Morgan: 60-40

Roy Morgan has caused a disturbance in the force by releasing its weekly poll a day early, perhaps hoping to strike while the Strippergate iron is lukewarm. Conducted over the last two evenings, the phone poll of 633 voters shows an intriguingly strong result for Labor, whose lead has widened to 60-40 from 58.5-41.5 at the last comparable poll a fortnight ago. Separately published leadership approval figures are remarkable enough to raise suspicions about the sample: the Prime Minister’s approval rating is at its lowest level since he was elected, his disapproval rating (up nine to 51 per cent) shooting past his approval rating (down nine to 44 per cent), while Kevin Rudd’s approval rating has reached a Bob Hawkeian 74 per cent (up 2 per cent). Rudd’s lead as preferred prime minister has widened from 51-44 to 52-38, and 87 per cent of respondents profess them unconcerned about the incident in New York.

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.

336 comments on “Morgan: 60-40”

Comments Page 1 of 7
1 2 7
  1. These results are just too good to be true. However even if they don’t reflect the situation out there, they produce a bit of a circuit breaker for Labor after Scoresgate.

    Of course next week’s polls will be interesting.

  2. The results are as true as those polled! If the sample had been 6,330 then senior Liberals would be sharpening their knives ready for the Ides of September. Even so, it’s an astounding result. It does make Alexander Downer’s outburst look that more unwise.

  3. Greeensborough Growler Says:
    August 23rd, 2007 at 5:12 pm
    Dolly Downer has identified a point of differentiation:

    (a) Rudd and the ALP being full of cunning stunts
    (b) Howard and the Liberals are full of stunning……………

    Great quote!


  4. At worst Labor maintains an landslide election winning position. No amount of dismissive interpretation by Liberal party supporters can change this reality.

  5. The polling completely explains Alexanders outburst, and there has been nothing at all State or Federal level that is a consistent indicator that they are getting detailed or specific polling that is making them relaxed and comfortable.

    They are facing defeat and a possibly a very very significant defeat and from their behaviour and reactions we know that they know it. There isn’t really anything else that could explain their behaviour credibly. Because 55% is pretty much as bad for them in a narrow power sense as 60% that we can’t be sure which end of bad losers they are currently polling at is quite irrelevant.

    They have $17 billion in just one surplus they just can’t use; and can’t really even promise to use much of future surpluses for anything but hiding in ‘god our economy is so awful lets hide this money with our mates who will earn good fees funds.’

  6. Quite unbelievable, but I agree that there is no great swing back to the Coalition, and the “Strippergate” drama hasn’t done Rudd any damage.
    I wouldn’t underestimate Howard and his capacity for dirty tricks/vote buying, but with idiots like Downer shooting his mouth off, it’s a sign the Liberals are getting desperate.

  7. GLEN, How does it feel to be the on the fringe, on the outer re strippergate?

    {The vast majority of electors (87%) are not concerned about Mr Rudd’s drunken visit to a New York strip club while on a Government funded trip to the United Nations, only 12% are concerned and 1% are undecided, a special telephone Morgan Poll over the last two nights (Wednesday and Thursday) finds.}

    You are on the one of a rare 12% who is concerned. Are you a prude? Are you a freak? Are you a crazy loner? Are you losing it?
    You latest posts certainly point that way. Is the pressure getting to you? Is it getting hot in the kitchen?

    Don’t worry it is only the real world catching up with you and the liberals. And there is no stronger and more powerful experience than reality.

    Welcome to your worst nightmare. Your hero is going down! And Australia and the world will be a much better and happier place for it.

  8. Downer appears not to have spoken about anything that relates to his ministerial duties for some time; in fact nobody on Howard’s front bench has.

  9. Can someone enlighten as to why two phone polls (eg Galaxy and Morgan) would consistently reach results outside the margin of error? Is it weighting of sample, style of questioning? You’d think they would have the randomness element down to a reasonably fine and shared art.

  10. Howard is totally gone. His ‘secret meetings’ with the Exclusive Brethren will not go well in the electorate. Recently in the local paper in Kingston we had a two page spread on this ‘cult’ moving in the area and their strange ways couple this with the story on them on Today Tonight recently and the rumors that Howards asks the Brethren leader advice on how to run the country has peoples tongues wagging. So my past post that Howard will win marginally needs to be updated to he wont win and the ALP will romp it in ( should make Adam smile)

  11. Let’s be realistic. The sample in this poll is only 633. This leaves a pretty wide margin of error. So, let’s not be surprised if the next Morgan poll, and Galaxy on Monday, fall well below these current figures.

