With the Leaders’ Debate done and dusted, who do you think won the face-off between Ms Palaszczuk and Ms Frecklington?
It’s been 25 long days on the hustings, but the Queensland election campaign has finally reached its close, ahead of polling day tomorrow.
The leaders are doing a series of live TV interviews, hoping to reach as many voters as they can.
Due to the strange placement of the debates at the very end of the campaign, we didn’t get a final rush of campaigning across seats today, with both leaders doing that yesterday instead.
In fact, for all the pomp and circumstance of the debate and the huge news about the NSW border being reopened, we actually had a relatively quiet final day of campaigning on the hustings.
ECQ figures now indicate as many as 2 million voters might have already cast their vote or requested a postal ballot which might have already been sent in, representing more than half the total number of voters.
In this most unusual of campaigns, the old adage still holds true – it’s not over until it’s over.
That concludes Poll Call for today, join us again tomorrow as we bring you all the colour and movement on election day, and stick with us tomorrow night for full coverage of the results as they come in.
How can Queenslanders trust you, given you are just a puppet for the unions?
-Deb Frecklington lashes out at Annastacia Palaszczuk during the second and final debate of the campaign today.
How are those property developers going?
-Ms Palaszczuk’s response.
Comparing that debate with the US presidential debates, our state is in much better hands than the US.
–Brisbane Times reader Dave Miers finding the positive in the final day of the campaign
Due to the debate and the early border announcement, we went another day without high-vis today.
Below then is likely the final Hard Hat Index of the campaign, unless one of the leaders inexplicably decides to visit a factory to vote.
Deb Frecklington just pips Annastacia Palaszczuk on the high-vis measure, but the Premier is the clear winner on the Hard Hat Index, having donned her specially-branded headgear far more times than the LNP leader.
Will it make the difference come polling day? Labor certainly seem to think so. But as always, the voters make the final decision.
An appearance on Ten News with Sandra Sully is next on LNP state leader Deb Frecklington’s agenda for the day.
The backdrop was New Farm Park in Brisbane’s east for the live cross into the network’s Sydney studio.
Ms Frecklington says Queensland “deserves a government with ambition” that will get people back into work “and put Queenslanders first”.
Analysis of campaign media coverage indicates Labor has sought to ensure a pandemic-focused election, while the LNP has aimed to shift the agenda to jobs and crime.
Media analytics company Streem has analysed the media coverage the two parties have received over the course of the campaign, and the messages they’ve been pushing.
While the most commonly used word by both Annastacia Palaszczuk and Deb Frecklington is, unsurprisingly, “Queensland”, after that they split noticeabloy.
Words used far more frequently by the Opposition Leader include ‘crime’, ‘police’, ‘law’ and ‘integrity’.
Words used more frequently by the Premier include ‘cases’, ‘transmission’, ‘community’ and, that word again ‘borders’.
Ms Palaszczuk has also wound up with the larger overall “share of voice”, the percentage of all coverage of the election across all media.
At a party level, Labor enjoys a similar narrow lead in mentions versus the LNP, followed by the Greens ahead of One Nation, KAP and UAP.
Queensland’s peak doctors’ body says both major parties have failed to make health a focus of the election campaign.
While the issue of borders and pandemic management have been front of mind for both parties throughout the campaign, issues of health have been far less prominent than they usually are.
Labor has announced extra funding for a series of satellite hospitals, while the LNP has promised to clear surgery backlogs by paying for space in the private system, amid a smattering of other health promises from the two major parties.
But the AMAQ has scored both parties “below average” in its assessment of their campaign promises related to health.
AMAQ president Chris Perry said Labor’s fast-tracking of euthanasia laws if it was re-elected would put further pressure on the state’s overworked palliative care system.
“Voluntary assisted dying is applicable to a small minority, so it’s really important Queenslanders know their end-of-life suffering can be managed effectively,” he said.
AMAQ vice-president Bav Manoharan said the LNP focus on regional maternity services was welcome, but much more was needed.
