to be held after Liberal member Daryl Maguire fell foul of the Independent Commission Against Corruption. It presumably won’t be contested by Labor and will probably be of interest only to locals, but Antony Green naturally has a guide up.

On with the show:

The Guardian reports a poll conducted for the ACTU has Labor leading 51-49 on two-party preferred. Other findings of the poll relate to wage rises, or the lack thereof: 47.6% reported not having received one in the past year, 32.9% said such as they had received did not cover the cost of living, and only 19.5% said their pay had improved in real terms. The poll was conducted on August 2 from a sample of 2453.

• Greenpeace has a Victoria only poll which, after exclusion of the 6.7% undecided, has the Coalition on 35.4% (compared with 41.8% at the 2016 election), Labor on 34.9% (35.6%), the Greens on an unlikely 18.6% (13.1%) and One Nation on 5.1%. Labor leads 57-43 on two-party preferred, compared with 51.8-48.2 at the election. The poll was conducted July 30 from a sample of 1118.

The preselection news bonanza starts in Victoria, where internal party democracy has been having a rough time of it lately, with Labor’s national executive and the Liberal Party’s state administrative committee both taking over federal preselections to protect sitting members amid factional unrest.

• The Labor vacancy created by the retirement of Michael Danby in Macnamara, as Melbourne Ports will now be known, is set to be filled by one of his former staffers, Josh Burns. The seat is reserved to the Right under factional arrangements, and Burns prevailed in a factional ballot with 61 votes to 49 for Nick Dyrefurth, executive director of the John Curtin Research Centre, and 16 for Mary Delahunty, a Glen Eira councillor (numbers related by Emma-Jayne Schenk of the Caulfield Glen Eira Leader). Delahunty called on the national executive to disregard the result, accusing Danby of hand-picking the attendees to the meeting and seeing that others were locked out, and complaining that 85% of those present were male.

• United Voice state secretary Jess Walsh will take second position on Labor’s Victorian Senate ticket after winning Socialist Left endorsement at the expense of incumbent Gavin Marshall. Marshall has been demoted to what is being described as an unwinnable position – number three according to the Herald Sun, though reports vary. The result is a defeat for Socialist Left powerbroker and Marshall ally Kim Carr, whose influence has diminished in the face of a new alliance between the Industrial Left and Right forces associated with state MP Adem Somyurek. It also contradicts the justification for referring preselections to the national executive, which was to protect sitting members.

• The Herald Sun reports a factional deal has set up state upper house member Daniel Mulino to run in the new safe Labor seat of Fraser in western Melbourne, making his existing seat in Eastern Victoria available for Jane Garrett. This was supported by Bill Shorten, and bitterly opposed by Garrett’s foes in the United Firefighters Union. Garrett is backed by the Industrial Left, which has been determined to find her a new seat after she abandoned her existing berth of Brunswick, where she is under growing pressure from the Greens. Mulino is aligned with the Right faction Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association (although the internal politics of that union is a story unto itself), which was at first unhappy at losing influence within the state government, but has been mollified with the promise of an extra state seat.

• Jenny Macklin’s successor in Jagajaga, which is reserved to the Socialist Left, will be Kate Thwaites, a former staffer to Macklin, ABC journalist and, most recently, communications director at Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services. Thwaites won factional backing ahead of Sonja Terpstra, a local teacher and community activist.

• The Victorian Liberal Party’s administrative committee has rubber-stamped the preselections of all sitting federal MPs, ostensibly to prevent the party from being distracted in the lead-up to the November 29 state election. However, the real story by all accounts is that the dominant conservative faction wishes to protect Kevin Andrews in Menzies, who faced a challenge from Keith Wolahan, a former Blake Dawson lawyer who earlier served overseas with the Australian Defence Force.


Matthew Killoran of The Courier-Mail reports five candidates are seeking preselection for a Queensland Senate position reserved to the Left, which is being vacated with the retirement of Claire Moore. The front runner by all accounts is Nita Green, a former staffer to Senator Murray Watt, who is backed by the CFMMEU. This is despite Green being based in Brisbane, and party rules reserving the spot for central or north Queensland (Green says she will move there if successful). Others in the field are Leanne Donaldson, who held the state seat of Bundaberg from 2015 until her defeat in 2017, and lost her position in cabinet when it emerged she had failed to pay nearly $8000 in council rates; Julie McGlone, Tourism Australia marketing executive; Tania Major, Cairns-based indigenous youth advocate; and Karin Campbell, an occupational health and safety consultant.

