BludgerTrack: 53.2-46.8 to Labor

The BludgerTrack poll aggregate again records little change this week. Also featured: updates on important preselections for the Liberal Party, who are persistently butting their heads against gender issues.

The BludgerTrack poll aggregate, updated with this week’s results from Newspoll and Essential Research, remains unimpressed with much of the recent opinion poll commentary, maintaining a slow trend back to the Coalition that appears to go back to December. The movement since last week on two-party preferred is negligible, with a weak result for the Coalition cancelling out a somewhat stronger one from Essential Research, converting into a one-seat gain for the Coalition on the seat projection. Newspoll provides new numbers for the leadership ratings trends, which are all but unchanged. Full details on the link below.

Other news:

The Guardian reports uComms/ReachTEL polls for GetUp! conducted on Thursday found independent Zali Steggall leading Tony Abbott 57-43 in Warringah, while Labor’s Ali France led Peter Dutton 52-48 in Dickson. The poll also found majority support for the medical evacuations bill in both electorates.

• Following Julie Bishop’s retirement announcement, Andrew Burrell of The Australian reports Bishop’s hope of anointing her own successor in Curtin is likely to be scotched by her opponents, most notably Mathias Cormann. Bishop has reportedly been pushing for Erin Watson-Lynn, 33-year-old director of Asialink Diplomacy at the University of Melbourne. However, a highly fancied rival has emerged this week in Celia Hammond, who resigned on Monday as vice-chancellor at Notre Dame University. Hammond’s social conservatism is noted in a further report in The Australian today, relating a speech from 2013 in which she “railed against sex before marriage and contraception, while arguing against ‘militant feminism’”.

• A Liberal preselection vote on Saturday to choose Michael Keenan’s successor in the Perth northern suburbs seat of Stirling was won by Vince Connelly, risk management adviser at Woodside and former army officer. This was despite the wish of local party heavyweights Mathias Cormann and Peter Collier, along with Keenan himself, for the seat to go to a woman – specifically Joanne Quinn, legal counsel at Edith Cowan University. Quinn was in fact knocked out in the early rounds, together with Georgina Fraser, business development manager with a subsidiary of Kleenheat Gas, and Taryn Houghton, manager with a mental health support not-for-profit. Connelly prevailed in the final round over Michelle Sutherland, high school teacher, Bayswater councillor and wife of former state MP Michael Sutherland. His win out of an otherwise all-female field of five excited much commentary about the Liberal Party’s deficiencies in preselecting women, including my own analysis in Crikey on Monday.

• Sighs of relief could be heard from the Liberal hierarchy the following day when the preselection to replace Kelly O’Dwyer in Higgins was won by Katie Allen, paediatrician and unsuccessful candidate for Prahran at the state election in November. Allen prevailed in the final round with 158 votes to 116 for a male rival, Greg Hannan, former state party vice-president and factional moderate who ran against Michael Kroger for the presidency. Excluded after the penultimate round was Zoe McKenzie, “a non-executive director of the NBN board and former chief of staff to Abbott/Turnbull government trade minister Andrew Robb”.

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.

2,270 comments on “BludgerTrack: 53.2-46.8 to Labor”

  1. A discussion involving the relative merits of Bishop, Morrison and Dutton skirts around the fact that this LNP government is corrupt at best and perhaps something more.
    Pell is abhorrent and should be dealt with by the courts.
    In the meantime Australia has a woefully inadequate federal government, and a unethical mob of MSM owners and reporters, writers and commentators, intent on deception and mis information to benefit a small band of neo-liberals and their beneficiaries.
    The election whenever the shouties with the pub drunk persona care to step outside and get a result is crucial for the future direction for an ever changing Australia.
    The fact that many Australians have been allowed to remain ignorant as to the behaviour of this LNP government is a fraudulent and cleverly designed policy to keep the LNP in office.
    There exists no better example of ineptitude and disingenuous policy direction than the Darling River, the allocation of government funds and the self interest use of those funds to benefit certain interests with complete disregard for all the communities depending on the Darling River and the environmental ramifications.
    There is much work yet to be done to rid this country of the shysters and crooks.
    Thanks to those actively engaged in affecting the necessary change to elect a better government.

  2. @ Mogotrone

    The reason that W.A. swings so much is that unlike other cities there is no concentrated blue collar working class vote. Instead labor and liberal voters are spread roughly evenly throughout most parts of Perth. So if a swing is on it is a disproportionate result for one side or the other.

