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ACT Election 2008

Oct 4, 2008

The Canberra Times has published a poll of voting intention for the October 18 Australian Capital Territory election, covering 400 respondents in each of the three multi-member regions. The poll appears to confirm what might have been ascertained from anecdotal evidence and recent elections elsewhere: that Labor’s primary vote is down by as much as 10 per cent since the last election; that it has no chance of retaining its majority; and that the dividend from its decline is set to be reaped by the Greens, who have a quota in their own right in each electorate and are looking good for a second seat in the seven-seat Molonglo region. The table below shows results from both the poll and the 2004 election, with the number of quotas indicated in brackets.

Patterson
2004 Election
ALP LIB GRN OTH ALP LIB GRN OTH
Molonglo (7) 33% (2.6) 29% (2.3) 23% (1.8) 16% (1.3) 45.3% (3.6) 32.6% (2.6) 11.5% (0.9) 10.6% (0.9)
Brindabella (5) 38% (2.3) 37% (2.2) 18% (1.1) 7% (0.4) 45.7% (2.7) 40.0% (2.4) 7.3% (0.4) 6.6% (0.4)
Ginninderra (5) 34% (2.0) 34% (2.0) 16% (1.0) 16% (1.0) 50.1% (3.4) 32.4% (2.2) 8.2% (0.6) 7.6% (0.6)

Labor and Liberal seem assured of two seats in Molonglo and the Greens of one, but the remaining two are hard to pick. With seven seats on offer, the electorate has proved attractive to independent candidates including Liberal-turned-independents Richard Mulcahy (an incumbent) and Helen Cross (defeated in 2004), along with high-profile Queanbeyan mayor Frank Pangallo. The poll respectively has them on 2 per cent, 2.5 per cent and 3 per cent, meaning there would need to be tight mutual preference flows if any of them are to be in the hunt (for what it’s worth, Pangallo has been approached by Labor in the past to run in Eden-Monaro). If the figures are accurate, the most likely result would be that the minor candidates’ preferences would spray around enough to deliver one of the final seats to Labor and another to the Greens. The figures from the five-member electorates point to straightforward results of two Labor, two Liberal and one Greens. That means the most likely outcome of the election is that Labor will survive as a minority government with Greens support (assuming a coalition of some description isn’t on the cards). The current numbers are Labor nine, Liberal seven and Greens one.

Further discussion at The-RiotACT.

UPDATE: Remiss of me not to have noticed the accompanying Canberra Times article which reports: “The Greens have made no secret that they would consider forming a coalition with either side of the political equation”. Hat tip to Oz in comments.

UPDATE 2 (5/10/08): The Sunday edition of the Canberra Times provides further figures on leadership perceptions, finding Jon Stanhope is preferred as leader by 41.6 per cent against 40.0 per cent for Zed Seselja. This compares with Stanhope’s 63 per cent to 19 per cent lead over then-Liberal leader Brendan Smyth shortly before the 2004 election. “Just over half” reckon Stanhope suffers from the foible du jour, arrogance.

UPDATE 3 (6/10/08): Adam Carr has some lovely maps at his Psephos website with colour-coded booth results for Labor, Liberal and the Greens.

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175 comments

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Oz
Guest

Clearly they’ve been rife throughout this campaign, my point is that it’s unlikely to translate into any tangible positive electoral result.

mogfeatures
Guest

And ‘negative attacks’ haven’t been central to the demonising of Stanhope? (So much so that one of the minor, so-called ‘independent’ parties appears to be running almost solely on an anti Stanhope ticket, rather than anti Labor.)

Oz
Guest

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/news/local/news/general/rivals-gang-up-on-greens-as-poll-push-boils-over/1331045.aspx

I thought it had been emphatically proven that negative attacks don’t actually work.

Rebecca
Guest
mogfeatures: I’m not surprised in the least. ACT Liberal leaders who campaign on traditional Liberal Party ideology become long-forgotten opposition leaders. It goes down like an utter ton of bricks here. Seselja is smart enough to realise that by staying the absolute hell away from anything that could be portrayed as seriously conservative, he won’t alienate a giant swathe of the population who are fed up with Stanhope and want somewhere else to go. History makes this bloody obvious – the only Liberal Chief Minister who ever won an election was Kate Carnell, who was popular, charismatic, and on the… Read more »
mogfeatures
Guest

170 – Perhaps then they might be willing to form a coalition with the medieval wing, sorry, branch, of the Greens.

ltep
Guest

I remember seeing some vague comments about wanting to return Canberra to it’s former ‘nature’ on some such thing, which was hinting at a more conservative, backwards looking territory. I think that could possibly be viewed as a traditional campaign point.