Paul Starick of The Advertiser reports that Georgina Downer, who for some reason wants to run in Mayo again, will face opposition from Reagan Garner, human resources manager for ReturnToWorkSA. However, Starick reports Downer is the “overwhelming favourite”.

Sally Whyte of the Canberra Times reports there are five nominees for Labor preselection in Canberra, where a vacancy is available as a result of the Australian Capital Territory’s House of Representatives seat entitlement increasing from two to three. They are John Falzon, chief executive of St Vincent de Paul; Kel Watt, a lobbyist for the greyhound racing industry; Jacob Ingram, a staffer to Chief Minister Andrew Barr; Simon Banks, managing director for lobbyists Hawker Britton; and Alicia Payne, who has worked as a staffer to Jenny Macklin, Bill Shorten and Lindsay Tanner. Falzon has been endorsed by the Left, Watt and Ingram are seeking endorsement from the Right, and Banks and Payne are unaligned. Falzon has been in the news lately after a picture emerged of him wearing a t-shirt with Lenin emblazoned on it, while Watt has been the target of a dirt sheet being circulated within the local party. The preselection process will be completed early next month.

• In South Australia, Labor will deal with the abolition of Port Adelaide by having the homeless Mark Butler run in Hindmarsh, and moving Hindmarsh MP Steve Georganas to neighbouring Adelaide. The latter is being vacated by Kate Ellis, and has turned from a marginal to a fairly safe Labor seat as a result of the redistribution changes. Paul Karp of The Guardian reports the deal involves a Senate seat being forfeited by the Left, of which Butler is a member, with the top two positions on the Senate ticket to be taken by the Right.

Nathan Hondros of Fairfax reports Labor’s likely new candidate for the marginal Liberal seat of Hasluck in eastern Perth is James Martin, Mundaring Shire councillor and director of Marketech Ltd, a firm that develops stock market trading software. The position became vacant after the withdrawal of Lauren Palmer, an official with the Maritime Union of Australia, who cited health reasons. Andrew Burrell of The Australian reports Martin is a member of the Progressive Left faction, which combines forces of the Right (the SDA, TWU and AWU) and Left (the MUA and CFMMEU).

• Luke Hartsuyker announced this week he will not seek another term in the mid north coast New South Wales seat of Cowper, which he has held for the Nationals since 2001. No word yet on who might succeed him as Nationals candidate, but Rob Oakeshott, who ran unsuccessfully against Hartsuyker in 2016, is not ruling out running again.

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.

892 comments on “Saturday smorgasbord”

Comments Page 18 of 18
1 17 18
  1. – – Who is more rational and thoughtful – –
    I am using the old trick when faced with difficult multiple choice questions.

    The answer is ‘C’.

  2. Tricot
    In terms of the Japanese being used by the British to restore order in the NEI, ironies abound.
    My father, who was in the KNIL, aka the Royal Dutch Colonial Army, was in Bandung when the NEI surrendered to the Japanese. Within days of his capture the Japanese gave him a jeep, a couple of troops, an armband with some Japanese characters on it, a couple of rifles, and then ordered him to help restore order.
    The Dutch killed well over 60,000 Indonesians during the Indonesian War of Independence. The Dutch Government has only recently paid compensation for (some of the) war crimes.
    The Dutch Government was for around at least half a century very active in suppressing information about the Indonesian War of Independence.
    Dutch museums and other memorials are deceptively coy about the Dutch role in Indonesia between 1945 and Independence.
    The military hospital in which I was born (Now Dustira in Cimahi) still operates are a major civilian hospital.
    I don’t know the name of the ship or the date but Mum and myself were evacuated from the NEI to the Netherlands. Yeah. Refugees! Dad eventually made his way to Australia direct from what had become Indonesia to Australia. According to him the migration interrogation in what was still Batavia by the Australian consulate staff consisted of, Q ‘What did you do during the War?’ A. ‘Burma Railroad’. ‘You’ll do.’
    When we eventually again travelled to Australia in 1957 it was on the Flotto Lauro which I assume was in the same Line as Andgelino Flotto. But I am not sure about that.

