Something for the weekend

Random notes: a WA only poll on coronavirus, some detail on the elections in Queensland last Saturday, and a look at Donald Trump’s counter-intuitive poll bounce.

The West Australian had a Painted Dog Research poll of 500 respondents on attitudes to the coronavirus, with field work dates undisclosed – or at least its website did, as I can’t see any mention of it in the hard copy. What the online report ($) tells us is that 71% believed the federal government should “enforce a full lockdown”; that 25% expected three months of social distancing, and 23% six months; that 18% were extremely worried about losing their job by September, with another 42% slightly worried; and that 68% were most concerned about the health impact, compared with 28% for the economic impact.

Other than that, I have the following to relate about Queensland’s elections on the weekend, which I’ll put here as the dedicated post on the subject doesn’t seem to be doing much business:

• As the dust settles on the troubled counting process, it’s clear the Liberal National Party has enjoyed something of a triumph in the election for Brisbane City Council, extending their 16-year grip on the lord mayoralty and quite probably repeating their feat from 2016 of winning 19 out 26 wards on the council. Incumbent Adrian Schrinner leads Labor’s Pat Condren in the lord mayoral race by a margin of 5.5%, although the latter gained a 4.0% swing off Graham Quirk’s landslide win in 2016. The ABC projection is awarding 17 ward seats to the LNP, to which they look very likely to add Enoggera, while maintaining a slender lead over the Greens in Paddington. The Greens’ combined council ward vote is up 3.4% on 2016 to 17.9%, and they retained their sole existing seat of The Gabba with swings of 12.2% on the primary vote and 8.5% on two-party preferred.

• However, it was a less good performance by the LNP in the two state by-elections, where all the detail is laid out at my results pages for Bundamba and Currumbin. The party finished a distant third behind One Nation in Bundamba, which remains a safe seat for Labor, and have only narrowly held on in Currumbin, where Labor has achieved a rare feat for a governing party in picking up a swing of nearly 2% at a by-election. Party leader Deb Frecklington would nonetheless be relieved by the result, since a defeat in Currumbin, which a pre-election poll suggested was in prospect, would surely have imperilled her leadership, despite her being able to point to the highly unusual circumstances in which the election was held.

• Speaking of which, I offer the following numbers on the ways the enrolled voters of Bundamba and Currumbin did and didn’t vote, with the qualification that there is an indeterminate number of postals still to be counted — perhaps rather a few of them, given I understood that there had been a surge in applications (although it seems a number of applicants never received their ballots).

Finally, a few thoughts on the situation in the United States, elaborating on a subject covered in yesterday’s post here by Adrian Beaumont – you are encouraged to comment on that thread if you have something specific to offer on matters American, and in particular on Donald Trump’s confounding opinion poll bounce over the past few weeks. I sought to put the latter event in context in a paywalled Crikey article on Monday, the key feature of which is the following comparison of his approval rating trend, as measured by FiveThirtyEight, with comparable trend measures of my own for Angela Merkel, Boris Johnson, Emmanuel Macron and Scott Morrison.

The upshot is that leaders the world over are enjoying a “rally around the flag” approval bounce, and that Donald Trump’s looks meagre indeed compared with his colleagues across the Atlantic. I feel pretty sure that the lack of a clear bounce for Scott Morrison is down to the fact that there have been no new numbers since Essential Research’s poll of over a fortnight ago, with the surges for Merkel, Johnson and Macron being concentrated since that time.

It’s also interesting to observe that Trump’s improvement has not been consistently observed. The chart below records his trends so far from this year from the five most prolific pollsters. For some reason, Rasmussen, the pollster that is usually most favourable to him — and which is accordingly the most frequent subject of his vainglorious tweets on the odd occasion when it reaches 50% — has in fact found his approval rating going in the direction he deserves. There is also no sign of change from the Ipsos series. However, the improving trend from the other three is more in line with the many other pollsters included in the FiveThirtyEight series, hence its overall picture of his best ratings since his post-election honeymoon.

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.

