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. lizzie @ #494 Sunday, October 18th, 2020 – 11:31 am

    clem attlee

    Well, I’m happy. I can travel to a major shopping centre instead of my local one. House maintenance and pet grooming are allowed. Retail outlets and hospitality have a fortnight to prepare for opening.

    I am another one – both hubby and I are fairly happy. Most of what I really wanted today is there, and beginning of November for the rest is OK. Gives people time to prepare and stock up. One of the stupid grizzlers yesterday was a hairdresser who only needed to wait another 2 days. Instead copped a large fine.

  2. clem attlee @ #496 Sunday, October 18th, 2020 – 11:31 am

    Rex, if the shops are open four weeks out from Christmas, what sort of crowds dod you think will be out? The shops will be rammed and any advantage form delaying the opening of retail will be lost anyway. Fucking stupid saying that there will be significant easing of the lock down and then basically saying we are still in lockdown. Wow, I can drive around Melbourne now for 25 K doing nothing and going nowhere, instead of 5K.

    You’re clearly in an irrational mood at the moment.

  3. if the shops are open four weeks out from Christmas, what sort of crowds dod you think will be out?

    Minimal sort of crowds. Because the Internet is a thing.

  4. Very convincing electoral result in NZ in favour of effective COVID management. NZ-ers can feel safe in their boots thanks to the leadership of Ardern.

    In the hurly-burly, the Greens have taken a seat from Labour in Central Auckland. Their reward should be exclusion from Government. When the Greens start to take seats from the Nationals – Labour took 15 from them – then the Greens might expect to be seen as contributors. Labour will govern better if they govern alone.

  5. clem

    You’re free to continue to observe the 5km rule, if that suits you better.

    However, given the number of times Melbourne friends of mine have said to me that they’d love to do something, but it’s just outside their 5k zone, I’m sure they’ll be happy.

  6. Andrews has fucked up big time. He should have kept his mouth shut two weeks ago and said nothing about what was planned for today. The place will be seething.

  7. Hmm. The message I hear in this video is, that as a Republican who doesn’t like Trump you can feel safe voting for Biden. You’ll be ridding the party of Trump, but you won’t be risking the socialists ruining the country. That’s an interesting perspective.

    This has been the message being pushed by anti-Trump Republicans for a while now, and the big reason why Biden is a much better candidate than someone like Sanders.

  8. Of the little media attacks in the ACT election I saw, it was actually Labor attacking Greens as ‘crazy’ about gas that was most prominent.

    ACT Labor takes swipe at Greens over ‘crazy’ gas phase-out plan

    This needs a bit of context. It’s a matter of product differentiation. Barr (Labor leader) and Rattenbury (Greens leader) have cooperated well in the last term of government. Gas is well established in Canberra after AGL began supply in the late 1980s. Like many Canberra households, we have gas for heating, stove top and hot water.

    Labor has a plan to replace gas with renewable electricity and the Greens have a plan to replace gas sooner than Labor. This was a bit of a staged argument during the election period, allowing the Greens to emphasise their plan to voters, while allowing Labor to point out that a massive changeover by households from gas to renewable electricity would take time and at considerable cost.

    It must be remembered that Labor has brought in a net 100% renewable electricity supply to the ACT and is working on dealing with transport and other sources of greenhouse emissions through a range of measures. In the new term of government, I am sure the ACT Greens and Labor will continue to cooperate, especially if Rattenbury remains leader.

  9. Logical to keep it a 25km when considering summer population in places like the Mornington Peninsula.

    Can you imagine the danger of transmission in that sardine can environment down there.

  10. Clem

    Don’t you think that 2020 has made people re-evaluate their life style?

    People shop in Camberwell in their “should have been thrown out last winter” trakkie daks

    Will people be able to have big family Xmas dinner? If not, then elaborate food shopping will be curtailed

    Will people be able to or want to participate in the December round of parties?

    Will women need a new summer dress or be happy to update their worn out undies.

    Last year in our family the kids got presents & Kris Kringle for adults with 5 relatives flying in from USA. Lunch will be smaller this year.

    25km radius is to keep people from the badly effected northern suburbs visiting the beach or Dandenong Ranges spreading the virus with them

  11. Watch this space for the next state opinion poll. Don’t be shocked if shows Labor behind. Andrews will be gone within six months I reckon. He over promised and undelivered, which is the worst thing you can do in politics.

  12. Victoria, over the last month I have noticed a big change in sentiment. People who supported Andrews even after the second wave have shifted against him. This was a dumb move politically.

  13. Clem atlee

    What does it matter. Whether the premier is popular or not. It is irrelevant at the moment.
    We are in a pandemic.
    Victoria has a proper winter.
    Lockdown was necessary to control the virus.
    Does anyone like it or want to be going through this. No.

