Regular readers will know that I keep an eye on the online polls looking for any evidence of any manipulation. I have previously posted many examples of one side of a poll being heavily supported, which always happens overnight. In every instance except one the side favouring the Labor Party has been the one receiving the votes.
I didn't take a screen capture of this poll because, quite frankly, I didn't think anyone would bother playing around with it. With about 50,000 votes cast it was Yes: 34% and No 66% but look what happened overnight:
The Yes vote has received about a quarter of a million extra votes.
I've been wondering whether it's people connected with the Labor Party themselves who are behind this poll manipulation. Because I'm not big into conspiracy theories I didn't really believe that to be the case but I must admit that I'm starting to wonder a little more now.
Labor really doesn't want to face John Howard at the next election. They've had their media allies (including about 80% of the Canberra press gallery) hammering Howard for ages. The anti-Howard strategy has been very well worked out and executed, including having Maxine McKew stand in Bennelong against the PM. We know that the media has been hammered into submission by Kevin Rudd who has been threatening journalists who are looking to run negative stories (and they're mightily pissed off about it, too, but they want to see a Labor government themselves so they're torn between their political beliefs and journalistic integrity).
If the next poll, which is due out early next week, shows the government losing further support then I'm of the opinion that Peter Costello will mount a challenge and Labor's tactic will have worked.
That's if it's not just a conspiracy theory, of course.