Around the traps

As the government approaches the middle of its term, the first sighting of early election speculation in the wild.

Dennis Shanahan of The Australian reckons “two basic assumptions are driving the economic and political debate in 2021”, and that one of these is that there will be an election late next year. The other is that COVID-19 restrictions will start to ease in the coming months; “neither is certain”. The government’s election window opens in the middle of the year, at which point the Senators given six-year terms after the 2016 double dissolution will enter the final year of the terms, the period in which the half-Senate election to replace them may be held.

That will do as a kick-off for a new open thread, which is needed because there are so many other posts flying around at the moment. For convenience, these include:

• Adrian Beaumont’s New Zealand live election count post, which will begin in earnest when polls close at 7pm New Zealand time and 5pm Australian eastern daylight time – to be followed an hour later by my own live commentary post on the Australian Territory election. And if you’re a Crikey subscriber, you can read my collective preview of the two here.

• Also from Adrian Beaumont, a review of the US situation.

• A post on a Newspoll result showing Labor leading 52-48 in Queensland.

• Another post on the Queensland campaigning detailing relevant recent developments.

• A post on a Ten News uComms poll from New South Wales showing strong support for Gladys Berejiklian.

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.

1,345 comments on “Around the traps”

  1. What really grinds my gears is the underlying assumption in all the media reporting that Morrison is such a clever political dick that he is cruising to victory at the next federal election!

  2. Citizen from the old thread

    Boris stuffs up the Covid response badly and now tells Brits that it’s probably a no-deal Brexit.

    I always suspected that that’s what the Tories wanted all along.

  3. Minor correction: “Australian Territory election” -> “Australian Capital Territory election”.

    Pre-polling was encouraged, with a three week window including both weeks of school holidays; I certainly took advantage of it, and expect many others did too.

    For people voting today: “Very high (90%) chance of showers, most likely during this afternoon and evening. The chance of a gusty thunderstorm during this afternoon and evening.”

  4. From the NZ/US thread:

    ‘Trump will be 78 by 2024

    Mugabe was 93 when he ‘resigned’.’

    Don’t forget Betty Windsor is still going strong at 98 and Mahatthir Mohammed just retired again at 95.

  5. An assailant has decapitated a history teacher in France who had recently shown cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed in class.

    The attacker was said to be enraged after the teacher displayed cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed to pupils, French media said.

    Witnesses watched the man decapitate his victim — who was also male — in broad daylight close to the school in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine.

    Police officers rushed to the scene after the alarm was raised and the killer fled towards the northwestern Paris commune of Eragny-sur-Oise.

    The attacker was later shot by police near Paris as they tried to arrest him and he died of his injuries.

    He’s believed to be an 18-year-old Chechen man born in Moscow.

  6. The ‘disobedience’ of the visitors from NZ who caught a flight into Melbourne, under the noses of Border Force and the airline that booked them, illustrates just how difficult it is to keep the lid on peoples’ actions.

  7. What really grinds my gears is the underlying assumption in all the media reporting that Morrison is such a clever political dick…

    The trouble is, in the game of politics, he actually is, although it helps having most of the media and most of the ”natural” fonts of power on-side.

    For actual achievement, cross out ”clever”.

