Landslide? What Landslide?

We keep hearing our recently elected Prime Minister for Opposition in Goverment talking about his “Mandate”.

Assuming he is not talking about his relationship with Rupert Murdoch, the subject must be the results of the election held on 7th Sepember.

The one in which his Liberal Party won 58 seats compared with the Labor Party’s 55 seats. By cobbling together a ragtag of the Queensland Right and a group of Agrarian Socialists he has been able to create a coalition controlling 90 of the 148 seats available.

This is variously described as a landslide or a mandate for any of the half explained though-bubbles put forward by Peta Credlin’s mouthpeice prior to the election.

We have seen the raw figures which show that 53% of the voters voted for one of the parties now in the Coalition while only 47% voted for the Labour Party.

But what does a landslide consist of? How many seats gives a mandate for everything? The Labor Party fell short of another hung parliament by 19 seats. Is that what makes for a landslide?

Remembering that there are around 75,000 electors in each electorate this table of the nineteen closest seats in Australia creates a little food for thought.


Over those nineteen seats, if just 30,000 voters had voted differently, the Coalition would not be in power in their own right.

It is up to you if you want to call a result determined by less than half the people who live in a single electorate a landslide or a mandate for thought bubbles.

I have often called democracy a “Dictatorship by the small majority”.

The Opposition does not need to win millions of votes back from the Coalition. They just need to win a very specific 30,000 votes!

Tony Abbott, seeing his apparently overwhelming team of 90 within the House of Representatives is forgetting the very real, very slim margin which gave that outcome.

He needs to be very ware of hubris.

8 responses to “Landslide? What Landslide?

  1. There are lies, damn lies and statistics.

    As much as I would want to believe that 30,000 people changing their vote would change the result, it defies belief to think that would have been contained to those 19 seats.

    It would only have happened if that trend was apparent over the whole 150 seats. In other words, the above approximately 2% swing was replicated for 150 seats, not those select 19.

    I’m not a mathematician and no doubt someone will confirm that, but the above is a bit of selective use of numbers.

    Having said that, I wish it was the case.


    • Actually, Daryl, it is not quite as hard as you make it seem. It is just a matter of finding those 30,000 amongst the sea (or is it the swamp) of 811,550 coalition voters within those 19 seats. Looking to change less than 4% of them. Granted it is a difficult thing to do but it shows how slim and un-mandatelike the margin between the parties is!


      • That’s also right, but requires a very unlikely set of circumstances. What I do agree with is that it won’t take much to get rid of Abbott, given the volatility of the electorate now.

        I don’t think Abbott is capable of fooling the people for another 3 years, despite the best efforts of the supine media.


  2. so u only need a 2 thousand or so in each of those seats to be annoyed by the libs I am thinking that will happening very soon


  3. Heck, just getting the disaffected voters who didn’t turn up for this election to vote could be sufficient to swing Labor back into office. If Abbott refuses to force a doubld dissolution, then you know its because he is scared he might actually lose.


  4. Don’t forget the compliant Liberal voters of Warringah, North Sydney, Sturt, Cook, Curtin, etc. They are the ones who actually voted these monsters into power.

    Wonder how they feel now?

    Thanks Ærchie.


  5. I think the Abbott Government should go for a double dissolution .


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