Back To Listing

Indi: Can former Liberal MP Sophie Mirabella stage a political comeback to defeat Independent Cathy McGowan?

Source: Based on interviews with 596 Indi electors between October 2013 – March 2016.

At the 2013 Federal Election Independent candidate Cathy McGowan caused the biggest upset of the election defeating incumbent Liberal MP Sophie Mirabella against the national swing. Mirabella had won Indi at the four previous Federal Elections (2001, 2004, 2007, 2010).

Facing re-election in early July, McGowan is once again facing Mirabella for the seat. Can McGowan consolidate her victory of three years ago and secure another term in Parliament?

Analysing Roy Morgan voting data in Indi since the 2013 Federal Election (interviews with 596 Indi electors) shows considerable support for Independent McGowan (19.5%), although support for the L-NP 44% (Liberal 37% & National 7%) has held up.

It’s important to understand no candidate names were read out during this period which inherently favours support for the major parties and is why ALP support (24.0%) is measured above support for McGowan.

Since September when Malcolm Turnbull became Prime Minister there has been a noticeable lift in support for the L-NP 52.5% (Liberal 42.0% & National 10.5%) which has reduced support for both McGowan 16.5% and the ALP 16.5% in Indi.

Analysing data on a two-party preferred basis in Indi relies on distribution of preferences at the same rate as at the 2013 Federal Election which showed McGowan attracted 80% of ALP, Greens & Other preferences cf. Mirabella receiving 20% of preferences.

Based on a repeat of this preference flow the L-NP 51% is narrowly ahead of McGowan 49% on a two-party preferred basis since the 2013 Federal Election and this gap has increased since Turnbull became Prime Minister in September: L-NP 58.5% cf. McGowan 41.5% - although these figures are based on a considerably smaller sample size they are indicative of a positive impact for the L-NP since Turnbull became Prime Minister.

The Top Issues in Indi – All electors

%

Keeping day to day living costs down

38.0

Improving health services and hospitals

24.0

Open and honest government

17.5

Improving education

16.0

The needs of families

14.5

Respondents were presented with a list of issues and asked: “What three issues are the most important to you?”

Roy Morgan asked Indi electors what three issues they regarded as the most important and the results show the differences between those supporting the L-NP, ALP and Independent clearly. All Indi electors (38%) clearly regarded ‘Keeping day to day living costs down’ as the most important issue although there are differences between supporters of different parties (L-NP 42% cf. ALP 37.5% cf. IND 34%).

The second most important issue for electors is ‘Improving health services and hospitals (24%); this is a very important issue for L-NP supporters (28%) and Independent supporters (28%), but not so important for ALP supporters (15.5%). ‘Open and honest government’ (17.5%) is the third most important issue in Indi, but it is Independent supporters (23.5%) and ALP supporters (21%) that regard this as an important issue while it isn’t so important for L-NP supporters (14%).

Similarly, the fourth most important issue in Indi is ‘Improving education’ (16%), which is again led by ALP supporters (21%) and Independent supporters (17.5%), but not regarded as a top issue for L-NP supporters (12%). However, ‘Australia’s ageing population’ (14%) is regarded as an important issue by L-NP supporters (18%), and also Independent supporters (18%), but only 7% of ALP supporters.


The Top Issues in Indi – L-NP supporters

%

Keeping day to day living costs down

42.0

Improving health services and hospitals

28.0

Australia’s ageing population

18.0

Managing the economy

17.0

Reducing crime and maintaining law and order

16.0

Respondents were presented with a list of issues and asked: “What three issues are the most important to you?”


The Top Issues in Indi – ALP supporters

%

Keeping day to day living costs down

37.5

Open and honest government

21.5

Improving education

21.0

The needs of families

21.0

Managing the economy

17.0

Respondents were presented with a list of issues and asked: “What three issues are the most important to you?”


The Top Issues in Indi – IND supporters

%

Keeping day to day living costs down

34.0

Improving health services and hospitals

28.0

Open and honest government

23.5

Australia’s ageing population

18.0

Improving education

17.5

Respondents were presented with a list of issues and asked: “What three issues are the most important to you?”


Gary Morgan, Executive Chairman, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“This special electorate profile of Indi shows a tight battle between incumbent Independent candidate Cathy McGowan – elected for the first time at the 2013 Federal Election, and former local MP Sophie Mirabella of the Liberal party.

“Support in the Indi electorate since the last election is nearly evenly split between the L-NP (51%) and McGowan (49%) on a two-party preferred basis. McGowan captured the seat with a narrow majority of 50.2% of the two-party preferred vote in 2013.

“The Indi winner in early July will be which candidate convinces electors they are best placed to deal with the issues that are important to Indi electors. Clearly the most important issue for Indi electors is ‘Keeping day to day living costs down’ (38%) ahead of ‘Improving health services and hospitals’ (24%) and ‘Open and honest government’ (17.5%).

“Although supporters of all parties mentioned these issues, supporters of the Independent candidate McGowan in particular mentioned ‘Open and honest government (23.5%) far more frequently than other Indi electors and ‘Australia’s ageing population’ (18%) is equal with L-NP supporters. If Mirabella wants to regain the seat at the expense of McGowan she must convince the Indi electors that she is best placed to deliver results on these two issues in particular.”