  14. To bushfire Bill , I reckon if Labor had if found a way to deal with the whole Rudd thing witout having to publically humiliate him, Australia’s perception of the ALPs management would be better now. Rudd who worked around the clock during GFC was getting the accolades off the public while LNP were saying Australia dodged a recession through luck and China. When he was a deposed every halfwitted ALP member gave the LNP/conservative media their attack lines.Rudd was unstable, said some ALP MPs and if he was ( thought the general public) the LNP was right, Aus was just plain lucky.When Tony Bourke,Kate Ellis and others lined up to denigrate Rudd on his first challenge against Gillard I knew Abbott was a shoe in and the ALP brand in my state of Qld would struggle at federal level. Thanks NSW right!!!!

  15. lizzie says:
    Sunday, October 18, 2020 at 8:47 am

    This is a pic of Scotty NOT at a Liberal Party fundraiser. Notable to me is the dearth of women.

    That is none other than Sandra Russo whose has made millions from the mismanagement of the unemployed.

  16. Mexicanbeemer

    Sometimes it’s hard to contain my anger at some of these profiteers. All I can do is mutter about the evils of privatisation of services.

  17. No further evidence was needed, but in case it was, Victoria is proof that lockdowns are effective in controlling the spread of coronavirus.

    Only ideological nutjobs or the wilfully stupid would continue to assert otherwise.

  18. The Greens win in Auckland Central was probably at least partly due to tactical voting by Labour supporters there (the Greens winning there meant they would get back into Parliament, and therefore be available as a potential coalition partner, even if they fell below 5% nationally). National don’t seriously contest Epsom (the ACT seat) for the same reason.

    (I also suspect that NZ Labour will keep the Greens in government in some role, knowing that this was a once-in-a-lifetime result and that they will probably need coalition partners next time).

  19. Whatever one thinks of Dan, he is so well-versed in all the complications of the restrictions, and is able to reiterate them interminably to the journos. Imagine Scotty being questioned at the same level of detail.

  20. Clem
    This year’s Christmas will be more online than usual because people wont want to go shopping in large groups and the criticism is mostly coming from Liberals and the business community. Andrews said it himself that everyone is over the restrictions.

  21. Woohoo!

    Canberra LNP pissed off with @TimWilsonMP arriving to help with pamphlets and baby kissing, they reckon it cost them 2 Seats.

  22. Lizzie
    Yeah and making that worst some people describe Russo as self-made like just ignore the part about the government handing her contracts.

  23. zoomster @ #499 Sunday, October 18th, 2020 – 11:33 am


    Oh, so ONE ALP MP versus all the Greens?

    And no, I don’t pay much attention to Joel at all.

    Now you are just being disingenuous.

    You know as well as I do that the Gibbon faction has a significant number of adherents within Labor, and even more significant influence.

    Joel is not a shadow minister because Albo is fond of him.

  24. “Imagine Scotty being questioned at the same level of detail.”


    Imagine Scotty being questioned at any level of detail on anything!

  25. Confessions @ #503 Sunday, October 18th, 2020 – 12:08 pm

    No further evidence was needed, but in case it was, Victoria is proof that lockdowns are effective in controlling the spread of coronavirus.

    Only ideological nutjobs or the wilfully stupid would continue to assert otherwise.

    I woke up at 4am this morning(I was able to get back to sleep after my journey to the loo), and the first thought that came to mind was about the disgusting way that Opinion Writers in Victoria, like Adam Creighton and Andrew Bolt, have been allowed and encouraged by their editors to push dangerous lines repeatedly. I could only think that this was a dereliction of duty and amoral behaviour by them and their editors and I hope that people can see it for what it is. Also that it is part of an agenda by the Coalition and their supportive media to deny any Labor governments the oxygen and clear air they might get from their successes and being able to explain to their citizens the rational justifications for their actions, by continually muddying the water and sowing the seeds of doubt.

  26. A change from a 5 km to a 25 km limit increases the places that you can visit by a factor of about 25 (well, excluding water). It would mean many more people can get to a beach, a favourite national park, a favourite place or favourite people.

    NSW came back out of lockdown gradually during May and June. Victoria are doing the same, as they should, ignoring the self-interested bleatings of business and the politically motivated bleatings of right wing media and politicians.

  27. To bushfire Bill , I reckon if Labor had if found a way to deal with the whole Rudd thing witout having to publically humiliate him, Australia’s perception of the ALPs management would be better now.


    Seriously, it’s about time we all stopped going over the entrails. Every time people left of centre do it, it’s music to the ears of the fascist trickle down forces in Australia.

  28. For moaners from Victoria , well anywhere really, would you prefer the consequences of Andrews removing restrictions/lock down a week earlier than is necessary to stop the spread or a week later than necessary ?

  29. Journos suggesting all the reasons why they think Andrews is being unreasonable. Like, what about if they come from Dubai? What about….?

  30. The only positive in the Kiwi Bubble affair is that, of all countries in the world, incoming visitors from New Zealand are the LEAST likely to be infected prior to arrival.

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