  8. Good morning Dawn Patrollers

    Peter Hartcher says that democracy is fragile, and it should be handled with care. It is a very good read.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/democracy-is-fragile-handle-with-care-20201016-p565vm.html
    The more Ross Gittins study the budget, the less impressed he is. He describes it as being big on political correctness but weak on job creation.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/no-bang-for-buck-budget-is-big-on-political-correctness-weak-on-job-creation-20201015-p565kc.html
    These days the biggest threat to Australian prosperity and security seems to Crispin Hull to be losing, dumb, donor-driven government decisions.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6970966/biggest-threat-to-our-prosperity-is-dumb-donor-driven-govt-decisions/?cs=14264
    Governments are handing out vast amounts of money at speed with less supervision as they try to stem the economic pain of the pandemic. It’s a recipe for trouble, writes the AFR’s John Kehoe who wonders who is watching over the rivers of COVID-19 cash.
    https://www.afr.com/politics/federal/rivers-of-covid-19-cash-make-a-federal-watchdog-essential-20201014-p5654c
    Phil Coorey looks at how Labor is lining itself up for the next election campaign.
    https://www.afr.com/politics/labor-resists-going-back-to-the-future-20201016-p565o6
    Christopher Knaus reveals that three federal infrastructure department officials and federal MP Angus Taylor separately met with Louise Waterhouse while she lobbied for potentially lucrative changes to her vast landholdings near the Western Sydney airport. Fancy that! Angus Taylor of ALL people!
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/oct/17/louise-waterhouse-met-with-top-officials-and-angus-taylor-over-land-near-western-sydney-airport
    Karen Middleton reports that legal experts are questioning the basis on which national cabinet deliberations are deemed to be secret, and the issue has now led to an Administrative Appeals Tribunal case.
    https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/politics/2020/10/17/challenging-the-secrecy-national-cabinet/160285320010576
    And she writes that as well as criticising the performance of the prime minister’s department, the auditor-general’s midterm review has a warning about unethical behaviour in the public sector.
    https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/politics/2020/10/17/auditor-general-takes-pmc-task/160285320010578
    John Silvester whimsically takes us through the A to Z of pandemic politics.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/just-hang-on-the-a-to-z-of-pandemic-politics-20201014-p56529.html
    If ever we needed a gender lens on government policy, it is now, declares Natasha Stott-Despoja.
    https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/opinion/topic/2020/10/17/after-the-virus-plan-women/160285320010564
    Paul Kelly reckons Daniel Andrews now presides over a cover-up whose full dimensions are yet to be revealed.
    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/inquirer/berejiklian-andrews-and-hard-questions-of-political-integrity/news-story/de60772655e45a407f67ccd93c66e46c
    Several departmental sources have this week claimed that a deliberate decision was made by Victorian DHHS and its legal advisers not to give certain emails to the inquiry. Hmm.
    https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/hotel-inquiry-to-hold-extraordinary-sitting-as-new-emails-contradict-sutton-s-account-20201016-p565v3.html
    The media we consume influences our compliance with Covid-19 recommendations. Poor media coverage in Victoria is impeding the state’s recovery, writes Michael Tanner.
    https://www.michaelwest.com.au/megaphone-madness-how-reckless-media-impeded-victorias-covid-19-recovery/
    Cait Kelly tells us that a leading public health expert was warned that the Morrison government must work with its Victorian counterpart to make sure there is no third wave instead of undermining the state’s public health message.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2020/10/17/covid-19-nsw-vic-morrison/
    Following the death of her mother from Covid-19, Sian Prior has encountered the ugly ways in which the virus has been politicised by the Victorian opposition and even strangers in the street.
    https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/politics/2020/10/17/politics-pandemic/160285320010577
    Kate McClymont reveals that the business plans of disgraced MP Daryl Maguire are in ruins with one prospective partner found dead in a pool and another in debt to Chinese business figures.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/maguire-s-post-politics-plans-crumble-amid-business-failures-and-corruption-claims-20201016-p565v9.html
    John Lord describes another week in a government going from bad to worse.
    https://theaimn.com/another-week-in-a-government-going-from-bad-to-worse/
    A great editorial from the Saturday Paper looking at Angus Taylor and how we need a federal ICAC.
    https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/opinion/editorial/2020/10/17/taylors-super-grass/160285320010580
    Christopher Knaus and Michael McGowan wonder if a ‘close personal relationship’ could bring down the premier.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/oct/17/gladys-berejiklian-and-the-wheeler-dealer-mp-could-a-close-personal-relationship-bring-down-the-premier
    What stunned Julia Baird about the reaction to the ICAC revelations this week is the enormous public sympathy for Berejiklian, and the number of women who threw their hands up in the air and said: “Je suis Gladys!”. Julia is not one of them.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/i-was-stunned-by-the-number-of-women-who-declared-je-suis-gladys-20201016-p565tl.html
    The real story this week is not Gladys Berejiklian’s relationship with Daryl Maguire but whether she knew the details of his deal-making – although her supporters would rather you focus on the former says Mike Seccombe.
    https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/politics/2020/10/17/poor-gladys-rings-hollow-after-premiers-icac-grilling/160285320010562
    The more we know, the bleaker Gladys Berejiklian’s future looks, says the SMH editorial.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/the-more-we-know-the-bleaker-gladys-berejiklian-s-future-looks-20201016-p565v4.html
    Given the evidence, the intrusion of Icac’s public hearings into Gladys Berejiklian’s private life is justified, argues Quentin Dempster.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/oct/16/given-the-evidence-the-intrusion-of-icacs-public-hearings-into-gladys-berejiklians-private-life-is-justfied