  3. Will Emma Husar be returning to work this week or does she have more time off ?


    I hope she has more time off. She still has to sweat out of her pores so much poisonous vitriol from people who have had 1/5 of the life challenges she has faced.

  4. In relation to Husar I am still not sure why Labor supporters are so intensely supportive of someone who was a badly-behaved boss.
    It is true Husar is far from the only bad boss in Parliament and that there are some grounds to believe that Husar was stitched up to some extent by her colleagues.
    But rather than accepting Husar’s bad bossing, I would have thought that, as friends of the workers, we would support the treatment meted to Husar being extended to others.
    A certain very powerful person in the Parliament, for example, is very widely rumoured to have a volcanic temper. One assumes that indulging in temper tanties in front of, and to, staff is also bad bossing.

  5. I agree lets lay off Husar. She is a special Labor politician on a lousy 200k a year. All politicians on the right, no matter the issue are fair game.

  6. TPOF
    It is good to see that in England there are decent Tories who are prepared publicly to call out Mr Johnson. None on the Right Wing side here are calling out Turnbull and Dutton for their deliberate and systematic dog whistling.
    It was good to see Savva this morning on Insiders, without mentioning names, call out the same thing.

  7. I think I’ve worked it out.


    otherwise known as DTT,

    otherwise known as …

    DonaldTrumpTweets!! 🙂

  8. BW

    In relation to Husar I am still not sure why Labor supporters are so intensely supportive of someone who was a badly-behaved boss.


    Because it is not always either/or.

    From the sound of it (bearing in mind that I only have to go on what has made it into the news cycles) she would have been a nightmare to work for – especially in the first part of her membership of Parliament. Having actually worked in the area, the first step would have been to try to change and improve behaviour, not to trash the person as a human being and slut-shame her for good measure.

    I’m supportive because she did not deserve the public treatment she got. If there is one thing nobody appears to have accused her of is doing to her staff what a couple of them, using compliant media, did to her. Which was national public humiliation.

  9. Funny how there are many mentions of Emma Husar’s $200k a year. Apart from the fact that she has never cried poor about what she is paid (but won’t be after the next election), I did not think that public humiliation and demonstrably false slut shaming was part of the job description. Actually, it’s fucking irrelevant. On the contrary, the evidence was that she worked her guts out.

  10. In relation to Husar I am still not sure why Labor supporters are so intensely supportive of someone who was a badly-behaved boss.

    I can’t speak for others, but I’m supportive of her because she was clearly ganged up on by bully boy forces within the NSW ALP. Was she a bad people manager? Yes. But the slime that was put out there about her, cheerfully reported by Buzzfeed was a stitch up. Nobody deserves that.

  11. TPP 51-49 to Labor
    Coalition primary down to 37
    Labor primary down to 35
    Turnbull’s netsat down to almost same as Shorten’s

  12. “Turnbull’s popularity plunges” – The Australian headline

    Looks like Rupert came “All The Way From America” (Sorry Joan Armatrading!) just to stick the knife in you Malcolm!

  13. Turnbull’s popularity has plunged in the wake of the Super Saturday by-elections, with the Coalition’s primary vote dropping two points ahead of federal parliament resuming tomorrow.

    An exclusive Newspoll conducted for The Australian reveals the Coalition’s primary vote slipping from 39 to 37 per cent, with One Nation increasing from 7 to 9 per cent.

    With MPs returning to Canberra following the winter break, Newspoll shows Mr Turnbull’s lead over Bill Shorten as preferred Prime Minister has been slashed from 19 points to 12 points.

    In the 38th consecutive Newspoll in which the Coalition has trailed Labor on a two-party preferred vote, the government remains behind at 49/51.

    Labor also experienced a decrease in its primary vote, falling back one point to 35 per cent.

    The Newspoll, which was conducted between August 9 and August 12 based on 1607 interviews among voters, showed satisfaction with Mr Turnbull’s performance has nosedived, dropping six points in two weeks leading to a negative net satisfaction rating of minus 19, almost rivalling Mr Shorten’s unpopularity.

    The latest Newspoll comes a fortnight after the Super Saturday by-elections where the Liberal National Party secured only 29.6 per cent of the primary vote in Longman, shedding votes to Pauline Hanson’s One Nation.

