March 08, 2009 | Graham

Cyclone enters Queensland election

(Cross posted from What the people want) Yesterday The Australian’s analysis of the latest Victorian Newspoll suggested that the increase in the Victorian government’s vote was due to the fires which have devastated the state.
The theory rests on the presumption that natural disasters unite the community, and that as the real and symbolic head of state, the premier or prime minister gains an advantage from that.
As the Victorian government’s popularity had recovered by the end of last year (up from 51% 2PP to 57% 2PP between samples) and this year’s results (60% 2PP) are just within sampling error that hypothesis looks a little shaky, however the popularity of Premier Brumby was up from 45% to 52% over the same period, so it is possible.
Which raises the issue of Cyclone Hamish, a once in a 100 years cyclone threatening the coast of Queensland right in the middle of an election campaign. If it devastates any part of Queensland, will it enhance Anna Bligh’s chances?
Or will she be blamed, given that she has already been criticised for calling this early election while much of Queensland is still in flood?
Much may depend on whether Queensland’s disaster services are seen as being up-to-scratch.
(Added 19:02 Sunday 8 March) The off-and-on-again cancellation of the election campaign for this not-yet-disaster, indicates that Labor is aware of the potential in the issue. They’ve probably shot themselves in the foot by taking this tack. It indicates cynicism rather than statesmanship. As I said to Mark Bahnisch, and he kindly reported, voters seem to have stopped listening to Labor, and this sort of behaviour is one reason.

Posted by Graham at 7:22 am | Comments (4) |
Filed under: Uncategorized


  1. And someone recently opined that the punters that love disasters. I for one would like the BOM to be right about predicting Hamish to peter out in the sea. The pollies may have to talk about actual issues instead. Then again ….

    Comment by Evan — March 9, 2009 @ 7:09 am

  2. Graham, have you joined the LNP campaign group or something. Couldn’t be anymore biased if you tried.

    Comment by complete rubbish — March 9, 2009 @ 10:59 am

  3. Dear Complete Rubbish. One of my best Labor Party clients is right in the way of the cyclone at Whitsunday. It doesn’t give me any pleasure for her sake to have to write this analysis.

    Comment by Graham Young — March 9, 2009 @ 3:08 pm

  4. Had to have a wry laugh as Hamish heads out to sea and loses it’s puff. Maybe the fate of Queen Anna … and hopefully Hugo Rudd.

    Comment by Keith — March 9, 2009 @ 7:53 pm

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