Australian Election Campaign – Abbott Will Be Prime Minister – Second Poll Agrees Rudd Could Lose His Own Seat

Posted on Sat 08/24/2013 by

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Bolt New 01By Andrew Bolt ~

Australian Leader Of The Opposition Tony Abbott

Australian Leader Of The Opposition Tony Abbott

The only question now is how bad Labor’s loss will be, with Kevin Rudd such damaged goods that even he could now lose his seat:

With only a fortnight to go in the five-week election campaign, the latest Fairfax-Nielsen poll shows Mr Abbott’s Liberal-Nationals Coalition extending its lead over Labor, to be 53-47 on a two-party-preferred basis…

On the question of preferred prime minister, Mr Rudd’s commanding 14-point lead of 55-41 in July has been reduced to a statistically insignificant 3 points on 48-45.

UPDATE

Liberal strategists had trouble believing a Lonergan poll this week showing Kevin Rudd trailing 48 to 52 per cent in his own seat. Now a Newspoll confirms it:

The Coalition candidate in the Prime Minister’s seat, Bill Glasson, has also had a huge lift in primary vote support – up 12 percentage points since the election in 2010 – and leads Mr Rudd on a two-party-preferred basis by 52 per cent to 48 per cent.

The Liberals are considering a plan to now swamp Griffith with volunteers to makes sure Rudd is gone:

LNP workers would be sent into Griffith, where ophthalmologist and former AMA head Bill Glasson is the party’s candidate, from safer seats such as Moncrieff, McPherson, Fadden, Ryan and Groom.

“Our people hate Kevin Rudd – in the same way Labor hated John Howard,’’ one senior Liberal said.

“And everyone wants a little bit of Kevin’s death.’’…

Kevin Rudd now holds the seat by more than 8 per cent. If that falls to 3 per cent, it will be considered “in play’’…

Inside LNP headquarters, the plan has been developing over the past 10 days… Behind closed doors, a marginal seat campaign was being drawn up “to play with Rudd’s head’’, and by Thursday polling was under way.

Today or tomorrow, a decision will be made on how much the political assault is worth.

UPDATE 2

Queensland has turned against not just Rudd but his captain’s pick, Peter Beattie, and Labor looks unable to pick up a single seat in a state where it needed half a dozen:

According to the Newspoll survey of marginal Coalition seats in Queensland, Labor’s primary vote has dropped from 36.5 per cent at the 2010 election under Julia Gillard to 32 per cent…

On a two-party-preferred basis, using preference flows at the 2010 election, the Coalition leads Labor 60 per cent to 40 per cent across the group of Brisbane, Forde, Longman, Herbert, Dawson, Bonner, Flynn and the now independent-held Fisher…

Former Labor premier Peter Beattie was brought out of political retirement to try to win Forde… LNP MP Bert Van Manen … (leads) Labor’s star recruit, Peter Beattie, 54 per cent to 46 per cent on a two-party-preferred basis…

With margins like that, Labor could actually lose seats in Queensland.

UPDATE 3

Labor could lose four more seats in Tasmania:

ReachTel polling for the Hobart Mercury newspaper on Thursday shows all Tasmanian Labor MPs could lose their seats with swings of up to 18 per cent.

The polling suggests Tasmanian independent Andrew Wilkie will hold his seat of Denison, but the only Labor MP with a chance of holding on is Julie Collins, in Franklin, where she trails Liberal candidate Bernadette Black by 49.4 per cent to 50.6 per cent on a two-party-preferred basis. In Lyons, Bass and Braddon, Labor MPs are behind on second preferences by 12-16 percentage points.

Labor is now dangerously close to losing so badly it would be down to 55 seats against 94 for the Coalition (with Independent Andrew Wilkie keeping Denison). Rudd’s return would have saved perhaps between five and 10 Labor MPs.

But there are still two weeks to go … for Rudd to make it even worse.

UPDATE 4

If Rudd and his supporters had kept a level head – realising his job was simply to minimise losses, not win the election – there would be less stress and disillusion. There would probably be fewer stories of backbiting, too:

LABOR MPs are losing hope that Kevin Rudd can deliver them victory at the September 7 election and are digging in to fortify their own seats in face of opinion polls showing the campaign is going against the government.

One MP told The Weekend Australian that the Prime Minister on the hustings was “not Kevin07”.

“He’s been off the paddock for too long and he’s not match fit,” the MP said.

There is also anger being directed at Mr Rudd’s election strategist Bruce Hawker over the direction of the campaign… There is a sense among some MPs that things are being made up “on the run” on the plane…

(A)n MP said the fall in Mr Rudd’s approval ratings and the rise in Mr Abbott’s approval ratings since the election was called was a direct result of voters judging Mr Rudd’s underperformance in the first two weeks of the campaign.

But despite an avalanche of poor opinion-poll results, MPs said they were polling better than when Julia Gillard was prime minister.

“The only saving grace (is) he will save the furniture. We’ll be within striking distance to win the next election,” one MP said.

But that was all that Rudd was brought back to do. As I said on Channel 10 Brisbane yesterday, by this measure you cannot say Rudd has failed. Yet.

Andrew Bolt is a journalist and columnist writing for The Herald Sun in Melbourne Victoria Australia.

Andrew Bolt’s columns appear in Melbourne’s Herald Sun, Sydney’s Daily Telegraph and Adelaide’s Advertiser. He runs the most-read political blog in Australia and hosts Channel 10’s The Bolt Report each Sunday at 10am. He is also heard from Monday to Friday at 8am on the breakfast show of radio station MTR 1377, and his book  Still Not Sorry remains very widely read.

Read more excellent articles from Andrew Bolt’s Blog . http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/