    But, one thing that we can conclude with some confidence is that strippergate, Howard’s aspirational nationalism, pork-barrelling, and state bashing is not doing the coalition any favours at all.

    There might even be the possibility that the government is starting to go backwards again, but this cannot really be determined for another couple of polls.

    Maybe Australians really are becoming awake to the fact that we have an economically reckless and morally and ethically bankrupt PM. It might really be that the lies and spin just aren’t working anymore…

  12. If the next Newspoll has Labor leading 57-43 or better, I wonder if the Liberals will really start getting alarmed, if they’re not so already?

  13. I suspect the latest Morgan poll is a bit too pro-Labor, but I’m pretty sure it reflects the rise in interest rates kicking in. And it will kick in further soon, when letter boxes are full of letters from banks informing people about their new mortage rates.

    The government won’t getting anywhere with personal attacks on Rudd or anyone else, and, conversely, it would be counter-productive for Labor to make personal attacks on the government.

    What the government needs to do is come up with a string of solid policies that will convince voters that they have an agenda for the next three years, and a leadership plan beyond John Howard. Perhaps this is all in hand, and is being saved for the election campaign proper, but there’s not a lot of evidence yet to suggest that.

    It’s really bizarre that they have plenty of money but can’t do their usual trick of handing out more tax cuts, without threatening interest rates.

    And incidentally, I’m not sure that anyone answered a query I had some time ago, about whether any government in recent Australian history had gone beyond its exact alloted term before calling an election, and had then been re-elected? Does anyone have any info on this?

    I really can’t see Howard delaying the calling of the election much beyond the end of APEC. It would be suicide.

  14. I’m not sure that much can be read into this result – it’s basically more of the same. Labor are on course for a crushing election victory. The only thing this particular poll shows is that Australians don’t give a toss about scandals of a salacious nature (just back from the UK, where this is clearly not so).

    Watching things from afar has been constructive – one hears as much about Australian politics when overseas as the average Aussie punter takes in – pretty much nothing. What many of us in here sometimes forget is that the overwhelming mass of people couldn’t care less about the cut and thrust of politics.

    What is clear is that people have switched off to the government and Labor is yet to give them a reason not to vote for them. Barring some extraordinary event, it’s hard to see what can turn it around for the government, seeing as how everything they do is being seen through cynical eyes.

    The basic reason for this situation is WorkChoices – a classic example of over-reach due to hubris. What the Right often don’t understand is that WCs has given a clear focus to all those vague anxieties about work which have built up over the last few decades. People can see WCs as an intensification of all that they don’t like about the way ‘work’ is heading – the lack of control over hours for example. I realise that WCs itself is not the sole villain here, but politics is largely about perception. The basic political problem that WCs has, is that there is no obvious upside for people. People look at it and see longer hours and less pay.

    I can’t see how the government can neutraliise this issue. In the end, it doesn’t really matter what Labor’s policy is, as long as they repeal some high-profile parts of it (and that is all the ALP policy calls for, changes which would do no more than bring Australia into current world practice). Everytime IR dominates as an issue (regardless of the context), Labor wins.

  15. What rubbish. I can still recall Gazza’s hilarious appearance on 11AM back in 1996, when he announced on the eve of the election that his latest phone poll indicated that the result would go right down to the wire. For some reason, his sampling has always been wildly flawed, and in fact he switched to face-to-face for his political polls precisely because his phone work was so bizarre. Now he’s gone back to it, obviously because it’s easier to churn out, but he hasn’t improved his methodology. Hasn’t he learned from his past humiliations?

    Speaking of not learning from past mistakes, Rudd today announced his version of Medicare Gold. In fact, judging by his totally unconvincing performance while announcing it, I think he knows his proposal to take control of public hospitals is ludicrous. And the AMA – who applauded the Government’s new Health investment fund – swiftly poured scorn on Labor’s policy. Better luck next time, Kevvie.

