Various stuff that’s happening

Sarah Henderson reportedly struggling in her Senate preselection comeback bid, plus yet more on the great pollster failure, and other things besides.

Newspoll’s no-show this week suggests last fortnight’s poll may not have portended a return to the familiar schedule. Amid a general post-election psephological malaise, there is at least the following to relate:

• The great pollster failure was the subject of a two-parter by Bernard Keane in Crikey yesterday, one part examining the methodological nuts and bolts, the other the influence of polling on journalism and political culture.

Richard Willingham of the ABC reports former Corangamite MP Sarah Henderson is having a harder-than-expected time securing Liberal preselection to replace Mitch Fifield in the Senate, despite backing from Scott Morrison, Josh Frydenberg and Michael Kroger. According to the report, some of Henderson’s backers concede that Greg Mirabella, former state party vice-president and the husband of Sophie Mirabella, may have the edge.

• The Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters has invited submissions for its regular inquiry into the 2019 election, which will be accepted until Friday, September 2019. Queensland LNP Senator James McGrath continues to chair the committee, which consists of five Coalition, two Labor and one Greens member.

Daniella White of the Canberra Times reports Labor is struggling to find candidates for next October’s Australian Capital Territory election, said by “some insiders” to reflect pessimism about the government’s chances of extending its reign to a sixth term.

• The Federation Press has published a second edition of the most heavily thumbed tome in my psephological library, Graeme Orr’s The Law of Politics: Election, Parties and Money in Australia. A good deal of water has passed under the bridge since the first edition in 2010, most notably in relation to Section 44, which now accounts for the better part of half a chapter.

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.

1,701 comments on “Various stuff that’s happening”

  1. lizzie
    Wednesday, August 14th, 2019 – 6:02 am
    Comment #1272

    This is so scary that I thought one post by one person wasn’t enough.

    This can only be the result of a sinful electorate so that we now have the Gummint we deserve.

    I don’t believe it although if true the LNP would be wiped out at the first electoral opportunity.

    Bloody cold in Newcastle. Back to a warm bed for me.

  2. I can’t see the point in linking to Crikey articles that you have to have a subscription to be able to read them. As, if you had a subscription, you would already have read them.

  3. Senator James McGrath continues to chair the committee, which consists of five Coalition, two Labor and one Greens member.

    That doesn’t sound very balanced. ???

  4. lizzie @ #3 Wednesday, August 14th, 2019 – 7:06 am

    Senator James McGrath continues to chair the committee, which consists of five Coalition, two Labor and one Greens member.

    That doesn’t sound very balanced. ???

    It’s just another one of Morrison’s methods of attempting to grind Labor into the psychological dust. He’s good at that sort of thing. I think Labor are not going to succumb but are just giving him enough rope. It has worked in every other job he’s ever had.