Oh… and there’s law and order of course.

Adam in Canberra
Guest

Obviously in these circumstances they should run on a platform of outright Bolshevism.

mogfeatures
Guest
Has anyone noticed anything the ACT Liberals are proposing which owes anything to traditional Liberal Party ideology? Or does it appear they’re just promising whatever it takes to have a turn at the wheel? In which case, given the predisposition of the ACT electorate to the left, the ascendancy of Rudd and Bolshie Turnbull, and the collapse of the glorious market, whither the Canberra Liberals? What do they stand for? Anyone care to enlighten us or speculate where individual Canberra Liberals are coming from or just where they might sit on the political spectrum? They can’t all be opportunists, surely.
Michael
Guest

The Hettinger hoo haa is mostly a symptom that the ALP see most of their problem coming from the Green side rather than from the conservative side. He wants to have a bit of both ways.

Oz
Guest
Yeah, I think that too about RiotACT. Bird of Paradise, if you remember a few years back there was another case up in QLD where almost the exact same thing happened… a certain someone whose name doesn’t deserve to be mentioned on this hallowed website was kicked out of the Liberal Party for peddling views they didn’t agree with, created their own party and ran as a candidate but because the ballot papers had already been printed they were listed as a Liberal candidate. Of course it would be quite a bit harder in the ACT with the party tickets… Read more »
Bird of paradox
Guest

Also – a nice round up of ACT goings-on at RiotACT, here. That’s quite a good website – I could see myself using it quite a bit if I ever moved to Canberra.

Bird of paradox
Guest
[ Hettinger should defect to the Greens. ] There’s another article on this here (Canberra Times). I guess Hettinger could do a Ronan Lee and jump over to the Greens… I doubt he’d do it now, seeing as the ballot papers have already been printed and there’s probably some regulation against it, but if he got elected (which may happen – he’s getting plenty of publicity 😉 ), and then went Green… well, that’d be interesting. Might be the second Greens member in Molonglo. (Third, even, in the case of a boilover – although if he’s making himself known as… Read more »
Adam in Canberra
Guest

Gosh, if that’s an extremely serious matter, what is the impending collapse of the British banking system?

ruawake
Guest

OK its tedious but http://www.archive.org will confirm my assertion. 🙂

Possum Comitatus
Guest

heh!

From rua’s doc

“Our sampling was N=400 in each case.

This provides a sample error of +/- 4.9% at the 95% level of confidence, or about 2.1% at the 70% confidence level”

Who the hell uses a 70% confidence interval?

It’s like “yeah, sure – two out of three aint bad”. 😀

ruawake
Guest

“We also provided two iterations of voting intent for the Canberra Times in Eden- Monaro.”

http://www.marketresearch.com.au/aurora/assets/user_content/File/Federal%2007%20Assessment%20FINAL.pdf

ruawake
Guest

Patterson polled Eden-Monaro twice, the first poll showed a Nairn win, the second showed the result within 2%.

The only result widely published was the aggregated result of the two polls. 😛

NOTE: This statement is false: see here – The Management.

Oz
Guest

Hettinger should defect to the Greens.

Bird of paradox
Guest

This from today’s Crikey email:

[ Labor Party HQ in the ACT has just frozen campaign funding for Mike Hettinger, one of its candidates for the electorate of Molonglo in the 18 October ACT Election. Hettinger, a former rocket scientist, narrowly missed out on being elected in the last election in 2004. In recent years he has been an outspoken activist on local educational and environmental issues, such as school closures and the controversial Gungahlin Drive Extension. It is understood that the latest action is a response to Hettinger’s radio and TV advertisements in the current campaign. ]

ltep
Guest

ruawake… I don’t remember any polls saying Nairn would retain Eden Monaro. I remember they said that it’d be about 54/46 or 52/48.

Antony GREEN
Guest

No Margaret, Adam is quite right. Swing is always expressed as a percentage point difference, not as a percentage. By your mathematics, interest rates fell 14.3% yesterday.

