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Seat of the week: Boothby

Another trip through a South Australian federal electorate to mark the looming state election – this time the southern coastal suburbs seat of Boothby, a nut Labor is never quite able to crack.

Blue and red numbers respectively indicate booths with two-party majorities for Liberal and Labor. Click for larger image. Map boundaries courtesy of Ben Raue at The Tally Room.

The southern Adelaide electorate of Boothby covers coastal suburbs from Brighton south to Marino, extending inland to the edge of the coastal plain at Myrtle Bank and the hills at Belair, Eden Hills, Bellevue Heights and Flagstaff Hill. The seat’s Liberal lean is softened by the area around the defunct Tonsley Park Mitsubishi plant, the only part of the electorate with below average incomes and above average ethnic diversity. It has existed without interruption since South Australia was first divided into electorates in 1903, at which time it was landlocked and extended north into the eastern suburbs. Coastal areas were acquired when the neighbouring electorate of Hawker was abolished in 1993.

Boothby was held by Labor for the first eight years of its existence, and it remained a contested seat until the Menzies government came to power in 1949. This began a long-term trend to the Liberals which peaked in the 1970s, when margins were consistently in double digits. The seat’s member from 1981 until 1996 was Steele Hall, former Premier and figurehead of the early 1970s breakaway Liberal Movement. A trend to Labor became evident after the election of the Howard government in 1996, with successive swings recorded over the next five elections. The swing that occurred amid the otherwise poor result of the 2004 election was particularly encouraging for Labor, and raised their hopes at both the 2007 and 2010 elections. On the former occasion, Right powerbrokers recruited what they imagined to be a star candidate in Nicole Cornes, a minor Adelaide celebrity and wife of local football legend Graham Cornes. However, Cornes was damaged by a series of disastrous and heavily publicised media performances, and was only able to manage a swing of 2.4% compared with a statewide result of 6.8%. Perhaps reflecting a suppressed vote for Labor, the seat swung 2.2% in their favour at the 2010 election, compared with a statewide result of 0.8%. However, that still Labor 0.8% short of a win they had desperately hoped for to buttress losses in Queensland and New South Wales. With the seat off Labor’s target list in 2013, Southcott enjoyed a comfortable victory on the back of a 6.5% swing, which was 1.0% above the statewide par. Labor’s candidate in both 2010 and 2013 was Annabel Digance, who is now running in the seat of Elder for the March 15 state election.

Boothby has been held since 1996 by Andrew Southcott, who first won preselection at the age of 26 ahead of Robert Hill, the leading factional moderate in the Senate. The Right had reportedly built up strength in local branches with a view to unseating its bitter rival Steele Hall, and turned its guns on Hill as a “surrogate” when denied by Hall’s retirement. Unlike Hill, who went on to become government leader in the Senate, Southcott has led a fairly low-key parliamentary career, taking until after the 2007 election defeat to win promotion to Shadow Minister for Employment Participation, Apprenticeships and Training. After standing by Malcolm Turnbull in the December 2009 leadership vote, Southcott was demoted by a victorious Tony Abbott to parliamentary secretary, a position he has retained in government. Southcott’s preselection at the 2010 election was challenged by former state party president Chris Moriarty, following disquiet in the party over his fundraising record. However, Moriarty was heavily defeated, his challenge reported losing steam when Kevin Rudd’s first bid to return to the Labor leadership came to a head in February 2012.

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  • 51
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    Has everything had anything at all to say about Morrison’s conduct this week. Anything to say about the Navy incursions and their excuses. Anything at all re details of the asylum seekers online in breach of their security and privacy??

  • 52
    poroti
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    victoria

    re “These clowns should never have been let near public schoolchildren”

    Look who is making money out of the “biblezine”.

    The material, produced by the News Corp-owned Nelson Bibles, America’s largest Christian publishing house, also “exposes the lie of safe sex”,

    http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/uproar-at-biblezine-sex-tips-for-kids-20140222-338zn.html

  • 53
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    poroti

    It beggars belief. We are in 2014. Not 1514

  • 54
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    I think I understand DN:

    You are mocking me for not knowing what Melissa Parkes said about AS while admitting that you don’t know what Melissa Parkes said about AS.

    Yeah?

  • 55
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Poroti

    I should have added, but of course, where people can be exploited for monetary gain is timeless

  • 56
    DisplayName
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Mocking?

