The age of entitlement

Prospects for the states’ seat entitlements in the medium term, and the Coalition’s chances of having any left to their name in Victoria after the coming election.

Essential Research should be breaking the New Year polling drought this week. Until then, three things:

• I have taken a look at state population growth trends to ascertain what the states’ House of Representatives seat entitlements are likely to be when the matter is determined a year after the next election. The table below shows how the numbers looked at the determinations following the 2013 and 2016 elections, how they are right now, and where they are headed according to current trends. Note the exact size of the House of Representatives depends on the vagaries of how these numbers are rounded: it will increase to 151 at the next election, because the last round decreed extra seats for Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory while penalising only the ever-declining South Australia. Note also that Tasmania is constitutionally entitled to five seats come what may.

2013 2016 2018 2019
NSW 47.39 47.32 47.29 47.24
Victoria 36.78 37.89 38.25 38.57
Queensland 29.75 29.64 29.68 29.73
WA 16.21 15.58 15.37 15.21
SA 10.63 10.42 10.28 10.15
Tasmania 3.25 3.15 3.13 3.10
ACT 2.44 2.54 2.51 2.51
NT 1.56 1.50 1.47 1.44

It appears quite certain Western Australia will lose the sixteenth seat it gained in 2016; that Victoria could potentially gain a seat for the second electoral cycle in a row; that the Northern Territory is in big danger of reverting to one seat after eighteen years with two; and that it’s touch-and-go for the third seat the Australian Capital Territory will gain at the coming election. Western Australia was lucky not to lose a seat last time, and has since fallen well below threshold, while Victoria’s growth rate of 0.3 seats a year leaves it projected to just make it over the line. Northern Territory’s entitlement fell below two after the 2001 election, but parliament came up with a legislative fiddle to preserve its second seat. Its population then went through a period of growth on the back of the resources boom, which has lately been in reverse. The ACT’s numbers tend to wax with Labor governments and wane with Coalition ones, owing to the parties’ respective attitudes to the public service, so the result of the coming election may have a bearing here.

The Australian reports that Cathy McGowan, the independent member for Indi, “will make an announcement about her political future on Monday morning”. One senses the announcement will be that she is not seeking re-election, as the Voices for Indi group that was behind her successful campaigns in 2013 and 2016 has seen fit to anoint her successor: Helen Haines, a Wangaratta-based midwife and rural health researcher. However, McGowan’s position was that she would wait to see who the group chose before deciding, and Haines says she will happily leave the field clear for McGowan if she wants to continue. The unsuccessful candidates included McGowan’s sister, local lawyer Helen McGowan. It is anticipated that Senator Bridget McKenzie, who recently relocated her electorate office to Wodonga, will run for the Nationals if McGowan retires.

• The Nine Network reports Liberal internal polling shows it headed for a near total wipeout in Melbourne, with only Tim Wilson in Goldstein looking good to hang on. However, this was reportedly conducted at the time of the state election, which raises two issues: whether its proximity confused respondents, and why it whoever leaked it should be doing so now in particular.

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.

1,220 comments on “The age of entitlement”

  1. C@tmomma
    says:
    Did you not see Bill Shorten running around the track with Joseph Deng and Peter Bol the other day?
    Or know that he helped them find a house to live in when racist landlords refused to let to them?
    ___________________________
    That’s very good of him, and probably not related to any politicking of any kind. I wonder will he find people houses as PM? Because I have a nephew moving to Canberra in July, so if Bill is still helping people find accommodation after the election. It would be appreciated.

  2. nath @ #1042 Monday, January 14th, 2019 – 2:28 pm

    C@tmomma
    says:
    No. I was commenting on the fact that it’s old news but YOU see fit to trawl through old news to bring it up again here.

    _____________________________

    So I’ll expect you to rage on whenever someone mentions something about Morrison or Trump that has already been reported elsewhere. I had not been aware of it, and was alerting people to it’s significance. You honestly think this is your domain and that anything posted here must meet your approval.

    Lack of awareness seems to explain much about you!

  3. Looking at the internet speed site Ookla I found this amazing gif. It shows the increase in gigabit internet connections. from 2017 to 2018. Check out the huge increase in Europe ,Eastern Europe and Russia. It is like a river heading towards China (?) . Part of the Belt and Road plan ?

    Did I mention Australia doesn’t bother the gigabit score keepers ?

  4. sprocket_

    Brilliant comeback by Ed Cowan.

    From memory Ed played 18 more Tests for Australia than Mark Latham.

    In fact does Latham ever have anything positive to say about anything or anyone? Maybe Pauline Hanson – for now – but watch this space!

  5. nath says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 6:15 pm
    sprocket_
    says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
    Why do Rex and nth shy away from poll predictions?
    __________________
    Simple. Like William, we operate on a higher plane.
    ——————————————-

    Does that mean you use stronger drugs?

