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Tasmanian Politics

May 21, 2014

EMRS: Liberal 48, Labor 25, Greens 21 in Tasmania

The first Tasmanian state poll since Will Hodgman's March election victory shows a big rise in support for the Greens, although it's not clear how meaningful that is.

The new Tasmanian Liberal government’s first opinion poll, part of EMRS’s regular series of 1000-sample polling, has the Liberals at 48%, down slightly on the 51.2% recorded at their landslide win in March. Labor too is down slightly, from 27.3% to 25% – although this makes way for a 21% result for the Greens, who polled only 13.8% at the election, and whose vote tends to get inflated in EMRS polling. Apparently Bryan Green leads the Labor Party now (apologies to my Tasmanian readers that I don’t take a greater interest in their affairs), and his debut rating on preferred premier is 22% to 54% for the recently triumphant incumbent Will Hodgman. For a much better performed perspective on the poll, you can’t do any better than Kevin Bonham.

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12 comments

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Kevin Bonham
Guest

Raaraa@11

@10

If either major parties can’t win an outright majority, will another election be called if neither wants to form government with a balance of power party?

Not necessarily. If a government loses its majority but there is no alternative party willing to provide an alternative government with guarantees of support then the original government may well stay in place until the Parliament decides otherwise.

It is in theory possible to have a minority government that continues on the floor of the house without any guarantee of support indefinitely, just so long as other parties do not pass a motion of no confidence in it. That would have happened after the 2010 election here had Labor not formed a deal with the Greens, since no-one was doing a deal with the Liberals.

The situation in which an election really needs to be called is if no government can be formed without it being voted down by motions of no confidence. Or all options have been tried and ended that way.

Raaraa
Guest

@10

If either major parties can’t win an outright majority, will another election be called if neither wants to form government with a balance of power party?

Kevin Bonham
Guest

Tom the first and best@9

8

What will that quarter do when a grand coalition is formed, quite possibly when the Greens next end up with the balance of power?

I don’t think it will happen. For the junior partner in the grand coalition it’s a hiding to nothing: it fails and you cop some of the blame or it succeeds and you are redundant. Far better, if the government loses its majority, to just leave it holding the baby, put up with a term in opposition and win the next election outright.

Tom the first and best
Guest
Tom the first and best

8

What will that quarter do when a grand coalition is formed, quite possibly when the Greens next end up with the balance of power?

Kevin Bonham
Guest

Coast@6

When pollsters ask people a simple question of who they intend to vote for why do Tasmanians give misleading responses, or are too apathetic to think about their political leanings on the spot?

One thing here is that about one quarter of the electorate doesn’t care who wins the election so long as the Greens don’t get the balance of power. So between elections these voters often genuinely don’t know which major party they prefer, unless one is obviously winning.

Whether we have more people who just pick the Greens as a form of glorified face-saving “dunno” is hard to say, or whether it more represents the foibles of particular pollsters. EMRS used to have a reputation for paying staff modest rates and pushing them pretty hard for interview completion speed. Perhaps also the tendency for the Green vote to be overstated by pollsters (which happens nationwide, across pollsters generally) might be higher here just because the base Green vote is higher.

Coast
Guest

I see. Thanks to Kevin Bonham for the correction.. apologies to William Bowe.

When pollsters ask people a simple question of who they intend to vote for why do Tasmanians give misleading responses, or are too apathetic to think about their political leanings on the spot?

Kevin Bonham
Guest

fredex@4

Kevin

has a demonstrated and large house effect in favour of the Greens and against Labor


That does that mean we can accept the combined ALP+Grn number [25+21] as OK but just be sceptical about how it splits into the 2 constituents?

Generally you could safely do that though in this case I reckon the Green sample is even more out of whack than normal so I’d be inclined to take a point at least off that. I rather doubt that ALP+Green combined have gained quite as much as 5 points off the Libs and PUP since the election.

fredex
Guest

Kevin
[has a demonstrated and large house effect in favour of the Greens and against Labor]
That does that mean we can accept the combined ALP+Grn number [25+21] as OK but just be sceptical about how it splits into the 2 constituents?

