Tasmanian voters expect hung parliament, but unsure who can get the job done

Tasmanian Premier Jeremy Rockliff speaks to media in Hobart, Wednesday, February 14, 2024. Tasmania's minority Liberal premier visited the state's governor to request an early election, more than a year ahead of schedule. (AAP Image/Rob Blakers) NO ARCHIVING
AAP Image/Rob Blakers


A majority of Tasmanians (58%) believe the upcoming state election is most likely to produce a minority government, but the electorate remains unsure about who is best placed to work with the crossbench, according to new research from the Australia Institute.

First preference voting intention indicates that a hung parliament remains a clear possibility, leading to either the Liberal or Labor party needing to work collaboratively with other parties and independent MPs to form government.

Key findings:

  • The Liberal party is on 37.1% of the first preference vote; Labor on 23.0%; followed by the Greens on 13.7%, Jacqui Lambie Network on 8.5%, Independents on 12.8%, and Other on 5.0%
  • Almost half (46%) of Tasmanian voters say the state is generally heading in the wrong direction. One in three (36%) say it is heading in the right direction
  • When asked which of three senior Liberal parliamentarians would negotiate with the crossbench most effectively, Premier Jeremy Rockliff was chosen by only 39.4% of survey respondents, while 42.3% didn’t know or weren’t sure.
  • When asked which of three senior Labor parliamentarians would negotiate with the crossbench most effectively, Opposition Leader Rebecca White was chosen by 31.2% against 41.8% who didn’t know or weren’t sure.
  • Labor voters overwhelmingly believe White would negotiate better than Anita Dow or Dean Winter (59%, 9% and 16% respectively).

“Voters are questioning the capacity of both major parties to deliver meaningful change for Tasmanians or to guide the state through a minority government,” said Vanessa Bleyer, Native Forests Spokesperson at the Australia Institute.

“Voters will expect candidates to work collaboratively and constructively in the new parliament, but they lack faith in both major parties to deliver.

“With more Tasmanians saying that the state is heading in the wrong direction than the right direction, both major parties are on notice that they need to talk to voters about the issues that matter to them and how they will work to deliver the best outcomes for all Tasmanians.

“A significant percentage of the potential cross bench want an end to native forest logging, and this polling shows Tasmanians lack confidence in either of the major parties to negotiate that successfully.

“Polls indicate that Tasmanians have the confidence to vote-in a multi-party government but have less confidence in major party leaders to effectively lead it.”

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