Federal election guide

Introducing the Poll Bludger’s guide to the (presumably) 2022 federal election.

The Poll Bludger’s guide to what I hope it is now safe to assume will be the 2022 federal election is open for business. There remain many gaps to fill owing to yet-to-be-declared candidates, and a Senate guide is still a work in progress (by which I mean I haven’t started it yet), but it remains a pretty substantial piece of work as is. If you find it stimulating or useful, you can show your appreciation by throwing some pennies into the collection jar, featured at the top of the site in the shape of the “become a supporter” button.

A bright and colourful front page serves as an entry point to the 151 individual electorate pages, each featuring a write-up based on detail I have accumulated since I first did one of these things way back in 2004, adding up to around 75,000 words all told. These are complemented by a range of charts and tables detailing past election results and demographic indicators, the latter compiled from 2016 census data to reflect the current boundaries (with acknowledgement due to Antony Green’s post-redistribution margin estimates), together with interactive maps showing booth results from the last election, which can be seen in detail by clicking on the booth icons.

Also featured is an overview page that includes, among other things, a summary of the national polling situation that I hope I remember to update nearer the big day. In the likely absence of any new polling this week, and for the sake of something substantial to hang this post off, I hereby repaste this section in full:

The most striking feature of state-level polling over the past term has been a seismic shift to Labor in Western Australia, where the party has not recorded a majority of the two-party vote at a federal election since 1987. This seems intuitively satisfying given the historical scale of the McGowan government’s win at the state election in March, winning 53 of 59 seats in the state’s lower house with a record-shattering two-party vote of 69.7%. At a bare minimum, Labor would seem a very strong chance of gaining the seat of Swan, which has a retiring Liberal member on a post-redistribution margin of 3.2%. Labor should also be at least competitive in Hasluck, with a Liberal margin of 5.9%, and Pearce, where the redistribution has cut the beleaguered Christian Porter’s margin from 7.5% to 5.2%.

In Victoria, the Coalition performed relatively well during the state’s first COVID-19 crisis in mid-2020, but declined sharply as a new outbreak took hold in New South Wales and spread across the border in mid-2021, as Labor appeared to gain traction with its claim that Scott Morrison had acted as the “Prime Minister of New South Wales”. However, the only highly marginal Liberal seat in Victoria is Chisholm in Melbourne’s inner east, a seat notable for its Chinese population. Other possibilities for Labor include neighbouring Higgins (margin 3.7%), an historically blue-ribbon seat with an increasingly green-left complexion; Casey on Melbourne’s eastern fringe (4.6%), where Labor will be boosted with the retirement of Liberal incumbent Tony Smith; and the eastern suburbs seat of Deakin (4.7%), an historically tough nut for Labor.

Conversely, the damage to the Coalition from the mid-2021 outbreak appeared relatively mild in New South Wales itself, to the extent that the Coalition is hopeful of gain to redress any losses elsewhere. One such calculation is that Labor owed its wins in Eden-Monaro in 2016 and 2019 to the now-departed Mike Kelly, and its threadbare winning margin in July 2020 to the difficulty governments typically face at by-elections. Another is that its loss of neighbouring Gilmore in 2019 reflected a problematic preselection process, and that it will now return to the fold. With the retirement of Labor’s Joel Fitzgibbon, the Nationals could enjoy a further boost in Hunter (margin 3.0%), whose coal-mining communities savaged Labor in 2019. Labor also has tight margins in Macquarie on Sydney’s western fringe (0.2%), the Central Coast seat of Dobell (1.5%) and the western Sydney seat of Greenway (2.8%), whereas the Coalition’s most marginal seat is Reid in Sydney’s inner west on a margin of 3.2%.

Queensland has been the crucible of Australian federal elections over the past two decades, but the state’s remarkable result in 2019 left the Coalition with imposing margins in most of the state’s traditional marginal seats without quite shaking Labor loose in its strongholds. Labor’s polling in the state surged in the wake of the re-election of Annastacia Palszczuk’s state government in October 2020, though it subsequently moved back in line with the national trend. Labor’s highest hopes are reportedly for the far north Queensland seat of Leichhardt, held by veteran Liberal National Party member Warren Entsch on a margin of 4.2%, which resisted the surge to the Coalition across regional Queensland in 2019. The most marginal LNP seat is Longman on Brisbane’s northern fringe, at 3.3%. Peter Dutton’s northern Brisbane seat of Dickson is the third most marginal at 4.6%.

