Newspoll: 51-49 to Labor in Victoria

As the November state election looms closer into view, Newspoll finds next to nothing in it.

The Australian today brings us a Victorian state voting intention result from Newspoll, which is not one of the usual results accumulated through polling conducted over a period of two months, but a one-shot poll of 1023 respondents conducted from Friday to Monday. It records Labor with a two-party lead of 51-49, which is down from 52-48 at both the election and the previous poll conducted through February and March. On the primary vote, Labor is up one to 38%, the Coalition is up two to 41% and the Greens are steady on 11%, with One Nation down one to 5% and all others down two to 5%.

Both leaders suffer spikes in their disapproval ratings: Daniel Andrews tips over to a negative net approval rating, with approval down three to 43% and disapproval up six to 47%, and Matthew Guy is down four on approval to 32% and up eight on disapproval to 45%. Andrews’ lead as preferred premier is at 41-34, narrowing from 41-30 last time. As it did last time, the poll asks about the better party to handle energy supply and law order, which respectively find Labor’s lead narrowing from 44-34 to 42-40, and its deficit widening from 42-37 to 46-37. The poll also finds 69% of respondents saying the government should do more to reduce gang violence, up four from last month, while only 23% think it is doing enough, down two points.

Last month, The Age published results of ReachTEL polling of the crucial “sandbelt” seats of Bentleigh, Mordialloc, Carrum and Frankston, targeting around 735 respondents each, which found Labor leading in all of them: by 53-47 in the case of the first three, and by 51-49 in Frankston. The poll was conducted for Environment Victoria, an “independent not-for-profit advocacy group”.

BludgerTrack: 52.0-48.0 to Labor

In the week of the magic number thirty Newspoll, some polling-related consolation for Malcolm Turnbull.

After Malcolm Turnbull’s worst week for polling news since the election, the BludgerTrack poll aggregate finds Labor’s lead at its narrowest in some time. The three results out this week included a Newspoll that had the Coalition ahead of Labor on the primary vote, something they have only managed a handful of times in the past year; a high-end-of-average result from Ipsos that included a 50-50 respondent-allocated two-party result, indicating a strong flow of preferences to the Coalition, which factors into the BludgerTrack preference model; and a par for the course result from Essential Research. Equally importantly, these new results displace a particularly bad data point from the Coalition from ReachTEL on March 28.

On the seat projection, the Coalition is up one each in New South Wales and Victoria, and two in Western Australia. While Western Australia continues to record the largest swing, BludgerTrack’s recent double-digit blowout appears to have been a burst of statistical noise. A precis of the results can be seen on the sidebar, but the real deal is the link through the image below:

South Australian draft federal redistribution

Port Adelaide nominated for the chop in draft federal boundaries for South Australia, which bring the state down from 11 seats to 10.

The Australian Electoral Commission has published draft boundaries for the South Australian redistribution, which brings the state’s representation down from 11 seats to 10. The seat mooted for abolition is Port Adelaide; Wakefield is to be renamed Spence. At the bottom is a table featuring my estimates of party vote shares and two-party margins (Labor versus Liberal only).

Adelaide. Drifts westwards into the void created by the abolition of Port Adelaide, turning a tight Labor seat into a reasonably safe one.

Barker. Gains Barossa Valley territory around Kapunda.

Boothby. Drawn northwards into Glenelg through knock-on effects from Port Adelaide abolition, without much change to the margin.

Grey. Expends to the northern edge of Adelaide, gaining Clare Valley, with next to no impact on the margin.

Hindmarsh. Takes the bulk of Port Adelaide, turning the seat from marginal to safe Labor.

Kingston. Loses coast at southern end around Aldinga Beach, gains suburbia at northern end around Aberfoyle Park. Slightly advantageous to Liberal, but not enough to make them competitive on recent form.

Makin. Expands west to take over some Port Adelaide territory, notably Parafield Gardens.

Mayo. Not abolished, as some expected; gains the Aldinga Beach coastal area lost by Kingston.