    No, I don’t think you do understand, Mod.

  • 57
    WeWantPaul
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Of course, the aim is to get through the state election without alerting voters to the fact they’re about to be screwed over. Once the election is done and dusted, they can do whatever they like.

    Just as the govt made all kinds of assurances about the GP co-payment before the Griffith by-election, only to announce the very same thing once the by-election was over.

    The sad thing is Tasmanian voters will know how corruptly the Abbott liberal government works and if they vote labor then there is more chance of Abbott freezing the NBN in Tasmania completely than there is of a Tasmanian Labor government convincing the worst, most politically biased and most dishonest Australian Government ever to do the right thing.

  • 58
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    I have worked it out

    Everything is code for much ado about nothing

  • 59
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:23 am | PERMALINK
    Has everything had anything at all to say about Morrison’s conduct this week.

    I think Morrison is appalling.

    I think Offshore processing is appalling.

    I think Burke was appalling as well.

    I think Keating’s mandatory detention laws were appalling (in fact, I agree with the AMA that mandatory detention of children is a form of child abuse).

    I think Gillard’s lurch to the right is appalling.

    I think the Liberal governments continuation of these policies is also appalling.

  • 60
    guytaur
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Insiders playing Vogue sums up Abbott so well

  • 61
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    I try, DN, I really do….its just that the arguments are so convoluted and self-contradictory and so those of us in the real world, struggle with the alternate reality interpretation of events! :devil:

  • 62
    zoomster
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    ModLib

    ….and where are the views up until the caucus votes then????

    You seriously don’t know? Because Melissa Parkes was the one who sprung to mind, but there’s more who have done that.

    Dougie Cameron, Anna Burke (against reintroducing Manus), Senator Lin Thorp, Joanne Ryan, Lisa Chester, etc…

    Looks like there’s more dissenters willing to speak out in Labor ranks than there are in the Liberals.

  • 63
    confessions
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    WWP:

    Hodgman has made soothing, placating noises about pressuring the federal govt to deliver the NBN as intended. But of course we know from experience that once his party has won the election, they’ll just roll over and accept the second rate infrastructure the federal govt intends imposing on Tasmanians.

  • 64
    DisplayName
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Mod
    [I try, DN, I really do….its just that the arguments are so convoluted and self-contradictory and so those of us in the real world, struggle with the alternate reality interpretation of events!
    Oh I see. My being pissed off at taking someone at their word who claims to care about an issue as I do only to find out they’ve been less than careful in their claims and have simply been making stuff up is convoluted and self-contradictory.

    Fine. You can take your self-projected “mocking” and shove it.

  • 65
    kevjohnno
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    daretotread

    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    Gary and everything

    I think that Qld is VERY volatile and could swing just as harshly against the Libs as they did Labor. These are the issues that I think are affecting voters:

    1. Hospitals – remember that under JOH Qld still had a first hospital system PUBLIC system. There is real fear about its loss

    2. Bikie laws – 10% in Redcliffe for the bikie guy. That is actually pretty bloody huge for a single issue candidate, given we can assume that 80% of the greens (civil liberty issue) and 50% of the Labor voters hate the laws]

    DTT Len Thomas was not a single issue candidate and the anti bikie laws were only a tiny part of his platform. He cleverly tapped into a number of local issues such as utility costs(particularly water), council amalgamation (many Redcliffe residents want Redcliffe city back), reduction in health services etc. He was a great protest vote candidate and his results reflected that. Many of his supporters will also be still mad at the previous Labor government for much of that.

  • 66
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    Everything

    The coalition had been egging Labor on since Rudd was PM to pick up the phone to Nauru and PNG to re commence offshore processing.
    Gillard commissioned the Houston report and their recommendations apparently vindicated the coalition.

  • 67
    guytaur
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    Everything

    Labor has a group called Labor4refugees. What is the name of the liberal one and are you a member?

  • 68
    confessions
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    Melissa Parke was a lawyer with the UN before entering parliament. Her opposition to the then Malaysia Solution was very public at the time.

  • 69
    Steve777
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    Abbott, Hockey and other Ministers blaming their ongoing failures on the ‘Carbon Tax’.

