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Local Issues As An Influence On Voting Behaviour

Local issues may be strong enough to swing votes in elections. This is particularly true of State elections, but can also apply to Federal elections.

However, electoral behaviour tends to more uniform than many people think, so it is wise not to over-estimate this factor. In most elections, the state- or nation-wide swing is generally fairly consistent, but variations do occur, especially between states.

Local issues may swing some votes but whether this is decisive is open to question. [Read more…]

I’ve Never Met a Labor Voter: Felicity Kennett

The wife of former Victorian Premier, Jeff Kennett, is reported in today’s Sunday Herald-Sun as saying “I still haven’t met anyone who says they voted Labor” in the recent State election.

Mrs. Kennett also says that she believes the ALP outsmarted her husband by successfully marketing the word “arrogant” to describe the former Premier who was tipped out of office last week. “He was the best Premier Victoria ever had,” Mrs. Kennett said.

The Murdoch-owned newspaper also reports today that Kennett was on the verge of advising the Governor, Sir James Gobbo, to swear in his government on October 1 for a new term until Mildura independent, Russell Savage, rang the Governor’s official secretary, Charles Curwen. An hour later, Kennett rang Savage to say he had changed his mind, the paper says.

Savage claims Kennett told him he had the support of Gippsland East independent, Craig Ingram. All three independents announced their support for the formation of a minority government a week ago.

The Age today publishes a story about the fight over water in Gippsland that led to the defeat of the local National Party member and the election of the Bracks government.

Russell Savage: Statement in Support of a Minority Labor Government

This is the text of a statement from Russell Savage, independent member for Mildura in the Victorian Legislative Assembly.

Savage was elected as the independent member for Mildura in 1996. He defeated the sitting Liberal member, Craig Bildstein, in what is a traditionally National Party electorate.

Savage and the other independent members, Susan Davies and Craig Ingram, jointly announced their decision to support an ALP minority government led by Steve Bracks.

Statement from Russell Savage, independent member for Mildura.

SavageIt is with some regret that I record my position on whom I am prepared to support to govern Victoria for the next four years.

I find myself in an invidious position, damned if I do and damned if I don’t. I have reflected long and hard on the neglect and contempt shown to this electorate by the Coalition, and specifically the former Premier Jeff Kennett.

His three-and-a-half years of persistent criticisms of the Mildura electorate for electing an independent have been both unconstitutional and unwarranted. [Read more…]

ALP Wins Frankston East; Fate of Kennett Government Known on Monday

A major swing of around 8% has delivered the seat of Frankston East to the ALP. Victory for the ALP gives it 42 seats in the Victorian Legislative Assembly, the coalition 43, and Independents 3.

Attention now turns to the formation of a minority Coalition or Labor government. The Kennett government needs the support of two independents, whilst the ALP would require all three. [Read more…]

Independents’ Charter Victoria – 1999

This is the full text of the Independents’ Charter released in Victoria following the 1999 state election.

The election unexpectedly resulted in a hung parliament and ultimately led to the defeat of the Kennett government.

The independents who held the balance of power were Russell Savage (Mildura), Susan Davies (Gippsland West) and Craig Ingram (Gippsland East). [Read more…]

Kennett Government Mauled in Election Upset; Independents May Hold Balance Of Power; Country Voters Turn On Coalition; Majority Prefers Labor

The Kennett Government has suffered a mauling in the Victorian State election held on September 18 and is struggling to maintain its majority in the Legislative Assembly.

At the close of counting on Saturday night, the government had lost at least 11 seats and was struggling in at least two more. The ALP appears to have secured 41 seats, the Government 42 and Independents 2. There are two seats in doubt. The final result may hinge on a supplementary election to be held in Frankston East. [Read more…]