Galaxy: 56-44

The latest Galaxy poll, published in today’s News Limited tabloids, shows Labor’s lead easing imperceptibly to 56-44 from 57-43 last month. There has also been a one point exchange on the primary vote, with Labor down to 46 per cent and the Coalition up to 40 per cent.

Sept 24
56 44 46 40
Aug 27
57 43 47 39
July 30
54 46 44 41
July 2
55 45 46 41
June 4
53 47 44 42
May 14
57 43 49 39
April 23
58 42 49 37

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.

548 comments on “Galaxy: 56-44”

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  1. I’d love to see the Liberals private polling for SA seats. If the Rodent starts pork barrelling in Sturt and Boothby, that’ll be a good sign they are in big trouble.
    Interestingly, on ABC News tonight(Sydney), not one mention of either Howard or Rudd.

  2. 399
    Ian Mentioned:

    Keating floated the Australian Dollar.

    You know I remembered that as something Frazer did but your right. I think however you have to give the winding back of tariffs to Whitlem, he started it.

    Looking back, Keating did some amazing stuff.

  3. [ Keating floated the Australian Dollar ]

    Actually it was Hawke who floated the dollar. While Keating was Treasurer, it was Hawke who pushed the policy change and forced the Party, etc to accept it. Keating has often taken the credit but in reality if it wasn’t for Hawke it may not have happened.

  4. “Looking back, Keating did some amazing stuff.”

    Don’t forget the FBT. And the Capital Gains Tax also. Though I read today David Flint and John Stone advocating its abolition because it stifles entrepreneurial thinking. (And profit taking amongst the well-off, I guess.)

    Probably what we should be doing is applying CGT to family homes. If they weren’t so tax advantaged the demand would not be so high… not so much pressure on prices. But it isn’t going to happen.

    It’s late. I’ve metamorphosed into Ross Gittens.

  5. Anybody watching Sol on Lateline talking about how soft the Labor vote is? No wonder the Libs aren’t living in the real world. Does this guy have any credibility? He seems to be saying his own opinion polls are meaningless.

  6. 404
    paul k Says:

    Keating has often taken the credit but in reality if it wasn’t for Hawke it may not have happened.

    I think it would be fairer to say it was at the start of their government, back when they worked together.

  7. Sol’s other strange point was about the %age of voters who make up their minds in the last 2 weeks or even the day of polling. Maybe, but many have an idea who they will vote for. What Sol (nor anyone else) talks about is how many change their mind. That would be an interesting statistic.

  8. On Friday I posted a seat-by-seat survey based on talking to Labor MPs and Senators in Canberra on Thursday. I think that’s the best assessment you’re likely to get at present. I never thought to ask about Grey 🙂

  9. Surely if Sol is correct and 10% of people make up their mind at the last minute and therefore can’t be trusted in what they told pollsters then shouldn’t the margin of error for all polls be at least 10%?

  10. Adam @ 371

    Spot on. The tomato left kept us out for too many years. Extremes – left or right – must be put down. In both major parties.

    Glen. Any luck with ETHICS. Maybe if you Google it … just trying to help.

  11. Further to that, shouldn’t the polls a week before an election often be out by 10%? I’d love to see Sol provide even one example of that in the last 100 years.

  12. You would think that after a long election campaign that most would have at least an idea even if for trivial reasons – who looks ok. The ones who go into the booth with no idea probably know nothing about policitics, pay no attention and thus would be a random 50/50 choice.

  13. The other thing Sol said which I think is not quite correct is that it doesn’t feel like 1996, in other words, the electorate aren’t angry at Howard the same way they were with Keating. This is essentially correct but still misinterprets what is happening. With others l have spoken to who like me used to support Howard but have now changed to Rudd there isn’t so much a feeling of anger but more a feeling of deep disappointment and frustration. Anger isn’t the only thing people need to feel to change their vote.

  14. Paul Sekfy is the ALP candidate for Cowper (ABC On-line). As I have been outed and I am a friend of Paul – I am not saying anything.

  15. I return to my brief mention on earlier thread to the George Munster 2007 Award for Independent Journalism. Leigh Sales for her book on David Hicks. Heard on Sunday’s The Big Idea (ABC).

    Michael Duffy was the second speaker. His contribution departed from the usual one expects to hear.

    As the right wing Philip Adams, Duffy sided hitherto with for instance Keith Windschuttle against Henry Reynolds in the Culture Wars, scoffed at Climate Change proponents and adherents, hugged Howard who hugged back.

    Like Julie #62, I look at views not necessarily one’s own. I read the Spectator for example. Like to know what is being said.