  5. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    Peter Lewis uses the latest Essential poll to show how the dynamics of welfare politics are changing.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/commentisfree/2019/aug/13/there-is-growing-empathy-for-those-on-newstart-the-dynamics-of-welfare-politics-are-changing
    Is Scott Briggs – Scott Morrison mate, Liberal staffer, News Corp lobbyist and Packer empire crisis consultant – now the front-runner to win the Government’s billion-dollar privatisation of Australia’s visa system? Or is it his rival suitors from Accenture and Australia Post, a consortium packed with Liberal Party identities? Michael Sainsbury and Michael West investigate the political and business connections behind this bumper taxpayer-funded prize.
    https://www.michaelwest.com.au/mate-versus-mate-inside-scomos-billion-dollar-visa-privatisation/
    A man who allegedly stabbed a woman to death before running through Sydney’s CBD with a butcher’s knife was carrying a phone and a USB stick with information about recent white supremacist attacks in the US and New Zealand. Cathy, isn’t it?
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/sydney-cbd-stabbing-suspect-had-accessed-information-about-recent-mass-killings-20190813-p52gta.html
    Moderate Liberals are lining up behind Premier Gladys Berejiklian to defend her leadership, as disgruntled members of the party’s right continue to criticise her handling of the controversial abortion bill. Fired up also by News Ltd.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/moderate-liberals-defend-gladys-berejiklian-as-agitation-over-abortion-bill-ramps-up-20190813-p52gpn.html
    Amanda Meade tells us how the government sent ‘chilling’ letter to Channel Nine over its One Nation strip club broadcast.
    https://www.theguardian.com/media/2019/aug/13/government-chilling-letter-channel-9-steve-dickson-one-nation-strip-club-broadcast
    Shane Wright and Eryk Bagshaw tell us that a new review about city congestion will open the door to further cuts in immigrant numbers and moves to push more migrants into the regions.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/migration-under-review-amid-growing-congestion-concerns-20190813-p52gks.html
    The SMH editorial calls for more clarity on responsible lending rules.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/need-for-more-clarity-on-responsible-lending-rules-20190813-p52gpp.html
    On the above subject borrowers’ ability to service a loan was at the heart of a court battle and the banks will be delighted with Justice Nye Perram’s ruling writes Elizabeth Knight.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/banks-pop-open-champers-while-borrowers-drink-from-cask-after-loan-win-20190813-p52gnu.html
    Magellan will create market history by launching a listed investment trust that pays no commissions to stockbrokers and financial advisers.
    https://outline.com/CVhMwC
    The “retail recession” is getting deeper and is now worse than anything faced by the sector during the global financial crisis, a key survey of the nation’s businesses has revealed as the Reserve Bank grows confident its interest rate cuts are flowing through to borrowers. When is this government going to wake up?
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/retail-sales-drop-to-levels-not-seen-since-the-1991-recession-20190813-p52gn3.html
    Gary Linnell looks at the future for bricks and mortar retailers.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/money/consumer/2019/08/13/retail-dead-garry-linnell/
    In a bid to “save Christmas”, Trump has effectively admitted that his negotiating position with China is indeed hurting US consumers.
    https://outline.com/VqduVk
    Independence is a pipedream and China will never allow Hong Kong to determine its own legislature according to Sydney business consultant Guan Pei Ling.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/china-will-always-get-its-way-with-hong-kong-20190813-p52gn8.html
    Fergus Hunter reports that Labor has seized on the findings of an Infrastructure Australia audit, saying the Coalition has failed to deliver on its promise of a faster and cheaper NBN.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/nbn-customers-face-higher-prices-or-poorer-internet-connection-audit-warns-20190813-p52go7.html
    Harvey Grennan says that a simple stroke of the legislative pen would fix the corruption built into the NSW building inspection system.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/the-issue-at-the-core-of-sydney-s-building-crisis-gets-hands-off-treatment-20190813-p52gk5.html
    Our universities have become much bigger, but you wouldn’t be sure all the extra youngsters going in are emerging with valuable degrees opines Ross Gittins.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/perhaps-we-need-more-helicopter-pollies-caring-for-our-kids-20190813-p52gkb.html
    Sally Whyte reveals that Christopher Pyne discussed starting work with consulting company EY while he was still in Cabinet, and the job offer was made on April 17 after the election was called.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6326640/christopher-pyne-discussed-consulting-job-while-still-a-minister/?cs=14350
    A $500 million bid by Scott Morrison to silence criticism of his government’s climate change credentials at the Pacific Islands Forum has failed.
    https://outline.com/PuNK2u
    Paddy Manning explores the prospect of a no growth future for Australia.
    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/aug/14/the-no-growth-future-has-australias-economy-finally-run-out-of-luck
    More than half of young Canberrans were underpaid in the past year, a new report released Tuesday has found.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6327114/wage-theft-crisis-more-than-half-of-young-canberrans-underpaid/?cs=14225
    Tony Walker says that Morrison needs to take control of China policy – but leave room for dissent.
    https://theconversation.com/morrison-needs-to-take-control-of-china-policy-but-leave-room-for-dissent-121739
    Who needs guns?
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/you-don-t-think-heroes-who-tackled-alleged-sydney-stabber-20190813-p52goy.html
    Elizabeth Minter writes about how a new report used data from the Federal Court to show which creditors are actively seeking to make Australians bankrupt for relatively small debts.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/consumer-affairs/bankruptcy-threshold-of-5000-is-a-ticking-time-bomb-for-home-owners-20190813-p52gmp.html
    Despite the protests, Donald Trump thinks immigration and an attempt to build a border wall as among his most potent political assets as he counters the Democrats writes Jennifer Hewett.
    https://outline.com/HsBagj
    Half the new cars sold in Australia in 2035 will be electric vehicles even if there is no policy support to drive change, a new government analysis forecasts.
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/aug/14/half-of-all-new-cars-sold-in-australia-by-2035-will-be-electric-forecast
    Katharine Murphy writes that ACCC chairman Rod Sims says Facebook should have removed the bogus death tax claims in circulation during the May federal election and that it has the capability to deal with the proliferation of fake news on the platform, but the social media behemoth is instead “palming off responsibility” to protect its bottom line.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/aug/14/facebook-could-tackle-fake-news-but-chooses-not-to-regulator-says
    It is glaringly obvious that Frydenberg is not being denied a place in Parliament because his family was forced to flee the Holocaust, writes Dr Jennifer Wilson.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/frydenberg-andanti-semitism-spin,12994
    A group of Melbourne Anglicans have written an open letter to Wangaratta Bishop John Parkes asking him to not threaten the unity of the church by blessing same-sex relationships.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6327268/bishop-challenged-over-proposal-to-bless-same-sex-relationships/?cs=14231
    Meanwhile the Catholic Church is set to defy new laws that would punish priests with jail time if they refuse to report sexual abuse revealed during confession.
    https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/church-digs-in-as-victoria-forces-disclosure-of-abuse-revealed-in-confession-20190813-p52gqd.html
    Chris Uhlmann reckons America has got a lot of things wrong but not when it comes to free speech.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/forget-the-hardy-outdoor-image-we-re-really-a-bunch-of-wowsers-20190813-p52gkg.html
    This is an interesting dynamic in the UK. Labour’s deputy leader Tom Watson has urged his party to work with the Liberal Democrats in order to stop a no-deal Brexit, as the party’s new leader Jo Swinson made clear she would work with Watson, despite having ruled out an alliance with Jeremy Corbyn.
    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/aug/13/tom-watson-urges-labour-to-work-with-liberal-democrats
    Federal prosecutors in New York have shifted their focus to possible charges against anyone who assisted or enabled Jeffrey Epstein in what authorities say was his rampant sexual abuse of underage girls.
    https://outline.com/ZEA4bm
    And right on cue the FBI has raided Jeffrey Epstein’s private island in the Caribbean, in a further sign the death of the financier will not halt scrutiny of his alleged sex trafficking crimes.
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/aug/13/fbi-raids-jeffrey-epsteins-private-caribbean-island
    Time for your morning emetic.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/visit-to-trump-country-on-the-cards-for-scott-morrison-s-us-trip-20190813-p52glp.html