  6. Australia’s 800m record holder Joseph Deng and 2016 Olympian Peter Bol were sleeping on couches after months of struggling to find a home … until Labor leader Bill Shorten was forced to step in
    ________________________
    Even more impressive was Bill’s decision not to publicise this act of generosity 🙂
    I mean we all help people from time to time, but only the genuine refuse to shout it from the rooftops!

  7. Lizzie@5:52pm
    Both. I will also add that 2 more
    1. He thinks he is a great Marketing genius. Hence he can convince people that white is black
    2. He thinks people have gold fish memory, which I believe is a mindset of all Tories .

  8. nath @ #1051 Monday, January 14th, 2019 – 6:34 pm

    C@tmomma
    says:
    Did you not see Bill Shorten running around the track with Joseph Deng and Peter Bol the other day?
    Or know that he helped them find a house to live in when racist landlords refused to let to them?
    ___________________________
    That’s very good of him, and probably not related to any politicking of any kind. I wonder will he find people houses as PM? Because I have a nephew moving to Canberra in July, so if Bill is still helping people find accommodation after the election. It would be appreciated.

    You are a sad and pathetic individual. And likely the unfunniest clown in Australia.

  9. SCOUT
    says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 6:42 pm
    Thanks for doing so Nath- keep the obsession going
    ___________________________
    I’ve made a few posts on Shorten today, but nothing compared to the constant flow from some bludgers on Morrison and Trump. When I post, it’s an obsession, when they do it, they are engaged in politics!

  10. C@tmomma says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 6:29 pm
    You and nath both need to cool your jets! You both keep going off half-cocked all the time!
    —————————————————
    Careful Cat. They will get upset at your implication that they only have half a cock. Accuracy is never accepted as a defense with that mob.

  11. says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 6:46 pm
    @Nath
    You did far more than just a few.
    and Also, Morrison and Trump are in power, and control two very large countries.
    _________________________
    that is almost as funny as your assertion that the AFP, the Mafia and the Mormons are in a conspiracy with the Liberals.

  12. nath @ #1056 Monday, January 14th, 2019 – 2:39 pm

    Australia’s 800m record holder Joseph Deng and 2016 Olympian Peter Bol were sleeping on couches after months of struggling to find a home … until Labor leader Bill Shorten was forced to step in
    ________________________
    Even more impressive was Bill’s decision not to publicise this act of generosity 🙂
    I mean we all help people from time to time, but only the genuine refuse to shout it from the rooftops!

    So no idea what point he is trying to make?

    It seems your lack of awareness is impacted by your lack of comprehension.

  13. Donald Trump is genuinely evil, fcs!

    Bill Shorten is much maligned.

    Scott Morrison is a dangerous religious zealot with Authoritarian tendencies.

    The differences between the men couldn’t be starker!

  14. C@tmomma
    says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 6:57 pm
    Donald Trump is genuinely evil, fcs!
    Bill Shorten is much maligned.
    Scott Morrison is a dangerous religious zealot with Authoritarian tendencies.
    The differences between the men couldn’t be starker!
    ___________________________
    “Genuinely Evil?”. Somehow he managed not to eat his children. Hmmm
    Morrison with “Authoritarian tendencies” that is absurd.
    Both of them are rather comical, I’ll agree to that, and both are likely to lose their next respective election.

  15. Dan,

    During the Abbot/Turnbull phase of the lunacy they usually got a bit of a lift after the summer solstice poll break. This was put down to there being minimal public utterances from them. During this break we have had a number of strange utterance from Morrison. The poll result tomorrow may test the hypothesis. put me down for 54/45.

  16. You know when global warming is getting serious…

    Record-breaking heatwave to hit Australia’s south-east, restricting sporting events

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/jan/14/record-breaking-heatwave-to-hit-australias-south-east-restricting-sporting-events

    The report uses sporting problems to get you reading, but it also mentions some other effects. This sentence though had me going, “What?”

    Temperatures in Sydney are expected to peak on Friday at 34C, with overnight temperatures remaining as high as 22C. Penrith in the western suburbs is forecast to reach 45C on Friday.

    Is the reported 34C prediction correct?

  17. C@tmomma
    says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 6:57 pm
    Donald Trump is genuinely evil, fcs!
    Bill Shorten is much maligned.
    Scott Morrison is a dangerous religious zealot with Authoritarian tendencies.
    The differences between the men couldn’t be starker!
    ____________________________
    That is your opinion, and you have the audacity to get on here and tell people that their opinions and concerns are wrong and that yours are correct, and that only those should be expressed. You’re are a bit deranged, sorry.

  18. Nicko
    says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 7:04 pm
    nath thinks leaders who would rather see the planet burn is comical… says it all really.
    ____________________________________
    Deranged Exhibit B.