  • 70
    DisplayName
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    Especially someone who is always so careful to point out everyone else’s exaggerations. Who would have thought they couldn’t be bothered checking for their own?

  • 71
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    Speak out how? I agree there are ALP MPs who are against these policies, I have absolutely no doubt about that. Are they causing a public ruckus like the moderate Liberals? Troeth, Broadbent, Petro, Judi Moylan….these people actually stood up out of the trenches and agitated. They crossed floors. They went public. You are talking about people whispering mild suggestions while peaking around from behind doors!

    I llike Dougie and Anna Burke. I think these are the exact people who should speak out more vociferously. The others I don’t know and have never heard them say anything about this…..they must have been very timid!

  • 72
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    guytaur
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:32 am | PERMALINK
    Everything

    Labor has a group called Labor4refugees. What is the name of the liberal one and are you a member?

    I am not a member of the Liberal party, and have never been, so ….no, I am not a member of any subgroup.

    What are they called? They don’t need a name, they are the “moderates” (not hard to find, there are so few of them!)

  • 73
    zoomster
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    fess

    and she has only recently resigned as Shadow Minister and was a junior Minister before that – unlike Liberal MPs who spoke out against their party’s AS policy, she hasn’t been relegated to the back bench.

    So the difference with ModLib celebrates is that in the Liberal party, if you speak out of conscience, you do risk your career…in the Labor party, if you do, you don’t.

  • 74
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    in the Labor party, if you do, you don’t.

    in the Labor party, you don’t, because you know what happens if you do.

    There….fixed!

  • 75
    WeWantPaul
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    Troeth, Broadbent, Petro, Judi Moylan….these people actually stood up out of the trenches and agitated.

    Moylan was my local member and I had quite a bit of respect for her, but your definition of agitate and crossing the floor is clearly different to mine, at one point she said somethings in the media that made me think she was about to do something courageous and agitate but she didn’t carry through.

  • 76
    zoomster
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    ModLib

    right. So Labor members care enough about the issue to have an internal lobby group, the Libs have one MP, who isn’t even prepared to speak out on the issue.

    Labor clearly does not discourage dissent, does not penalise MPs when they do speak out, and has more MPs in Parliament who are prepared to go on the public record with their dissent than the Liberals do.

  • 77
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    WeWantPaul
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:37 am | PERMALINK
    Troeth, Broadbent, Petro, Judi Moylan….these people actually stood up out of the trenches and agitated.

    Moylan was my local member and I had quite a bit of respect for her

    I had great respect for all of them as well, and it is very sad that these folk and Dr Washer and others are no longer there to moderate policies….

  • 78
    confessions
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    zoomster:

    It’s perfectly obvious that Liberals speaking out are punished. Look at all the times Moylan and Washer were paired just so their party didn’t suffer the ignominy of having them cross the floor.

  • 79
    zoomster
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    ModLib

    in the Labor party, you don’t, because you know what happens if you do.

    I have just provided you with several examples of Labor MPs who have criticised Labor’s stand on AS, and whose careers have not suffered because of it.

    Get over the denial and look at the facts.

  • 80
    guytaur
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:42 am | Permalink

    Everything

    Thank you. Seeing as you admit there are less moderates to influence AS policy in the Liberals you should consider supporting another party.

    The Greens seem closest to what you want. Then PUP, then Labor then Liberal

  • 81
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:42 am | Permalink

    (Reuters) - Australia asked Cambodia, one of Asia's poorest countries, on Saturday to take in asylum seekers detained while trying to reach the Australian coast and Cambodia said it would think about it.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/22/us-cambodia-australia-idUSBREA1L06D20140222

  • 82
    zoomster
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    ModLib

    and it is very sad that these folk and Dr Washer and others are no longer there to moderate policies

    Right. So stop living in the past. What Liberal MPs did what a decade ago has nothing to do with the modern party (my list of Labor dissenters would be a lot, lot longer if I thought going back even five years was of any relevance).

    Have you considered why these people are no longer in Parliament? It’s because they knew there was no place for them in the modern Liberal party.

  • 83
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    guytaur
    ....The Greens seem closest to what you want.

    Indeed….on this issue, unfortunately, not on other issues!

    Then PUP,

    Yes, probably true.

    then Labor then Liberal

    Labor has agreed with every Liberal policy, whereas, the Liberal party still doesn’t support rendition. Although, there are reports today that Cambodia is having discussions with Bishop and that might be about some form of rendition- lets see.

