Happy trails: episode two

Another look at where the campaign has taken the two leaders, and what that might tell us about the state of play.

Click on the image at the bottom of the post and you will see an updated account of the electorates visited by the leaders during the campaign, more or less (there is an element of subjectivity as to what constitutes a visit). One of the salient points to emerge is the rather intensive focus on Tasmania, which remarkably played host to both leaders yesterday. Scott Morrison has spent three days over two visits – exactly equal to his record for Victoria, where he has targeted the five Liberal-held seats on margins of up to 6.4%, but not wasted effort on Dunkley, which is Liberal-held but notionally Labor. Bill Shorten’s visit to the state was likewise his second, but so far he’s spent two days in the state to Morrison’s three.

Western Australia also logged up some points this week, but this is largely due to the debate having been held there on Monday, and the practicality of hanging around afterwards given the distance involved. Nonetheless, it is notable that Morrison spent fully three days campaigning their compared with Shorten’s two, and that Morrison felt it worth his while to conduct a street walk in the electorate of Canning, situated well up the pendulum at 6.8%.

Bill Shorten is overdue for a visit to New South Wales, where he hasn’t been since he spent the first three full days of the campaign in Sydney. Nonetheless, the prize for the most targeted seat of the campaign so far would appear to be the Sydney seat of Reid, which has been visited three times by Scott Morrison, most recently on Sunday, and was also visited by Shorten on each of his three days in Sydney.

And while you’re about, note also the other new post below this one: episode three of Seat du Jour, covering the Melbourne seat of La Trobe.

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.

1,298 comments on “Happy trails: episode two”

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  1. I would go with 5. I just want to live the way I want and CC gets in the way so lets selfishly ignore it and continue on.

    Add to that perhaps a little bit it will not be as bad as expected, everything will be okay.

  2. Patrick Bateman @ #533 Friday, May 3rd, 2019 – 1:59 pm

    Does anyone else feel that we might see a bit of a shift in the next round of polling?

    I can’t put my finger on why, and I’m usually a pessimist about Labor, but for some reason I feel like the major polls have failed to pick up a move to them, not away from them. I wouldn’t be surprised by 53/47 or even 54/46.

    Maybe it’s just that the desperate spinning of the last couple of 51/49 results has felt like the government’s last chance to seize the initiative, and they have comprehensively failed to do so with all these candidate issues and Morrison’s poor performance in the debate.

    I’m thinking that with nearly every seat poll showing Climate Change as the motivating issue in this campaign and all the Libs pain is coming from a major push on their traditional seat base, then you may be right. The balkanisation of the RW vote is difficult to assess because preference flows are completely uncharted and distributions by pollsters are speculative.

    The polls may also not be picking up the mood of the younger generation on this issue given they are difficult to access for polling purposes. Of course, the high voter registration and who has registered may be under weight in published polls as well.

  3. “Edited to add. There is no comparison with male circumcision and genuine forms of FMG beyond Cutna, because real FMG can interfer with sexual pleasure, function and indeed other basic bodily functions. Male circumcision (unless there is a massive stuf up) doesn’t affect any of these.”


    That’s incorrect. There’s plenty of evidence that circumcision reduces and effects the amount of pleasure a man can feel. Google it.

  4. Regarding the conflation of FGM with male circumcision. Let us be very clear . FMG is the cutting of the clitoris which is specifically done to cause women loss of sexual gratification. This could be conflated with a practice of cutting of the head of the penis to have a similar effect . Male circumstance is the cutting of a bit of skin. I am sure most bludgers get this . For those who don’t cross your legs and think about it.

  5. Promulgated by faux greens whose raison d’être is coaxing the Labor-leaning posters into responding to their inane taunts.
    They continue, because it works, any RW troll can see that, and join in.

  6. THE Greens have been forced to denounce a regional branch of the party, after it suggested vaccinations, not life-threatening diseases, were causing the deaths of children.

    A Facebook post attributed to the Greens in Townsville was quickly taken down from the site yesterday, after it sparked outrage by claiming vital vaccines were putting children’s lives at risk.


  7. “Actually, just like FGM, circumcision can and does impact the pleasure a man can feel from stimulation.”

    WHAT have I been missing out all these years!

  8. Edi_Mahin @ #549 Friday, May 3rd, 2019 – 1:39 pm

    I would go with 5. I just want to live the way I want and CC gets in the way so lets selfishly ignore it and continue on.

    Add to that perhaps a little bit it will not be as bad as expected, everything will be okay.

    Yeah, maybe. That’s sort of the position on the franking credits debate – it would be better for me to ignore the parlous state of the rest of society, so I’ll just go ahead and do that. I have had some incredibly discussions with quite intelligent baby boomers who fundamentally cannot accept that housing affordability is awful, wages are stagnant, wealth disparity is growing, corporate profits are growing, and so on. They get this glazed expression like you are telling them what happened in the latest Avengers movie.