    Cartoon Corner

    David Rowe in Hong Kong.

    Cathy Wilcox with Morrison’s contribution to climate change in the Pacific Islands.

    More so from David Pope!

    And Fiona Katauskas joins in.

    From Matt Golding.






    Alan Moir.

    Peter Broelman and Huawei.

    I don’t know whose this is.

    Zanetti delights in putting the boot into Shorten.

    Cathy Wilcox with Epstein’s death.

    Jon Kudelka also goes to the pacific islands.
    https://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/c5920186861b24b113be09ef1c8d8787?width=1024

    From the US










  6. William,

    I think you might have meant “tome”. 🙂


    • The Federation Press has published a second edition of the most heavily thumbed tone in my psephological library, …

  7. I’m speechless!

    Three years ago, Rickey Halbert was torn about whether to vote for President Trump.

    On the one hand, he had read about Trump’s extramarital affairs and the women who alleged he had sexually assaulted them. Halbert, a Defense Department employee, didn’t think the candidate matched his moral compass.

    Then again, he believed Trump would reduce the number of abortions in the country.

    In the end, he said, that convinced him to vote for the president, like most of his fellow evangelicals.

    In the years since, he’s watched as Trump restricted abortion access, rolled back gay rights and tried to reduce both legal and illegal immigration. He’s listened as Trump has made racist statements and been accused of rape.

