Rough trade

Doubts that the Poll Bludger had harboured over the opinion poll dividend awaiting Mark Latham’s Free Trade Agreement manouevre have been laid to rest with today’s Newspoll and ACNielsen results. Newspoll has Labor resuming a commanding 54-46 lead on two-party preferred thanks largely to a 6 per cent slump in support for the Coalition. Labor has absorbed only 2 per cent of this, up from 40 to 42 per cent, with the "others" vote up from 8 to 11 per cent (no hard copy to hand, but I’m guessing the remainder knocked the Greens from 6 to 7 per cent). ACNielsen has produced an impressively similar set of results, with the Coalition on 42 per cent and Labor on 39 per cent, respectively down 2 and 1 per cent. The Greens are steady on 9 per cent and the Democrats are stuck on 2 per cent, with Labor ahead 53-47 on two-party preferred. The consensus between Newspoll, ACNielsen and Roy Morgan leaves the odd-man-out newcomer OmniTalk looking on very shaky ground with its rosy picture for the Coalition. Taverner is perhaps admissible as further evidence of an intriguing drift to the minor party and independent sector which is not substantially benefiting the Greens or Democrats, instead vanishing into the mysterious "others" column. Last week’s national launch of Family First could well have something to do with it.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.