  9. I have read reports that Melissa Parke had to quite because of anti semitism. She has strong views about Israel but can anyone tell me how she was anti semitic?

  10. Andrew_Earlwood @ #538 Friday, May 3rd, 2019 – 2:01 pm

    If society can tolerate without endorsing male circumcision, then why can it not tolerate the less intrusive and non damaging practice of Cutna?

    Why should society tolerate something that neither Wikipedia nor Google nor Urbandictionary seem to know about? 🙂

  11. “There’s plenty of evidence that circumcision reduces and effects the amount of pleasure a man can feel. Google it.”

    D’oh. I really wish I wasn’t told that …

  12. Circumcision is a lot more significant operation than most FGM, although it’s much less barbaric than clitoridectomy (which is illegal).
    Some Indigenous tribes perform a serial subincision of the penis which is pretty horrible. Most of these practices are legal under both parties and I don’t think either plan on banning them.

  13. “THE Greens have been forced to denounce a regional branch of the party, after it suggested vaccinations, not life-threatening diseases, were causing the deaths of children.”

    Good. Vaccines have saved millions of lives. They should be denounced as they obviously don’t align with the Greens’ views on the issue.

  14. You can say what you like about RdN’s leadership of the Greens (and I know you do 😉 ) but one thing that I would hope everyone would agree has been a positive is that he has really actively tried to marginalise the anti-vax elements within the party.

  15. “D’oh. I really wish I wasn’t told that …”

    I’m genuinely sorry to hear that mate. It should never have been done to you or anyone. Maybe best not to go Googling then. Apparently around 75% of American males have been circumcised. It’s so widespread and really needs to be spoken about and stopped.

  16. I sense a perfect storm forming that will result in an ALP landslide – certainly in Vic.

    The remnants of the liberal and national parties (by then no longer is coalition) will do post mortems (multiple, because different factions will do their own), these will variously conclude:
    – making deals with Clive Palmer was a stupid thing to do. the bloke is a delusional fraud and crook and he recruited crazies. His lack of integrity and likley corruption became apparent in the last two weeks of the campaign. He mainly drew votes from the libs and LNP and the ALP got 1st preference from UAP votes who would have otherwise voted labor. Supporting him saves a few seats in Qld, but cost more seats in other states.
    – playing footsies with PHON was a mistake – see above
    – having barnaby joyce visible during the campaign was a major mistake
    – hiding dutton was a good idea, but it still didn’t work becuase he lost his seat
    – a national party that cares only for miners and large agribusinesses donors and mates cannot expect farmers to vote for them. Indies and shooters and rooters will replace the national party over the next decade unless they change massively.
    – dumping turnbull may have saved the conservative base in parts of queensland, but lost seats elsewhere and created a situation where the moderates in the party had to focus on saving their ‘safe’ seat, drawing resources from other marginal seats. It only regained votes from RWNJ parties, but lost large numbers of leafy suburn upper middle class voters
    – scomo’s screming melt down in the last week of the campaign and tony abbott anouncing that they would have won under him or dutton and that he wants to lead the party again cost another 5-7 seats.
    – Australians may be conservative in many regards, but they:
    – don’t think the US socio-economic-political model is something we should aspire to.
    – have realised that trickle down economics and neo-classical economics are a crock of shit and poor model for a functioning nation.
    – are becoming diverse enough that the race card no longer works in marginal seats and works strongly against the LNP in Victoria, SA, ACT, NT and tasmania, as well as leafy suburb former LNP seats

    – Most voters under the age of 60 accept the science of climate change and want to see action. every year, natural attition due to old age mortalities reduces ‘the base’ and 65-70% of millenials and coming generations will never vote LNP in their lives.
    – We are faarrked for some time to come.
    – The last person to leave should turn out the lights (although some members like to leave ot on to burn more coal)

  17. Just received my postal vote ballots.
    The Qld senate ballot is interesting, going to be difficult putting numbers on it.

  18. I don’t approve of MGM at all but if it helps you at all Andrew Earlwood, you can always comfort yourself with George Costanza’s appraisal of a non-circumcised penis “Meh, it had no character”

  19. “It is no point talking to fuckwit misogynist bastards like you. Go shove your head in a bucket of rats.”


    Well said.

  20. Came back from prepolling in safe Labor seat.

    No Palmer booth workers, Greens only handing out for Senate. Liberal guy was from other part of the city. A Hinch truck but no HTV cards. Some hostility to Liberals. A lot of people already know who they voting for.

  21. Would seem the majors plus the greens all have outliers on their particular political spectra and for public consumption they probably should be excised.
    LNP is winning this particular contest hands down and I think we all know the root causes of their problem .
    What really stands out is how social media in particular and lack of feck as to the longevity and toxicity of posts come back to bite you.
    That said, if social media was about in my teens and early uni days ‘I be F$&@ed!

  22. “There’s plenty of evidence that circumcision reduces and effects the amount of pleasure a man can feel. Google it.”