    He has reached the same conclusion as so many evangelicals across the country: In 2020, he’ll support the president. This time, it won’t be a hard choice.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/evangelicals-arent-turned-off-by-trumps-first-term–theyre-delighted-by-it/2019/08/11/3911bc88-a990-11e9-a3a6-ab670962db05_story.html

  8. Urban Wronski @UrbanWronski
    4m
    “Australia’s going to meet its 2030 Paris commitments. Australia’s going to smash its 2020 commitments when it comes to meeting our emissions reduction targets … And that is a point that I’ll be making again when I meet with Pacific leaders. ”
    They know you are lying, ScoMo.

  9. lizzie @ #14 Wednesday, August 14th, 2019 – 8:26 am

    Urban Wronski @UrbanWronski
    4m
    “Australia’s going to meet its 2030 Paris commitments. Australia’s going to smash its 2020 commitments when it comes to meeting our emissions reduction targets … And that is a point that I’ll be making again when I meet with Pacific leaders. ”
    They know you are lying, ScoMo.

    It’s an accounting trick wot did it.

  10. Peter Lewis from Essential makes an astute point that Labor should take up (going by today’s analysis of Essential):

    Although Labor has kicked the stage three tax cuts down the road, these findings suggest there is an argument to block the tax package for high-income earners when the time comes to frame its policy for the next federal election.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/commentisfree/2019/aug/13/there-is-growing-empathy-for-those-on-newstart-the-dynamics-of-welfare-politics-are-changing

  11. As Alan Austin pointed out in IA yesterday, Britain still has a top marginal tax rate on high income earners of 45%. That is how they continue to fund their more generous welfare system. Australia is becoming an extreme outlier on tax.

  12. I’ve had a quick look at the twitter feed of Seth Abramson after sprocket made mention of it yesterday.
    It is a very interesting twitterfeed. Lots of information that many would not be aware of.

    Worth a look for those interested in getting a sense of what is really going on with respect to Epstein etc.

  13. http://on.theatln.tc/BcXGrCK
    The point is that it is common for prisoners to die in American jails and prisons. Terrible systems and badly trained sociopaths don’t suddenly become good when a high profile prisoner arrives. Epstein died from the neglect, incompetence, and empathy deficit that define American correctional facilities.

  14. Always good value

    Rick Wilson
    @TheRickWilson
    ·
    7h
    Yes, America, it’s true.

    I’ll be appearing this Friday night on
    @RealTimers
    with
    @billmaher
    !

  15. Nicholas

    Nah Epstein did not die by accident or badly trained people.
    It was an intentional act, and if you believe otherwise you are very naive

  16. https://www.newsweek.com/myberniestory-trends-americans-share-why-theyre-voting-sanders-2020-he-will-cancel-all-1453910

    “Tens of thousands of Americans took to Twitter on Monday to share why they’re voting for Senator Bernie Sanders in the 2020 presidential election, making the hashtag #MyBernieStory trend to the number one spot.”

    “I was in Afghanistan, spring of 2015, feeling hopeless for many reasons. Then a grumpy old guy from Vermont gave me hope that together we could change course, save the USA, & [the world]. After that deployment I was knocking on doors in Iowa & driving people to caucus. #MyBernieStory,” Twitter user @SnoozeWalk wrote.

  17. It was an intentional act, and if you believe otherwise you are very naive

    There is no evidence of any conspiracy to murder Epstein or encourage him to suicide. But there is voluminous evidence that American jails are dangerous, under-resourced and incompetently run places where many prisoners die.

  18. Britain still has a top marginal tax rate on high income earners of 45%. That is how they continue to fund their more generous welfare system.

    The UK private sector does not fund the UK Government. The UK Government funds the private sector. The taxes levied by the UK Government are important because they control inflation, reduce inequality, and influence behaviours via incentives and disincentives.

  19. Nicholas says:
    Wednesday, August 14, 2019 at 9:21 am

    https://www.newsweek.com/myberniestory-trends-americans-share-why-theyre-voting-sanders-2020-he-will-cancel-all-1453910

    “Tens of thousands of Americans took to Twitter on Monday to share why they’re voting for Senator Bernie Sanders in the 2020 presidential election, making the hashtag #MyBernieStory trend to the number one spot.”

    Pretty hard to vote for him if he doesn’t gain the nomination! 😆

  20. Victoria says:
    Wednesday, August 14, 2019 at 9:27 am

    Nicholas

    You can believe what you want regarding the Epstein matter.