The sole battlefield in South Australia is likely to be Boothby, a southern Adelaide seat in which long-held Labor hopes have never quite been realised. It will be vacated with the retirement of two-term Liberal member Nicolle Flint, who retained it in 2019 by 1.4%. Greater attention is likely to focus on Tasmania, where the three seats of the state’s centre and north have see-sawed over recent decades. Labor will naturally hope to gain Bass, with its Liberal margin of 0.4% and record of changing hands at eight of the last ten elections, and to a lesser extent neighbouring Braddon, which the Liberals gained in 2019 with a 3.1% margin. However, the Liberals hope to succeed in Lyons where they failed in 2019 after disendorsing their candidate mid-campaign. Labor seems likely to maintain its lock on the five territory seats, although the retirement of veteran Warren Snowdon suggests the Northern Territory seat of Lingiari is less secure than its 5.5% margin suggests.

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.

2,202 comments on “Federal election guide”

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  1. Lars Von Trier @ #2092 Thursday, November 4th, 2021 – 7:45 pm

    sure drink driving is a crime, as is jaywalking and parking illegally – should this be disqualifying for a politician?

    Sure, rape is a crime; should this be disqualifying for a politician? Sure, murder is a crime; should this be disqualifying for a politician? Sure, being a dual citizen disqualifies a politician; should it be a crime?

  2. “Firefox,
    It’s not the truth. But what does hurt is you thinking you can ride roughshod over people’s private information and that you have some sort of self-justified right to publish it.”

    ***

    Yeah it is. You blocked me – @Righ7isWr0ng – on Twitter for calling you out over it. You published it yourself, not me. But yeah we’ll leave it at that.

  3. Steelydan says:
    Thursday, November 4, 2021 at 8:53 pm

    Why all the hate for Smith was he seen as a future leader.
    _____________
    By some people apparently. Not sure why. But I’d suggest that if the Liberals can trade out Smith for John Pesutto it would be worthwhile for them.

  4. Flaneur says:
    Thursday, November 4, 2021 at 8:52 pm
    Lars Von Trier @ #2092 Thursday, November 4th, 2021 – 7:45 pm

    sure drink driving is a crime, as is jaywalking and parking illegally – should this be disqualifying for a politician?
    Sure, rape is a crime; should this be disqualifying for a politician? Sure, murder is a crime; should this be disqualifying for a politician? Sure, being a dual citizen disqualifies a politician; should it be a crime?
    _________________________
    So you don’t distinguish – murder is the same as jaywalking in your book?

  5. “Rumours are that Senator Rex Patrick is considering running for Grey, a safe Liberal seat based on his home town of Whyalla.”

    He might as well he has no chance being relected in the senate even if Nick Xenophon wasn’t running.

  6. DUI is what I hate. Infuckingexcusable.

    And anyway, who drives Jaguars. Pretentious gas guzzlers made for the northern hemisphere.

  7. “ Why all the hate for Smith was he seen as a future leader.”

    For someone who claims to be in touch with the common people, do you really need to have it spelt out:

    He’s actually quite unintelligent, only obnoxious with his lack of mental furniture,

    His sense of self entitlement saw him commit a serous crime that could have easily killed someone. Someone like an 8 year old boy sleeping in his bedroom for example.

  8. NSW and Victoria will open their borders to one another from 11.59pm on Thursday, the states’ premiers have announced.

    Dominic Perrottet and Daniel Andrews issued a joint statement earlier that evening saying the decision was part of normalising living with Covid-19.

    For the first time in more than six months in Victoria, all local government areas in all states and territories across Australia will be “green zones” for the purposes of entering Victoria.

    There are no requirements for fully vaccinated Victorians entering NSW, unless they have been to a place of high concern in Victoria.

  9. Andrew_Earlwood says:
    Thursday, November 4, 2021 at 9:02 pm

    His sense of self entitlement saw him commit a serous crime that could have easily killed someone. Someone like an 8 year old boy sleeping in his bedroom for example.
    _________
    If the house had been a weatherboard instead of brick that may have been possible.

  10. before Scotty forgot to buy the Pfizer …

    For that piece of negligence and blithering incompetence, he should be hounded day and night until he leaves politics and takes up his fat pension and no doubt numerous sinecures in fossil fuels and finance. What started as the “Bondi cluster”, approaching 150,000 cases, over 800 deaths, all on his head.

  11. “Firefox, nobody cares about you being blocked on Twitter.”

    ***

    Oh trust me, I wear being blocked on Twitter by right wingers like Cat, Paul Murray, and Chris Kenny as a badge of honour! That’s not what I care about either. It’s the racism directed at Tu Le that I have an issue with, and so should you.

  12. David Crowe 8pm….
    Labor leader Anthony Albanese pointed this out but was restrained in his attack this week. There is a real risk for Labor in siding with France against the Australian government. And it is not clear what Labor would do differently from this point onwards. Would it scrap the AUKUS plan? Not likely.