Spence (Wakefield). Greatly strengthened for Labor through loss of Clare Valley and Barossa Valley to Grey and Barker respectively, and gain of suburbs around Paralowie from Port Adelaide.

Sturt. Gains Norwood at western end from Adelaide, with little impact on margin.

LIB change ALP change XEN change LIB 2pp vs ALP change
Adelaide 34.4% -2.1% 42.8% 6.9% 12.5% -0.3% 41.1% -4.3%
Barker 47.3% 0.8% 15.9% 0.7% 29.0% -0.1% 64.4% -0.8%
Boothby 44.4% 3.2% 27.7% 3.2% 18.3% -2.4% 52.8% -0.7%
Grey 44.7% 1.9% 22.4% 0.8% 27.2% -0.6% 58.6% -0.1%
Hindmarsh 33.5% -6.8% 43.4% 9.4% 16.4% 1.4% 41.8% -7.6%
Kingston 27.2% 3.9% 50.0% 0.6% 17.7% 0.5% 36.5% 3.5%
Makin 28.6% 0.0% 46.3% 4.5% 16.2% -0.4% 39.2% -1.2%
Mayo 37.7% -0.1% 16.4% 2.9% 33.8% -1.1% 53.3% -2.1%
Port Adelaide Abolished
Spence/Wakefield 20.4% -6.0% 49.4% 9.6% 20.1% -0.4% 32.1% -6.9%
Sturt 47.4% 3.0% 23.5% 1.3% 19.7% -1.4% 55.7% -0.1%

Essential Research: 53-47 to Labor

Essential Research yet again records a solid lead for Labor on two-party preferred, but finds Malcolm Turnbull moving clear as preferred Liberal leader.

The Guardian, which joins the fun by spruiking the result as the “eightieth straight loss” for the Turnbull government, reports that Labor holds a lead of 53-47 in the latest Essential Research poll, out from 52-48 a fortnight ago. The poll also features Essential’s monthly leadership ratings, which find Malcolm Turnbull’s lead over Bill Shorten as preferred prime minister unchanged at 41-26 (a growing contrast with the narrow results from Newspoll); a 39% approval rating for Turnbull, down two, and a disapproval rating of 42%, down one; and a 35% approval rating for Bill Shorten, down two, and a disapproval rating of 43%, down one.

A question on preferred Liberal leader finds Turnbull moving clear of Julie Bishop since the last such result in December – he’s up three to 24%, with Bishop down two to 17%. Both are well clear of the more conservative alternatives of Tony Abbott, on 11% (up one) and 3% (down one). Scott Morrison scores only 2%, unchanged on last time. When asked who they would prefer in the absence of Turnbull, 26% opted for Bishop and 16% for Abbott, with Dutton and Morrison both on 5%. Also featured is an occasional question on leaders’ attributes, but I would want to see the raw numbers before drawing any conclusions from them. Those should be with us, along with primary votes, when Essential Research publishes its full report later today.

UPDATE: Full report here. The primary votes are Coalition 38%, Labor 37% (up one), Greens 10% (up one), One Nation 7% (down one).

Also today, courtesy of The Australian, are results from the weekend’s Newspoll which find support for a republic at 50%, down one since last August, with opposition up three to 41%. With the qualification of Prince Charles ascending the throne, support rises to 55%, unchanged since August, while opposition is at 35%, up one.

Newspoll: 52-48 to Labor

The Newspoll everyone has been waiting for is in all other respects a dull, steady, status quo result.

Malcolm Turnbull’s thirtieth successive Newspoll loss is 52-48 to Labor, down from 53-47, which actually completes a hat trick of polls for the Coalition over recent days which have been at the better end of normal for them (see previous post on Ipsos and Morgan results). On the primary vote, the Coalition up one to 38%, Labor is down two to 37%, the Greens are up one to 10% and One Nation is steady on 7%.

As Kevin Bonham has observed, it seems likely that Newspoll is no longer using a roughly 50-50 preference split for One Nation as per the results of the 2016 election, but is instead being guided by the lean towards the Coalition evident at the Queensland and Western Australian elections. This was apparent in the pollster’s recent quarterly state breakdowns, and this latest poll would come out at 52.7-47.3 if the earlier measure had been used (albeit that rounding might have changed this).

