Friday, July 28, 2023

Rockingham By-Election 2023: How Big A Swing Is Too Big?

Note for Tas audiences: Cassy O'Connor recount is covered here


Rockingham (WA) (ALP 37.7%)
By-election for resignation of Mark McGowan (ALP), MP since 1996

CALLED 7:40 pm Magenta Marshall (ALP) retains, will probably just be taken to preferences

Second place after preferences TBD between Hudson (Lib) and Edwards (IND) (edit: Edwards was second.)

Monday, July 24, 2023

Voice Referendum Polling: No Leads / Indigenous Support Levels

TWO-ANSWER TREND ESTIMATE YES 47.8 (-2.8 in four weeks)

Aggregated polls have Yes losing in five states and trailing the national average in three (two narrowly)

(Above estimates may be updated if new polls are added in next few weeks)


Greetings.  I was going to call this article "Welcome to No" but thought of some wrong ways that that could be taken.

Four weeks ago my last Voice update still had Yes very slightly ahead but the lead was not long for this world.  Unsurprisingly in this edition Yes is still going downhill rapidly and is now clearly behind in my aggregated estimate.  The most recently added polls are Newspoll with a 46-54 result and Resolve with 48-52 (and an even worse 36-42-22 prior to the forced-choice question).  

Saturday, July 15, 2023

Fadden Live: Who Gets The Swing?


Fadden (LNP 10.6%), vacancy for resignation of Stuart Robert

CALLED (7:26 pm) Cameron Caldwell (LNP) retain

Small 2PP swing to LNP ( 2.72%), slightly above average for contested opposition vacancy

Poor result for Greens, One Nation and obscure independents, strong result for Legalise Cannabis

Live Comments (scrolls to top)

12 August:  The final results have been published and the swing is 2.72%.  Legalise Cannabis stayed ahead of the Greens, failing to overtake One Nation by just 31 votes.  There are "swings" to both the LNP and Labor and away from One Nation at the 4CP stage, but this is not comparing like with like because Legalise Cannabis are the fourth party.  The most striking result in the figures is that the flow of One Nation preferences to LNP jumped to 77.06%, which exceeds the flow in any classic-2PP seat in the entire 2022 election except Gippsland.  In the Gippsland case One Nation were first on the ballot and the National's Darren Chester was second, so the flow included donkey and similar votes.  I would take this as a sign that One Nation voters are pleased that Peter Dutton is LNP leader, although it may also be they are happier to have Stuart Robert gone and/or that they are displeased with Anthony Albanese, his government or its Voice proposal.  

Friday 28th: The remaining postals count has gone to zero so the primary count is probably done now barring very minor corrections in the distribution of preferences.  88.5% of postals came back but 4.1% were disallowed, meaning 84.4% made the cut, a very common figure.  Swing is now 2.72%, turnout is 72.54% and the Citizens Party is last by 19 votes.  Next we get the distribution of preferences sometime next week maybe, which will yield some interesting order of exclusion and probably 3PP/4PP data involving One Nation, Legalise Cannabis and the Greens.  

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Cassy O'Connor Resignation, Recount And Run For Hobart

Clark recount for seat of Cassy O'Connor (Green)
Vica Bayley (GRN) wins recount but it has been closer than expected.

1:01 Bayley wins 5380-4649 (53.6% to 46.4%) with 592 exhausted (mostly on the final exclusion).  That result highlights some problems for the Greens in terms of fracturing of candidate preferences among their voters, with so many preferring Taylor (who has run for Council but is far from a household name) but it is also an opportunity: if they can split their vote this evenly it will improve their chances of winning two!

12:11 I have heard that Bayley is going OK on the final exclusion and should survive. (Update: more than OK, he will gain by over 200 here and win by several hundred.)

Sunday, July 9, 2023

1951 And A Reason To Avoid An Early Double Dissolution

In recent weeks there has been a lot of speculation about a possible early federal double dissolution, after the Greens and Coalition deferred Labor's Housing Australia Future Fund Bill 2023 until October.  The Albanese government says that this deferral constitutes a first "failure to pass" the Bill for the purposes of Section 57 of the Constitution and that if the Senate were to block or defer the Bill again, then the Bill would become a trigger for an early double dissolution election whenever the government wished to call one.  The Greens dispute that the deferral is a "failure to pass", but it would be a brave Governor-General who refused an election to a government that had an even arguable case that that box had been ticked, and in my view the government's case would be more than merely arguable.  There are questions about the mechanics regarding whether the Bill needs to be withdrawn before the Senate could fail to pass it again, but in some form or another it seems to me the HAFF Bill could become a double dissolution trigger if it is not passed in October or shortly afterwards.  

This article concerns not the mechanics of whether and how Labor can acquire an early double dissolution should it be unable to pass the HAFF Bill (though I am happy to have that discussed in comments), but whether it is a good idea strategically.