My mobile phone buzzed a few minutes ago with an SMS message from reader Mike Smith, advising that a state election has been called for Saturday 9 September. This is, I think, the first time I’ve received actual news by text message.
I’m not great on the instant analysis thing, but my off-the-cuff prediction is a narrow win for Labor. I heard on the news that Centrebet were offering 8/1 for bets on the Coalition, which seemed long enough odds for a flutter, but by the time I checked in they’d shortened to 6/1. Meanwhile Labor has ‘blown out’ from 20/1 on to 10/1 on. This still seems to me to underestimate the odds of Labor losing, given that the opinion polls are level pegging, but the margin isn’t enough to induce me to back my judgement with cash.
One question that arises is whether a Coalition government would be led by the Liberals or the Nationals. I caught the tail end of an interview with Springborg in which he assured voters that he would be Premier in the event of a Coalition win, but I don’t know if that was based on an agreement with the Libs (possibly unenforcable) or his confidence of winning more seats (dubious based on a quick scan of the marginals).
I’ve expressed the view that we’ll never see another National government and I still think that’s highly probable. The best chance for the Coalition is that the Liberals get more votes and seats than the Nats this time around, and then become a plausible contender next time around.