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Aussie election: Gillard holds the advantage

Written By: - Date published: 10:26 am, August 28th, 2010 - 30 comments
Categories: australian politics, International - Tags: ,

A week after Australia went to the polls the outcome is still unclear. However, the way the cards are falling I’d put my money on Julia Gillard remaining Prime Minister and Labor retaining power.

The current seat count is:

72 – Labour
72 – Coalition
1 – Green (to support Labour)
1 – Western National (to support the Coalition)
4 – Independents (3 former Nationals, and anti-war campaigner Andrew Wilkie)

Now let’s look at the House with those numbers together making the assumption that Wilkie, whom the Liberals wanted to jail at one point, will side with Labour.

74 – Supporting Labor
73 – Supporting Coalition
3 – Undecided former Nationals

What’s clear from those numbers is that Tony Abbott would need all three remaining independents to form government, whereas Gillard would only need two of three. That makes it a lot easier for the Prime Minister.

And even though these key independents are former Nationals, personality clashes and bad blood almost eliminate this advantage.

Further factors are:
1) Tony Abbott had refused Independents’ demands to allow Treasury to cost the Coalition’s promises, and made up two different excuses as to why. And though he’s now conceded this point it must look very suspicious for the independents.

2) The Greens will from July 1 hold the balance of power in the Senate. That will make it extremely difficult for a Coalition government to get legislation passed through the upper house. The independents have a far better chance of getting their policies through if they support a Gillard-led government.

Although the numbers are still unclear, I’d say all signs point to Gillard.

30 comments on “Aussie election: Gillard holds the advantage”

  1. The Voice of Reason 1

    The Western Nat, Tony Crook, is making it very clear that he doesn’t support Abbott. Doesn’t mean he’d go with Gillard, but it’s not a vote the Coalition can count on. He also refers to himself as an ‘agrarian socialist”. So if he abstains on confidence, that’s one less vote Labor need.

    “Crook stated he would sit as a crossbencher advocating the interests of Western Australia. He opposes the participation of the Nationals in The Coalition. “I’m clearly an independent”, he stated to reporters. “I can sit on the crossbenches quite comfortably”.

    “Tony Abbott urged me to consider my position and said to consider that I am a member of the Nationals. But I highlighted to him that although we are a federated body, the WA Nationals are an autonomous political organisation”. Crook said he had been disappointed by media coverage of the hung parliament, which has included his seat of O’Connor in the number of seats won by the Coalition. “In every news report and press report we see, my number is being allocated in with the Coalition and it shouldn’t be” he said. Crook’s separation from the Coalition puts him at odds with Nationals MPs from the eastern states.

  2. comedy 2

    If either of the two major party’s leaders had any sense they’d be working as hard as possible to not form the next government as it is likely to be a monumental fuckup

  3. Lanthanide 3

    I wouldn’t necessarily count Gillard needing 2 and and abbot needing 3 as being in Gillard’s favour.

    She can easily say to the independents “I only need 2 of you, so that means you have to come to a compromise on what you want to achieve”, whereas Abbott requires all 3, so all 3 together have a much stronger negotiating position with Abbot than they do with Labor. If they’re only interested in getting their own goals through, Abbott is more likely to meet all demands from all 3 independents than Gillard is because he has no choice (of course there’s nothing stopping her from meeting all demands as well).

  4. Rex Widerstrom 4

    Meanwhile the indepdendents’ voters overwhelmingly want them to support the Coalition but hey, they’re only the plebs.

    I tend to agree with comedy… it doesn’t matter who “wins”, it’s all going to end in tears very quickly as these independents have let the power go their heads (and in Bob Katter’s case there was an awful lot of spare space in there waiting to be filled). They’re going to make NZF post-96 look cohesive, intelligent and principled.

    Crook – despite everyone who voted for him understanding the Liberals and the Nationals are joined at the hip – is openly demanding a $860 million bribe for regional WA as the price of his support. If either leader is stupid enough to pay up, they’ll have every other rehional area (including the dedperately poor and primarily Aboriginal NT) screaming “unfair”.

