Reuters Poll Trend: 54.9-45.1

The latest semi-monthly Reuters Poll Trend figure, a weighted composite of results from Morgan, Newspoll and ACNielsen, continues the gentle trend back to the Coalition that has been evident since May. On the primary vote, Labor is down from 47.7 per cent to 46.9 per cent and the Coalition up from 39.5 per cent to 40.4 per cent. Kevin Rudd’s preferred prime minister rating is steady on 46.4 per cent, while John Howard’s is down from 40.5 per cent to 40.2 per cent.

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.

429 comments on “Reuters Poll Trend: 54.9-45.1”

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  1. I wouldnt be counting out Bendigo and Issacs in Victoria and i would put down Swan and Cowan as most probable gains for the Coalition in WA…

    I think the result could come down to WA whether the Coalition can hold Stirling and Hasluck or whether Labor will lose Swan and Cowan…

  2. Glen, you are just plain wrong about Victoria. There is no chance Labor will lose seats here. The state ALP has shifted its strategy from defence to offense and is putting its money into La Trobe, Deakin and Corangamite.

    I agree Swan and Cowan are at risk. We will have to wait for another poll to tell us whether Westpoll or ACN is right about WA.

  3. Also im wondering what peoples thoughts are on political journalists declaring who they vote for to the public after all they hold a lot of sway in the public arena and i reckon they should because their influence cannot be underestimated…

    I think the public has a right to know what slant we get from these (below) political journos and it would save one side labeling the other as biased…

    Karen Middleton
    Matt Price
    Misha Schubert
    Virginia Trioli
    George Megalogenis
    Piers Akerman

  4. You really don’t know? Most of them are so transparent with their bias that it only just falls short of them wearing either a Kevin07â„¢ T-shirt, or a tie to barbecue.

  5. Of course i have suspicions Stunkrat but nevertheless none of them i think have gone on the record to say who they vote for even though we can take a good guess…

  6. I’ll have a guess:

    Oaks – Lib
    O’Brien – Lab
    Bolt – Lib
    Kelly – Lib
    Grattan – Lib
    Bongiorno – Lib
    Farr – Lib
    Henderson – Lib
    Karen Middleton – Lab
    Matt Price – Lab/Lib
    Misha Schubert – Lab
    Virginia Trioli – Lab
    George Megalogenis Lab
    Piers Akerman – Lib

  7. You have suspicions that Bolt or Henderson (not a journo) are Liberal voters? Or that Kerry O’Brien may vote Labor? Startling insight.

    Of course, what they vote shouldn’t make any difference to their objectivity, but most have them failed miserably on that score.

  8. In the case of Dennis Shanahan, this information is quite stark. He personally asked the NewsPoll chief executive, Martin O’Shannessy, to spin the data about preferred prime-minister for the liberals. Martin publicly apologised for it and indicated he would never do it again.

    It’s a valid question to ask, when you’re expecting objectivity from a journalist, and really, you’re getting a press-release. It’s no different than advertisements in newspapers having to be identified.

    If you want to be recognized as a journalist, you should be objective. If you want to align yourself with a political party, you should not decieve your readers by letting them assume that your opinion is not biased.

  9. Malcolm Farr: Liberal
    Alan Jones: Liberal
    John Laws: Liberal
    Mike Carlton: Labor
    Peter Fitzsimons: Labor
    Lisa Wilkinson: Labor
    Karl Stefanovik: Liberal
    David Koch: Liberal
    Kerry O’Brien: Labor
    Ray Hadley: Liberal

  10. This is my first post but I couldn’t hlep asking a quick question of Antony Green, comment 341. If the average swing is 6%, and the standard deviation is 2%, doesn’t that mean that two-thirds of the seats had a swing of 4-8% (not 4-6%)? Because if that’s true, a bunch of extra seats could come into consideration.


    Just read the correction… hmm…

    Newspoll CEO Martin O’Shannessy writes: Re. “Newspoll chief regrets siding with The Australian” (yesterday, item 1). Your report is a highly selective interpretation of what was meant to be an education session for young members of the Market and Social Research Society as part of the Society’s Professional Development Programme. It’s true, I do regret getting my analysis wrong. Newspoll’s own figures (provided by me) a fortnight after the article showed that my predicted revival in the Coalition primary – based on historical trends -has yet to materialise. I should point out that other prominent speakers also recalled bad predictions they had made in the spirit of educating young researchers. However, your contention that I wrote the article at the urging of Dennis Shanahan is just not right. I’ve been informed that Dennis first saw it when he picked up the paper the next morning. The article was entirely my own idea and the fact that The Australian ran it on the front page was my evidence to say they wanted it. I offered the piece to The Australian because I thought Dennis Shanahan’s position was supportable.