    Daryl Maguire has raised doubts about when their “close personal relationship” began, telling a corruption inquiry it started earlier than the Premier indicated.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/maguire-says-close-personal-relationship-with-premier-could-have-started-in-2013-20201016-p565uk.html
    Jennifer Duke reports that Peter Costello has warned that the gap between company and personal tax rates is encouraging individuals to corporatise themselves to avoid paying their share.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/company-taxes-and-top-income-tax-rates-too-high-peter-costello-20201016-p565ol.html
    Federal police have launched an investigation into a Commonwealth deal that sparked a damning audit over a $32.8 million payment to billionaire political donors for land near the new airport in western Sydney. Every day it seems like another scream for a decent federal ICAC.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/potential-criminal-offences-police-investigate-airport-land-sale-20201016-p565to.html
    In an October 2020 speech, Home Affairs Secretary Mike Pezzullo increased his list of major threats to Australia from the seven he gave us in March 2019. Abul Rizvi tells us how the two lists compare.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/pezzullo-swaps-dark-kaleidoscope-for-a-rear-view-mirror,14418
    Crown chairman Helen Coonan lack of remorse about the casino giant’s culture and behaviour won’t go down well with investors who’ve had a gutful., writes Adele Ferguson.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/investors-have-had-a-gutful-of-crown-and-its-butt-covering-board-20201016-p565vb.html
    A bullying culture, death threats, criminal influence, a negligent board and a charade of independence. It is hard to see how Crown can proceed in its present form, says the editorial in the AFR.
    https://www.afr.com/companies/games-and-wagering/easy-decision-to-make-on-crown-s-nsw-licence-20201016-p565o8
    The high-profile scandal that brought down one of Australia’s most popular local government politicians, Ipswich mayor Paul Pisasale, could help lift the lid on illegal council activities, writes the AFR’s Liam Walsh.
    https://www.afr.com/politics/prostitutes-and-bags-full-of-cash-the-downfall-of-a-local-mayor-20201015-p565fa
    Ben Smee tells us why Queensland’s opposition leader wants party’s anti-abortion push kept out of election sight.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/oct/17/why-queenslands-opposition-leader-wants-partys-anti-abortion-push-kept-out-of-election-sight
    Mike Foley thinks that the NSW government is planning to weaken its reforms and limit protections for koalas on privately owned farmland in a big win for the Nationals party.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/liberals-back-down-on-koalas-after-barilaro-bluster-20201016-p565uf.html
    Margaret Simons explains why Kevin Rudd is determined to see an end to Murdoch’s media dominance.
    https://www.theguardian.com/media/2020/oct/17/culture-of-fear-why-kevin-rudd-is-determined-to-see-an-end-to-murdochs-media-dominance
    With its coronavirus consensus in tatters, Europe faces a grim winter ahead, writes Bevan Shields.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/with-its-coronavirus-consensus-in-tatters-europe-faces-a-grim-winter-ahead-20201016-p565mc.html
    In what can hardly be called a surprise, Boris Johnson has told the UK to prepare for a no-deal Brexit.
    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/oct/16/boris-johnson-tells-uk-prepare-for-a-no-deal-brexit
    Tom Switzer writes that Joe Biden’s radical agenda should scare Middle America. However, the stench of failure around Trump is so great and the mood of the nation is so grim that there is a growing sense that this election is Biden’s to lose.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/trump-defeat-will-transform-us-in-way-we-haven-t-seen-in-decades-20201015-p565ew.html
    The Age reports that US intelligence agencies warned the White House last year that Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani was the target of an influence operation by Russian intelligence, according to four former officials familiar with the matter.
    https://www.theage.com.au/world/north-america/giuliani-targeted-by-russia-to-feed-misinformation-to-trump-us-agencies-20201016-p565s6.html
    Progressives have no choice but to elect Joe Biden in the U.S. Presidential Election, despite some on the Left saying that they won’t support him, writes Martin Hirst.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/a-joe-biden-victory-is-important-for-progressive-politics,14416
    Without warning, the government has removed all support from hundreds of refugees in community detention – denying them housing and income support, writes Rick Morton.
    https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/politics/2020/10/17/exclusive-war-refugees-moves-final-phase-onshore/160285320010560
    Troy Bramston writes, “The reality is that Trump is on track to lose by a landslide. This has been evident all year. Why? Not because the election is rigged, the political system is corrupt or the media is biased, but because Trump has been a catastrophic president.”
    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/politics/us-election-2020-voters-are-tired-of-trumps-catastrophic-presidency/news-story/072651acec9e171b5be8242b087817fd
    One person hoping Donald Trump wins is Boris Johnson writes Jonathan Freedland.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/oct/16/donald-trump-boris-johnson-joe-biden-us-president-labour
    Trump and Biden town halls: two channels, two candidates, two planets, writes David Smith from Washington.
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/oct/15/trump-biden-town-halls-two-channels-two-candidates-two-planets
    Trump feels great. But what about the 215,000 Americans who died of COVID, asks Warwick McFadyen.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/trump-feels-great-but-what-about-the-215-000-americans-who-died-of-covid-20201014-p5651z.html
    A retired French surgeon has been charged with the rape and sexual assault of more than 300 people, a vast majority of whom were under 15, in what could be France’s biggest-ever paedophilia and sexual abuse case. There can be no question about his nomination for “Arsehole of the Week”.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/retired-french-surgeon-faces-more-than-300-paedophilia-and-abuse-charges-20201017-p565y8.html

