Save the date – The poll bludger


Confusion around the likely date of the New South Wales state by-elections, to add to the one we already have about the federal election.

This coming Monday is the last date an election can be called for this year, especially the Dec. 11 date recently announced by Anthony Albanese, which few people expect yet. The board game therefore seems to have to move on to the alternate scenarios of March and May now. A complication in the first case is an election of a state in South Australia set in the normal course of events for the third Saturday in March, i.e. March 19. If I understand the situation correctly, the government of South Australia will have the discretion to delay elections by up to three weeks if a federal election is called before February 19 for a date in March.

Here is what we know:

Max Maddison from The Australian reports grumbling within the New South Wales Liberal Party over its failure to finalize candidates in the important seats of Dobell, Warringah and Gilmore. The report quotes liberal sources, no doubt interested in the matter, accusing Alex Hawke of using his influence over the state executive to delay proceedings for the benefit of candidates from his center-right faction. “Other leading liberal sources” argue that the problem is “a lack of quality candidates and imminent municipal elections”. Potential candidates for Dobell include former trial cricketer Nathan Bracken, as well as Michael Feneley, a cardiologist who has twice run unsuccessfully at Kingsford Smith, and Jemima Gleeson, owner of a chain of coffee shops.

• Further on Gilmore, the always readable Niki Savva reported in her Age / Herald column two weeks ago that “speculation is rife” that Andrew Constance will not pursue his preselection candidacy, just as he withdrew from the Eden-Monaro dispute ahead of last year’s by-election. If so, that would apparently clear the way for Shoalhaven Heads attorney Paul Ell, who is seen as a formidable opponent of Constance anyway.

• Labor has also failed to field candidates in New South Wales, with still no sign of progress in Lindsay’s crucial seat in Sydney’s western fringe. However, candidates have recently been confirmed in two liberal misfits: Zhi Soon, education policy adviser and former diplomat, at Banks, and Sally Sitou, doctoral student at the University of Sydney and former ministerial staff, at Reid.

• In Victoria, the Labor candidate for La Trobe will be Abhimanyu Kumar, owner of a local house-building company.

• In an article by Jason Campbell of the Herald Sun, JWS Research says the increase in polls for Clive Palmer’s United Australia Party is driven by “skilled workers and low-end middle managers,” supplementing an existing base of support that was largely limited to individuals over 65 years old. Masculinity and low education levels remain common. son.

• An article on voter identification laws by Graeme Orr of the University of Queensland in The Conversation makes a point I hadn’t heard before: that those who cast a declaration vote instead of providing ID will have no way of knowing if their vote has finally been admitted to the count. This contrasts with some US states, where those who cast the equivalent of postal votes or absent can track their progress online.

Last by-election in New South Wales:

• It is now clear that the by-elections will not take place at the same time as the local elections on December 4 as initially planned. The Guardian reports that state electoral commissioner John Schmidt said yesterday during a parliamentary committee hearing that “it would neither be possible nor sensible to try to aim until mid-February”, in part because of the government’s “piecemeal funding” of his agency, he had left him with inadequate cybersecurity standards.

• Labor have announced that they will field a candidate for Bega, making it the only one of five impending by-elections in which the coalition and Labor are both confirmed starters. James O’Doherty of the Daily Telegraph (who, I hope, was paid extra for pointing out that “Labor chose to run for the seat despite Leader Chris Minns criticizing the impending by-election last month as costly and unnecessary”) reports that the Liberal shortlist candidates will include Eurobodalla Shire Mayor Liz Innes and, possibly, Bega Valley County Councilor Mitchell Nadin.

Anton Rose of Inner West Courier reports that Liberal hopes in Jodi McKay’s seat in Strathfield are not high, particularly if Burwood Mayor John Faker is running as the Labor candidate and the party “would not mount a vigorous campaign”. A potential Liberal candidate would be Natalie Baini, a sports administrator who reportedly planned a preselection against Fiona Martin at Reid’s federal headquarters earlier in the year.

Poll News:

• A Redbridge Group Survey conducted for Simon Holmes, a Court’s Climate 200 nonprofit group recorded Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s main vote falling from 49.4% in his Kooyong headquarters in Melbourne, the Blue Ribbon, to 38%. With the Greens at 15%, well below the heights reached with Julian Burnside as a candidate in 2019, such a result would put Frydenberg under pressure from Labor at 31%. About half of the balance goes to the United Australia Party, which looks questionable in an electorate like Kooyong. The purpose of the poll was to test the waters for an independent challenge a la Zali Steggall, and responses to some rather leading questions indicated that such a candidate would indeed be competitive or better. The survey was conducted from October 16 to 18 by automated telephone survey with a sample of 1,017 people.

• Liberal-aligned think tank the Blueprint Institute obtained the results of a YouGov poll on attitudes towards carbon emissions policy, conducted in nine regional electorates from September 28 to October 12 with samples of approximately 415 each. Still, these show large majorities in favor of both halving emissions by 2030 and net zero by 2050, even in electorates like Hunter and Capricornia. Even among coal workers (the size of the sub-sample is unclear), the results are 63% and 64% respectively.

• The Australia Institute has published its annual nationwide climate survey, based on a survey of 2,626 respondents conducted by YouGov in August.

• It took me a while to update BludgerTrack with last week’s Resolve Strategic and Roy Morgan results, but now that it’s done I can exclusively reveal that they made very little difference. . Labor is currently credited with a bipartisan lead of 53.8 to 46.2.


• Antony Green has published his analysis of the finalization Victorian State Redistribution.

Author: William bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional professor of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has been around in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most visited websites on Australian politics. View all articles by William Bowe

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