For personal ratings, Malcolm Turnbull is steady on 32% approval and up one on disapproval to 57%; Bill Shorten is down two to 32% and up three to 57%. On preferred prime minister, Turnbull is down a point to 38%, while Shorten is steady on 36%. The poll was conducted Thursday to Sunday from a sample of 1597.

Correctives to the notion that Tony Abbott should feel vindicated:

• Newspoll has been a lot less volatile in Malcolm Turnbull’s time than it was in Tony Abbott’s, when it was essentially a different poll – but even the most favourable outliers under Abbott failed to draw the Coalition level, such was the scale of their underlying deficit.

• At the time of his ousting in September 2015, my trend measure found Tony Abbott with a net approval of around 30%. Turnbull is currently at around minus 20% and was only as low as minus 25% at his nadir, whereas Abbott bottomed out at minus 45% right after the Prince Phillip knighthood on Australia Day 2015.

• Turnbull also enjoys a modest but consistent lead over Bill Shorten as preferred prime minister, whereas Abbott never did better than equal him, and was usually behind — often badly, which is very unusual for the incumbent.

Ipsos: 52-48 to Labor

A new poll from Ipsos just about does for Malcolm Turnbull what he can apparently only dream of from Newspoll.

Two days out from the one we’ve all been waiting for, Fairfax has cutely interjected with an Ipsos poll – conducted on this most special of occasions from Tuesday to Thursday for publication on Friday night, and not from Thursday to Saturday for publication on Sunday night as standard. The sample is 1166, somewhat lower than the usual 1400 from Ipsos.

The headline two-party result of 52-48 to Labor, as determined using 2016 election preference flows, is only slightly above the Coalition’s usual form – but Malcolm Turnbull is given a very useful straw to grasp with a tied result using respondent-allocated preferences. This is something the Coalition hasn’t achieved on either kind of two-party measure in any poll since September 2016, except for the quirky and apparently short-lived YouGov series for Fifty Acres. The previous Ipsos poll in early December had Labor leading 53-47 on previous election preferences and 52-48 on respondent allocation. On the primary vote, the Coalition is up two to 36%, Labor is up a point to 34%, and the Greens are down a point to 12% (high results for the Greens being a consistent features of Ipsos polls).

The good news for Malcolm Turnbull doesn’t end there: the poll finds only 28% in favour of the Liberals removing him as leader, compared with 62% who think he should remain, and his approval rating bounces five points to 47%, with disapproval down six to 43%. This is the first time since April last year that Turnbull has recorded net favourable personal ratings – the previous instance being another Ipsos poll, which is no coincidence, since the series consistently records high approval and low undecided ratings for both leaders. Bill Shorten is steady on 38% approval and up one on disapproval to 53%. The poll also finds 49% support for company tax cuts, with the number opposed not provided. This is dramatically more favourable than ReachTEL’s finding of 29% in favour and 56% opposed, although recent Essential Research polls have had slight net favourable results.

We have also had Roy Morgan publish results of its face-to-face polling for the second fortnight a row, which the pollster has hitherto been reserving for its massively expensive subscriber service since the 2016 election campaign. I’m not sure if this portends a regular return to publication, or if it will be appearing on an ad hoc basis, as the release a fortnight ago seemed to suggest. Whatever it is, the result is likewise on the high side for the Coalition, with Labor holding a steady 51-49 lead on two-party preferred. This is in contrast to the form of the Morgan face-to-face series of old, which was notorious for its skew to Labor.

However, as with Ipsos, it’s respondent allocation that’s making the difference – if previous election preferences were applied, Labor’s lead would be up from 51-49 to 53-47. The primary votes are Coalition 38.5%, down from 40% a fortnight ago; Labor 37.5%, up from 35%; Greens 11%, down from 12%; and One Nation on an unusually weak 3%, down from 3.5%. The Morgan release has two-party breakdowns by state and income category. The poll was conducted over the past two weekends from a combined sample of 1477.