Victoria election 2022 report card, week four: a debate, the challenge for pollsters and the sprint to the finish line

1 week ago 13

Margaret Simons, writer and academic

We are down to the wire. The polls are antithetic capable to origin anxiousness each round, but they hold connected the trends: an accrued ballot for the Greens, independents and insignificant parties, and a crook distant from Labor – though not capable to mean defeat.

Once you get past that, the predictions are each implicit the place. Roy Morgan has Labor’s superior ballot astatine 38% and the Coalition astatine 32.5%, with Labor good up connected 2 enactment preferred. Resolve polling, reported by Nine newspapers, has their superior ballot level astatine 36%, which is simply a accelerated alteration from a fewer weeks agone – but inactive puts Labor up connected 2 enactment preferred. RedBridge polling, reported by the Herald Sun, predicts the astir apt effect is simply a hung parliament, based connected a seat-by-seat analysis.

Given the differences, I deliberation we are entitled to beryllium sceptical connected the detail. I person occupation believing the suggestions of huge, last-minute changes successful voting intentions. To recognition that, we would person to judge thing has happened during the past weeks of the run to alteration galore people’s minds. I deliberation we each cognize that is not apt to beryllium true. But “campaign changes nothing” does not a header make.

It’s been beauteous disappointing. So galore issues person not been illuminated oregon tackled.

The main issues stay the aforesaid arsenic earlier the campaign, contempt the committedness of a spendathon. Negatives for the authorities see the authorities of the wellness strategy – for which, aft 2 terms, it can’t dodge work (although the media are inactive not holding national governments to relationship for their role). Both sides person promised spending connected hospitals. But cipher is listening to experts pointing retired that the astir important issues are astir illness prevention and nationalist health.

Other than that, it’s astir whether you are prepared to backmost Daniel Andrews’ big-picture reckoning – that the wealthiness and benefits generated by the Suburban Rail Loop and different infrastructure commitments volition enactment the legume counters and the naysayers connected the incorrect broadside of history, oregon whether you bargain the drawback container of offerings from Matthew Guy and the assertion that the wellness situation demands cancelling the obstruction loop and diverting the funds to hospitals.

As for debt, Guy talks astir it, but has not offered a program to tackle it. Andrews reckons it’s bully indebtedness due to the fact that it is an investment. The grounds volition travel successful aft astir 3 decades.

Corruption allegations and investigations person enmeshed the large parties. I uncertainty if voters deliberation 1 is amended than the other. Most inactive springiness Andrews bully marks for the hard calls made during the pandemic, but radical are looking ahead. Anxiety astir the existent surge successful Covid cases is politically neutral, due to the fact that neither broadside was prepared to suggest nationalist wellness measures – specified arsenic compulsory mask-wearing connected nationalist transport – during the campaign.

Of course, the authorities volition suffer seats. The past predetermination was a grounds triumph and Labor approaches the polls covered successful dents and scratches, tires successful request of aerial and the steering erratic. Guy’s run has been miles amended than in 2018, but it has not amounted to a compelling lawsuit for change.

Who won the week: The Independent Broad‑based Anti‑corruption. Who volition situation to chopped its backing oregon weaken its powers fixed the workload it present has, backed up good into the word of the adjacent government?

This week’s dux: The undecided voters astatine the SkyNews people’s forum. They asked questions of substance and listened to the answers. Yay for them.

This week’s dunce: The Liberal party’s vetting process for candidates. The preselection of immoderate candidates undermines Matthew Guy’s transportation that helium is safe, mean and mainstream. How did they get it truthful wrong?

Tony Barry, RedBridge pollster and erstwhile Liberal enactment exec

In governmental campaigns, the absorption tries to person voters to bargain their product. Meanwhile, the authorities tries to person voters not to bargain their competitor’s product.

That’s wherefore Labor spent the past week of the run sharpening their onslaught connected Matthew Guy, informing of the hazard of buyers’ remorse if they power their ballot to the Coalition.

Labor’s run this week is consecutive retired of the party’s playbook, with claims that Guy was liable for cuts to wellness spending. The Coalition responded by quoting an ABC Fact Check, which dismissed those claims. Labor past counterpunched by verballing the Coalition connected the fracking of gas.

This strategy is usually clever politics, but Labor is astatine hazard of looking hopeless successful the aforesaid mode that the Morrison authorities did successful its dying days. That’s due to the fact that Guy has mostly neutralised perceived Liberal weaknesses. He’s promising much for health, ambitious enactment connected clime alteration and hasn’t bought into immoderate of the civilization warfare debates.

Andrews is 1 of the shrewdest and astir superb politicians of his generation. But by his elevated standards, he’s not had a large campaign.

With the premier continuing to suffer altitude, the cardinal question present is whether helium volition scope the runway successful time.

But connected the eve of the election, it’s hard to spot the electoral arithmetic to enactment a Coalition win. Although the likelihood of a Labor and Greens number authorities are shortening.

Who won the week: The Coalition, aft starting the week untidily. The leaders’ statement was a turning constituent – of the 100 undecided voters that attended, 28 were inactive incapable to divided the 2 aft an hr of questions and answers. That’s a worrying motion for an incumbent who’s had 8 years successful the occupation and suggests elector hesitations astir giving the premier a 3rd term.

This week’s dux: Treasurer Tim Pallas and absorption treasury spokesperson David Davis stock the honours, with the merchandise of predetermination costings and their seamless and effortless quality to guarantee Victorians that the authorities fund isn’t successful structural deficit.

This week’s dunce: The Labor campaigner who recruited Kevin Rudd to run successful Northcote. Why would anyone deliberation it’s a bully thought to punctual voters that Kevin Rudd is connected your side?

My barista called it earlier this week. “Dan Andrews has got to triumph this.” I person implicit spot successful immoderate quality who tin froth beverage to that level of perfection. Also, aft the statement betwixt the 2 leaders earlier this week, it’s hard to conceive immoderate different outcome.

Andrews has conquered the creation of nationalist speaking and came crossed arsenic articulate and measured. Meanwhile, Matthew Guy stumbled and missed cardinal opportunities to enactment the premier connected the spot, demonstrating helium whitethorn not beryllium the Guy (ahem) for the job.

The icing connected the barroom was Guy declining to convey healthcare workers for their hard enactment since the opening of the pandemic. Imagine saying nary to that.

“Hey, Matthew, would you similar to crook down and rescue that handbasket of kittens close successful your path?”

“Nah, I’m good, thanks.”

Labor continued its absorption connected women’s wellness issues this week with a pledged $19m proceedings to let pharmacists to dainty insignificant illnesses, including straightforward urinary tract infections (which chiefly impact women), and to reissue prescriptions for contraceptive pills. That successful itself volition prevention women a large woody of clip and money.

Guy spent clip revisiting 1 of the Coalition’s biggest summons items: capping nationalist transport astatine $2 a day. There’s nary denying that voters are acrophobic astir the rising outgo of living, but I don’t cognize that nationalist transport is the biggest worry. Is it capable to get the Coalition in? I don’t deliberation truthful but we don’t person to hold overmuch longer to find out. I reckon my barista’s close connected the money.

Who won the week: After being virtually ignored for, well, ever, women’s wellness has cleaned up again this week.

This week’s dux: The statement provided an evident metric for this and it’s harmless to accidental Andrews won it with calm and calculated governmental communication.

This week’s dunce: Catherine Cumming for her “red mist” comments astir Andrews astatine a rally connected Saturday afternoon. While she was cleared of inciting unit by police, she would person been sweating for a fewer days earlier being handed the verdict.

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