Election night thoughts

Ho hum, just another election victory for Howard to throw on his pile of successes. Now is not the time to get bogged down in the detail and the seat by seat breakdwon (see Antony Green for all those goodies) but there are some generalisations which can be made:

- The Coalition have managed to hold almost all the marginals which were up for grabs. This will be extra frustrating for the ALP, knowing they'd they had a string of seats that were made marginal in 2001, and this year was the one to reach success. It will be tougher to win in 2007 than it was this year given the starting point.

- It seems like it's a farewell to Christian Zahra in McMillan (a sad loss to the parliament), Michelle O'Byrne (who?) in Bass, Sid Sidebottom (best name in parly) in Braddon, Anthony Byrne in (the previously safe seat of) Holt. There is some cause for celebration, however, with Ross Cameron looking like losing Parramatta (he has had plenty of 'polling' problems in the past... groan). Lineball in Adelaide, Larry Anthony in Richmond. I suspect both will end up with the coalition after postals.

- Reasons for the loss? The interest rate message seemed to hit the spot with many voters, and the poor ALP vote in aspirational seats is a testament to that. Latham's inexperience seemed to have some impact as well, and the inevitable speculation about how Beazley would have performed if he were leader will reveal that the ALP would have got closer than they did under Latham. Rather than the ALP's weaknesses, it seems like Howard won the election by playing to his strengths. He's a cunning politician, and knew which issues to campaign on and how to dominate those issues. And he doesn't punch taxi drivers.

Comments

TheLoneAmigo said…
A triumph for lies, deceit, dishonest, and bribery. Congratulations, Man of Steel.
Anonymous said…
Whoever posted the comment is a putz!

The fact is that the coalition has governed well, and it is strong. People with large mortgages are - very sensibly - just not prepared to take risks.

The War on Terror is real, and most decent people have had enough of Bush bashers and kowtowing to tree cuddlers - who prefer the terrorists' values to ours.

The ALP has lost its way. It has lost its lunatic left fringe to the Greens.
Polly said…
Oh well, here's my 2 cents - Labor got caught up in a lousy last week
where they focused on forests, and all they managed to do was convince the average voter that they were too inexperienced, and too caught up in irrelevant issues to normal people.

What's the point of getting swings in seats like Melbourne when you're losing massive ground in seats like McMillan and Holt and Isaacs (Holt and Isaacs are shocking results for the ALP - they should be holding these seats easily, instead of scrapping over the line).

The senate has massively changed, with the Coalition grabbing 38 seats, and blocking power. The Democrats senate premium has collapsed, and gone back to the major parties - and the greens received a much lower swing than the commentariat were predicted, which will struggle to see them pick up a seat outside of Tasmania.

I'm sure there's going to be much whinging from some quarters about selfish aspirationals or whatever, but it's completely missing the point - if you don't provide people with a credible alternative, or put together a strong campaign (or in the case of the Greens even bother to have more than a token presence, and instead concentrate on a couple of inner suburban seats in the latte belt) then how can you expect normal people living in the suburbs to take you seriously?

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