    Well, having been given a nasty little jolt, I googled it. Seems the ‘plenty of evidence’ claim is somewhat overstating the situation (typical Green!). Maybe. maybe not seems to be the present state of the debate. This from 2014 caught my eye:


    And this from 2015 seems to strongly suggest that circumcision is neutral re: sexual pleasure:


    My own situation is complicated by the fact that I only received a partial circumcision as a baby. … the mind boggles.

  23. The only embarassing thing on the public record from my past was a letter to the editor when I was 18. A surprising number of people mentioned having seen it and the Greens sent me a party membership form. Hoping it has been expunged from the record…

  24. As we are getting to the stage of predictions for the next round of polls, put me down for a couple of 52/48s, which would settle the nerves a little! I don’t think much has changed over the past week – but it just feels that Labor might have had the better of it. Given the rounding effects in the last Newspoll and ER polls that favoured the LNP, a fairly small improvement will bring it back to 52/48 in Labor’s favour. Importantly, it will help the narrative of Labor heading for a win, which of itself is valuable.

  25. mundo@12:47pm
    They ( Shorten and Butler) did it yesterday. Because you did not follow the news doesn’t mean it did not happen. Go through today’s BK dawn patroller and you will find an article on that in The Guardian.

  26. In the everything-lives-forever-on-the-internet social media age I think we will have to evolve socially accepted procedures for political candidates to be able to distance themselves from their online past, and for that to be accepted.

    As someone else said on PB earlier, the crucial question for politicians is what are your values now. If they have moved on, more power to them, and some sort of ritual dissociation from what was said 7 years ago has to become ok or else we are throwing away anyone with actual lives who did actual silly things in their youth.

  27. Who do I vote for in Melbourne now that Labors candidate has been disendorsed?

    Is it too much to ask for parties to hire someone to forensically go through people’s social media presenses?

    The closest competitor is Adam Bandt. The world most charmless man and member of a party of moaners and wreckers.

    I might just not vote for the first time.

    Is it still worth voting in the Senate?

  28. @ Patrick
    That’s excellent news, how long ago? good to see this attitude is changing!

    That being said it still doesn’t excuse the hypocrisy in this country of how one mutilation is socially “acceptable” while another is not. Again they are both abhorrent and should be criminalised – its 2019 for goodness sake.

  29. “Helmet or Beanie.

    That is indeed the question..”

    My parents seems to have answered that by saying “headband”. …

  30. Blanket, don’t forget the formerly endorsed Labor candidate is still running.

    And I don’t see why a candidate being disendorsed in the lower house would mean you don’t vote in the Senate.

  31. “Actually, just like FGM, circumcision can and does impact the pleasure a man can feel from stimulation.”

    And just HOW has this been measured?

    The only way you could do it would be to observe and (somehow) record the sexual pleasure of an uncircumcised male in certain fixed circumstances, then circumcise him, make allowances for recovery and mental effects from the procedure, then replicate the EXACT circumstances of the previous test (same partner, stimulation etc.) and only then make new observatiobs.

    Comparing Jack’s with Bob’s experiences with Jill and Mary respectively, or Jim’s experiences with Jill, and then later Jim’s dalliance with Mary doesn’t count (for all the obvious reasons).

    The idea that circumcised men don’t have as jolly a time as uncircumcised men due solely to the circumcision sounds like more made-up Firefox chickenshit to me.

    On the matter if the clitoris, the glans is just the tip – a miniscule part – of the entire organ, most of which is buried within the pubic area and all of which is given over to the sole purpose of sexual pleasure.

    The full function of the clitoris is only in recent times being comorehensively researched and understood, both behavioyrally and anatomically. In one issue of Gray’s Anatomy (mid 20th century) the clitoris was omitted altogether. That was the low point.

    One thing is certain: the clitoris is not “the female penis” (which is what it was regarded as for millennia). It’s a much more complicated organ than that, and analogizing FGM with circumcision is a dicey process, possibly completely misguided.

    I had a female friend once who had lost the glans of her clitoris through infection. I have never met anyone who enjoyed sex more often and more intensely than this person. Anecdotal, I know, and I am not making a pitch here in favour of FMG or circumcision, but enjoying the sexual experience (in every sense of the word “enjoyment”) can be a much more involved process than simply whether your various bits and pieces are intact.

  32. Ugh, but I hate him so much! He gives me the creeps. I wouldn’t be surprised if this social media stuff was dug up by him and the people working on his campaign.

  33. @Blanket

    You should definetely vote for senate. It is very important. Last seat in Victoria is competetive.

  34. Edi_Mahin @ #531 Friday, May 3rd, 2019 – 1:59 pm

    Abortion is not about a women deciding what to do with their own body, it is baby murder. Perhaps they should have thought about what they were doing with their own body when they got pregnant if their response was going to be to become a murderer.

    …baby murder? What fuckin’ year is it?

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