The ‘party’ is over for the Libs

Older Australians have told the Coalition that its time is up, with an overwhelming number of respondents saying that the next government will be formed by the Labor Party after the next federal election.

In what has been our most successful Friday Flash Poll, 61 per cent of the 2668 respondents – most of whom were Liberal voters, say that Labor will take the nation’s reins at some stage this year.

In the Forecasting the Federal Election poll, 39 per cent of the participants typically prefer the Liberal Party, with another 37 per cent preferring Labor, six per cent for the Greens and three per cent National Party voters.

The third largest cohort were Independent voters and judging by the comments on the Flash Poll page, many more will turn to independents to salvage our ‘disappointing’ democracy.

In an election that 67 per cent of our members believe will be held in May, only 17 per cent think the Coalition will retain government, with 22 per cent saying there may be a hung parliament.

Interestingly, if Labor forms government after the next election, the jury is also hung on whether Scott Morrison should stick around as leader, with 36 per cent saying he will and 36 per cent saying he won’t – 27 per cent say he will but he shouldn’t.

On the flipside, in the seemingly unlikely event that Labor fails at the polls, 50 per cent of our members think Bill Shorten will walk, while 25 per cent think he’ll stay and 25 per cent say he’ll stay but he shouldn’t.

And the pair of pollies arguably responsible for the Liberal Party’s more recent instability – Tony Abbott and Peter Dutton – will also lose their seats at the next election, say our members, with 60 per cent saying Mr Abbott is out the door and 69 per cent saying Mr Dutton will follow.

When asked which party will get their vote in 2019, 37 per cent will cast in favour of the Labor Party, 31 per cent for the Libs, five per cent for the Greens and three per cent for the Nationals – so it may still be a close race.

But the big result was in favour of independent candidates, with almost one in five (19 per cent) of our respondents saying they will vote independent at the next election.

The poll proves that Australians want to send our two-party system a message that democracy is failing and it’s time for it to be more ‘democratic’, with more choice and a chance for balance.

“Vote Independent,” wrote YourLifeChoices member Retired Knowall. “Make your vote count by sending the message to the Major Parties that the ‘party’ is over. Voting for the major parties will only continue the mess this country is in. I believe you may have heard the expression ‘If you keep doing what you are doing, you will keep getting what you have got’.”

Most of our members expressed disappointment (to say the least!) about the actions of the current government, but many are also disillusioned by the prospect of a Labor win, even though most say it seems inevitable.

“The priority should be to ensure neither major party has sufficient numbers to do serious harm, and I honestly believe the ALP is the more dangerous of the two, despite recognising that the LNP is toxic and has done enormous harm. I believe both parties share the same agenda. Labor just goes about it differently, and I believe in a much more harmful and deceptive manner.

“What matters most is that we send a strong message to career politicians that the day of reckoning has come and we will no longer tolerate their abuse of power. They must be told that they are there to serve us and to act in the interests of the majority and society as a whole – not to peddle their own self-serving agenda or to feather the nests of their buddies. To do that, we must elect as many independents and minor party members as possible, taking great care to choose our own preferences and not follow how to vote cards,” wrote OnlyGenuineRainey

What should be most concerning to the Liberal Party is the one in four typically Liberal voters who say they will vote for either an independent candidate or the Labor Party at the next election.

“I have voted Liberal all my voting life. I was in the young libs when I was in my mid 20s (during Costello’s time there). But as a care worker and a mother of two young people – one who has tried really, really, really hard to get a job, my eyes are open to the injustices of the current government. No way I will be voting Liberal next time. I am ashamed to have been a Liberal,” wrote Leek.

Will you be changing your vote at the next election? Are you surprised by these results? Or has the writing been on the wall for the Liberal Party for a while now? Do you think independents are the answer to our democratic failures?

Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca has worked in publishing and media in one form or another for around 25 years. He's a voracious reader, word spinner and art, writing, design, painting, drawing, travel and photography enthusiast. You'll often find him roaming through galleries or exploring the streets of his beloved Melbourne and surrounding suburbs, sketchpad or notebook in hand, smiling.
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