    No, the reason I’m fuming is that I want more independents in any Parliament, not less, but it just so happens that these guys aren’t exactly the cream of the crop and the spotlight on their current and future antics is going to turn people off voting for independents and have them flocking back to the parties for “stability”.

  5. Blue 5

    I don’t think I would wish government on either major party this time. The Aussie voters monumentally stuffed up at the polls and now they’ve got probably the worst possible outcome.

    Whoever forms a government will have very little power to pass laws. Anything they want to do will have to have the support of some unpredictable and slightly nutty right-wing rural independents who can’t get along with anyone.

    What a mess to leave your country in.

    • Con 5.1

      Funny … I think this may end up being the best possible outcome.

      Whoever forms a govt will have to be be a canny political operator; they’ll have to negotiate with potential partners and actively build a coalition on the basis of shared goals. They will have to address the interests that the independents are championing. The National Broadband Network, for instance, is a big thing for the rural areas of Australia which are in a state of long-term decline. The NBN offers the prospect of being able to attract knowledge workers to rural areas (or at least lose fewer of them). Living in a rural town offers some huge advantages, if the main disadvantage (of being in a cultural backwater) can be reduced.

      Another big issue for rural Australia is climate change. Objectively, climate change is a particular enemy of rural towns which are vulnerable to climate variability. In times of drought, shops and businesses close, and when the drought lifts, residents have become used to traveling to bigger towns nearby, and the market opportunity for those local businesses is lost. Australia’s climate has always been highly variable, and as it gets more so, more settlements will be abandoned.

      But to my mind the best thing about the hung parliament is precisely that it represents the failure of the political establishment to continue as normal. People are questioning the political system, and this is the real threat to political “stability” – not the market jitters around a week or two of coalition negotiations. To my mind, this kind of political instability is what Australia needs: the failure of the 2-party system to reproduce itself means that there’s a chance for some substantive changes in the political system – it introduces an opportunity for the changes to occur in a progressive direction (under the influence of some kind of popular political activity). Bring it on!

  6. If you’re right, then you can go and make a TON of money on the betting markets, that have Labour at only a 30 to 35 percent chance of winning. If you believe what you’re saying, go to iPredict, or to BetFair or to CentreBet, and put a pile of money on Labor.

    I’m agnostic, and so only have been making arbitrage plays looking at price differences across markets as a way of making money. But if you really think it’s going to be Labor, you can triple your money. Go do it! If you think you’re right.

    • Michael Foxglove 6.1

      If only gambling wasn’t a social disease that I refuse to touch. Well… mostly :).

      • iPredict is a futures market, not a gambling site.

        There’s no difference really between buying futures contracts that pay out on the value of a barrel of oil and contracts that pay out on the outcome of an election.

        And, of course, if you’re SURE that Labor will win, then it isn’t really gambling, is it?

        • Lanthanide 6.1.1.1

          Um, buying oil futures is gambling…

          • Eric Crampton 6.1.1.1.1

            And so is buying any share on the stock market (could go up, could go down), same for buying bonds, same for buying a house….

            • Bill Browne 6.1.1.1.1.1

              I buy a house to keep myself and my family warm and dry in the winter time

              • Buying rather than renting is a bet that house prices won’t depreciate substantially. I bought mostly because I wanted to set up heating to a North American standard. But had I thought in 2005 that we’d see a big property crash soon after, I’d have rented instead.

    • toad 6.2

      Farrar’s backing Gillard, isn’t he, Eric?

      • Could be; I’ve lost track. But Farrar would be one to be putting money on it on iPredict if he reckoned that. I like folks to put their money on it when there’s a market letting them do so. Otherwise, I can never tell if they really believe what they’re saying.

        • felix 6.2.1.1

          That’s because you measure everything in economic terms, duh.

          • Eric Crampton 6.2.1.1.1

            So, felix, if somebody at the bar insists that Canterbury never had the Ranfurly Shield in 2009 – insists it really really strongly – but then refuses to put money on it when you offer him the bet, that then, what, makes you more confident that he believes what he’s saying?