  • 84
    guytaur
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    “@mumbletwits: According to Twitter,Gerard arguing for the release of Rudd govt cabinet papers. How the mighty have fallen.”

  • 85
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    everything

    Refer to my post at 81

  • 86
    confessions
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    And while boats continue to take centre stage, nobody is talking about the fact that more Australian jobs have been lost under this govt than during the GFC.

    So far the govt’s response to saving Australian jobs is to increase the age at which people qualify for the pension, and treat the G20 as some kind of focus group.

  • 87
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    zoomster
    ....I have just provided you with several examples of Labor MPs who have criticised Labor’s stand on AS, and whose careers have not suffered because of it.

    An hour in and we have no-one here, all political tragics, that can remember a single condemnation of the ALP policy on the matter. Not supporting Manus is hardly the same as the level of condemnation of such policies by the Lib moderates!

    Get over the denial and look at the facts.

    I am very happy for you to console yourself with the delusion that the ALP speaks out to defend these vulnerable people. As long as that is working for you, don’t worry about me! :devil:

  • 88
    confessions
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    guytaur:

    What was I saying about Henderson last night?

  • 89
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    confessions

    Here in Victoria, the public is focussed on job losses. Although having said that the Herald Scum front pages are never about the state of politics and the economy. The front page was always reserved for bad news during the Labor years, but now it is reserved for the crime or celebrity story of the day

  • 90
    guytaur
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    confessions

    Yes. He is doing well at destroying Insiders credibility as Bolt and Akerman have been.

  • 91
    DisplayName
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    http://www.melissaparke.com.au/speeches/469-melissa-speaking-in-parliament-on-the-government-s-asylum-seeker-plan.html

  • 92
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    Lots of quotes from other people but nothing in that speech other than saying people fleeing do so for good reasons and whether they come by plane or boat is not relevant.

    And…..?

  • 93
    zoomster
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    ModLib

    An hour in and we have no-one here, all political tragics, that can remember a single condemnation of the ALP policy on the matter.

    I gave you a list of MPs who have condemned ALP policy. You didn’t ask what they’d said. One of them – Melissa Parkes – immediately leapt to the mind of most of us.

    If you google the MPs I listed, you’ll find the condemnations you’re after…which are considerably more robust than Broadbent’s “There’s no point saying anything, because no one listens to me” sulk.

  • 94
    WeWantPaul
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    I had great respect for all of them as well, and it is very sad that these folk and Dr Washer and others are no longer there to moderate policies….

    I’m am pretty sure any of them succeeded in moderating policy but they all would have had a more moderate policy if they had influence. I don’t know where he stood on refugees but Washer was well spoken and well considered (and I don’t remember him failing to put his money where his mouth was as the rest largely were guilty of).

  • 95
    DisplayName
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    That’s from 2012, prior to Labor implementing their policies, but then we come to the same issue raised – by Mod Lib, too! – all the time here on PB with regard to how often does someone need to repeat themselves so as not be seen as being silent.

  • 96
    victoria
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    So funny. Just reading comments elsewhere

    PMTony Abbott being referred to as PM Tiny Habit. M

    LOL!

  • 97
    Everything
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    zoomster
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:55 am | PERMALINK
    ModLib

    An hour in and we have no-one here, all political tragics, that can remember a single condemnation of the ALP policy on the matter.

    I gave you a list of MPs who have condemned ALP policy.

    No they haven’t. How have they condemned ALP policy?

  • 98
    confessions
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    victoria:

    The govt is mute on what it intends to do to create jobs. It certainly has no evident plans to try to salvage manufacturing, and we aren’t even sure what it intends doing with Qantas other than make mealy-mouthed appeals to its board.

  • 99
    AussieAchmed
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    Just waking to the news -wow

    With a swing against the Newman Government of more than 16 per cent, Labor candidate and former Federal MP Yvette D’Ath easily defeated the LNP’s Kerri-Anne Dooley, earning a second political career.

    The LNP’s loss of Redcliffe takes to five the number of electorates lost through defeat and defections since 2012

  • 100
    WeWantPaul
    Posted Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    I’m am pretty sure any of them succeeded

    I am pretty sure none of them succeeded is what I meant to say.

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