    And conspiracy theories and speculation are so much more fun¿

  21. Believing unsubstantiated conspiracy theories when there is an amply documented and very compelling regular explanation is not smart or sophisticated. It is the result of cognitive dissonance.

  22. Nicholas

    Yeah I reckon you’re right. The most high profile prisoner currently in a prison on suicide watch was being conveniently watched by incompetent guards. Cos that’s how they roll.
    As I said you can believe what you want

  23. Great news from a SurveyUSA poll about presidential general election contests.

    https://www.newsweek.com/biden-sanders-poll-trump-2020-election-1453658

    “Former Vice President Joe Biden and independent Senator Bernie Sanders, both currently competing for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination, would trounce Trump by eight points in the popular vote, according to the poll.

    Biden and Sanders earned the support of 50 percent of U.S. registered voters, SurveyUSA found, while Trump lagged behind at 42-percent support.”

    Clearly Bernie is the only option. With him in charge the world has a chance of averting the worst of global warming. If corporate proxy Biden wins, we will burn to a crisp. The stakes couldn’t be higher. Go Bernie!

  24. Victoria says:
    Wednesday, August 14, 2019 at 9:39 am

    Nicholas

    And I should add. Cognitive dissonance is seeing the world in black and white

    As opposed to a psychedelic rainbow!

  25. Coalition Tea Lady @ItsBouquet
    18m
    “Julie Bishop now says attacks on Julia Gillard were grotesque and brutal. Did she say anything at the time?”

    She certainly did … was at the front of the queue putting the boot in.

  26. Cognitive dissonance covers many situations, including the mental struggle of a person who seeks to maintain an unsubstantiated belief in the face of evidence that contradicts the belief.

  27. Sanders is a splitter. He ain’t gonna get there. If he does get there he will be unable to do anything. Politics is a team sport. Sanders has no team. He will not accomplish anything.

  28. Nicholas @ #22 Wednesday, August 14th, 2019 – 9:09 am

    Epstein died from the neglect, incompetence, and empathy deficit that define American correctional facilities.

    You make several assertions there with no proof whatevoer. The only true claim is that American correctional facilities generally provide abhorrent conditions for convicts.

    Epstein wasn’t a convict yet. He was being held pending trial. You don’t see many people with that status falling prey to the shitty prison conditions (and doubly so when they’re high profile and likely to provide evidence against even higher profile targets), because usually when you’re remanded pending trial you’re not just thrown in amongst the general prison population.

  29. Nicholas
    Sanders will perform well in the primaries. He showed us that last time and has been impressive again. We need the field to reduce (now!) so we can better judge the other candidates under the full blow torch. Because up until now it has been a circus.

  30. It wouldn’t surprise me if they are being conservative with their predictions. The price differential could be closed much sooner than they say.

    Half of all new cars sold in Australia by 2035 will be electric, forecast predicts

    New government analysis on electric vehicles suggests Labor’s election policy was not out of step with path country is already on

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/aug/14/half-of-all-new-cars-sold-in-australia-by-2035-will-be-electric-forecast

  31. I tell you what, it will be a truly enormous effort if the ACT government gets back in for a 6th term in a row. It’s been a Greens/Labor minority government for 4 out of it’s 5 terms (the first term plus the three most recent terms). For any government to win 5 terms in a row is an enormous feat, but to do it when in minority government is even more impressive. It shows just how well the ACT Greens and ACT Labor work together.

    Labor is probably right to be worried though after the federal election. Canberra is very anti-Liberal (they always do incredible damage to the city’s local economy when they’re in power when they start culling the public service) but that doesn’t mean Labor or even the Greens should be taking it for granted.

  32. Sanders is rating less well this time than in 2015/6 at least partly because there is a lot more competition. As well, the last time Sanders benefited in the Primaries from votes cast by Republicans who were trying to make sure that Clinton did not win the nomination and who had no intention of ever voting Democrat in the final race.

    Sanders is not sufficiently popular among Democrats to either win the nomination or the Presidency. He is a trump-equin….a splitter. The reason he lacks support among Democrats is because he has made a career out of attacking Democrats. His campaign is an anti-Democratic campaign. He will most likely not get more than around 15% support from Democrats…not enough to win….unless Republicans also vote tactically to help him out.

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