        • Pascal's bookie 6.2.1.2

          Otherwise, I can never tell if they really believe what they’re saying.

          First of all, why should you care whether they really believe it or not? Does your opinion on ‘whether they really believe it’ affect whether or not you think it’s true? It might I suppose, if I knew nothing at all about the matter at hand. But in that case I think I would still be far more influenced by why they claimed it to be true than by whether or not I though they were being honest about their opinion. If I did know something about the matter, then again, my beliefs about their honesty would be an insignificant factor.

          Secondly, even if their honesty about their beliefs was a decisive factor, then I don’t see how the having money on it tells me much. If I have assumed that they might be lying about their actual belief, then I probably assume that they have some motive for the lie. The obviously want me to think that they believe what they are saying, so why should I believe that they are only motivated enough to lie but not enough to put a bit of money on it. maybe their desire to have me think they believe it is worth the bet. Or maybe the bet is a hedge. There could be all sorts of plays going on, and if you assume dishonesty is in play, where do you stop.

          No, I think it’s far simpler to forget about whether or not they being honest about their belief, (because it doesn’t really matter) and just assume they are being honest. If you are still not convinced that what they are saying is true, you can conclude idiocy, or bias or some other factor.

          I don’t think the fact of betting gives you enough information to conclude honesty, if you are prone to suspecting it.

          • Eric Crampton 6.2.1.2.1

            I think folks here like to self-deceive about the relative chances of their preferred parties, both here and abroad. That one has money on it suggests passing some minimal hurdle.

            • Pascal's bookie 6.2.1.2.1.1

              That one has money on it suggests passing some minimal hurdle.

              No it doesn’t. It could just as easily suggest that they want you to think they believe it.

              • 1. Saying you believe X, but being unwilling to put money on X, suggests you don’t believe X as much as you said you did.
                2. Putting money on X makes it more likely that you believe what you said, especially if the money stakes are greater than the “convincing other people” stakes.

                Can we agree on that much?

                • Pascal's bookie

                  But you can’t know what the ‘convincing other people’ is worth to them.

                  You are already assuming that they might not be being honest about what they think, so why wouldn’t you think that any amount they bet is just an indication of how much they want to decieve you?

                  All I’m saying is that once you assume bad faith, you can’t really escape that assumption. Much simpler to just assume that they are being honest and go from there.

                  Afterall, what difference does it make?

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    Afterall, what difference does it make?

                    To what you think about the truth value of X I mean.

                    .

                  • I’m less worried about folks trying to deceive me and more about folks having deceived themselves. In general, if I’m spouting nonsense and somebody challenges me to put money on it, it forces me to consider how strongly I believe what I’m saying.

                    • Bill

                      What a load of rubbish!

                      How rich or poor are the people entering into the wager?
                      What are their thoughts on or attitudes towards gambling?

                      And what has money or strength of belief got to do with being right and wrong?

                      hint. money has got nothing to do with it and dogmatism always winds up as quaint anachronism at best.

                      hint no 2 . egotism would seem to have quite a lot to do with supposed right and wrong and an inability to shift position, ie learn

  7. Olwyn 7

    Does anyone recall a cartoon in the Brisbane Courier Mail after our 1996 election: the caption read “Weary of their harsh neo-liberal masters, the New Zealanders struck out in a bold new direction,” and the drawing was of a mob of sheep going round and round in circles. Looks like its their turn.