    Cartoon Corner

    David Rowe



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    From the US












  9. Has the media , called for Morrison and Berejiklian to resign ,over the passengers from New Zealand allowed to break the Bubble , going to Melbourne from Sydney

  10. ‘You have your reasons for supporting a slightly less corrupt option but please don’t shame other voters for supporting parties that make a forceful case for progressive change.

    A key difference between you and me is that I don’t shame the “lesser of two evils” voters…’

    So Nicholas is allowed to denigrate and shame people who don’t vote the way he does because he’s the Good Guy. People who don’t vote the way he does, however, are not allowed to argue back.

    You don’t have to be intolerant and dictatorial to vote Green, but jeessh, it sure helps.

  11. After a quick perusal of BK’s valuable collection this morning, it seems to me that the independent ‘news papers’ might be winning over the Murdoch ones. Perhaps Mr Rudd should concentrate on TV and radio instead.

  12. zoomster,
    Nicholas is simply delusional. It’s a symptom of Cult Mentality. The blinkers get applied and rational thought flies out the window. A person like him then only sees things through the prism of their stoutly-held, not open to rational discourse, beliefs. Sad.

    I mean the guy still hasn’t disowned his belief in Tara Reade, from what I’ve seen, fcs!

  13. Thanks BK
    From the Saturday Paper – the company employing (exploiting) international students which is behind many of the COCID outbreaks in Melbourne!!
    https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/health/2020/10/17/where-victorias-second-wave-cases-are-still-occurring/160285320010571

    Saturday morning there is LOTS of reading: I get an email from Aeon/Psyche with a weekly recharge of philosophy/psychology. This one on Hannah Arendt and the connection between loneliness and totalitarianism.
    https://aeon.co/essays/for-hannah-arendt-totalitarianism-is-rooted-in-loneliness

  14. I don’t denigrate voters who decide that “lesser of two evils” is their preferred course of action in a FPTP electoral system.

    In a preferential voting system it makes a lot less sense to vote that way but I still respect voters’ right to arrive at their own conclusions. It is the responsibility of candidates to try to win voters over.

    Centrists often don’t grasp that reality. Shaming and blaming voters is a big part of their approach to politics. They have disdain for vast swathes of the electorate, including a lot of people whose votes are genuinely up for grabs if you actually try to appeal to them with policies that would improve their wellbeing.

  15. Morrison, Frydenberg and Hunt are being irresponsible. Morrison in particular is constantly trying to use his authority to influence Andrews.

    The Morrison government must work with its Victorian counterpart to make sure there is no third wave instead of undermining the state’s public health message, a leading expert has warned.

    The plea comes as Prime Minister Scott Morrison joined Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and other government ministers on Friday in publicly pressuring Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews to go “as far as possible” when easing restrictions on Sunday.

    UNSW epidemiologist and World Health Organisation coronavirus pandemic adviser Mary-Louise McLaws warned that caving into pressure and easing restrictions as far as some would like might spark a third wave in Victoria.

    “If this is rushed we will get a spike like South Korea did,” Professor McLaws told The New Daily.

    “Victoria is still not getting [COVID-19] under control and they haven’t since March. But they are doing their level best and everyone should take the pressure off.”


    Pointing to the fact that Melbourne’s top five areas for COVID-19 cases in the second wave – Wyndham, Brimbank, Hume, Whittlesea and Melton – are among the city’s most culturally and linguistically diverse, Professor McLaws said NSW needed to improve messaging to communities to avoid the same.

    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2020/10/17/covid-19-nsw-vic-morrison/

  16. I see the gullible, brainwashed flock are going after Nicholas again for daring to think differently to them. It’s amazing how eager they are to defend the corrupt establishment and rich right wing elite against someone who is simply trying to improve the lives of everyday people.

  17. C@t:

    Just listening to the latest New Abnormal. Rick says the Lincoln Project polling in battleground states shows “the concrete is setting” on Trump’s polling. In particular in Wisconsin, Pennsylvannia, Michigan, Iowa (Iowa!) and even in Florida. Although he says Florida will be very close.

