With Messrs Howard and Rudd consulting voters on the future of the nation, Crikey is proud to publish the views of the very same in our marginal electorate blogging project, Citizen Crikey. What better way to take the mood of the electorate than from voters in the seats that could decide the colour of the next Australian government?

If you live in a marginal electorate and would like to join the marginal electorate bloggers already mouthing off in Crikey, send your campaign observations, reports, pictures and gossip to [email protected].

Meanwhile, here are some highlights from the first few days of the campaign. To stay in touch with the campaign in the marginals, bookmark the Citizen Crikey homepage.

Braddon: spreading the fertilizer

Mike Walker writes: I’ve just been talking to a farmer neighbour to apologize for breaking his old fertilizer spreader which we’d borrowed. The election came up in conversation. Bob is in his 70’s and has voted Liberal for 50 years but not this time. Like the spreader, he’s finally broken. Click here to read more

Adelaide: It’s all about the posters, or is it?

Nicholas in Adelaide writes: On Sunday I drove along a long-ish section of Park Terrace just to the north of the city. What amazed me was how quickly the campaign posters had been attached to pretty much all of the lamp-posts. The funny thing was that, judging by the posters, you would think that the ALP and the Greens were the two major parties. They were, and still are, the only two parties with a decent number of posters up. Pictures of Kate Ellis were stuck to stobie poles as far as the eye could see. She has most of Park Terrace and almost all of North Terrace from Stillwell Ford to Regency Road; the end of her electorate. — Click here to read more.

Parramatta: an emblematic battle, sort of

Niall Clugston writes: The contest for Parramatta is emblematic: a business person against a unionist. Except the business person is Labor (Julie Owens) and the unionist Liberal (Colin Robinson). Parramatta was one of the few Labor gains of 2004. This is often credited to Liberal member Ross Cameron’s mea culpa of infidelity, but the swing to Labor was strongest in traditionally Liberal booths, reflecting the disenchantment of the “doctors’ wives” demographic.  Though “Parra” is often perceived as working class, the electorate has always included parts of the Hills District (the wannabe North Shore) and previous incumbents include Philip Ruddock and Sir Garfield Barwick. A recent boundary change has made it notionally Liberal, but most commentators believe the ALP will retain it. Click here to read more.

Eden-Monaro: meet the candidates

MJC writes: Day one in Eden Monaro and by sheer coincidence GetUp has arranged a Meet the Candidates forum at Narooma Golf Club, just a few kilometres down the road. It’s a full house in a room I calculate seats around 250 people, and ten minutes after the appointed time people, most well over retirement age, are still pouring through the door. Standing room only now as the four candidates take their seats: Gary Nairn, the Coalition incumbent, in country gentlemen’s’ gear including Akubra which sits upside down on the table beside his jug of water; Mike Kelly, the ALP candidate, a huge exarch colonel with a big moustache, in dark suit and shiny tie; Keith Hughes, the Green, all casual academic in white shirt and open neck; and Acacia Rose, the independent, looking startled and startling with a red sash from shoulder to waist and a nifty little spray of flowers which she places on her table. — Click here to read more.