“It is disappointing that neither the ALP nor the LNP would commit to the call by doctors to invest $1.7 million in supporting the wellbeing of all of our junior doctors in the first five years of practice, despite a damning report released on Wednesday that found 48 per cent of Queensland’s trainee doctors feared they would make a clinical mistake because of fatigue from working exhaustively long hours,” he said.
During the campaign, Brisbane Times is running our Ask a Reporter feature, where we’ll endeavour to answer all your questions about the campaign, big or small. All the answers can be found here.
A reader (name not supplied) asks: LNP preferencing Greens over Labor might help the Greens more in McConnel than South Brisbane because rich (Malcolm Turnbull-type) Liberals can hold their noses and vote Green compared to middle-class Liberals. That’s why blue-to-green seats are a thing yeah? Is this assumption wrong?
Griffith University political expert Paul Williams answers: Yes, the assumption is wrong.
Notwithstanding the slightly lower primary vote in McConnel, the demographics of South Brisbane and McConnel are very similar.
We shouldn’t think in terms of blue-to-green to red-to-green. Green voters are more likely to live closer to the CBD, have graduated with tertiary qualifications and have exposure to multicultural communities.
If these traits are found in concentrations, there is likely to be an increased Green vote, regardless of whether the seat in held by Labor or the LNP. Indeed, we have seen National-to-Green in northern NSW.
Queensland’s peak business lobby group has hit out at the continued “uncertainty” of border closures after the decision to open to keep travellers from Greater Sydney and Victoria out of the state.
“Today’s announcement on the ongoing border closure is not what many tourism regions, sectors and related businesses wanted to hear,” Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland’s general manager of advocacy policy, Amanda Rohan, said.
“With Christmas fast-approaching there are many families and travellers wanting to confirm their holiday plans, and many businesses wanting to plan for the month ahead.”
But because of this, Ms Rohan said the importance of easing restrictions for businesses within the state was “even more vital”, with one-tenth of those in the state still impacted.
“And it’s these businesses, local pubs, clubs, restaurants and cafes, who will benefit the most by being able to open and begin trading more viably,” she said.
“The current restrictions capping their patronage is impacting their profitability, which will put their future ability to operate at risk, especially if they cannot capitalise on the upcoming peak trading season.”
“Right now, more people are wanting to get out and support their local venues, but they can’t because they can’t get in.”
Ms Rohan said the group was not pushing for an easing of COVIDSafe practices but “ways for businesses to be sustainable in the long term” as stimulus support tapers off.
“There needs to be a plan in place for when restrictions will ease, so business can plan and for them to know there will be a chance for them to be viable into the future.”
Asked about a further easing of the restrictions still in place on Thursday, Deputy Premier Steven Miles said there was a “trade-of” with borders and no intention of easing those any further.
Fresh from the Media Club Debate, Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington has visited the same Fortitude Valley early voting centre as she did yesterday.
After the bus carrying the accompanying media made a bizarre detour to the Aspley electorate but there was no media opportunity, the bus turned around and headed back into the city.
Ms Frecklington visited the early voting centre on the corner of McLachlan & Winn streets in Fortitude Valley, where she was yesterday, in the electorate of McConnel.
McConnel is held by Education Minister Grace Grace with a 7.8 per cent margin, within reach for LNP candidate Pinky Singh and the Greens Kirsten Lovejoy.
However, unlike yesterday, she was not heckled by a Labor volunteer.
This time around though, Ms Frecklington did not acknowledge Ms Grace or Ms Lovejoy, who were both at the polling booth when she made her second visit on Friday afternoon.
The Business Council of Australia says Queensland’s decision to only reopen to regional NSW and not Sydney will be another hit to the tourism and hospitality industries.
In a statement, the council’s chief executive Jennifer Westacott said there was “no reason” why states couldn’t fully reopen with contact tracing, containment and quarantine.
“The cost of this border closure has been monumental. Reduced flights between Brisbane and Sydney airport alone have cost Australia’s economy $1.2 billion,” she said.
“The impact has been particularly acute in Queensland’s tourism and hospitality industries.”
Ms Westacott said reopening all of Australia’s internal borders by Christmas would be a “$3 billion gift to the nation”.