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    2 days ago
  • TPP Agreement bad for democracy
    International Trade Union Confederation TPP Agreement bad for democracy, rights, public services and health Brussels, 4 February 2016 (ITUC OnLine): The ITUC has called the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) a major setback for employment ...
    2 days ago
  • TPP Agreement bad for democracy
    International Trade Union Confederation TPP Agreement bad for democracy, rights, public services and health Brussels, 4 February 2016 (ITUC OnLine): The ITUC has called the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) a major setback for employment ...
    2 days ago
  • Peru signed the Trans-Pacific Partnership in NZ
    Thursday 4 February 2016 Press Release Peru's Foreign Trade and Tourism Minister Magali Silva has signed the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement in New Zealand's city of Auckland today along with her counterparts from 11 Pacific countries. The ...
    2 days ago
  • Peru signed the Trans-Pacific Partnership in NZ
    Thursday 4 February 2016 Press Release Peru's Foreign Trade and Tourism Minister Magali Silva has signed the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement in New Zealand's city of Auckland today along with her counterparts from 11 Pacific countries. The ...
    2 days ago
  • Protesters project giant message onto SkyCity
    Community organisations representing more than five and a half million people around the world have united to take joint action and express global opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, as Trade Ministers sign the deal at SkyCity in Auckland. ...
    2 days ago
  • Protesters project giant message onto SkyCity
    Community organisations representing more than five and a half million people around the world have united to take joint action and express global opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, as Trade Ministers sign the deal at SkyCity in Auckland. ...
    2 days ago
  • Reserve Bank highlights importance of market discipline
    Reserve Bank highlights importance of market discipline The Reserve Bank today highlighted the importance of market discipline as one of three pillars that help maintain the stability of financial institutions. In a speech this evening hosted by the NZ Bankers… ...
    2 days ago
  • Infrastructure to underpin development of the Northland regi
    “The release today of the Tai Tokerau Northland Economic Action Plan is strongly endorsed by the New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development (NZCID) and will drive much needed employment, investment and growth in the region,” says NZCID ...
    2 days ago
  • Infrastructure to underpin development of the Northland regi
    “The release today of the Tai Tokerau Northland Economic Action Plan is strongly endorsed by the New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development (NZCID) and will drive much needed employment, investment and growth in the region,” says NZCID ...
    2 days ago
  • Kiwis reject the TPPA
    Around 15,000 Kiwis marched down Queen Street today to protest against the signing of the TPPA. The march was loud, diverse, family-friendly, peaceful and passionate in its opposition to the TPPA. ...
    2 days ago
  • Kiwis reject the TPPA
    Around 15,000 Kiwis marched down Queen Street today to protest against the signing of the TPPA. The march was loud, diverse, family-friendly, peaceful and passionate in its opposition to the TPPA. ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ-US Council welcomes the signature of the TPP
    NZ-US Council welcomes the signature of the TPP The Executive Director of the NZ-US Council, Fiona Cooper Clarke, has welcomed the signature of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement in Auckland today. “We are delighted that the TPP has been… ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ-US Council welcomes the signature of the TPP
    NZ-US Council welcomes the signature of the TPP The Executive Director of the NZ-US Council, Fiona Cooper Clarke, has welcomed the signature of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement in Auckland today. “We are delighted that the TPP has been… ...
    2 days ago
  • Let Quake Outcasts Move on Says Human Rights Commissioner
    Let Quake Outcasts Move on Says Chief Human Rights Commissioner The Chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford is calling on the Government yet again to settle the Quake Outcasts case following yesterday’s announcement that the Outcasts have ...
    2 days ago
  • Kiwifruit winner in TPP Agreement
    The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement will generate significant value for the New Zealand kiwifruit industry and Zespri welcomes the signing of the Agreement today in Auckland. Zespri Chief Executive Lain Jager explains the TPP will eliminate ...
    2 days ago
  • Kiwifruit winner in TPP Agreement
    The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement will generate significant value for the New Zealand kiwifruit industry and Zespri welcomes the signing of the Agreement today in Auckland. Zespri Chief Executive Lain Jager explains the TPP will eliminate ...
    2 days ago
  • Waihi Dam Update
    Waihi Dam Update Hawke’s Bay Regional Council is hopeful the discharge of sediment from the Waihi Dam into the Waiau River will cease by the end of next week. HBRC staff met with Eastland Group staff and contractors yesterday to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Waihi Dam Update
    Waihi Dam Update Hawke’s Bay Regional Council is hopeful the discharge of sediment from the Waihi Dam into the Waiau River will cease by the end of next week. HBRC staff met with Eastland Group staff and contractors yesterday to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Campaigners vow “final battle” to prevent massive deal
    As TPP is signed in Auckland casino, campaigners vow “final battle” to prevent massive deal being ratified ...
    2 days ago
  • Paddling Cape to Cape for a Cause
    A mission that will see him spend three week on stand up paddle board, paddling from the South Cape to the top of the East Cape of the North Island. ...
    2 days ago
  • Trust applauds $4m government funding for art centre
    Today's announcement of central government support, made by Minister of Economic Development Steven Joyce, provides a key step forward in funding for Whangarei’s Hundertwasser Art Centre & Wairau Maori Art Gallery. ...
    2 days ago
  • Horticulture Welcomes TPP Signing
    New Zealand’s peak body for commercial fruit and vegetable growers, Horticulture New Zealand, has welcomed the official New Zealand signing of the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement today. Horticulture is New Zealand’s fourth largest export earner, sending ...
    2 days ago
  • Attitude change to sexual violence needed, council says
    The National Council of Women of New Zealand says the commentary around Malaysian diplomat Muhammad Rizalman bin Ismail's assault on Tania Billingsley should be a wakeup call for New Zealanders to change their attitudes to violence. ...
    2 days ago
  • Hundertwasser Art Centre receives Government boost
    Prosper Northland has welcomed today’s announcement of a $4 million contribution by Central Government to the Hundertwasser Art Centre (HAC) project in Whangarei. ...
    2 days ago
  • National Policy Statement a powerful tool under the RMA
    Property Council believes there is an urgent and pressing need for a National Policy Statement (NPS) on urban development under the Resource Management Act (RMA). ...
    2 days ago
  • National Policy Statement a powerful tool under the RMA
    Property Council believes there is an urgent and pressing need for a National Policy Statement (NPS) on urban development under the Resource Management Act (RMA). ...
    2 days ago
  • TPPA – The People Prefer Accountability
    The Conservative Party are by no means opposed to trade agreements with other countries, but the secrecy surrounding the negotiations and the lack of disclosure of real detail with regard to the TPPA, accompanied by the fobbing off of serious… ...
    2 days ago
  • TPPA – The People Prefer Accountability
    The Conservative Party are by no means opposed to trade agreements with other countries, but the secrecy surrounding the negotiations and the lack of disclosure of real detail with regard to the TPPA, accompanied by the fobbing off of serious… ...
    2 days ago
  • TPP casino signing gambles with our future
    OTTAWA – Trade ministers from 12 nations have chosen a casino and convention centre for the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), leading to criticism from fair trade advocates like the Council of Canadians that governments are gambling ...
    2 days ago
  • TPP casino signing gambles with our future
    OTTAWA – Trade ministers from 12 nations have chosen a casino and convention centre for the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), leading to criticism from fair trade advocates like the Council of Canadians that governments are gambling ...
    2 days ago
  • TPPA Still Needs an Independent Health Impact Assessment
    TPPA Still Needs an Independent Health Impact Assessment The New Zealand Medical Students’ Association (NZMSA) urges the Government to facilitate an independent Health Impact Assessment (HIA) on the recently agreed Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement ...
    2 days ago
  • TPPA Still Needs an Independent Health Impact Assessment
    TPPA Still Needs an Independent Health Impact Assessment The New Zealand Medical Students’ Association (NZMSA) urges the Government to facilitate an independent Health Impact Assessment (HIA) on the recently agreed Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement ...
    2 days ago
  • Neo-Kalashnikovs join TPPA protest
    Auckland indie band The Neo-Kalashnikovs are issuing a challenge to all others bands to stand up in protest against the TPPA. They performed at the Protestival on 31st January and will be on the protest march down Queen St. ...
    2 days ago
  • Neo-Kalashnikovs join TPPA protest
    Auckland indie band The Neo-Kalashnikovs are issuing a challenge to all others bands to stand up in protest against the TPPA. They performed at the Protestival on 31st January and will be on the protest march down Queen St. ...
    2 days ago
  • Federated Farmers welcomes TPP signing
    Federated Farmers welcomes today's signing in Auckland of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement as a significant milestone for the New Zealand economy and a positive deal for the agriculture sector. ...
    2 days ago

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