  3. Capt Moonlight

    That is very interesting. I have only been to Perth briefly(!) several times and seen very little of the city and suburbs. Do you think there were real ‘working class industrial’ suburbs say 100 years ago or has it always been more homogeneous?

  4. Just checked the cricket – India struggling much like Australia. Dhoni is 12 off 26 balls – this reflects a worrrying pattern for him : he seems to have lost his ‘next gear’ that he was always able to pull out.

    A brutally realistic selection panel would drop him for the World Cup.

    India has risen I think partly by getting rid of some of the ‘cronyism’ of the past, but Dhoni remaining in the side is starting to irritate even the Indian supporters who post in cricinfo and The Guardian.

  5. Rockets, I agree….Morrison should have gone for a March election, when considered from the viewpoint of the best chance for results favouring the LNP. As it is, by May voters will be aching to finish them off. They are an appallingly bad government. Each Act in the ATM trio has been bad. This is easily the worst.

    We’ve had more than 5 years of mis-management by clowns who have no idea whatsoever. Time is up.

  6. I don’t know that anyone but Julie thinks she would have won. Her colleagues certainly didn’t. I wish I could have seen her lose the election. Would have been way more fun than watching Morrison lose.

  7. Roger Miller, the delicious thing is the Liberals have put their defeat beyond doubt and they have driven away their own luminaries in the process. To add to the pleasures, they’re now blaming each other.

    There’s always blame with the Liberals. In this instance they have no one to blame but themselves.

  8. Michael A @ #2227 Saturday, March 2nd, 2019 – 10:23 pm

    Many may feel uncomfortable reading continual attacks on Pell, the Catholic Church, Howard, Abbott, Bolt and conservatives who don’t assertively disavow Pell. Well, trust me, your discomfort counts for absolutely nothing alongside the sufferings of the victims of abuse at the hands of Pell and other Catholic clergy. So I say, suck it up, snowflakes. You sow the wind, you reap the whirlwind.

    Yeah, that.

    I have a hard time reconciling the indignation some people express towards others using harsh language in a way they disagree with against the general apathy (or implicit disdain, even) these same people seem to have towards victims who have been forced to experience things whole orders of magnitude worse than harsh language.

    It’s like their empathy has been miscalibrated or something. One the one hand you get “there’s a convicted pedophile and some of his defenders whose feelings are being hurt; quick, outrage factor 11!”, and then on the other it’s like “people (including children) are being sexually assaulted; oh well, shit happens”. Weird.

  9. The LNPs appalling economic management exposed.

    https://www.michaelwest.com.au/coalition-doubles-all-government-debt-since-federation-in-just-under-six-years/

    “The conclusion seems inescapable. Economics reporters and their editors in the mainstream media are paid to conceal what is actually happening in the economy. This is to maintain the myth that the Coalition manages the economy better than Labor. And thereby maintain the tax regime so beneficial for the big corporations.”

  10. Onebobsworth, planting trees is a waste of time as it wouldn’t compensate for the tree lose Australia is experiencing at the moment.

    1. De-trees get due to drying out of much of Australia.
    2. Fires de-treeing alpine areas.
    3. Goats de-treeing much of western NSW
    4. Land clearing. I drove towards Longreach 2 years ago and past 100km of cleared bush on either side of the road as far the eye could see.

  11. @PeeBee
    Thank you for your response. I think I covered most of the areas where there are major issues. Sure those you mention are further examples. It is absolutely understandable to feel overwhelmed by it all.
    It is the major issue of our time as we humans realize finally that we are controlled by our environment and not the opposite. We can thank religion for one for giving us the attitude that we can damn well do what we please with the planet that sustains us.
    So, the task is enormous. Does that mean-don’t even try?
    I for one won’t step back. Nor will many, here or elswhere. We owe it to those who come after us.

  12. I think Democrats are lucky that Donald Trump was foolish enough to follow his party’s orthodoxy on tax cuts and government spending on infrastructure and public services. Imagine what the electoral landscape would be like had Trump implemented tax cuts for low and middle income earners only. Imagine what his electoral position would be like had he increased government spending on public infrastructure and services. He would be in a much stronger position had he done those things and his party and its plutocrat backers wouldn’t have been able to stop or punish him. He would have accumulated a lot of power that was independent of the GOP and the GOP’s wealthy supporters.

    Fortunately for progressives, he made the wrong moves and his approval rating is stuck in the low 40s. As long as the Democrats nominate Bernie Sanders, Trump will have little chance of winning re-election.

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