  18. John Kelly has dished to friends that Trump is ‘the most flawed person’ he has ever met

    In a new CNN special to air Sunday night called, The Insiders: A Warning from Former Trump Officials, former White House chief of staff, friends of retired Marine Gen. John Kelly report he has dished on President Donald J. Trump as “the most flawed person” he’s ever known.

    “The depths of his dishonesty is just astounding to me,” Kelly reportedly told friends. “The dishonesty, the transactional nature of every relationship, though it’s more pathetic than anything else. He is the most flawed person I have ever met in my life.”

    https://www.rawstory.com/2020/10/john-kelly-has-dished-to-friends-that-trump-is-the-most-flawed-person-hes-ever-met/

  19. Just one new case in Victoria

    Victoria has reported just one new coronavirus case in the past 24 hours, and no new deaths.

    It’s excellent news for the state, with Daniel Andrews set to announce a “significant” lifting of restrictions tomorrow.

    Melbourne’s rolling 14-day average is 8.1; while regional Victoria’s is at 0.5.

    In a tweet, the DHHS said cases with unknown sources were “stable”.

  20. “Trump will be 78 by 2024”

    ***

    TOO OLD!

    …oh no, wait, my mistake! 78 is only too old if you happen to be a left winger. That rule doesn’t apply to establishment dotards. As you were…

  21. Firefox

    ‘I see the gullible, brainwashed flock are going after Nicholas again for daring to think differently to them.’

    No, I’m going after Nicholas because he doesn’t tolerate others thinking differently to him.

    You’d think tolerance, debate and diversity of views would be encouraged by Greens, but apparently no.

  22. Confessions @ #31 Saturday, October 17th, 2020 – 8:38 am

    C@t:

    Just listening to the latest New Abnormal. Rick says the Lincoln Project polling in battleground states shows “the concrete is setting” on Trump’s polling. In particular in Wisconsin, Pennsylvannia, Michigan, Iowa (Iowa!) and even in Florida. Although he says Florida will be very close.

    I’d say this has something to do with it:

    But Ralph Reed, chairman of the nonprofit Faith & Freedom Coalition, told the CNP audience that conservatives are embracing the technique this year.

    “And so our organization is going to be harvesting ballots in churches,” he said. “We’re going to be specifically going in not only to White evangelical churches, but into Hispanic and Asian churches, and collecting those ballots.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/council-national-policy-video/2020/10/14/367f24c2-f793-11ea-a510-f57d8ce76e11_story.html

    Also, Rick Wilson’s latest column for The Daily Beast is scathing:

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/trumps-campaign-is-in-total-collapse-and-that-town-hall-proved-it?ref=topic

    This is also a very good read:

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/chinese-billionaires-network-hyped-hunter-biden-dirt-weeks-before-rudy

  23. zoomster @ #37 Saturday, October 17th, 2020 – 8:47 am

    Firefox

    ‘I see the gullible, brainwashed flock are going after Nicholas again for daring to think differently to them.’

    No, I’m going after Nicholas because he doesn’t tolerate others thinking differently to him.

    You’d think tolerance, debate and diversity of views would be encouraged by Greens, but apparently no.

    Greens also seem to become spiteful little b****es when challenged. 😀

  24. Firefox

    ”I see the gullible, brainwashed flock are going after Nicholas again for daring to think differently to them. It’s amazing how eager they are to defend the corrupt establishment and rich right wing elite…”

    Nicholas was simply stating his views and principles – fair enough. I haven’t gone after anyone. Further, with a couple exceptions, no one here defends “the corrupt establishment and rich right wing elite”.

    In the context of an Australian election, someone who shared Nicholas’ views should vote 1 Green (or other preferred left-green candidate) and down the list preference Labor ahead of L/NP and their fellow travellers like One Nation. In the context of a US election, they should campaign for their principles. Early in the campaign they can support a Green/Left minor candidate if they wish. However, except in the unlikely event that their candidate becomes viable, in the end they must cast a vote for the major party candidate they see as least worst – the Democrat (not stay home) – and urge like-minded voters to do the same.

    Those who want climate and environment action can influence a Democrat administration (and a Labor one here). They can have no influence over a right wing administration.

  25. “You’d think tolerance, debate and diversity of views would be encouraged by Greens, but apparently no.”

    ***

    What are you on about? You’re the ones who are lashing out in bitterness and anger at people like Nicholas and I for daring to have opinions and views that don’t align with yours.

  26. “Greens also seem to become spiteful little b****es when challenged. ”

    ***

    It’s amazing how perfectly you describe yourself sometimes without even knowing it. Your complete lack of self-awareness is truly something to behold.

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