  16. 7
    jasmine_Anadyr Says:
    August 23rd, 2007 at 5:55 pm

    They have $17 billion in just one surplus they just can’t use; and can’t really even promise to use much of future surpluses for anything but hiding in ‘god our economy is so awful lets hide this money with our mates who will earn good fees funds.’

    Who can tell me which of the more reliable polls will be coming out in about 2 weeks from now ? I think by that time the electorate will have had some opportunity to absorb the significance of —

    (a) the Prime Ministers ‘aspirational nationalism” pork barrel (but you have to wait for most of and “we havent worked out the details and probably won’t before the election”) compared to

    (b) Rudds [triangulation] follow up proposal to put up $2 Billion dollars for Health and Hospitals and his {straight away guys, now} commitment to get it up and running within 100 days of the election and giving the States to 2009 to get their act together or Federal Labor will take over the whole health system, box and dice.

    Both proposals will cop their run of critique from (1) economic commentators about the ‘economic management’ implications of these contesting proposals, (2) feedback from the current State Government’s {what is published is very supportive of the concept so far} (3) lobby group {eg AMA} commentary which the average punter won’t bother to read but will get a ‘snap shot’ summary of by watching ‘the news’ on telly and of course (4) the candidates capacity or failure to ‘sell’ their idea to the electorate as ‘better’.

    Funny thing for me is I suggested Howard might/could come out with the ‘ We are taking over the health system because the blame game has gone on for too long’ line (a few days ago on here), and RUDD does it.

    So much for my concerns about such a proposal ‘scaring the horses’ away from the one game enough to put this ‘lets take over health’ policy out there. Rudd has trumped Howard again-

    Yes mate, we will do that but we will do it ‘better, faster and in a more economically responsible and balanced way than you’ .. bring it on. Well done Mr Rudd- keep this up and you might be PM come Christmas.

  17. And Tony – congratulations! I believe you’re the first Leftie here who’s actually entertained the notion that the Government might be saving its grand plans for the election campaign. Good for you!

  18. If we get 60-40 again or close to it when the electorate has absorbed JWH v RUDD on ‘health’ in 2 weeks time I would say Rudd has won this little battle, and may be confident of having a shot of winning the war after APEC has had its run at ‘global warming’ and the Union adds on Workers wages and rights (Workchoices) pick up the momentum and run with it.

  19. Ouch – you know your shiny new health policy is DOA when even your biggest media booster runs this headline: “AMA says Rudd’s hospital plan flawed.” – ABC news online.

  20. Steven Kaye Says:
    August 23rd, 2007 at 6:32 pm

    And Tony – congratulations! I believe you’re the first Leftie here who’s actually entertained the notion that the Government might be saving its grand plans for the election campaign. Good for you!

    No Grand plans will dave the goveno……. oops Prime Minster

  21. Interesting you’d back the opinion of a union, Steven. The States all seem pretty supportive, and the people in the field I’ve heard interviewed on radio about it seem stoked. At any rate, it’ll play a lot better than JWH cherry picking hospitals in marginal seats – it looks more like a “plan”, because it actually is one.

    The government is tired, as all governments become, and Labor is ready. It’s as simple as that.

  22. 27
    Steven Kaye Says:

    August 23rd, 2007 at 6:38 pm
    Ouch – you know your shiny new health policy is DOA when even your biggest media booster runs this headline: “AMA says Rudd’s hospital plan flawed.” – ABC news online.

    Let’s wait a couple of weeks and see what the electorate have to say in the polls in 2 weeks time before we go claiming Rudds’ hospital plan is DOA Steven.

    Your selective hearing and vision persists, idiotic comments flow from them. Wake up and get your hand off your Johnny Howard love doll, please.

  23. The statement from the AMA is hardly surprising.

    The AMA has a history of producing Liberal Party types, just as the ACTU has a history of producing ALP types.

  24. Dont forget Rudd wont abolish the ABCC either

    Eureka flag forces workers to union, says watchdog – National –
    Michael Bachelard
    August 18, 2007

    THE Federal Government’s building industry policeman has banned the Eureka flag and ordered construction companies to remove it from sites, saying its presence intimidates people into joining the union.

    The Age has obtained a copy of an email from an Australian Building and Construction Commission staff member in Melbourne, Carol Hage, to an Adelaide building company telling them to remove the flag.

