Crikey’s citizen bloggers have been charting the campaign from their marginal electorates. With only days to go before Australia casts its vote, here is a selection of recent highlights with some tips on who might win the seats that will help decide which party forms the next government.
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Moreton. Shelley M writes: In Moreton it is as if the election result has been a foregone conclusion. Even though the Gary Hardgrave (Libs MP) signs have been sprouting up over a huge number of vacant blocks over the past weeks, no-one is slowing to look, everyone has decided how they are voting. Word out is that both Your Rights at Work and Get Up! campaigns are also targeting Moreton. Also, it is said that Gary Hardgrave’s staff members are updating their resumes and are sending them far and wide in the hope of finding employment beyond next week.
Robertson. Victoria Collins writes: Robertson is now starting to be mentioned in dispatches as one of the NSW seats (along with Dobell next door) that is likely to go from the Government’s grip this weekend. Sigh! Now why didn’t I get onto Centrebet and put a bet on the ALP the day after Kevin Rudd was elected Leader of the Opposition, at odds that were a lot better than what they are today?
Hindmarsh. Andrew Roff writes: I just picked up my local Messenger newspaper from the dying savannah that is our front lawn. It’s wrapped with the smiling faces of local ALP member Steve Georganas and his mate Kevin from Queensland. Why’d they bother? It’s obvious to most that the fate of Hindmarsh has been settled for weeks now. As far as I can tell, the people in these parts fall into two camps: those that know a lot about matters electoral, and those who remain blissfully ignorant. The thing is, people from both of these groups seem to have made up their minds already. What’s striking is the lack of people in the middle – those who know just a little, and/or haven’t made up their minds yet. It doesn’t augur well for Liberal challenger Rita Bouras.
Braddon. Mike Walker writes: This has been a presidential campaign, not a local member campaign. So it’s become a case of voting for Kevin Rudd or John Howard as opposed to voting for candidates Sid Sidebottom or Mark Baker. In terms of the way they’ve been campaigning, Labor candidate Sid Sidebottom has had a very low profile campaign. The assumption seems to be that if Kevin Rudd gets the votes he will get the vote. And the betting in today’s paper has Liberal candidate Mark Baker out to $6, while Sidebottom is at $1.10. I don’t think it matters what Howard says on his latest visit to Tasmania and if he does say it in the context of health nobody is going to believe him anyway. From experience the betting seems to be as accurate as the polls so, for me, it’s Labor, probably by a very very small margin.
Parramatta. Niall Clugston writes: Parramatta has been graced with the presence of a few Labor luminaries recently. Peter Garrett has launched the ALP’s arts policy at the Riverside Theatre, neatly coinciding with the Riverbeats Festival (for which someone has dumped a wrecked car in the river and called it public art – now that ought to be an election issue!). And Bob Hawke has opened the campaign office of Labor member, Julie Owens. As I pointed out previously, her electorate office is now 100 metres or so outside the electorate, due to the Great Shift Westward which has affected a number of Sydney seats, but she now has a campaign office in Seven Hills, out on the wild west frontier. So by the looks of it, Labor is making an effort to hold the seat…
Moreton. Ben Pennings writes: The Courier-Mail has reported that Moreton is fast getting the nickname “Five Past Six”, referring to the estimated time that the electorate will be called as a Labor win on election night. The lack of campaigning within the electorate indicates this may not be an exaggeration.