2,303 comments on “Something for the weekend”

  1. Sally McManus is reserving the right to do battle.

    Christian Porter has ordered unions and Labor not to stand in the way of changes to the Fair Work Act needed to implement the government’s $130 billion wage subsidy, setting up a potential showdown when parliament sits on Wednesday

  2. I have to ask, what got the ball rolling on the Intellectual PissAnts Hurk…I mean Hacka and Enough is Enough earlier?

    Mm, curried snorks and rice, just right for a cold evening. Probably not going to need the ‘lecky blanket later although a gas mask might be called for.

  3. Dio

    One the Coroner is on board he/she directs the police inquiry.

    Plus the coroner is broader. The police are not going to second guess NSW Health. The coroner can.

    In the old days, NSW WorkCover Authority would have had a go too.

  4. BB

    Last month I saw a presentation from an infectious diseases professor who stated that the overall mortality rate could be lower due to social distancing and WFH decreasing transmissions of other diseases, decreased traffic and work related deaths etc

    WA influenza results for last week was 10 positive from 549 tests or 2% – lowest for the last 5 years at this time. It was 15% positive in Feb

    Gastro presentations to ED are down 50% and admissions down 66% cf Feb

    I have a nice chart of flu trends for the last 5 years…if someone can tell me how to post it!

  5. The jurisdictional issues loom large too.

    If the Coroner tried to get ABF records, things might hot up.

    A precedent was when the NSW branch of the RSPCA tried to prosecute a Commonwealth employed vet concerning animal exports.

  6. It appears the Agriculture Department has updated its advice to cruise liners, possibly after the gate was left open and the herd escaped..

    But I suspect this still applies to the Master of the Ruby Princess

    Vessel reporting requirements and the Biosecurity Act 2015
    Vessel masters and shipping agents are reminded:

    To read and understand the BSD directions and conditions, and keep a copy of the current document on board the vessel for the duration of the voyage in Australia.

    Any changes in circumstances during the voyage in Australian waters, particularly changes to the human health of travellers, must be reported to the MNCC as soon as practicable.

    That a failure to report accurately or comply with a requirement under the Biosecurity Act may result in penalties, including infringement notices, civil penalties or criminal prosecutions.

  7. Shellbell
    What is to achieved by investigating the nursing home.
    Do you believe someone deliberately infecting residents.

  8. shellbell
    I imagine no RC while the criminal and coronial investigations happen.
    The RC should be for the whole shebang; preparedness, quarantine, healthcare, state-national issues etc.

  9. From the Biosecurity Act 2015

    533 Civil penalty provision for false or misleading documents
    (1) A person is liable to a civil penalty if:
    (a) the person produces a document to another person; and
    (b) the person does so knowing that the document is false or misleading; and
    (c) the document is produced in compliance or purported compliance with this Act.
    Civil penalty: 60 penalty units.
    (2) Subsection (1) does not apply if the document is not false or misleading in a material particular.
    Note: A defendant bears an evidential burden in relation to the matter in this subsection (see section 96 of the Regulatory Powers Act).
    (3) Subsection (1) does not apply to a person who produces a document if the document is accompanied by a written statement signed by the person or, in the case of a body corporate, by a competent officer of the body corporate:
    (a) stating that the document is, to the knowledge of the first‑mentioned person, false or misleading in a material particular; and
    (b) setting out, or referring to, the material particular in which the document is, to the knowledge of the first‑mentioned person, false or misleading.
    Note: A defendant bears an evidential burden in relation to the matter in this subsection (see section 96 of the Regulatory Powers Act).
    Division 5—General rules about offences and civil penalty provisions
    534 Physical elements of offences
    (1) This section applies if a provision of this Act provides that a person contravening another provision of this Act (the conduct rule provision) commits an offence.
    (2) For the purposes of applying Chapter 2 of the Criminal Code to the offence, the physical elements of the offence are set out in the conduct rule provision.
    Note: Chapter 2 of the Criminal Code sets out general principles of criminal responsibility.

  10. Puffy

    Will you be wearing one of these?


  11. lizzie @ #2102 Sunday, April 5th, 2020 – 5:58 pm

    Sally McManus is reserving the right to do battle.