    “The flag represents the union and gives the impression that to work on the site you need to be a union member. This is therefore a breach of freedom of association,” Ms Hage wrote on July 5.

    In Perth, the commission has ordered managers of construction company Multiplex to take down Eureka flags, presenting them with a booklet containing photos of their sites where flags were flying, and quotes linking it to the union.

    The union is aware of similar action being taken in Victoria, though flags were visible on a number of sites yesterday. Under the Federal Government’s national building code of conduct, the flag can be equated with ” ‘no ticket no start’ signs … posters, helmets, stickers or union logos or flags etc that imply that union membership is anything other than a matter for individual choice”. Under the Workplace Relations Act, nobody can be coerced to join, or not join, a union.

    ABCC commissioner John Lloyd yesterday confirmed the policy, saying: “The ABCC draws any activity that is not consistent with the code to site owners’ attention”.

    But Victorian Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union acting secretary Bill Oliver said: “No law in Australia yet prevents workers or employers from flying flags or wearing union T-shirts. It is unbelievable that the ABCC is wasting taxpayers’ money on bullying employers to stop workers freely expressing themselves.”

    The flag first flew above the Eureka Stockade at the Ballarat goldfields in 1854, and has come to symbolise unity in defiance. It was adopted as a symbol by Norm Gallagher and the Builders’ Labourers Federation in the 1970s.

    The issue is a testament to the power of the commission and its interest in every aspect of life on construction sites. With powers more often seen in police corruption bodies, it is the most forceful expression of the Government’s zeal for workplace changes. The commission has the power to force people to answer questions and provide documents, under threat of a six-month jail term, and jail them if they tell anybody about the questioning.

    It can seek $28,600 fines against individual workers for taking illegal industrial action.

    Almost two years after its inception, unions believe it is a draconian body that should immediately be abolished. Labor is not so sure, preferring to wait until 2010 and see.

    But construction industry leaders say it has had a positive effect on their fractious and dangerous industry.

  25. Good observation Fagin: the plan will cop some flak no doubt, but at least we can understand it and dont have to go to a thesaurus to understand wtf it means, unlike ‘aspirational nationalism’. Try selling that brand !

  26. Steven, don’t presume I’m a leftie. I try to steer a middle course, and enjoy analysing political tactics, not because I’m a true believer in any party, but because I really like politics. Some of my commentary may have seemed supportive of Labor’s tactics and promises, but to be honest, much of what the Government is doing or hasn’t done is baffling. If Labor had been in government, and the polls were this bad, they would have changed their leader and made a fresh start.

    There is still a hell of a lot of money unspent in each side’s campaign chests. The announcement of the Budget surplus will get the calculators going on a more informed basis.

    I think we’ll hear more about things like university fees, an infrastructure fund for ports etc, further child care policies, announcements from both sides about Iraq and homeland security, and so on. A week ago, no-one would have predicted we’d all be discussing semi-naked bar girls in New York, so who knows what next week will bring.

    There is a long way to go in this election. I just don’t think the government has provided enough reason for voters not to give the other lot a go, and the other lot are looking quite capable.

    As I mentioned before, the issue of how long John Howard will stay in the job will get raised in the campaign debate etc. I don’t think voters will accept “as long as the party wants me” for too much longer. A better tactic would be that of Tony Blair. promise to lead the party for a year or so beyond the election, then let the party decide a successor. That may persuade voters who like the government’s economic management, but think it’s time for a new PM, to stick with Howard for one more election.

  27. ‘The AMA has a history of producing Liberal Party types, just as the ACTU has a history of producing ALP types.’

    A long one. Several Ministers, federal and state, infact.

    Wasn’t it that Gough and ALP helped form the Doctors Reform Society, basically created to defer propaganda from the AMA ?

    I think I heard that somewhere. You know, on the intertubes.

  28. and Speaking of the Doctor’s Reform Society.

    [Doctors Welcome Public Hospital Plan

    “The announcement today by the Opposition Leader, Kevin Rudd, to co-operate with
    states and territories to improve public hospitals is long overdue and very welcome,” said
    Dr Tim Woodruff, President of Doctors Reform Society.

