BludgerTrack 2: electric boogaloo

A newly launched aggregate of federal polling suggests an election that may be coming this year will be closer than commonly presumed — if indeed the polls are to be believed.

As we move into what may very well be an election year, the BludgerTrack voting intention poll aggregate is finally cranked back into action. The model, which naturally picked a fairly comfortable Labor win on the eve of the 2019 election, is not quite what it used to be: there are dramatically fewer data points and less depth available in terms of breakdowns (pollsters have promised more rather than less transparency on this score, but thus far largely failed to deliver), which means there’s no point attempting state-level trends and seat projections as was done before.

Nonetheless, and for what it’s worth, you can now see voting intention trends on the sidebar, and in greater detail here. The lodestar for the model is Newspoll/YouGov: the results of the other pollsters, which really just means Essential Research and the occasional Morgan, are adjusted for bias as measured by the extent of their deviation from a Newspoll trend measure. As it happens though, these adjustments don’t amount to much: over time, none of the three pollsters has shown any particular tendency to favour any one party more than the others.

The trend shows a consistently close race through the current term, somewhat in defiance of media narratives, with Labor poking in front on two-party preferred in the wake of last summer’s bushfires but the Coalition maintaining a lead of around 51-49 for most of this year. This pattern is equally evident in the cruder but probably no less effective aggregate that Kevin Bonham knocked together for his comprehensive view of the year in polling. Part of this may be related to the fact that the new YouGov-administered Newspoll has maintained the pollster’s curious habit of being more consistent than the vagaries of random sampling should theoretically lead us to expect.

I’ve also gone the extra mile on the poll data archive, which now includes all of the expanded breakdown data that Newspoll is now providing in its quarterly aggregates (education, income, language and religion, on top of the traditional state, age and gender) and such two-party state breakdowns as Morgan has provided us, right down to two tiny-sample readings for Tasmania. The leadership ratings trends are still in business, though I’ve bumped them in favour of the voting intention trends on the sidebar.

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.

4,232 comments on “BludgerTrack 2: electric boogaloo”

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  1. C@tmomma

    “This flag, however, is not as out of place as it may seem. Australia played a part in creating the mess in the US.”
    _____
    That seems to me, from a cursery examination, a bit of typical wokest hyperbole, i.e. click-bait.

    The article refers to the vacuous Sky News Australia, watched by a couple of misfits and their pet cane toads, which just repeats the USA right-wing fabrications.

    I’m sure similar outfits in many countries throughout the world equally repeated the same mis-information.

    I’m sure Australia, even the USA Sky News Australia, was just re-cycling USA feeds and had no direct contribution.

    I call that FAKE news. 🙂

  2. Late Riser @ #4151 Thursday, January 7th, 2021 – 8:02 pm

    When I watched the video of that woman hollering with joy on leaving the Capitol Building something went cold. That image went around the world. Enough. The trials must be public, forensic, and comprehensive.

    Should never have been allowed to walk out. There are plenty of photos circulating of what they did in there. Every participant inside the Capitol should have been arrested.

    These weren’t people doing a mostly-peaceful street protest, they deliberately stormed a government building with the intent of seizing power for Trump. They need consequences.

  3. Denying that a Trump has agency in the turmoil in the US is fucking troll-inspired bullshit.

    Purporting to blame the Democrats for the calumnies of the Republicans is more fucking troll-inspired bullshit.

    The Right are accountable for their actions. They are not victims of democracy. They are the enemies of justice and the truth. The Player is on their side here.

  4. I see Pencil Neck Hartcher has spoken.

    Democracy is dead it seems. Last week it was just resting, I guess.

    What a political genius we have to serve us.

  5. Trump should be impeached and removed from office. And then he should be tried for attempted insurrection. Then he should be imprisoned for the rest of his miserable days.

