Less than a week to go until the Fadden by-election, though I’m afraid there’s no specific news of consequence to relate concerning it. Last week I suggested that Newspoll quarterly breakdowns and a Resolve Strategic poll might be imminent, which still holds a week later. We should also be seeing proposed new state electoral boundaries for Western Australia at some point over the coming fortnight. Other than that:
• Victoria’s long-awaited Warrandyte by-election has been set for August 26. Labor sources cited by Rachel Baxendale of The Australian say the party is “highly unlikely to run”, although The Age reports Labor MPs are “privately pressuring the party to contest”, backed by “a fair bit of pressure coming from the branches”.
• The Financial Review has published further results from this week’s Queensland state poll from Freshwater Strategy showing 50% opposition to the Indigenous Voice with only 36% in support and 14% undecided, breaking out to 58-42 with the latter excluded. The results in Brisbane were 40% supportive and 47% opposed, compared with 31% and 53% in the rest of the state.
• Right-wing Queensland Senator Gerard Rennick has been dumped from the Liberal National Party’s ticket for the next election after a vote at the party’s state conference, despite backing from Peter Dutton. His third position, which did not avail Amanda Stoker when she held it at last year’s election, will instead go to Stuart Fraser, who reportedly won the final round of the vote by 134 to 131. Fraser is the LNP’s treasurer and director of a private investment fund, also noted for his involvement with the Tattersalls Club and the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane. The Guardian reports Fraser survived the final exclusion by four votes ahead of Nelson Savanh of strategic communications firm Michelson Alexander, then narrowly prevailed as moderate support coalesced behind him. Another contestant for the position, Sophia Li, a former adviser to Shadow Defence Industry Minister Luke Howarth, takes the fourth position, while former state Hinchinbrook MP and Newman government minister Andrew Cripps is fifth.
• Paul Sakkal of the Sydney Morning Herald reports on the prospect of Matt Kean, senior minister in the recently ousted state government and noted factional moderate, running at the next federal election in Bradfield should Paul Fletcher choose to retire, or alternatively against teal independent Kylea Tink in North Sydney. Dominic Perrottet was said to be resisting overtures to run in North Sydney or challenge Alex Hawke for preselection in Mitchell, and was likely to quit politics. There was “no indication” Gladys Berejiklian or Mike Baird might run, despite reported urgings from senior Liberals. Berowra MP Julian Leeser might be challenged by conservatives displeased with his support for the Indigenous Voice, but was “likely to survive”. Such questions may be settled later rather than sooner after a vote for the party’s state presidency was won by former Mackellar MP Jason Falinski, who is reportedly dubious about Peter Dutton’s determination to have all candidates preselected by October.