Are those voters calling for a new poll planning to change their vote?

According to this morning’s media, 56% of 1000 voters in a recent poll (it’s not clear from that article when it was conducted or for whom the PR firm works) are “fed up” and want a new election rather than a hung parliament.


Well, the person I wanted as PM didn’t win, so I’d like the people who failed to vote for them to have another go.

It’s a pity the pollsters didn’t ask the obvious next question to any voter thinking a new election will solve “the problem” of no party having an absolute majority: “Would you be changing your vote, then?” And, if we may be so bold to ask, “from what to what?” And, perhaps, “Why?”

If, like me, these respondents have no intention whatsoever of changing their votes, then are they just arrogantly assuming that other people will fix up their mistake and fall into line? That certainly appears to be the Liberal Party’s thinking.

I’m yet to see any voters declare that they wish they personally – as opposed to the people who voted for the other side and got it wrong – could have a chance to switch their vote. And without such people, who the media have notably failed to identify in their cries for a new poll, surely we’d just get the same result.

For the record, I’m perfectly happy with my Green vote. I won’t be changing it.

AND: I note that News Ltd, declaring that voters “call for new election to end deadlock”, doesn’t bother explaining to its readers that it’s not actually constitutionally possible for a new election to be called instantly, anyway.

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42 responses to “Are those voters calling for a new poll planning to change their vote?

  1. I remember the first time I heard a talkback caller seemingly jokingly insisting on a new election. I remember thinking “Very amusing! Indeed, who could endure another campaign? Bravo!”, not expecting for an instant that within a day or two others would be saying the same thing without a hint of comedic intent.

    But then, I also giggled when News Limited demanded the resumption of the Pacific Solution 6 months ago, never suspecting that anyone would attempt that embarassing nonsense again. Clearly I’m criminally out of touch with the views of mainstream Australia and am precisely the type in need of an opportunity to amend my vote.

  2. Not to mention that a new election may not break the deadlock at all. What happens with another hung parliament?! ANOTHER election?!

    (I hate this system of choosing the executive.)

  3. The one thing I could see changing in a fresh election is that some of those who voted informal two weeks ago might decide in favour of one side or the other as their least-worst alternative, rather than settle for having the choice made for them by others. And since the informal vote was higher than the winning margin in a whole swag of seats, that could very easily change the result.

  4. Splatterbottom

    austin: “I hate this system of choosing the executive.”

    Too right. If we had true separation of powers and had a separate nationwide vote for PM there would always be one winner. We wouldn’t have this hiatus, or the preposterous spectacle of the independents, high on their own hubris, enjoying their day in the sun. Australians want a leader and resent these preening posing poltroons who are enjoying much too much the fawning attention they are receiving.

  5. I don’t want “a leader”, I want a representative arguing for my views in parliament.

  6. Splatterbottom

    We need both a leader and parliamentary representation. The problem with the current system is that parliament, not the people, elect the leader.

  7. On many sites comments reflect a willful ignorance of the Parliamentary process and as a matter of course the actual poll questions posed (rarely shown) and answers given are then morphed into a editorial position by the writer or held back because they don’t fit the narrative. Whilst I don’t want a didactic media there should be some effort to state the actual situation rather than let headless chickens run around stirring up blood and dust.

  8. I’d rather a body of representatives decided what legislation is passed, rather than an executive elected once and then allowed to run rampant on whatever issue they like over the next three or so years.

  9. The problem with the current system is that parliament, not the people, elect the leader.… In fact the parties elect their leaders. The majority “group” forms a Government, and as for “electing a leader” … “always be a winner..” is this satire? Are you trying to get a gig on Groupthink?

  10. Splatterbottom

    I’d rather a body of representatives decided what legislation is passed

    I’m not proposing that parliament be abolished, just a more direct way to choose the executive.

  11. If we directly elected the executive, then we’d have a conflict between what they decide and what parliament decides. How do you propose to resolve that?

    I presume your answer will involve taking decision-making away from parliament.

  12. I’m not proposing that parliament be abolished, just a more direct way to choose the executive.

    ok, so it is satire.

  13. Splatterbottom

    Phyllis, the PM is appointed by the GG. By convention The GG invites the person she believes will be able to form government. In practice that means being likely to be able to withstand a no confidence motion. In effect the GG is affirming the will of the parliament. Thus it is parliament who chooses the PM.

    In the present case, clearly the parties have elected leaders, and just as clearly it is not the parties who are choosing the PM, but rather the grouping which can command a majority. That grouping will consist of one or more parties and some independents and will represent the largest bloc in parliament.

    On the other hand if we had a true separation of powers and a PM/President elected directly by the people then their would be no issue of a hung vote. It would be a simple nationwide vote with one winner.

  14. I don’t think that the US model is one we really want to emulate.

  15. It would be a simple nationwide vote with one winner.
    “And I for one, welcome our new Overlord” (sic)… Stop it you’re hurting.

  16. Direct election? Meh. I don’t care for presidential-style politics (even if the past four or five election campaigns have strongly traded on the concept). Giving individuals strong popular mandates (or, alternately, weak mandates) and you really do run into problems if the far messier concept of representative politics runs counter to this mandate. A multi-member electorate system would alleviate that a bit (less all-or-nothing), but that also invites minor party representation and coalition politics.

    BTW, Jeremy, have you worked out a screed if the independents choose Abbott? (unlikely as that looks, on the face of it)

  17. Oh, and phyllis, it’s our new insect

  18. (html fail!) … overlords!