  6. They wont lockup Trump.
    They created their Presidential system in the image of European monarchies.
    He can pardon convicted criminals FFS. That alone places the president above the law.
    They still call the person elected president Mr President even after he has left office and a new president is in power. They worship and pay respect to them after they leave office.
    Journalist tend to be over respectful in interviews – instead of asking hard questions.
    The American public do not want to see a president behind bars. Wont happen.
    Any (mostly) other elected leader of a democracy would be off doing time had they committed the sort of offences Trump has. It is a broken system with some admirable qualities to be admired, but the power of the President is just ridiculous. He deserves to be locked up but they wont do it.
    They wont lockup Trump.

  7. If anyone is concerned about the brightness of the light on the hill, you only need to watch Senator Duckworth’s speech in the Senate today.

    The light may be dimmed, but it burns strongly in this woman who gave her her whole self for her country.

  8. timbo

    They wont lockup Trump.
    They created their Presidential system in the image of European monarchies.
    ___

    Indeed!

    The USA cultists on here don’t accept, that the USA President is the last ruling monarch in the western world. lol

    It’s amusing.

  9. N says:
    Thursday, January 7, 2021 at 11:05 pm
    Trump should be impeached and removed from office. And then he should be tried for attempted insurrection. Then he should be imprisoned for the rest of his miserable days.

    Pious self-righteous bullshit!

    Trump, reflects a significant the (central?) part of the US soul.

    The USA can’t imprison itself!

  10. Rakali @ #4210 Thursday, January 7th, 2021 – 11:25 pm

    timbo

    They wont lockup Trump.
    They created their Presidential system in the image of European monarchies.
    ___

    Indeed!

    The USA cultists on here don’t accept, that the USA President is the last ruling monarch in the western world. lol

    It’s amusing.

    Yes I have always found it amusing – even somewhat quaint.
    In the past, in friendly banter with peers, I have mentioned these absurdities – to mostly no response or raised shoulders with “Meh” so what?.
    That was all fine until Trump.
    As a side note, a lot of Australian republicans opt for such a system, with an elected President.
    While lately we have received some mockery for how frequently and how easily we can change our PMs at least we can! They are stuck for 4 years with whichever monster had enough cash and backing to get themselves elected president.

  11. timbo

    I regret very much the change from 3 year Parliaments to 4 year Parliaments at the State level.

    Done ostensibly to allow “better planning”.

    Total nonsense of course. I worked for State Governments in NSW and Qld. I Never met a politician interested in long term planning!

    Just making the system less accountable and more comfortable for the governing class, i.e. more American!

  12. The USA cultists on here don’t accept, that the USA President is the last ruling monarch in the western world. lol

    Imagine being so unhinged, so deranged, so boringly obsessive you think the objectively false statement above is remotely true or clever.

    Seriously, there are mental health professionals who can help you process this stupid tick you bore this place with on a daily basis, Rakali. Nobody else cares.

  13. Rational Leftist @ #4214 Thursday, January 7th, 2021 – 11:47 pm

    The USA cultists on here don’t accept, that the USA President is the last ruling monarch in the western world. lol

    Imagine being so unhinged, so deranged, so boringly obsessive you think the objectively false statement above is remotely true or clever.

    Seriously, there are mental health professionals who can help you process this stupid tick you bore this place with on a daily basis, Rakali. Nobody else cares.

    I hope they lock him up but do you think that will happen Rational Leftist?

  14. I hope they lock him up but do you think that will happen Rational Leftist?

    I don’t know. You make a valid point about hesitation to punish former presidents. That is a problem we saw with people like Nixon but we’ve also never tread into the water of a President actively trying to resist handing over power after an election, so I don’t know. I really don’t.

    Honestly, if Melania could just grab a pillow tonight and take care of it all for us, I think it would solve a lot of problems. (Apologies if that crosses a line.)

  15. Rational Leftist

    “Seriously, there are mental health professionals who can help you process this stupid tick you bore this place with on a daily basis, Rakali. ”
    __

    My God, you right wing American cultists are even worse than I imagined!

    Anyone who disagrees with you, and points out your danger to “rational leftism” should be hospitalisied.

    I can see why an absolutist like “Rational Leftist” would be attracted to the last western monarchy.

    No one who posts on here seems to have any interest in forward thinking countries.

    The future of Australia is not a topic of interest here, apart from its relationship with the USA.