The reason why is simple. Say a two party contest, one party 45%, the other 55%. Say the next election was 50:50. The swing was 5 percentage points. If you used percentages rather than percentage points, the party whose vote rose would have received an 11.1% swing, but the swing against the other party would be 9.1%. The number of voters was the same in both cases, so the percentages are clearly misleading.

margaret
Guest

Thanks for clearing that up Adam

Should be

Greens up 8.5% on their vote in previous election
Labor down 9% on their vote in previos election

Adam in Canberra
Guest
Margaret, I don’t know what planet you’re living on, but on this one the results of the 2007 NSW state election were as follows: Australian Democrats 21,099 00.5 (-00.4) Australian Greens 352,805 09.0 (+00.7) Australian Labor Party 1,535,872 39.0 (-03.7) Christian Democrats 97,420 02.5 (+00.7) Liberal Party 1,061,273 26.9 (+02.2) National Party 396,023 10.1 (+00.4) Others 471,497 12.0 Greens up 00.7%, Labor down 3.7%.
margaret
Guest

mogfeatures, have a look here and all shall be revealed:-

http://act.greens.org.au/

mogfeatures
Guest

What shade of Green are we talking about? The Ronan Lees or Ian Cohens, the Petra Kellys or Joschka Fischers? Everything from anti abortion to pro Afghanistan intervention eh? Just think what they’ll be like when they have to caucus.

Oz
Guest

Yeah, fair enough. Only a week and a half to go anyway.

The wrangler
Guest

[Can anyone else be bothered to do polling in the ACT? Or is that the reason we have to deal with Patterson?]

A mate of mine is a subbie at the Canberra Times and said they can’t afford to hire to many companies to do polling. I’d suggest (though he didn’t) that they chose Patterson cos they were cheap (not that i can confirm that).

I don’t think any of the major companies could be bothered in the ACT. It’s not really a massive talking point anywhere but here. And even here its not that big a deal.

ruawake
Guest

margaret

I get some very good drugs on prescription – what’s your excuse? 🙂

margaret
Guest

Greens vote increased by 10%, Labor vote dropped by 10%.
2007 NSW State election
Go The Greens.
http://www.abc.net.au/elections/nsw/2007/results/

The wrangler
Guest

The real problem here is that we won’t get many more polls other than this one in the lead up to the election here. Its pretty hard to assess its accuracy in the absence of any trends…

ruawake
Guest

Patterson have a deal with The Canberra Times and The “West”. Maybe the contractual obligations of the others ties them to their newspapers.

Maybe Morgan ?

Oz
Guest

Can anyone else be bothered to do polling in the ACT? Or is that the reason we have to deal with Patterson?

Oz
Guest

Right, so there’s no point in picking the few examples bucking the trend, is there? Because I don’t think anyone is saying that The Green vote is rising EVERYWHERE. It doesn’t happen for any other party, so why would it happen for them? Pointless assertions.

ruawake
Guest

So back to the ACT election and the Patterson (Westpoll) figures. It may make the Greens all hairy chested thinking they may win 4 seats. But remember this is the polling mob who said Labor was ahead in WA : 54-46 , the same polling mob who last election said Gary Nairn would retain Eden-Monaro.

NOTE: The latter statement is false: see here – The Management.

Adam in Canberra
Guest

Of course I acknowledge the Green vote is rising. Look at my post #1 on this thread.

Adam in Canberra
Guest

That’s what happens when you get over-excited.

Oz
Guest

Blargh, higher at the *State election.

Oz
Guest
Interesting that the counterargument to quite substantial and trending swings to The Greens right throughout the country is cherry picking particular results, that one could call outliers. The NSW primary vote in Federal election may have dropped 0.21%, but it was 0.7% higher at the Federal election in the same, and I would say quite a bit higher at the more recent council elections. And we’re still only talking about NSW. But I don’t quite understand how you could be arguing that votes for The Greens aren’t increasing in numbers? You can argue about why people are voting and whether… Read more »
Oz
Guest

Oh my bad, I got confused with “State result”.

Adam in Canberra
Guest

ruawake clearly said FEDERAL election, Oz. The Green vote in NSW at the 2007 federal election dropped by 0.21%

Oz
Guest

Conduct all the hypothetical plebiscites and elections you want, it’s the real ones that count.

Adam in Canberra
Guest

I suggest Oz conducts a plebiscite in Cessnock about shutting down the coal industry. Tar and feathers, anyone?

Oz
Guest

Quite sure there was a swing of 0.7% towards The Greens at the last NSW state election,

http://www.abc.net.au/elections/nsw/2007/results/

Omg swing against Labor! They’re a spent political force! Silly, and factually incorrect point.

ruawake
Guest

Wow the swing to the Greens was +0.1% in Hunter at the last Federal election. Staggering. Better than the overall state result where there was a swing AGAINST the Greens. 😉

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