    Still raises the question though… why did Shanahan diliberately spin it that way.

  12. This looks like fun.

    Oaks – Lab
    O’Brien – Lab
    Bolt – Lib
    Kelly – DLP 😉
    Grattan – Dem
    Bongiorno – Lab
    Farr – Lab
    Henderson – Lib
    Karen Middleton – Sun Dried Tomato Party (whatever happened to them)
    Matt Price – Doesnt vote:rearranges his sock draw on election day.
    Misha Schubert – Greens
    Virginia Trioli – Unity
    George Megalogenis – Lab
    Piers Akerman – Informal (cant fill out the ballot correctly)

  13. I wonder what bizarre and outrageous commentary Gary Morgan is going to append to the poll results today. Always interesting.

  14. Andrew Bolt doesn’t vote for the Liberals. They’re too left wing for his tastes. He’s probably be Family First or DLP. He’d support any party to the right of Atila the Hun and Gengis Kahn.

  15. Once again Morgan has devalued the National Party vote…

    The Nats got 6% in 2004 and Morgan you guessed it have them on just 3% what a joke…

    I dont know how anyone can take Morgan seriously when they undervalue the Bush vote…if the Coalition had that 3% back they be back up to 40% primary vote but as they’ve reduced the Nats vote considerably the Coalition have fallen back…

  16. Apropos nothing… (and this isn’t a suck up! honest!) but isn’t The Piping Shrike bloody excellent. Writes well, thinks clearly, goes into a depth of analysis which is apparently unavailable to ‘insiders’. I guess that’s the advantage of sitting to one side – you don’t get involved in these odd little quid pro quo type agreements a la Costello and the three journalists. Hats off to The Piping Shrike – you’re my hero…(ok, that last bit was a suck up! 🙂 ).

  17. This is in great agreement with the Morgan ph poll last Friday (same results in fact), and is definitely evidence that the AC Nielson on Monday is a bit off. No sign of any effect on national polling from Qld. Michelle Grattan wrote in the Age today that Qld had averaged 56-44 to Labor since Feb. Am hoping the economic turmoil doesn’t push people back to the Coal. I doubt it’ll happen as the Libs simply aren’t trusted on much now. If banks increase mortgage and/or credit card rates to cover bad debts in US, this will really hurt.

  18. Remember.
    When the stocks go up, its due to John Howard’s economic management.
    When the stocks go down, its due to global factors.

  19. Once again Morgan has devalued the National Party vote…

    The Nats got 6% in 2004 and Morgan you guessed it have them on just 3% what a joke…

    I dont know how anyone can take Morgan seriously when they undervalue the Bush vote…if the Coalition had that 3% back they be back up to 40% primary vote but as they’ve reduced the Nats vote considerably the Coalition have fallen back…

    Um, no. the Nat vote has gone upfrom the previous poll, 2.5% to 3%, the Lib vote has dropped by 4%. they may be undervaluing the Nat vote, as you say, but at least they’re consistent. It remains to be seen whether they understate the total coalition vote.

  20. I would read this poll, in light of the recent other polls as basically no-change over the past month or so (“statistical noise” being the favoured term at the moment).

    Newspoll on Tuesday I think?

  21. The Nats got 6% in 2004 and Morgan you guessed it have them on just 3% what a joke…

    Yeah! And the Libs got 40% on their own in 2004 so we know they can’t possibly be on 33.5% now…

    if the Coalition had that 3% back they be back up to 40% primary vote but as they’ve reduced the Nats vote considerably the Coalition have fallen back

    Even assuming that you are correct, how exactly do you know the ‘missing’ National voters have been counted as ALP supporters and not as Liberal supporters or, more realistically a split of the two?