    Would Labor dump AUKUS…. 1000% it will.. AUKUS was dead before it left the wharf..

    Labor will buy French nuclear boats, it will pick up the old contract while having an open enquiry to confirm the need for nuclear boats. That way no time or money wasted except for the 6 months the Shire Liar will have wasted.

  13. Taylormade.

    The Labor party has come a long way, getting rid of a policy because of the cruelty of it, only a few boats, push and pull factors then death but when electoral defeat loomed on the policy they finally changed their policy to exactly the same as the Coalitions.

  14. I have no liking for Smith, the worst kind of person to be elected to parliament.
    But it’s a valid question: should every person guilty of driving under the influence lose their job?
    I don’t know.
    I can think of any number of high profile people who have not.
    I guess Smith’s problem is that he tried to set standards for others.
    As a humble backbencher he might have been able to ride this out.
    As a head kicking leadership aspirant he’s toast.

  15. I must remember to tell the President of the NSW Fabians, when I meet them for lunch tomorrow, that I am a wolf in sheep’s clothing! 😆

  16. “I can add Firefox’s Twitter blockage to my list – maybe around 8,000.”

    ***

    Oh I can’t match that! That’s a lot of blocking!

  17. Rossmcg,
    I simply remember what the Liberal Party have been prepared to do to others who are not of their political stripe, when they have been caught for drink driving. They should therefore take a dose of their own medicine.

  18. Few people in western countries believe US sets a good example on democracy, poll finds
    Nearly a year after voters showed Donald Trump the White House door, the global image of US democracy has not recovered

    Nearly a year after Americans voted Donald Trump out of office, very few people living in a group of 17 western countries think the United States sets a good example when it comes to being a functioning democracy.

    According to a new survey by the Pew Research Center, just 17 per cent of the 18,850 adults surveyed across 17 countries for their Global Attitudes Survey believe America’s political system is a good example to follow.

    Nearly a quarter of respondents from outside America – 23 per cent – said the US has never been a good example for democracy, while more than half – 57 per cent – said American democracy “used to be a good example, but has not been in recent years”.

    The Americans surveyed were equally pessimistic about their own country, with just under one-fifth – 19 per cent – seeing the US as a good example of democracy. And nearly two-thirds – 72 percent – said the US “used to be a good example” until recently

    https://www-independent-co-uk.cdn.ampproject.org/v/s/www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/us-democracy-poll-western-countries-b1950133.html?amp=&amp_gsa=1&amp_js_v=a6&usqp=mq331AQIKAGwASCAAgM%3D#amp_tf=From%20%251%24s&aoh=16360165040956&csi=0&referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com&ampshare=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.independent.co.uk%2Fnews%2Fworld%2Famericas%2Fus-politics%2Fus-democracy-poll-western-countries-b1950133.html

  19. Rex Patrick got into the Senate through Centre Alliance when a vacancy opened up after Xenophon left. Now an independent. Only a slim chance of being re-elected, but has a reasonably high profile. South Aussies do like independents in the Senate, though. But I don’t think Stirling Griff is in with a chance.

  20. “Have you thought of trying for the diplomatic service? I feel you would bring a refreshing attitude to the old stale traditions.”

    From the current observable sate of the Govts diplomatic capability, it looks a lot like PB’s own Intimate Stimulation Appliance has been on contract to provide training to the Govts advisers?

  21. I wonder what Keating thinks of the Senate now, he called them unrepresentative swill in the good old days when we had the Democrats with the balance of power.

  22. Firefox Oh I can’t match that! That’s a lot of blocking!

    I don’t block. All posters here have something interesting to say, at least some of the time. I don’t read every post. I have other stuff to do. While here, I tend to skip over posts that don’t interest me, e.g argumentative and/or about AFL. As they say in the classics, others’ milage may vary.

  23. C@t
    NYT
    By Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns
    Published Nov. 3, 2021
    Updated Nov. 4, 2021, 12:00 a.m. ET
    WASHINGTON — Reeling from a barrage of unexpected losses, an array of Democrats on Wednesday pleaded with President Biden and his party’s lawmakers to address the quality-of-life issues that plagued their candidates in elections on Tuesday from heavily Hispanic San Antonio to the suburbs of Virginia, New Jersey and New York.

    Although they had braced for a close race for Virginia governor, Democrats were caught off guard by the intensity of the backlash against their party in major off-year elections

    My American friends accuse me of US bashing… but the country is finished as world leader… it will lurch from crisis to crisis , bouncing between the Dems & GOP
    It is paying the price for not believing in Government, a political system designed to fail though inaction. I blame Ronald Raygun

  24. Lars:

    Bob Hawke was a terrible drunk yet was a very popular and successful PM.

