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Jun 26, 2016

The Guardian | World | Australia | Australian Elections - June 27, 2016 8 (01:22 BST): Coalition Pulls Ahead in Poll - Plitics Live

Helen Davidson

Malcolm Turnbull is visiting the electorates of Adelaide and Hindmarsh today. Both major parties are concerned about the strength of the NXT vote.

Do it for your country

The prime minister has just done another phone-in on Adelaide radio, this time 5AA. Scott Morrison is coming up on 2GB.

Good morning and welcome to WWE

Thanks Helen, hello everyone, welcome to Monday. If, like me, you’ve just listened to the treasurer Scott Morrison on the ABC’s AM program, you might need to retreat to bed with a scented wheat pack and lie down. Given the rapid fire talking points and the sharp intakes of breath I feared for the safety of the broadcast microphone. I might check with the AM host Michael Brissenden later this morning to ensure the equipment wasn’t inhaled.
Morrison’s verbal tempo this morning tells you what you need to know as we join each other this morning, that the campaign in now in WWE territory. All sides this week will be looking for knock out blows. Big hair. Short shorts. Thwacks on the mat. Boings on the ropes. Go on, try and erase that mental image, I dare you. Today we have the residual debris of the costings argument which kicked off with with yesterday’s mild audacious and entirely self-interested decision by Labor to trot out its numbers in the shadow of the Coalition campaign launch. The Coalition has woken up today to a tiny positive movement in the Newspoll which could mean something or nothing. Notwithstanding that fundamental unresolvable ambiguity, Morrison and finance minister Mathias Cormann will be doing everything they can to hoist the shadow treasurer Chris Bowen and shadow finance minister Tony Burke aloft and chuck them out of the ring. Chris Bowen and Tony Burke will be doing everything they can to stay on their feet and stay in the contest.
Labor would love the upset victory this weekend. That’s obvious. The prospect of the shock upset is keeping a lot of exhausted people hauling themselves on and off planes with a disposition approximating civility and keeping a bunch of other people who need a shower and a session in daylight working dutifully round the clock in campaign headquarters. But if that’s not going to happen, pushing back the Coalition’s victory to a not entirely convincing stagger over the line on Saturday will do as a consolation prize.
As for the Coalition, they will go for broke. Even if they have a nose in front right now, as Newspoll suggests, a nose in front won’t do for Malcolm Turnbull. In fact for him, nose in front is in many respects the worst case scenario. It provides him no protection against his internal enemies. He needs a win and a decisive one. If the Coalition has, in fact, succeeded in bumping voters in its general direction (with an added bonus conferred by the Brexit event in the UK) it needs to bank every first preference vote this week, and then harvest some more.
So it’s going to be a close contact week, with a lot of shallow breathing from Scott Morrison. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. Let’s crack on. A reminder today’s comments thread is open for your business. If the thread’s too bracing for you, Mike Bowers and I are up and about on the twits – he’s @mpbowers and I’m @murpharoo. If you only speak Facebook you can join my daily forum here. And if you want a behind-the-scenes look at the day and the campaign as a whole, give Mike a follow on Instagram. You can find him here.