  19. Oh, and redravens, sic!

  20. I R stoopid.

    (cue: screed from SB on how the left is always so poorly educated)

    😉

  21. The US system may not be one we want to emulate in its entirety, but the concept of a more strict separation of the legilsature and the executive in Australia should not be dismissed so glibly.

    Phyllis’s Simpsons references may be fun, but they’re not particularly appropriate or illustrative in the present case. The US President is not akin to a dictator or ‘overlord’ and it cannot be denied that the current hung parliament wouldn’t matter the slightest if our executive was directly elected.

  22. it cannot be denied that the current hung parliament wouldn’t matter the slightest if our executive was directly elected.

    Gosh I’m displaying my ignorance here, but can you explain how this would be so?
    and,
    my allusion to the Overlord referred to a “winner” here, not to the US Presidency.

  23. I like the parliament having the final say, subject to the constitution as interpreted by the courts. I’m not keen on a third branch competing with the parliament – I don’t see why we need a smaller group of people telling our representatives what they can and can’t do.

    As for how much our “hung” parliament is a problem – it’s not a problem at all. It’s a parliament that will have to actually represent the electorate, rather than appointing a government and then being largely irrelevant for the next three years. It’s what representative democracy is SUPPOSED to be.

  24. Splatterbottom

    RR, I can’t comment. My Simpsons education is sadly lacking and even South Park is beginning to grate. My new favourite show is The Gruen Transfer, mainly due to that lefty Canadian panelist Todd Sampson.

    Mondo, we have our own insect overlords as it is, namely the faceless cabal that led the coup against Rudd and installed their lackey Jooolia.

  25. weewillywinkee

    I wish you would do a ring ring on this J. I need something to laugh at .. LOL.

  26. maybe they rang 1000 liberal voters. 56% unhappy with things, that means 44% were happy, not a very convincing survey.

    p.s parker etc is owned by WPP Group, the same “city of london” boys who run everything over here

  27. Gosh I’m displaying my ignorance here, but can you explain how this would be so?

    Yes you certainly are, and no I certainly will not. Do some basic investigation into the US system of government and you will have your answer.

    And Jeremy – tell me its’ not a problem in 12 months time when it becomes obvious that the independents are being given disproportionate influence all so that Julia can be protected from a vote of no confidence.

  28. I agree that local independents are a problem – the parties all work for the country at large (except the nationals, but even they have broader concerns) and mixing them up with purely local-based candidates tells the rest of us that we should give up on the nation and just look after the selfish issues of our own local backyard.

    The solution isn’t another layer of government, though, it’s a more democratic parliament. My suggestion is multi-member electorates, which would result in parliamentary representation for smaller parties more in line with their vote, and undermine the power of random independents.

  29. Gosh I’m displaying my ignorance here, but can you explain how this would be so?

    Yes you certainly are, and no I certainly will not. Do some basic investigation into the US system of government and you will have your answer.

    Mondo perhaps you misread my comment which referenced your assertion that:
    it cannot be denied that the current hung parliament wouldn’t matter the slightest if our executive was directly elected. “our” executive, not the US. Or perhaps you forgot your original argument. Or perhaps you can’t back that assertion because it is a stretch.
    Jeremy, multi member electorates? How would that number in each electorate being determined?

  30. I’d say something between 5 and 10 member electorates, simply replacing that number of single member electorates.

    The number to be determined by a parliamentary committee looking into the change and seeing how the numbers would fit the country. You’d want to avoid electorates overlapping states, and there might be some other considerations.

    The idea is to have some level of regional representation, but a lower house that much closer matches the number of votes parties receive at present. A lower house that doesn’t permanently lock in the present two big parties, regardless of how badly they do.

  31. I see …implications… but a roiling mass would be interesting. This model could supersede the states?

  32. I can’t see that happening, and that would require massive constitutional change. (And a sure-to-fail referendum.)

    Changing the electorates wouldn’t.

  33. OK Phyllis – this is probably going to be a challenge for you but let’s have another go anyway eh?

    If you want to see how a directly elected executive can overcome the problem of a split (or even hostile) legislature then please refer to the US system, which has a directly elected executive. I understand that the US is not Australia, but perhaps you can look past that monumentally obvious fact and nonetheless glean some sort of insight about the operation of a directly elected executive here by observing the operation of a directly elected executive over there.

    What I’ve done here is to engage in an age-old rhetorical method called “providing an example”. Obviously I’ve confused you because the example I’ve provided relates to a foreign country, but I must admit that I erroneously assumed that you would be able to overcome that minor hurdle and still find some value in the comparison.

    Clearly I was wrong. My apologies for overestimating you.

  34. “Clearly I was wrong.”
    Apology accepted.

  35. Ah yes – quoting out of context – the last refuge of the clearly defeated.

    I’ve enjoyed exposing your idiocy Phillis. Let’s do it again soon.

  36. I think everyone should calm down.

  37. To quote the great Walter Sobchak:

    “I’m perfectly calm dude.”

  38. You’ve set the tone, so I’ll join you. The John Goodman reference settles the mental bet I made as to whether you were (a) a retro “late bloomer” grappling with poli sci at VicU, or (b) a humourless senescent territorial steer. I pick b!

  39. I’m humourless because I use Big Lebowski quotes?

    Um, OK Phyllis.

  40. Splatterbottom

    Mondo you should leave the trolls alone, especially the willfully obtuse trolls like phyllis. At least I will engage you in an argument rather than pretend not to understand it.

  41. The problem is that you keep saying things I agree with.

  42. Splatterbottom

    I’ll try to remedy that on the next thread, Mondo. 🙂

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