    Hawke had quit drinking by the time he was elected to Parliament. In fact, his reputation was as such by that time that during the preselection process, it took some effort for him convince key Labor figures that he had changed his ways.

    And, well, Tim Smith, he’s, er… he’s no Bob Hawke.

    sure drink driving is a crime, as is jaywalking and parking illegally – should this be disqualifying for a politician?

    Crashing into a car and a fence while recording a blood alcohol of 0.13 is not the same thing as parking illegally.

  25. Steve777 says:
    Thursday, November 4, 2021 at 9:25 pm
    Firefox Oh I can’t match that! That’s a lot of blocking!

    I don’t block. All posters here have something interesting to say, at least some of the time. I don’t read every post. I have other stuff to do. While here, I tend to skip over posts that don’t interest me, e.g argumentative and/or about AFL. As they say in the classics, others’ milage may vary.
    ________________________________
    Live and let live I say!

  26. The Waverley Wally might have sooled the Murdoch attach dogs onto Malcolm Turnbull, however Andrew Forrest is pouring some of his billions into ‘the next big thing’ – with a certain person as his front man. Glasgow COP26 is just warming up.

    Forrest and Turnbull would have workshopped the hissy fit response from the PM. The Shire Liar should be seeing the warning signs…

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/FDVjS7MWQAASCLb?format=jpg&name=4096×4096#image.jpg

    https://gh2.org/publication/green-hydrogen-organisation-develop-green-energy-standard

  27. Any Seinfeld fans might appreciate this:

    Jason Alexander: I first encountered Larry David — this is true — at the Improv Comedy Club in New York City in the mid 1980s. The man was introduced as a comic. He lurched out onto the stage sweating and profoundly uncomfortable, launched into some diatribe about the improper use of the tu form over the usted form in the Spanish language, and after — I kid you not — a minute and a half of incomprehensible banter about “Et tu, Brute?,” he accused the audience of being ignorant, euphemisms of the female anatomy, threw down his microphone, and stormed from the stage.

    https://speakola.com/arts/larry-david-wga-laurel-award-2011

  28. What are PB’s fascination for dildos all about. I have been on here for 6 odd years and there is no dildo related name or naked lunch reference I have not heard. Anyway if it does it for you go for it.

  29. Asha,
    Can you imagine the performative outrage that the Liberals and their media arms would be engaging in if a Labor MP had done what Tim Smith had done? They would most definitely have been playing up the child safety aspect of the crash. They certainly wouldn’t be trying to falsely equate it to jaywalking, fcs.


  30. mikehilliardsays:
    Thursday, November 4, 2021 at 9:11 pm
    It’s been a tough few weeks for the Lib shills who post here. I suppose we should have some sympathy for them……nahhh

    I don’t know whether they are “shills” or not because I don’t know what a “shill”means. But they are more Shrill than usual. 🙂

    But you have to hand it for their Chutzpah and the confidence with which they approach their job on this blog.

    The Labor supporters would have been devastated if Laborbpoliticians were in such fire situation.

  31. Re: David Crowe:

    “ Labor leader Anthony Albanese pointed this out but was restrained in his attack this week. There is a real risk for Labor in siding with France against the Australian government. And it is not clear what Labor would do differently from this point onwards. Would it scrap the AUKUS plan? Not likely.”

    1. Labor might placate the French by future proofing its SSK capability with building the first block of Attack class boats, and also perhaps including French technology in the RANs upgrade of the Collins class;

    2. Labor might invite the French toi submit an SSN proposal. That might actually be welcomed by our AUKUS partners, because their are clear capacity constraints with both America’s submarine program and that of the UK. Besides, AUKUS isn’t only about submarines. Not by a long shot. It would end up being a far more credible security arrangement if it were expanded to include the French – a country with 1.5 million Pacific citizens – and ultimately other pacific democratic powers. In fact the Uk really is the odd one out, isn’t it? I’d say they are only in it as a armaments sales pitch – and we are the mark.

  32. Maybe Malcolm has found something to do. He could achieve nothing in the face of resistance from the dinosaurs in the “Liberal” party, even when the party in desperation after two years being led in office by a clown made him Prime Minister. Maybe he can make a start redeeming himself.

  33. So Asha conduct before parliament is ok, its the conduct once in parliament which can be disqualifying?

    There’s a NSW minister who had a drink driving offence (whilst he was in Parl) at about the same range as tim sim – yet he is in parliament still.

    I think its more conduct in parliament and the attention it attracts that decides the outcome?

    Maybe Tim Sim would have been smarter to check himself into a clinic immediately.

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