Premier Daniel Andrews is the longest serving political leader in Australia.Tomorrow Victorians go to the polls to decide whether he will be returned for a third four-year term.
The 2018 ‘Danslide’ election left the Coalition with just 27 of the 88 seats in the Victorian Legislative Assembly. They would need 18 seats to win in their own right.
As often happens, polls have tightened considerably in the past few weeks but this is unlikely to be enough. The latest Resolve Poll has the major parties level pegging on first preferences but has Labor with a winning 53-47 two-party preferred result. So at worst for Daniel Andrews will be a minority government backed by the Greens.
But there has been an unusually large pre-poll turnout which might give cause for concern for the incumbent. High levels of pre-polling normally means people want to send a strong message – so perhaps the Coalition’s personal attacks on the Premier on integrity and his handling of the pandemic will shift the dial more than that polling in telling us.
Watch out also for the Teal/Independent and Green vote. The Coalition is preferencing away from Labor which has insiders worried about Greens increasing from 3 to 5 or 6 seats and the Teals picking up 2 to 3 seats. Of the back of the May Federal election it will be fascinating to see whether the anti-major party vote continues its momentum. This will send the strongest message to major parties in NSW for their election next March.
On the Federal front, it has been a massive week with the National Anti-Corruption Commission bill, the Industrial Relations bill (rather cleverly titled the Secure Jobs, Better Pay bill), follow-up to the Albanese / Xi meeting and COP27 – and the list goes on. The SAS Group had four team members in Canberra this week working with clients on a wide range of policy issues ranging from defence, energy and renewables, healthcare, and education and training. Although the year is winding down, the business of government will continue right up until Christmas.