    Christian Porter has ordered unions and Labor not to stand in the way of changes to the Fair Work Act needed to implement the government’s $130 billion wage subsidy, setting up a potential showdown when parliament sits on Wednesday

    Porter is giving orders now or is some reporter pumping his tyres?

  12. Assantdj

    It is nothing sinister.

    The coroner may feel the need to ascertain what were the circumstances of the infection so recommendations can be made for future risk assessment etc

  13. It’s Time

    It’s in The Australian so I don’t know whether it’s a direct quote, but Chris Bowen has responded

    I wasn’t aware that’s how Parliament works.

  14. Dio

    There is probably protocols galore between State and Federal Agencies.

    The RC is problematic because of the Federal/State overlap.

    Coroner with the co-operation of Cth agencies. Does not feel like a RC to me.

    But it is going to be one mighty gang-up by the agencies on Carnival or whoever owns RP.

  15. Shellbell
    In that case add the cluster of cancer patients and staff and airport workers.
    In the long run a lot of work is going to need to be done, this should primarily be to further efforts to help in the future.
    Investigating a nursing homes just because it had some of the first cases would just increase public outrage.

  16. @AndrewCatsaras
    There’s some evidence now (from Iceland & Ruby Princess) to suggest asymptomatic carriers of #COVID19 are at least 50% of the infections, therefore the infection rate would have to be at least double the notified numbers.
    The ACT random sampling tests will be highly instructive.

  17. Confessions @ #1965 Sunday, April 5th, 2020 – 2:26 pm

    BK @ #1956 Sunday, April 5th, 2020 – 12:38 pm

    The second trumpet section of majestic fanfare was used to introduce the parliamentary broadcast when it was, quite rightly, on Local ABC.
    I remember being woken by it at 7 am when I lived in Perth and it was 10 am in Canberra
    And many, many years ago the local ABC radio heralded its sports reports with the “Thunder and Lightning Polka”.

    The conductor reminds me of Jack Nicholson!

    BK. The Thunder and Lightning polka introducing the local ABC sports results at 6.00 o’clock. That takes me back to the late 40’s and well into the fifties. I well remember the announcer saying something like. “We now cross to the Adelaide Oval to Arnold Ewens and Victor Richardson for their summary of the Sheffield Shield game between SA and Victoria”. If I’m not mistaken your father would have been mentioned many times during his career with SA.

  18. Chrisken @11:07am

    Does anyone have any research linking Covid and hypertension ? And are they linking the ACE/ARB inhibitors to the reason?
    Many people take Micardis and that drug is in this group so am keen to clarify this.

    Sorry, only just caught up with this morning.
    Here’s an episode of MedCram on Youtube that explains this, including ARBs and ACEIs.

  19. Assantdj

    [In the long run a lot of work is going to need to be done, this should primarily be to further efforts to help in the future.]

    Yes, that is the second most important function after identifying date, time, whereabouts and cause of death.

  20. Bushfire Bill says:
    Sunday, April 5, 2020 at 1:09 pm
    Mine’s 3.4% for now. What’s yours?

    I think it is a little higher, I argued as follows.

    The aim is to keep the principle constant, if success the principle will remain constant each day. Compound interest does not apply as there is no increase or decrease. You need interest to replace the principle as you lose in over 21 days.
    100/21 = 4.7%. That is 4.7 recover and 4.7% get added to the active cases and the number of active cases remain constant.

  21. “Diogenessays:
    Sunday, April 5, 2020 at 6:10 pm
    What about the AFP?”

    I would imagine the AFP would have decided that there’s nothing to investigate by now.

  22. max:

    [‘There’ll never be a right time to take away the safety net, and the coalition are as likely to be punished for withdrawing it..’]

    Once the destitute have a taste of living reasonably – if $1100 a fortnight is considered as such – it seems to me that the Morrison Government will be in deep nitrogenous waste when it restores it back. I mean to say, doubling Newstart (or whatever it’s now called) is an implicit admission that the allowance is woefully iinadequate.

  23. Aqualung

    I hope this cheers people up.

    Say hello to grandbaby aqualung.
    She arrived last night.

    She is gorgeous – congratulations!!!

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