    A National Health Reform Commission to set standards and dispense funds based on
    need, is an exciting development which can only benefit our desperate patients
    throughout Australia said Dr Woodruff.

    “The injection of extra funding will set the scene for major improvements, however the
    savings of billions by improved efficiencies, will also mean a further injection of
    funding.” said Dr Woodruff.

    “We can only wonder why the current Federal government has not put forward such a
    promising proposal to date.” ]

  29. Both the ABC and Channel 7 news have ridiculed Abbott’s about turn regarding Federal intervention in the Health system. This, combined with Channel Ten’s earlier labelling of the Strip club story as being a smear campaign, seems to show the media washing their hands of the coalition. ill bodings for Team Rodent. If (BIG if) the current Morgan poll may be argued to be exaggerated, it won’t be for long at this rate.


  30. Interesting to watch the hospital story tonight on the TV News. It included a reminder that Tony Abbott actually floated the idea of the Commonwealth taking over hospitals a year or so ago, but Howard said no. Then it showed Abbott criticising Rudd’s plan.

    Rudd said the public didn’t want a plan that was about the take-over of one hospital in one marginal seat. I think we’ll hear this line in many contexts in the lead-up to the election.

  31. Sorry, Hugo, but while the Premiers have naturally welcomed Rudd’s promise of $2 billion for health, they have ALL pooh-poohed the idea of any Federal Government taking over the public health system. They’ve also raised questions about the referenda Rudd says he would hold before assuming control of the hospitals.

    Face it, it’s as flimsy as Medicare Gold was. I think the problem with Labor is that they see all these polls stating that the public favours them on health and their hubris leads them to overreach and produce these cockamamie policies. Long may this practice continue.

  32. On insight the other night they had a forum on Health which most of the professors and doctors there advocated this (Labors) process. They also want the process de-policitised.

  33. No I believe your wrong on comparing this to Medicare Gold. This covers all 700 hospitals, giving incentives to states that reach goals and stop duplication.

  34. I think Rudd can sit on his hands for a couple of weeks now and let his lap dogs attack JWH on climate change to pre-empt the APEC summit. The pre and post APEC polls will be fascinating.

  35. The reaction we’ve all been waiting for – Hawkey on Strippergate!

    From his article on the Sportsbet website….

    “A hard one to call – the knee jerk reaction would be to call it a negative for Labor but, speaking with a certain amount of authority, from my own personal history in such matters, I think the story made it easier for a lot of punters to identify with Kevin,” he wrote.

  36. I’ve been looking over the early 2007 archives.
    No one presumed the Rudd honeymoon would last so long, nor that there was a such a desperate longing for a not uncreditable alternative (i.e. not strongly associated with Hawke/Keating) to JWH and the Coalition that would provide such a steady high polling averages, especially in primary vote, for Labor.

    With their economic credentials largely neutralised, their only hope now is National Security. One should not underestimate the inherent xenophobia of the electorate – a single incident in Iraq or here could change the landscape considerably in favour of the Coalition. Fortunately, although I believe they stoop fairly low, I don’t think they would engineer such an incident (and Haneef was not engineered but very badly handled!).

  37. Again you misrepresent reality Steven. Rudd did not say he would take over the health system -He said he would IF the State’s don’t get their act together by 2009. Have your views, but try to fabricate them on the grounds of some semblance of reality.

  38. What you’re all forgetting about Rudd dud of a policy today is that this ‘major’ 2billion dollar announcement in health and guess what…

    Not a single word from Nicola Roxon on the TV…a 2billion dollar health policy and not one word from the alternative minister for health…just shows how much faith the ALP spin doctors have in Rudd’s inexperienced front bench…

    Rudd has reconfirmed to the public that he is gutless and has no conviction he wants a bob each way he’s happy to hand over more and more money to the States who have failed in their duties to provide health services and yet he’s prepared to take them over all 750 hospitals….Krudd you cannot have it both ways mate…make a stand and show some guts for once…

    Funny to see all you leftards get worked up over a poll with a sample size of around 660 people…what a complete joke…yeah and the last newspoll of the 2004 election had it 50/50 and Howard won 53-47 face it polling is not credible unless its done by at least 1000 people and by reputable organizations like newspoll and galaxy not Morgan who are as biased as they come.

Comments are closed.

Comments Page 1 of 7
1 2 7