Preaching to the converted is a hard habit forThe Australian to break. From the moment Labor nearly lost the Northern Territory election, the paper's political writers -- federal and state -- have all been going on about some sagging national trend for Labor. The actual West Australian defeat was confirmation that the resurrection was underway and Labor's slide in the polls in New South Wales was portrayed as inevitable.
Then along comes the opinions of those pesky Queenslanders and Victorians. In both states, Newspoll has measured Labor on the improve. How can we fit that into our sagging national trend? Yesterday, bringing the Newspoll news about Queensland, where the two party vote is now 57% to 43% on a two-party basis, Sean Parnell made the grudging concession that "Labor has slowed the momentum of the Liberal National Party's run to the next election" but Premier Anna Bligh is struggling to keep pace with her Opposition and satisfy community expectations.
Just run that by me again: Labor's vote is going up and the LNP's is going down and Labor would bolt in if these figures were repeated on election day, but the momentum of the LNP has only been slowed? Clearly there's something that Sean knows that I have missed.
At least this morning, giving the Newspoll verdict of Victorians, Ewin Hannan did not try to hide that Labor has "performed a remarkable turnaround", regaining a commanding lead over the Coalition at the mid-point of the state's electoral cycle. The same 57 to 43 two party vote share as in Queensland is higher than the Steve Bracks-led Labor Party got at the last Victoria election. There's not much evidence of a sagging national trend there, nor is there in the Newspoll federal findings, which also has Labor further in front than at the election a year ago.