    In brief. Michael Duffy:

    “…the Right doesn’t stand for much either…has run out of ideas…no longer has an agenda…has even fewer ideas than the Left.

    ..(JH) is old style politician … might have caused him to miss some of the changes creeping up on Australia. I suspect he left it too long to change his mind on issues such as Climate Change…Hicks..

    Howard used to be generally acknowledged…as being in touch with the Australian public. Don’t think he is in touch anymore..because the public has changed.

    …this make it a good time for a leader who wants to introduce certain types of change, who may be a bit more expansive in his or her views, who may be thinking about the future rather than the past….

    In conclusion I do think Australians have come a long way since the Tampa and Children Overboard”.

    End quote.

    Michael Duffy’s observations include that the culture wars are over, Iraq is not just a failure in itself, Howard is dishonourable in avoidance of casualties, that some papers are leaning towards Labor, cites Sydney Daily Telegraph. Says the polls show it. Even the ‘Conga line of ’ gains his belated approval. I have omitted a lot.

    Duffy’s premise is that ‘prosperity’ has allowed Australians to ‘be’ compassionate. He may be correct in a limited way. Probably though, we are more perceptive and/or sceptical. As I have asserted, the public moves on, whilst Howard retains a mindset. GST. Tampa. Hicks. Connections exploited. Getting away with such as these encourages his tactical repeat. Therefore Work Choices. Therefore Haneef. Therefore APEC.

    Howard’s biographer, Peter van Onselen, interviewed, intimated his view that Howard is not necessarily so clever but that he learned lessons. He does not. Howard fails to learn that the public view evolves, even though he was brought to heel. On Tampa, Hicks, even Iraq for those who thought it a good idea.

    Quoting myself. Finally, the sleepers if a next Liberal Government. Whither Work Choices? Nuclear? Interest Rates? Infrastructure? Water? What to do with those billions? Primary Producers are being helped. What of the consumer, that is, me? It is obvious that the CPI hardly reflects the price of a vegetable. I note that butter leapt up a dollar (!) since my shopping the other day.

    Whatever, opinion has long been that the public is willing to sacrifice for the greater good.

    Yet where is Liberal policy on health, hospitals, Medicare? Core promises? What unpleasant surprises are in mind but unmentioned.

    And what of ethical dealing with Australia? The Government is spinning a weird line that Labor announcements are ‘slick’. The Government attempting to attack its own so long approach?

    Michael Duffy did not attribute the perceived public view to any of these affects. Still, change is acknowledged.

    Hence the polls. Hence this poll.

  16. 413
    Derek Corbett Says:

    “Spot on. The tomato left kept us out for too many years. Extremes – left or right – must be put down. In both major parties.”

    You need them to broaden you base, they just shouldn’t take control.

  17. Paul K @ 406

    Yeah, same thought struck me.

    Gets back to a general mistrust of polls and pollsters. I’d prefer to base my predictions on the sniff in the air, the ramblings of the BS prints, the tone of tabloid headlines, TV news grabs of the day … sniff, sniff. Body talk. Glen’s writhing. Stuff like that.

  18. Sat next to a bloke on the bus today.Out of the blue he started talking to me.He’s a computer programmer on contract(2-3 years) in QR,always a Liberal voter,but is voting Labor this election come what may.
    You guessed it,Workchoices!!!!
    Working contract himself he doesn’t want his kids to go thru what he’s going thru.A familiar tale these days.

  19. Solly Newspoll exposes himself and his industry as a fraud!
    Polls are useless and meaningless. How anyone can pay any money for them or even pay any attention to them is beyond him. The vote comes down to pot luck, toss of the coin, bad mood good mood on election day.

    Sol is a true believer false prophet who consults fairies at the bottom of the garden and Santa. Howard is the invincible demi god of steel houdini with a triple lazarus. He cannot be denied! Libs are safe. Libs will win. The Titanic refloated. General Waenk has broken the waters and a new Lazarus is born.

  20. It speaks volumes about the bigotry and prejudice in Australian politics that allows anyone to remain in current political life when they admit to being supporters of murderous communist regimes and ideology, whereas anyone who was ever associated with national socialists has a lot more explaining to do.

    On election night this year, Julia Gillard can sob alone under her mattress, a red under the bed, where she belongs.

  21. Glen, the reason why the Libs won’t be 116 seats short of a majority after this election is because our house of reps is about one quarter the size of the UK lower house.

    Labor would need around 57% of the vote for a similar majority after adjusting for size of the lower house. I think thats unlikely, although anything over 54% and the result will seem miserable for the Coalition

    Also, in the UK they use the deplorable first past the post system, and I reckon that results in larger majorities for the winner due to the spoiler effect.