  14. I am not supportive of Emma Husar nor do I join the pile on. I enter a plea of Ignoramus – I know nothing.

    I think that the investigation should have proceeded to its conclusion, in confidence as is appropriate to workplace issues, with fair process for the accusers and the accused. Findings of inappropriate dealings, if any, should have then been referred to the authorities competent to deal with them – Labor head office, the relevant Parliamentary standing committee or maybe Finance. What we have investigation into a little-known Opposition backbencher. It might have rated a few paragraphs on page 7 of a major metropolitan newspaper and a short item a several minutes into the evening news after the big stories and celebrity scandals.

    But this story was blown out of all proportion. There was far more important stuff going on – NEG and Reefgate for a start. And last year the Deputy Prime Minister of Australian was given a free pass on allegations of far more egregious behaviour on several fronts. It only came out after a critical by-election when it was no longer possible to hide, and only those relating to his marital / relationship problems were given any attention. He has many more questions to answer and no one who gets space in the mainstream media is asking them. He seems to be on the path to rehabilitation.

    Something’s rotten.

  15. Rupert in town.
    The SmearStralian leads with “Turnbull’s Popularity Plunges”.
    Coalition Party room meeting Tuesday morning.
    Just saying.

  16. Nice enough.

    The personal hits to Lucien’s netsat and PPM will be enough fodder for the media drones to chew on. Certainly with plenty of noise about them coming from the after 6 Sky and 2GB crowds.

    My prediction of a bottoming out of the #butalbomadeaspeech, Kill Bill, driven ‘recovery’ before going back to 53 after Super Saturday looking ok so far.

  17. @Steve777



    If Only we were a fly on the wall. (or a bug on the wall).

    The drought issue is gonna bite LNP.

  18. Good evening all,

    I think Shorten and labor will be happy with this poll especially after those individuals within NSW labor ( not federal members of caucus btw ) ensured the headlines were all about Emmar. A pox on the bastards.

    Labor will take this poll with a sigh of relief.

    Cheers and a good night to all.

  19. “Is there a worse political correspondent than Greg Jennett?”

    Yes. Yes there are. Several.

    Not that I’m actually talking Jennett up.

  20. Well one wonder what the spinmeisters are going to do – they resort to PPM whenever the Newspoll is unchanged … but the PPM just shat itself.

    What to do, Mr Crowe, Mr Speers et al.? What do say?

  21. Is a newspoll with 51 – 49 almost 53 – 47 with the ON preference fandango taken out (at 9 % it almost gives the Libs another 2% doesn’t it?)

  22. So I guess BoerWar supported the British Army presence in northern Ireland too… you know to keep the peace? Look how well that turned out. India was a poisoned chalice handed to Labour by the Tories and Attlee did as well as anyone could given the situation. The country was was only kept afloat because of American loans. Attlee needed to speed up demobilization because the military presence in the Empire it was sending the country broke. The last thing he needed was sending divisions over to India. The liklihood of them doing any good was negligible in any case. Still better to have them in India than South Africa hey?

  23. C@tmomma @ #834 Sunday, August 12th, 2018 – 8:26 pm

    You really must be bored waiting for Newspoll, to be responding to dtt’s witless maundering. (as much as I respect TPOF’s valiant efforts to point out the vile undercurrents in it).


    As one on here who always seems to me to be quite hostile to other races and most Muslim immigrant (covertly not overtly) I think you are the very last person to cast aspersions.

    Frankly I am sick and tired of people who bleat about racism when one comments about Israeli policy. It is nothing whatever to do with racism. it is about one arrogant group of rich white people bullying, bombing murdering and stealing from a group of less affluent brown people. The holocaust was a travesty and every person who knew and said nothing or who suspected and said nothing are guilty as hell of mass murder on a huge scale.

    However those inflicting torture and child abuse upon Palestinians and who encouraged idiots like Bush Trump, McCain and Bolton to bomb Iraq, Iran and whoever knows who else are NOT holocaust victims. They may be the children of such victims but more likely the grand kids or not connected at all.

    It is getting to be about as relevant to the present day as the Boer war was to me. Now that was a bit of a UK atrocity – all those Boer civilians in concentration camps. Now just because the British mistreated the Boers (and they did) that did not give the Boers the right to oppress the black.

Comments Page 18 of 18
1 17 18

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *