The lunitic Right fringe of the ACT Party will breathe a sigh of relief to know the The Veteran will be absent from the end of this week through until 25 August. I am in Australia as a guest of the Liberal Party looking at campaign tactics. I will be concentrating on the Liberal marginal seat of Paterson (NSW) held by the Hon Bob Baldwin, Shadow Minister of Defence Science and Personnel. Last election the two Party preferred vote was Liberal 51.5% (-5%) vs Labor 48.5% (+5%). Paterson is a rural seat north of Newcastle. The redistribution is thought to favour Labor.
BTW. Can anyone tell me why in Aust they opt for Labor over Labour?
While my heart tells me that the Liberals will win the election my head tells me otherwise. Neither New Zealand or Australia have a history of turning out a Government after only one term. In recent times (post 1970) there have only been three such occasions.
Nevertheless the manner in which Gillard rolled Rudd may prove decisive in the final result, particularly in Queensland.
Look for the Liberals to pick up seats in WA, Qld, NSW and possibly Tas and NT. For Labor to do well in Vic and SA. In WA and Qld the Mining Tax issue continues to bite Labor. Note too that in Qld and NSW you have two very unpopular Labor State Governments. Polls suggest that up to 45% of voters are influenced in their final choice by their perception of how well their State Government is performing.
Bellwether seats to look for include Bass and Braddon in Tas and Solomon in the NT.
There will be no change in the two ACT seats. Both are held by Labor with over 60% of the vote. Turkeys don't vote for an early Xmas.
And overlaying all of this is The Mad Monk vs the Photoshopped Puppet (c/w 'authentic' Ocker accent). Both have baggage.
As I said, my heart tells me one thing, my head the other. Going to be a fascinating ten days. Looking forward to it.