South Australia

Oct 9, 2017

Poll Bludger: how Nick Xenophon could end the two-party political system

Nick Xenophon stands poised to unleash his full powers of disruption at the South Australian election in March.

William Bowe — Editor of The Poll Bludger

William Bowe

Editor of The Poll Bludger

If everything goes according to plan for Australia’s two most prominent political outsiders, looming elections in Queensland and South Australia could stand as joint watersheds in the decline of Australia’s two-party hegemony.

The spectre of One Nation matching or even exceeding its 11-seat haul continues to hang over state politics in Queensland, where the most recent poll had the party’s primary vote support nudging 20%, despite its ongoing internal management issues.

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13 thoughts on “Poll Bludger: how Nick Xenophon could end the two-party political system

  1. John Hall

    It’s well past time to have a wider choice of major parties. The current 2 party system seems broken – look at the US in this context.
    Governments that need the support of a coalition (not counting the Nationals Rump) need to work smarter and harder.

  2. leon knight

    The 2-Party system had served us reasonably well compared to many other countries, until this present LNP rabble seized power federally and contaminated the entire system with a stench that will take decades to clear.
    Sadly NSW Labor added to the stench with the odious antics of Obeid, Macdonald and their ugly henchmen – that stench will take decades to clear as well…

    1. Hugh (Charlie) McColl

      Leon, I know the federal LNP are a “rabble” but you could hardly say they “seized power”. More likely they picked up the steaming pile that Rudd/Gillard/Rudd had dumped. And if the same LNP rabble win the Queensland state election soon that will hardly be because they are predictable. The next state election is an out of control circus. Queensland Labor is trying to wrangle coal, the Greens, death of the GBR and Pauline Hanson like a mob of three-legged cats. They don’t have any choice and they could easily stuff it up. Chaos is likely but it will be what we voted for. Don’t you love it?

      1. Mike Smith

        Is Chaos better or worse than Stagnation, do you think? Three or more parties will tend to force compromise.

        1. AR

          Sadly it has often been found that people prefer stability to freedom.

    2. AR

      Any evidence that the duopoly has ‘erved us well” Compared to what?
      All of northern Europe has had stable, successful & intelligent government since the end of WWII – we should be so lucky.
      Lest anyone needs a reminder of what happens when a government controls both houses, I give you Rattus Mendacious after 2004, SerfChoiceless, pissing away the boom on middle class bribes and a host of other joys.

  3. Dog's Breakfast

    Whyalla? I thought that was wiped off the map by the carbon tax!

    Qld, 20% for one nation, what is going on up there, are they kidding me? If Pauline Hanson is the answer, you are definitely asking the wrong question.

    Any good out of this could be if they, NXT and PHON, changed the system to give the number of seats based on their overall vote count, a la MMP or the federal senate count, in which case majority government will be a thing of the past, with the Nationals to follow soon after, so there could be some good in it.

    Then on to federal parliament to do the same. What a godawful mess.

  4. Chris McLoughlin

    Thanks for the quote marks around “rustbelt”. Headline on Keane’s yarn last week didn’t have them.

  5. Steve777

    As a “yellow dog” Labor supporter, if I were in a safe Liberal seat in SA at the time of the next State election, I would strategically vote for the X candidate, next preference Labor, putting the “Liberals” last, whatever Labor’s “how to vote” card said. I urge other Labor supporters whose vote is locked up in a safe “Liberal” seat to do likewise. Replacing “Liberals” with “X’ers” in seats where Labor can’t win had got to be better than letting the “Liberals” win. Whenever “Liberals” come to office, they immediately attack health, education and the vulnerable, flog off public assets to mates and work to oppose action on climate change.

    1. Kenoath

      “… they immediately attack health, education and the vulnerable, flog off public assets to mates and work to oppose action on climate change.”
      Isn’t that what Xenophon has enabled the Coalition to do with a host of major pieces of legislation at federal level over the past few years? Supporting major tax cuts for the wealthiest is tantamount to supporting cuts to public health and education.

  6. Tom Jones

    Nick Xenophon has a lot of community support personally in this electorate. His chances for a personal victory are strong. His candidate in the Federal election was not local nor with family and church connections,
    Vincent Tarzia has gone to every envelope opening but lacks any clout or ability to deliver. His main contention has been the need for more parking at Paradise Interchange after the Liberals scuttled a plan for funding more parking. They have no plans or ideas. It is a battle of the nice boy against someone who knows how to make things happen.

  7. Kenoath

    If South Australia is characterised as “Australia’s principal “rustbelt” state,” because of the decline of manufacturing industries there, then what are the second and third ranked “rustbelt” states? I can only guess that Victoria must be second and perhaps NSW is third. I hope you’ll mention that in your next article on Victorian state politics. I’m looking forward to it, “Daniel Andrews, premier of Australia’s second-ranked “rustbelt” state, today announced he was surprised to find himself in this position.”

  8. lykurgus

    I swear, Xenophons willy must be getting rubbed raw from all the licking it gets. He left the SA Upper House (1 year in) to go federal, now he’s leaving the Senate (again, 1 year in) to go back – aren’t you lucky, Croweaters!
    Notwithstanding his solemn vow to keep his nose firmly in federal matters (so yay! for all of us I guess); because if there was one thing we desperately needed from our crossbench, it was a showoff senator who delivers votes to the Coalition almost as reliably as Pauline Hanson (after making sure he got a drink out of it).

    One more thing – Google your candidates’ names, mate! Have a squiz at their Facebookings, to make sure they aren’t pretending to punch Rihannas lights out.
    It’s not hard.

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