Happy trails

As the election campaign enters a hiatus, a look at where the leaders have been and why.

As the Easter/Anzac Day suspension of hostilities begins, it may be instructive to look at where the leaders have travelled during the campaign’s preliminary phase. Featured over the fold is a display listing the electorates that have been targeted, as best as I can tell, and a very brief summary of what they were up to while they were there. Certain entries are in italics where it is seems clear that the area was not targeted for its electoral sensitivity, such as Bill Shorten’s visit to Melbourne’s West Gate Tunnel project to get some good vision presenting him as a champion of infrastructure, which happened to place him in the unloseable Labor seat of Gellibrand. There are also a few entries that clearly targeted more than one electorate, in which case the margin for the secondary elected is listed on a second line.

What stands out is that Scott Morrison has hit a number of Labor-held seats, consistent with the optimistic impression the Liberals are presenting about their prospects – an assessment which, on this evidence, does not look to be fully shared by Labor. The only activity of Shorten’s that had Labor territory as its primary target was his visit to the Northern Territory on Thursday. Of equal interest to Shorten’s pattern of travel is the clarity of Labor’s early campaign theme of health policy, in contrast of the grab bag of messages promoted by Scott Morrison.

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.

720 comments on “Happy trails”

  1. “So are The Greens transporting the EVs on a Flat Bed truck between PR appearances, Firefox? I wouldn’t imagine there are heaps of Recharge stations all the way up to the Galilee Basin. ”

    Actually C@t – thanks to Annastacia Palaszczuk there are fast charge stations right up the Bruce Highway to Cairns. Going inland to the Galilee might be more problematic though. However those Model S’s have an extremely long range, so who knows.

  2. “Wayne says:
    Sunday, April 21, 2019 at 12:39 am
    The seats I think the coalition will win are

    Bass
    Herbert
    Longman
    Lindsey
    Perth
    Adelaide
    Hotham”

    Here’s a tip. If you think you are right, drop into your local betting shop and put on a few dollars on an accumulator. Given the odds, if you are right, you will be incredibly rich.
    I am sure the bookies will be pleased to take your money.

  3. A procession of EV’s from Western Sydney to the Adani site may (or may not) help decide whether Adani goes ahead, but of itself this is in no way good for the environment.

    From a submission to the Victorian Government in 2018 promoting the use of Electric Public Transport Vehicles (url too big, but easy to find online)

    “Overall, the avoided CO₂ emissions in the road transport sector outweigh the higher
    emissions from electricity generation. In Australia with high shares of coal fuelled power
    plants, electric vehicle demand in high volumes could, however, lead to higher CO₂
    emissions. The environmental benefit of electric vehicles in these instances would therefore
    not be fully realised with current charging technology.

    For air pollutants, an 80% share of electric vehicles in the next three decades will significantly
    reduce direct exhaust emissions of NOx, PM and SO₂ from road transport, for each pollutant
    by more than 80% in comparison with 2010 levels. However, as for CO₂, the overall
    reduction for NOx and PM will to some degree be offset by additional emissions coming from
    the electricity-generating sector — by 1% for NOx and 3% for PM10 (particulate matter with
    a diameter of 10 μm or less). The situation is different for SO₂. The w SO₂ emissions from
    road transport, coupled with the use of coal in power generation, will result in additional SO₂
    emissions, which exceed the reduction made in the road transport sector by a factor of 5.
    Additional abatement of the higher SO₂ emissions would be required.”

    There are also environmental concerns with the build of EV’s and how to deal with their batteries.

    Better than gas guzzlers? Yes, probably – but by no means 100%

    I agree that EV’s probably are the future (although Hydrogen and other technologies may compete) but currently their use damages the environment (in absolute terms). Greater use of EV public vehicles would be better than EV cars – particularly if we still commute with largely empty vehicles.

    I hope the Adani procession has at least consolidated its people into as few cars as possible.
    But perhaps that wouldn’t look so impressive???

  4. Just been watching the Falcon Heavy rocket launch, live on YouTube.

    By exactly 10 minutes into the mission the spacecraft had achieved orbit and not one, not two, but THREE individual boosters had landed safely back on Earth, using retro-rockets, for re-use in the next mission.

    A couple of minutes later the payload – a communications satellite – was further boosted into geostationary orbit.

    All on live, high-definition TV.

    Absolutely amazing stuff. A 3-booster landing has never been accomplished before. It’s a first for spaceflight.

    Meanwhile, back in Australia, Bill Shorten is coming to steal our utes.

  5. A_E… the workers of Qld will read the Lib-Kin messages as public sneering. They will see immediately that the Gs are using the issue to campaign against their interests and against Labor. They will see conceit and condescension and general smart-arsery.

    If it hurts Labor, the Lib-kin will feel amply rewarded. They play voodoo politics – making themselves feel good by sticking pins into Labor.

    I hope the workers of Qld can look past the G posing.

  6. “briefly says:
    Sunday, April 21, 2019 at 1:29 am
    A_E… the workers of Qld will read the Lib-Kin messages as public sneering. They will see immediately that the Gs are using the issue to campaign against their interests and against Labor. They will see conceit and condescension and general smart-arsery.

    If it hurts Labor, the Lib-kin will feel amply rewarded”

    No. The Greens are trying to stop Adani, not hurt Labor and benefit the LNP.
    It is also an election publicity stunt and so they hope to get a few votes themselves.
    As a stunt, I think the procession itself actually harms the environment (see earlier posting)
    However, if Labor was less equivocal on Adani (and opposed it) this could not threaten them.

