Archive for May, 2010

Beware the leaked Labor polling

Ever since the ALP lost the 2002 Cunningham by-election to the Greens with a large protest vote, they have finessed the art of expectations management through the leaking of supposed internal party polling data. The latest example came yesterday when the Sun-Herald ran a story reporting that leaked Labor polling puts the ALP on only 32% of the two-party preferred vote in Penrith in the lead up to the June 19 by-election.

This story indicates a couple of things: firstly, it indicates how desperate the ALP is. It seems very implausible that the ALP is polling so badly, but it indicates that the ALP is looking to use this story to scare Labor voters back. Secondly, it shows how eager some journalists are to be spoonfed a story by spin doctors if it creates some political drama. It sells newspapers to publish a front-page story reporting such catastrophic polling figures, while burying the key facts that such a poll has zero scientific credibility due to its source.

Considering the ALP’s actions in leaking the poll, it suggests we are heading towards a result comparable to the 2008 Ryde by-election, with Labor losing on a large swing. Which we already could have guessed.

Seat profile #106: Moreton

Moreton is a marginal seat in southern Brisbane, won by the ALP’s Graham Perrett off the Liberal Party’s Gary Hardgrave in 2007.┬áThe seat covers the suburbs of Sunnybank, Runcorn, Eight Mile Plains, Acacia Ridge, Coopers Plains, Rocklea, Salisbury, Moorooka, Oxley, Corinda, Graceville and Fairfield. Perrett now holds the seat with a 6% margin, after a large swing in 2007.

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Seat profile #105: Oxley

Oxley is a Labor seat in south-western Brisbane. The seat previously covered Ipswich and other parts of the fringe of South-East Queensland, and was held by Bill Hayden throughout the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. Hayden held the seat while serving as Treasurer, Leader of the Opposition and Foreign Minister before becoming Governor-General in 1988.

The most famous election result in Oxley took place in 1996, when Liberal candidate Pauline Hanson was disendorsed after she made comments critical of government support for Aborigines. Hanson won election as an independent (but with the Liberal Party’s endorsement on the ballot paper) and went on to found One Nation, although she failed to win re-election after parts of Oxley were moved into the new seat of Blair in 1998. Apart from that single result in 1996, Oxley has long been a solid Labor seat.

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Seat profile #104: Rankin

Rankin is a seat on the southern edge of Brisbane, covering parts of the City of Brisbane and the City of Logan. The seat has been held by federal minister Craig Emerson since 1998, and he now holds it by 11.7%.

The seat covers the suburbs of Algester, Calamvale, Hillcrest, Regents Park, Heritage Park, Crestmead, Kingston, Chatswood Hills and Springwood.

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Seat profile #103: Fadden

Fadden is a safe Liberal seat covering the northern parts of the Gold Coast. The seat has almost always been held by the Liberal Party, and was held by David Jull from 1984 until the 2007 election, when he was succeeded by Stuart Robert.

The seat covers suburbs such as Helensvale, Coomera, Arundel, Ashmore, Runaway Bay and Paradise Lakes.

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Seat profile #102: Moncrieff

Moncrieff is a safe Liberal seat along the Gold Coast, covering central parts of the city, including Surfers Paradise and Southport. The seat has been held by Steven Ciobo since 2001. The seat should be easily retained by Ciobo in 2010.

The seat includes the suburbs of Miami, Surfers Paradise, Paradise Waters, Broadbeach, Mermaid Beach, Rialto, Carrara, Benowa, Ashmore and Nerang.

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Seat profile #101: McPherson

McPherson is a Liberal seat covering the southern end of the Gold Coast. It has been held by Liberal MP Margaret May since 1998, but she is retiring in 2010. The seat was home to a fierce preselection battle last year as senior Liberal frontbencher Peter Dutton attempted to move from the marginal north Brisbane seat of Dickson to McPherson, but was defeated by local candidate Karen Andrews. Despite the controversy, the Liberal National Party should easily retain the seat.

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The Tally Room on Facebook

Now that I have finished New South Wales and South Australia and reached 100 profiles, I am working on getting the remaining seats in Queensland posted soon. I have now also created a Facebook page for the blog which you may wish to join. This page will run a feed of posts from the website which you can access within Facebook.

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Seat profile #100: Melbourne Ports

Melbourne Ports is a Labor seat on Port Phillip Bay immediately south of the Melbourne CBD. The seat covers Caulfield, St Kilda, Port Melbourne and a number of neighbouring suburbs. The seat is held by a 7% margin for the ALP, and contains a number of varying areas. There is a high Greens vote in St Kilda, while the Caulfield area is a straight Labor-Liberal race.

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Seat profile #99: Batman

Batman is a Labor seat in the inner north of Melbourne, held by cabinet minister Martin Ferguson. While the seat is considered Labor’s safest seat in the country, with a 26% margin, there is a substantial vote for the Greens, particularly around Northcote at the southern end of the seat, where the Greens substantially outpoll the Liberals. While the seat will probably remain with Labor in 2010, this seat could be vulnerable to the Greens over the next decade.

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