  22. Glen, all polls “understate” the Nats vote, as has been discussed here several times. And here’s why: The only reason the Nats get 6% of the vote is that conservative voters are forced to vote for them in the 15-odd seats where the Libs don’t stand. Probably half of of them would vote Liberal if they were given the chance – which is why the Nats are run close every time there is a 3-cornered contest in a safe non-Labor seat (see Farrer, Murray, Lyne, Mallee). In an opinion poll these people are gfree to “vote”Liberal and they do. So a poll showing 3% for the Nats is probably quite accurate.

    Keep trying, digger.

  23. IMHO if the stockmarket turmoil settles down to some consistency and even remains low or gradually recovers, the positive approach taken by those in the know will calm nerves pretty quickly which will take this issue out of play before the election gets underway. Other issues will continue to dominate.

  24. It tells me that at least there has been no shrinkage in Labors vote these past few weeks.

    I one word – “joy” (for another week)

  25. Well Martin considering every other poll has the Nats on at least 5 or 6 points just shows how out of touch Morgan is…Most of Labor’s gains are from the Liberal Party and Greens…after all the ALP got 37.8% on Election night 2004 and have been polling high 40s for primary thus have made up 10% thus 7 from Liberal 3 from Greens…

    The Nats vote is usually stable at 5-6% not 3 or 2.5% as Morgan usually have them…

    We’ll have to see the next poll to see if Morgan has shown the ALP extending their lead or its just another Morgan poll and the Coalition are coming back…the share market scare should help the Coalition after all the people still trust the Coalition to run the economy…

  26. Beautiful set of numbers, but I’m not getting carried away, there’s a long way to go until the election, and as we know, the rodent will try every dirty trick in the book to say in Kirribilli.

  27. I agree with those who think that Morgan consistently overstates the Labor vote, and that 58% is higher than the “real” Labor vote at present (not that anyone will ever know). But since that bias is consistent over time, we can usefully compare this Morgan poll with the previous Morgan poll. The fact that this poll shows no change from the last one is good for Labor.

  28. [The Nats got 6% in 2004 and Morgan you guessed it have them on just 3% what a joke…]

    On these figures, if you give the Nats, and thus the Coalition, an extra 3%, the ALP would still win the election with around 94 seats.

  29. I can’t wait to read Nostradamus’ spin on this poll.

    Re: the drop in support for the Nats since the last election. Is it any wonder considering the Liberals have pinched their Senator and basically said that voting National is a wasted vote?

  30. Absolutely Adam – thats how I read every poll: in comparison to the previous by the same pollster.

    For all the Howard-led hoo-haa: Tick off another good week for the ALP; another week lost for Team Rodent.

  31. Me neither i cant wait should be a good one Paul…

    I still think the rural vote is undervalued in general by the National polls but we only really know their intentions on polling day…

    I would take the next Newspoll is crucial for the Coalition a drop would be a disaster and a rise would boost the stocks for a Nov 3 poll.

  32. [Remember.
    When the stocks go up, its due to John Howard’s economic management.
    When the stocks go down, its due to global factors.]

    Which is the same argument he uses for interest rates, just substitute “stocks” for “interest rates”.

  33. I’m happy with the idea that Morgan overstates the ALP, and happy with the idea that in part this is because it inadequately captures rural voters.

    However without further detail about exactly how this happens, one can’t say that the full 3% (or whatever) should just be added to the Coalition and subtracted from the ALP> This would obviously be an upper bound, but the ‘true’ figure would more likely be something less as it is likely that the Liberal Party is also overcounted relative to the Nationals as well as the ALP.

  34. Pay attention people, there is NO “drop in the Nats’ vote.”. This apparent drop is caused by the fact that the Nats get to run in 15 seats unopposed by the Liberals. If all country seats were 3-cornered contests the Nats’ vote would be 3%, not 6%. Are we clear on this now?

  35. I can’t wait to read Nostradamus’ spin on this poll.

    What poll? It never happened.

    Now about that June Westpoll…

  36. Pay attention people, the supposed “bias toward Labor” in the Morgan series of polls is only relevant when comparing against other series of polls. Morgan says the ALP vote is higher than what Newspoll and ACNeilsen say it is – this does not suggest that it’s higher than what it actually would be were an election held at this point.

    Are we clear on this now?

  37. Ok that makes sense – which means that essentially all of the ‘undercounting’ in a poll (in which the Nats compete with the Libs) relative to an election (in which they don’t) is to the advantage of the Liberals, and not to the ALP.

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