Voting Intention Indi

 

2013 Federal Election

October 2013-Present

January 2015-Present

September 2015-Present

Primary

%

%

%

%

LIB

44.7

37.0

38.5

42.0

NAT

0.0

7.0

9.0

10.5

L-NP

44.7

44.0

47.5

52.5

ALP

11.7

24.0

17.5

16.5

IND

31.2

19.5

21.0

16.5

Greens

3.4

8.0

8.0

7.0

Others

9.0

4.5*

6.0*

7.5*

Total

100

100

100

100

 

 

 

 

2PP#

 

 

 

 

IND

50.2

49.0

46.5

41.5

L-NP

49.8

51.0

53.5

58.5

Total

100

100

100

100

Source: Based on interviews with 596 Indi electors between October 2013 – March 2016. #2PP calculated by using the same preference flows as at the 2013 Federal Election. 80% IND cf. 20% L-NP. *Others include electors who gave ‘no answer’ when asked for their voting preference.

Note: No candidate names for the electorate were read out alongside party affiliation which favours the major parties.

 

Analysis by Age & Gender

 

 

Gender

Age

 

October 2013 -Present

Men

Women

18-34

35-49

50-64

65+

Primary

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

LIB

37.0

36.0

38.0

24.5

34.0

34.0

51.5

NAT

7.0

6.5

7.5

6.0

4.5

7.5

10.5

L-NP

44.0

42.5

45.5

30.5

38.5

41.5

62.0

ALP

24.0

26.0

22.0

29.5

23.5

23.0

21.5

IND

19.5

19.5

19.5

20.0

19.5

25.5

12.5

Greens

8.0

6.0

10.0

12.0

14.0

6.0

2.0

Others

4.5*

6.0*

3.0*

8.0*

4.5*

4.0*

2.0*

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2PP#

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IND

49.0

50.0

47.5

60.0

53.5

52.0

33.0

L-NP

51.0

50.0

52.5

40.0

46.5

48.0

67.0

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

Source: Based on interviews with 596 Indi electors between October 2013 – March 2016. #2PP calculated by using the same preference flows as at the 2013 Federal Election. 80% IND cf. 20% L-NP. *Others include electors who gave ‘no answer’ when asked for their voting preference.

Note: No candidate names for the electorate were read out alongside party affiliation which favours the major parties.


Top 15 Most Important Issues in Indi compared to Australia

Australia

Indi Electorate

All
Electors

All Electors

L-NP

ALP

IND

%

%

%

%

%

Keeping day to day living costs down

34.0

38.0

42.0

37.5

34.0

Improving health services and hospitals

26.0

24.0

28.0

15.5

28.0

Open and honest government

18.5

17.5

14.0

21.5

23.5

Improving education

18.5

16.0

12.0

21.0

17.5

The needs of families

13.0

14.5

7.0

21.0

14.5

Managing the economy

20.5

14.0

17.0

17.0

7.5

Australia’s ageing population

12.5

14.0

18.0

7.0

18.0

Reducing crime and maintaining law and order

13.5

12.5

16.0

14.0

7.5

Global warming and climate change

16.5

11.0

3.5

12.0

15.0

The needs of people outside cities

4.0

10.0

10.0

4.0

16.0

Reducing unemployment

13.0

9.0

9.5

10.5

6.0

Reducing the number of illegal migrants coming to Australia

6.5

8.0

13.0

0.5

7.5

Defence and national security

8.0

7.5

11.0

3.5

6.5

Managing immigration and population growth

6.5

7.0

5.5

13.5

4.0

Improving business in Australia

8.0

6.0

9.5

2.0

4.0

Respondents were presented with a list of issues and asked: “What three issues are the most important to you?”

Extensive analysis of any of Australia’s 150 electorates is available for purchase for $7,850.
Contact Julian McCrann (+613 9224 5365) and julian.mccrann@roymorgan.com for more details.

Finding No. 6829: Electors were asked: “If an election for the House of Representatives were held today – which party would receive your first preference?”

Visit the Roy Morgan Online Store to browse our range of Voter Profiles by electorate, detailed Voting Intention Demographics Reports and Most important Political Issue Reports (all 150 electorates ranked by an issue).


Electoral Profile: Indi (Victoria)

Held by Cathy McGowan (IND). 2013-

2013 Federal Election Result: Cathy McGowan (IND) 50.2% cf. 49.8% Sophie Mirabella (LIB).

Key Towns: Alexandra, Beechworth, Benalla, Bonnie Doon, Bright, Corowa, Eildon, Glenrowan, Mansfield, Marysville, Myrtleford, Rutherglen, Wangaratta, Wodonga, Yackandandah, Yea.

Federal Electorate of Indi (Victoria)


For further information:

Contact

Office

Mobile

Gary Morgan:

+61 3 9224 5213

+61 411 129 094

Michele Levine:

+61 3 9224 5215

+61 411 129 093