The Official New Matilda Dirty 30 List – The Politicians Our Readers Most Love To Hate


Well, it’s official New Matilda readers overwhelmingly don’t like Tony Abbott. Indeed, of the 1,275 readers who voted in NM’s first official ‘Dirty 30’ poll – a vote on the most unpopular federal politicians among the NM readership – Tony Abbott attracted a whopping 94% of the total vote.

That’s basically almost everyone who voted.

In Abbott’s defence, because his surname starts with ‘A’, he was at the top of the ballot paper – how ironic that the ‘donkey vote’ would finally not benefit a politician.

Not far behind Abbott in the House of Reps was – no-one is going to be particularly surprised by this – human potato Peter Dutton, on 90%. And then there was daylight.

Former immigration minister Scott Morrison, former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, and current immigration minister Peter Dutton, pictured in October 2015. Dutton and Abbott are recorded on microphone insulting Pacific Island leaders and joking about the effects climate change.

And then Scott Morrison (75%). Also not that surprising.

We also allowed readers to vote separately on the Senate, and there were a couple of clear standouts there as well.

Liberal defector turned Australian Conservative Cory Bernardi – famous for likening same-sex marriage to beastiality, among many other sins – topped the poll with 88% of the vote.

Marriage equality opponent and former Liberal Senator Cory Bernardi, pictured in a screencap from an ABC 4 Corners report.

Right on his heels was the great-nephew of a Nazi and perhaps parliament’s most over-annunciator, Eric Abetz with 87%. And right behind him was stunt-politician Pauline Hanson (86%).

Abbott, Dutton, Abetz and Hanson were the only politicians to attract more than 80% of the House of Reps and Senate votes.

An ABC News screengrab of Pauline Hanson, shortly after removing a burqa during her parliamentary stunt in August 2017.

Of course, there’s twice as many members in the House of Reps as there is in the Senate, so we had to weight the result in order to deliver a fairer Dirty 30.

Once weighted, all of the Senators slipped further down the poll. The final official Dirty 30 list is printed below, but first a few interesting factoids.

  • Only four politicians made the Top 30 who were not LNP members – Cory Bernardi (Australian Conservatives), Pauline Hanson (One Nation), David Leyonhjelm (Liberal Democrats) and Bob Katter (Katter Party).
  • No Labor or Greens members made the Dirty 30 list.
  • Only one politician in the Top 10 is NOT in federal cabinet (George Christensen). No mean feat when you think about it.
  • Only six women appear in the ‘Dirty 30’ list – Pauline Hanson (One Nation), and then five Liberals: Julie Bishop, Michaelia Cash, Kelly O’Dwyer, Sussan Ley and Concetta Fierravanti-Wells. The low number of women in the list is somewhat ironic because the LNP still refuses to increase its female representatives with a quota system.
  • The first Labor member to appear in the poll was a dead heat between Michael Danby (Melbourne Ports, at 31) and David Feeney who actually announced he was leaving parliament the day after we launched the ‘Dirty 30’ (over section 44 constitutional crisis). His retirement didn’t stop New Matilda readers for voting for him – a very New Matilda farewell.
  • The third highest ranking Labor member on the list was none other than Bill Shorten, slipping in at number 34.
  • Eight cabinet members did not make the Top 30 list – Marise Payne (Defence), Simon Birmingham (Education), Bridget McKenzie (Rural Health, Sport, Regional Communications), Daniel Tehan (Social Services), Michael Keenan (Human Services), David Littleproud (Agriculture and Water Resources), John McVeigh (Regional Development, Territories and Local Government), and Nigel Scullion (Indigenous Affairs).


How to read the table below

We asked readers two questions – who are their 15 their least favourite House of Reps politicians; and who are their 15 their least favourite Senators.

Vote was by invitation only – you had to be a New Matilda subscriber (paid or unpaid) to receive a link to vote.

The weighted result is the most relevant figure – it represents a ‘standardisation’ of the data. The reason for that is there are around twice as many House of Reps members as there are Senators, so obviously the Senate is a smaller pool of voters, and so Senators, statistically speaking, would receive higher numbers of total votes.

For the number nuts out there, we standardized both votes by multiplying the total number of each politician’s votes by 150 (House of Reps) and 72 (Senate) then divided by the total number of politicians (currently 222… we’re missing a few courtesy of some lax attention to constitutional detail).

That then gives you a standardized weighting, and the first official NM Dirty 30 List.

We’ll be using the list soon for a special subscription gift. More on that later. We’ll also publish the entire list later this week, including a special breakdown of the politicians who received no votes whatsoever. Not necessarily a good thing, in terms of their profile.

In any event, here’s the first official NM Dirty 30.

1 Tony Abbott, Member for Warringah 94.04% 1199 810
2 Peter Dutton, Member for Dickson 89.65% 1143 772
3 Scott Morrison, Member for Cook 75.45% 962 650
4 Barnaby Joyce, Member for New England 73.10% 932 629
5 Malcolm Turnbull, Member for Wentworth 60.78% 775 523
6 George Christensen, Member for Dawson 60.00% 765 516
7 Kevin Andrews, Member for Menzies 59.53% 759 512
8 Christopher Pyne, Member for Sturt 54.67% 697 470
9 Julie Bishop, Member for Curtin 48.71% 621 419
10 Josh Frydenberg, Member for Kooyong 45.25% 577 389
11 Cory Bernardi, Senator for South Australia 87.84% 1120 363
12 Greg Hunt, Member for Flinders 42.12% 537 362
13 Eric Abetz, Senator for Tasmania 86.75% 1106 358
14 Pauline Hanson, Senator for Queensland 85.80% 1094 354
15 David Leyonhjelm, Senator for New South Wales 74.27% 947 307
16 Michaelia Cash, Senator for Western Australia 73.02% 931 301
17 George Brandis, Senator for Queensland 64.16% 818 265
18 Kelly O’Dwyer, Member for Higgins 29.49% 376 254
19 Christian Porter, Member for Pearce 28.78% 367 247
20 Bob Katter, Member for Kennedy 28.47% 363 245
21 Mathias Cormann, Senator for Western Australia 58.51% 746 241
22 Steven Ciobo, Member for Moncrieff 25.57% 326 220
23 Andrew Hastie, Member for Canning 25.25% 322 217
24 Alan Tudge, Member for Aston 24.86% 317 214
25 Matthew Canavan, Senator for Queensland 48.16% 614 199
26 Arthur Sinodinos, Senator for New South Wales 47.92% 611 198
27 Sussan Ley, Member for Farrer 19.92% 254 171
28 Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, Senator for New South Wales 38.12% 486 157
29 Ian Macdonald, Senator for Queensland 34.12% 435 141
30 Craig Kelly, Member for Hughes 14.67% 187 126


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