    & Glen, when almost every OECD economy goes into recession, its hardly Labor’s fault when Australia gets dragged along with it. For a Conservative your economic illiteracy is almost as bad as
    Steven “the-next-interest-rate-movement-will-be-down” Kaye.

  22. Oakeshott, I didn’t see you outed – are you actually a Liberal minister blogging from a gay sauna?

    I’s like to know your views on why Fitzroy was dumped and why Sekfy, who has failed three times to win Cowper, is such a superior candidate.

  23. [ Also, in the UK they use the deplorable first past the post system, and I reckon that results in larger majorities for the winner due to the spoiler effect. ]

    This is correct. Their system produces some absurd results. Massive numbers of seats from relatively small percentage gains.

  24. Crikey

    Jeez, that was a full-on rant. Yes, voters move on. When I discovered this site a few months ago, I humbly predicted that Howard would lose this election because of one over-riding factor – his nasty baggage, his racist dog-whistling.

    Glen. Look up sunny retirement villages. Many options.

  25. Adam 371 and Derek 413

    It is obvious to me that you two people are members of the right faction of the Labor Party. You both suggest that it is best if the party was a centrist party, i tend to agree but the party is not a centre party it has become a right wing party. Economics now rules labor policies… people come last and this view that looney left kept labor out of office… Please explain the last ten years… The party has been dominated by the right.. Beazley simply was hopeless.. no policies and ideas.. And Crean no better… Labor needed people who were credible and actually believed in something and unfortunately they do not have these people at present… Where are its ideas this election please… Where is the alternative to ensure that big business and the major powerbrokers will not continue to dominate… But of course both of you have been captured by the powerbrokers and the money men who believe in nothing other than power and more wealth…
    And please both you tell me what good economic rationalist policies which we follow have done for this country…

  26. It’s not a meaningless self-selected online poll. It’s a legit poll with a substantial sample. It is presumably restricted to people with internet access, though I’m not sure which way that would bias it.

  27. Gotta love small minded statisticians who dont believe their own numbers simply because it’s never happened before. WTF? It hasn’t occurred to them that this is something that’s never happened before ever? Otherwise every single polling company has been getting wrong numbers since…well unless they’ve changed in how they collect data in the past 10 months or so…since ever! In which case every single polling company is a sham and then they should be sued! 81 polls surely cant be wrong.

  28. “It speaks volumes about the bigotry and prejudice in Australian politics that [Mr Howard?] allows anyone…”

    “It speaks volumes about the bigotry and prejudice in Australian politics that [the Constitution?] allows anyone…”

    “It speaks volumes about the bigotry and prejudice in Australian politics that [the voter?] allows anyone…”

  29. None of the sausages for me!! Several elections ago a friend of mine was rostered to man a booth at Eden on the NSW south coast. He had a broken leg and so I volunteered to drive him down there. The local ALP officials were so gratefull that they gave us vouchers to have lunch at the Fishermans Club. Delicious!

    Seriously, though. Everyone should have a go at manning a booth for the party of your choice, it is a tremendous learning experience. I have been away for every election since then, but if this election is before 8.12.07 I will definitely volunteer to have a go again.

  30. Sol’s comment that at least 10% of the population make there mind up on the day kind of down plays the importance of polls doesn’t it? I would be talking up the idea and process. If 10% of people decide on the day then all these polls don’t show anything and Sol is waisting his time.

  31. James J: While it’s an online poll, it is 1400 people selected from ACN’s 90K+ database and “those sampled were selected to represent a broad cross-section of the nation.”

    So, while it may not be as good at a face-to-face or a phone poll, it probably was representative; unlike the TV phone-ins, or’s online polls.

    The results seem to be inline with the current trend.

  32. From that SMH article on the Neilson poll:

    Mr Rudd campaigned in Hobart yesterday, while Mr Howard spent the day in his seat of Bennelong, as he had on Saturday. His increased presence there coincides with suggestions that internal party polling shows the Labor candidate, Maxine McKew, stands a good chance of winning Bennelong.
    Senior Liberals said it was frustrating that Mr Howard was having to spend so much time in Bennelong.

    That’s an interesting point. Suddenly people like Howard and Turnbull have to spend their time shoring up their own seats rather than working on the big picture stuff. Meanwhile, I don’t think there’s a single member of the ALP front bench that’s even at a remote risk of losing their seat.

    Of course, if you look at the quarterly newspoll numbers and assume the statewide swings are consistent across the state, people like Costello and Andrews also need to think a bit about campaigning locally.

    (I was going to avoid mentioning this – but oh, how terrible that Howard actually has to spend time in his seat. The poor darling. If he’s not careful he might meet an actual constituent :-))

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