  19. He thinks people have gold fish memory, which I believe is a mindset of all Tories .

    It was certainly the mindset of Abbott in 2014 when he broke all those promises in his first budget, expecting that by the following election people would have forgotten all about it and voted him back in again. He gambled everything on it and lost, when the polls went south and stayed there.

  20. nath, you have a very high bar for evil then:

    “Genuinely Evil?”. Somehow he managed not to eat his children.

    Maybe you’re just an apologist for Authoritarian leaders and you are doing your level best to try and make sure a genuinely good person doesn’t become the Prime Minister of Australia. Because you always come here and try and ascribe all sorts of devious and malevolent motivations for whatever Bill Shorten says or does, yet you feel unconcerned, it seems, about what Donald Trump has done/ is doing as President of the United States.

    That’s why I say you are a sad and pathetic individual.

    Are you sure you’re not Pennyroyal?

  21. The unfortunate thing for Morrison, Dutton & Co is that voters will correlate them with Trump. Trump scares the daylights out of Australian voters. So the Liberals are mini-Trumps. They will get maxi-rejection.

    The Liberals have come to stand for disruption….really, not something Australian voters have ever been too keen on. There’s almost nothing the Liberals can do now. They have campaigned long and hard against themselves and the results have been coming in. There will be even more Lib-shattering results to come.

  22. Dan: please put me down for 53:47 to Labor

    Dan Andrews is lucky the election was not being held this weekend with the rail system in meltdown, as tends to happen whenever the mercury climbs into the thirties. At least my 35 minute turned into a 90 minute plus commute has given me catch up time on PB, admittedly with plenty of scrolling…

  23. “Is the reported 34C prediction correct?”

    Yes is is correct. “Sydney’s” official temperatures are measured on a breezy headland next to the Southern approach to the Harbour Bridge, which catches any seabreeze going as it funnels down the Harbour. It tells you what it’s like on the deck of your Harbourside mansion.

    If you don’t have one, Sydney Olympic Park might be closer to what you’ll experience over the next 5 days: 34, 35, 35, 38, 32. Or four 40+ in Penrith.

  24. Steve777, thanks. That temp prediction then seems a bit “old school” and meaningless. Perhaps a weighted average for a place the size of Sydney might be a better number.

  25. C@tmomma
    says:
    Because you always come here and try and ascribe all sorts of devious and malevolent motivations for whatever Bill Shorten says or does, yet you feel unconcerned, it seems, about what Donald Trump has done/ is doing as President of the United States.
    That’s why I say you are a sad and pathetic individual.
    __________________________________
    I had assumed this site was concerned with Australian politics. Which is odd considering you berated me for mentioning the Batman by-election and the role of Catholic Education Melbourne in it. How many times would you like me to express dislike of Trump before discussion about the Leader of the Opposition is acceptable?

  26. “Steve777

    What the raw temp doesn’t convey is the degree of ‘orrible Sydney mugginess.”

    I like Sydney, apart from the traffic and trains that don’t work when it rains, but that’s a fair comment. Those temperatures will be accompanied by high humidity. A maximum of 35 degrees in Melbourne or Adelaide feels pleasantly warm, especially since Melbourne normally cools down overnight.

  27. If you don’t have one, Sydney Olympic Park might be closer to what you’ll experience over the next 5 days: 34, 35, 35, 38, 32. Or four 40+ in Penrith.

    Plus the humidity ugh.

  28. briefly says:
    Monday, January 14, 2019 at 7:12 pm
    The unfortunate thing for Morrison, Dutton & Co is that voters will correlate them with Trump. Trump scares the daylights out of Australian voters. So the Liberals are mini-Trumps. They will get maxi-rejection.

    ___________________________________

    I’ve said it before. The single most fatal thing for the coalition is that they are patently incompetent. The constant portrayal of Morrison as clownshoes and his bus as some sort of travelling circus (not to forget the incredible own goal of describing his party as a Muppet Show) means that they are dead, dead, dead.

  29. This story underlines what a dunce Morrison is.

    It took hours for his own people to figure out what he was talking about.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/jan/14/pms-pledge-to-help-native-species-was-about-cutting-red-tape-for-farm-chemicals-his-office-says

    But as long as people dress up for citizenship ceremonies everything will be OK.

    Going to be fun watching him in an election campaign when you do really have to be on your game.

  30. Nath,
    You have made it reasonable obvious that you do not think Bill Shorten is fit to be Prime Minister. Since Shorten became leader of the federal ALP parliamentary Party a few things have happened.
    • When he took over the Parliamentary Party was divided and disillusioned and defeated. It is now united, positive and winning.
    • In the same time period the Liberal government has changed leaders 3 times.
    • The political news is dominated about stories of divisions within the Coalition.
    • The ALP fell 2 seats short of winning the last election
    • The ALP has won every poll since shortly after the last election.

    Have you ever considered that maybe it is possible that your opinion of Shorten is wrong?

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