  7. The photos certainly don’t resemble a “psychedelic” rag tag and Bob Brown is a great communicator. Who knows how that will play out. Gleeful, scatological fantasies about sabotaging this lawfully assembled protest group are pretty contemptible in my view.

    I’m going to see how the politics play out, although I’m sure some here will leap on extreme right publications’ reportage as evidence of its failure.

  8. Wrt the environmental benefits, and even disregarding the issues with the materials, it’s obvious to me that without renewables the use of electric vehicles is a folly.

    However, from another perspective, as a pedestrian I long for the day when exhaust fumes no longer plague our cities

  9. PaulTu, the Lib-kin do not actually want to stop Adani any more than they want to close Nauru. The longer these matters defy resolution the better it is for them. They have nothing to campaign with other than these and a few other tokens. Without these issues they will have literally nothing to call their own. They hope to use them to wedge Labor. This is their gig.

    The incarceration of asylum seekers on Nauru and Manus would have been entirely avoided had the Lib-kin not voted with the Lib-Libs to obstruct the Malaysian solution. They did so knowing that they would doom hundreds or thousands of people to political exploitation and decades of exemplary cruelty. They are an utterly cynical outfit.

    They do not deserve the benefit of the doubt.

    Adani is not about coal. It is about campaigning against Labor. Pure and simple.

  10. If Adani has the approvals in place to go ahead with their mine and Labor gets elected, Shorten will probably consider every way possible to shut the project down.

    If successful, Adani will be off to the Courts for compensation for money already spent (no problems) and reimbursement for profit foregone over the next 10 or 20 years. Adani has been talking in the billions so a Judge will no doubt work that out.

    So if an environmental project costs Australia billions, where will that compensation be taken from? Pensioners, Education, renewal energy subsidies, defence etc etc etc.

    No one will be happy with any of these choices except Price and Scummo because it is a time bomb left for the incoming.

    Everyone can be dirty about what the Prime Minister has approved. But will 50% plus one punish him at the ballot box?

  11. The Adani project would require Government grants to become feasible. In this case public funds would be used to create jobs in central Qld while also causing jobs to be lost elsewhere in Qld and NSW.

    No Government is going to subsidise the destruction of existing well-paid jobs.

  12. “Mr Ed says:
    Sunday, April 21, 2019 at 2:24 am
    If Adani has the approvals in place to go ahead with their mine and Labor gets elected, Shorten will probably consider every way possible to shut the project down.”

    Then why not say so now?

    Labor seem to need to refer to their GPS tracker before answering a question on Adani.
    If in Vic then it seems they are against it, and if in Qld they are for it (or the jobs anyway). In both cases there are usually a few weasel words that a tightrope walker might be able to navigate to reconcile those disparate views.

    Briefly, I agree that Adani is a tangible campaign that they have latched onto. Perhaps they lack too many other tangible topics – at least as immediate and emotive as this. I believe that most Greens sincerely want the project stopped. I think most Labor supporters too.

    Seeing your most recent post, where would the jobs in NSW and elsewhere in Qld be lost? Other coal mines which become uneconomic?

  13. Paul….G-loyal voters would like to stop Adani. A lot of Lib-loyal and Labor-loyal voters feel the same way. However, for the G-politicians the longer the issue runs the better. They can use it. It’s gunpowder for them. No Adani, no gunpowder.

  14. Actually i don’t have too many problems with the present platform and economic planning. Labor have moved a fair bit back to the left in the last three years or so. I think going after the corporates not paying tax, was a great idea, politically and economically, as it provides Labor with a lot of of budget wiggle room. The Tories cannot so easily fall back on their “where is the money coming from?” mantra. I would prefer that there be no federal funding of any private education, but concede that genie is never going back into the bottle, thanks to Menzies’s cynical science blocks policy. The next best thing would be real needs based funding. Other than this, I would like Labor to support the union movements change the rules campaign. The rules do need changing, not just because workers are now disempwered, more than ever, but because it is bad for the economy with wages as low as they are, domestic demand and all that. In 2007 a lot of the worst aspects of Serf Choices were undone, but not all of them. That anti building worker commission must go and penalty rates must be restored. Now Labor have talked a lot about doing these things, let’s see if they carry them out. BTW, I have voted Labor in every state and federal election since 1980 and am a former member. During the 90’s (Andrew Earlwood’s neo liberal dream period), the only thing that made me continue voting Labor was Medicare. Had that been watered down, I would have parked my vote with an independent socialist party. Thankfully, Labor have moved back towards where they belong of late and I am pretty happy with their policy settings.

  15. “Wayne says:
    Sunday, April 21, 2019 at 12:39 am
    The seats I think the coalition will win are

    Bass
    Herbert
    Longman
    Lindsey
    Perth
    Adelaide
    Hotham”

    Current sportsbet odds (for the Coalition) are Bass 1.82, Herbert 2.20, Longman 5.50, Lindsey 2.0, Perth 7.0, Adelaide 11.0, Hotham 11.00.

    Obviously you must know something the bookies don’t on a number of these seats.

    A $100 “investment” in an accumulator (resposible gambling only please) could net you $373,050 …. or could leave the bookies $100 better off. I know what my money would be on (but I am not a gambler).

    Good luck with that!

  16. Actually, decimal point error. A $100 accumulator could net you $3,730,500.

    Seriously …… my advice ……. don’t bet on it.

  17. “So are The Greens transporting the EVs on a Flat Bed truck between PR appearances, Firefox? I wouldn’t imagine there are heaps of Recharge stations all the way up to the Galilee Basin. ”

    You are obviously not aware of the Round Australia Electric Highway.

    More info: https://www.plugshare.com

    🙂

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