Kevin Bonham
Guest
Coast@2 William Bowe: I am at a loss to understand why you don’t use EMRS second table of results instead of your headline numbers ( both sets of results are availble on their website ). The second set of results which you don’t use but you should leaves the undecided rate alone and just uses the respondent result plus the ‘lean to’ response. This is the result that all opinion pollsters use when they publish their results. That’s not correct. For instance if you look at Newspoll, they publish a headline result that sums to 100 if you add up the votes for the parties. That is the result that gives a percentage of all firm and “leaning” voters and excludes or proportionally redistributes (it makes no different which) the hardcore undecided. The difference at present is that EMRS actually publishes the tables prior to the exclusion of the undecided as Table 2, whereas Newspoll just includes an asterisk and something that says “*5 per cent “uncommitted” and 2 per cent “refused” excluded” and leaves it to people to construct their own table equivalent to EMRS’s Table 2 should they wish. The headlines are now created by the same process. Current Newspoll: 36+38+11+15=100. Current EMRS: 48+25+21+3+3=100. EMRS have made a lot of reporting changes and some of those made in the current report are new. They used to report results in an idiosyncratic fashion by publishing the raw result prior to pushing respondents who are leaning to a party as the headline, and it was that table that had the vast undecided rates. At a certain point they relegated that table and finally this time around they have stopped publishing it altogether. The disappearance of that table (plus the recency of the election) is why you are now seeing an undecided rate of “just” 10% and not say 23%. That said I’d maintain that 10% is still rather high. Presenting the data in the Table 2 form (with undecided not redistributed) is something ReachTEL used to do in some polls but seem to have stopped unless the client wants it, and I have never seen any of Morgan, Newspoll, Essential, Nielsen, Galaxy doing it for a voting intention poll. They all count voters who are leaning to a party as for that party then redistribute the hardcore undecideds. They generally seem to do it without getting a figure that overstates… Read more »
Coast
Guest

William Bowe: I am at a loss to understand why you don’t use EMRS second table of results instead of your headline numbers ( both sets of results are availble on their website ). The second set of results which you don’t use but you should leaves the undecided rate alone and just uses the respondent result plus the ‘lean to’ response. This is the result that all opinion pollsters use when they publish their results. The peculiarity to the way EMRS publicises their results has been pointed out to you countless times. It will also save you coming up with a different way of saying “the Green vote is over inflated” or “the Green vote is not really true” every 3 months. This situation is amplified when the undecided rate is high. However, it is different story this time around.

Your headline numbers should thus read 43/22/19 for this poll. The undecided rate was just 10%.

And yes, we have a new Labor leader as well as a new Greens leader.

meher baba
Guest

William, we forgive you for not taking too great an interest in our politics, which have been relatively quiet since the election.

I think the Libs will be relieved that the swing away from them is so negligible, as they’ve had a pretty rotten first couple of months in office: being forced to back down over their promises to log the areas reserved under the TFA; disagreeing publicly over the question of continued subsidisation of Forestry Tasmania; and now having their Canberra mates totally shaft them in terms of hospital and schools funding.

Hodgman has been almost invisible lately and I suspect his highish personal rating reflects a continuing wish on the part of a majority of the electorate to “give him a go”.

The new leader of the Greens, Kim Booth, has some policy stances that I can’t share, but he’s undoubtedly a very effective communicator and I think that has contributed to the rise in the Green vote (albeit that we are all pretty certain it is overstated).

Bryan Green as Labor leader is the sort of bloke that you either love (mainly if you hail from Burnie) or hate (a fairly common emotion among Hobartians to whom I talk). He began his stint as leader in auspiciously by (for god knows what reason) coasting slowly through a red light in downtown Hobart and thereby causing a minor car accident.

Apart from this, I think he’s done a reasonable job at communicating his message: personally, I don’t find him quite as unappealing as many others seem to do.

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