    Anyway. To think that i bore a right wing arsehole like “rational leftist” fills me with a tiny bit of satisfaction. (“Rational leftist”, it’s like calling McDonalds a “Restaurant” – what a hoot!)

    But, after 10 years, I think it’s time i left this site which I realise my very minor contributions of my fears for my country are totally out of step.

    Maybe William should change it’s name to PollGrifter, i think that’s the more yankee appropriate name.

  16. Rakali
    No one who posts on here seems to have any interest in forward thinking countries.
    The future of Australia is not a topic of interest here, apart from its relationship with the USA.
    But, after 10 years, I think it’s time i left this site which I realise my very minor contributions of my fears for my country are totally out of step.

    I see where you are coming from but don’t entirely agree that is the situation for all of us – even a lurker like me.
    It would be an odd thing if one were to agree with all of the posts from an individual poster, most, from time to time do make valid points worth consideration at least.
    I don’t always agree with your opinions but you do from time to time make good posts.
    I try to ignore posts that I vehemently oppose and try to focus on what I consider to be well thought out propositions – even if they don’t always align with my views.
    It would be a shame if you left the site but if you feel that way – well what can one say.
    Apart from the fact the US is dominating the news cycle at the moment – I too fear for Australia’s future – that was why I mentioned the Australian republican movement and their and the general publics seeming desire for an elected HOS. I do not think that is a step forward, but rather a step back to monarchism as has happened to the US – and I don’t want us going there. I have always felt this but it is even more apparent with the abuses of power we have seen by Trump.

  17. I am not going to drag this place down by getting into an argument but I do object to this one line for pedantic reasons:

    it’s like calling McDonalds a “Restaurant” – what a hoot!

    It’s a place where you eat food that is prepared for and served to you, of course it’s a restaurant. It isn’t fancy and the food isn’t good but it’s still a restaurant.

  18. Trump has been banned from Facebook and Instagram:
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/us-riots-live-updates-capitol-hill-violence-condemned-as-democrats-republicans-unite-against-trump-s-false-claims-of-election-fraud-20210107-p56sfe.html

    Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg has banned Donald Trump from Facebook and Instagram indefinitely, saying the risks to America’s democracy are too great for the US President to be allowed back on the platforms, amid concerns Trump will continue to incite his supporters to carry out more riots.

    Zuckerberg released a statement on his Facebook page saying that “the shocking events clearly demonstrate that President Donald Trump intends to use his remaining time in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transition of power to his elected successor, Joe Biden.”

    “Over the last several years, we have allowed President Trump to use our platform consistent with our own rules, at times removing content or labelling his posts when they violate our policies,” Zuckerberg wrote.

    “We did this because we believe that the public has a right to the broadest possible access to political speech, even controversial speech.

  19. It took Zuckerberg far too long to figure that out. He didn’t mind that Trump generated traffic of course, but now Trump is a reputational threat to Facebook.

    Always amazes me how the vast majority of people will react to a sociopath with denial.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2016/07/trump-and-sociopathy/491966/

    This week, the co-author of Donald Trump’s autobiography said in The New Yorker that if he were writing The Art of the Deal today, it would be a very different book with a very different title: The Sociopath.

    That was July 2016 and yet through most of his Presidency people have tried to rationalise away his behaviour and floundered doing so. Because they just can’t deal with the possibility that he’s a monster.

  20. I have never wanted an elected HoS. No Presidential crapola for Australia. If we are having our own HoS, then an appointment backed by a 2/3 or 3/4 majority of both Houses of Parliament is my choice. Also Powers need to be greatly reduced.

    USA style hoopla and an over-powered single person role is not my cup if tea.

  21. Puffy

    As I pointed out here before. During the “republic” debate there was a group putting forward a proposal for no head of state (beyond maybe ceremonial).

    It boiled down to the fact that the reserve powers could be whittled down to (iirc) three and those that remained could be handled a procedure that involved the High Court.

    Sadly, the whole debate evolved into one that didn’t recognise a “no head of state with reserve powers” possibility and then into a debate about how the HoS would be chosen/elected. A banal distraction.

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