Newspoll: 56-44

After 30 seconds of joy for Coalition supporters, Newspoll comes along a day early to rain on the parade. It shows no change whatsoever from a fortnight ago: Labor ahead 56-44 on two-party preferred, with a primary vote of 48 per cent to the Coalition’s 39 per cent. A small amount of solace might be taken from a 3 per cent increase in the Prime Minister’s remarkably resilient approval rating, now up to 47 per cent, and a rise in dissatisfaction with Kevin Rudd from 20 per cent to 24 per cent. However, both Howard and Rudd are up 1 per cent on preferred prime minister, with Kevin Rudd leading 48 per cent to 39 per cent.

Plaudits to James J for somehow finding the graphic before The Australian put its coverage online.

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.

477 comments on “Newspoll: 56-44”

Comments Page 1 of 10
1 2 10
  1. I don’t know where Morgan gets this soft vote scenario. It looks that every other poll has the base for Labor, concreted at 54-55% tpp. There are a few % that seem to fluctuate, hence the 57% and tonights 56%.

  2. Here is a piece of the Liberal Party’s website:

    It purports to show “union bosses” in red. Among those shown in red is Julia Gillard. I ask Edward and any other Liberal hereabouts – of which union was Gillard a “boss”, and when? In which union has Gillard ever held an elected or appointed position? I’m waiting.

  3. Really this Government has descended into a rabble, clearly they have no vision for Australia’s future.

    Their election campaing allready has them looking so so desperate.

    I would be asking for a refund from their election advisors.

  4. Gee. Does it matter? As I left base camp this morning, heard the Libs preparing to slag Rudd, with some absurd slogan. What of Howard Hucksters, Had Enough.

  5. Hey Adam,
    as an croweater im interested on ur take/predictions on SA seats of Sturt and Boothby? other three of wakefield, kingston and makin should be done and dusted

  6. And their $500,000 donation to Telethon looks really mean spirited against the $1.1 Million donated by the State Govt.

    I’ll bet Howard was told about the $100,000 donation and decided on upping to to $500,000 but not seeing the extra Million Dollar Donation.

    Not a good sign 🙂

  7. In some way I hope that QLD fail to come to the ALP party. NSW and VIC may deliver an ALP govt alone.

    This may then provide some balance in national policy.

    Recall in Keatings last term the need to keep QLD onside dominated political thinking. It would healthy to change the tune.

  8. I would usually think figures would tighten as per usual but Howards just looking so desperate (i.e. his reconciliation speech…11 years too late) that I think cynicism in Libs will increase enough to ensure these figures hold to election day. he cant buy himself out anymore cos only increases this cynicism.

  9. [I’ll bet Howard was told about the $100,000 donation and decided on upping to to $500,000 but not seeing the extra Million Dollar Donation.]

    Surely he had to agree with Rudd in advance to make this donation.

    Or does the caretaker period only come into effect Midday tomorrow, once the House of Reps is dissolved?

  10. A good result for the ALP again, but I’m still not feeling it. I’m keeping my prediction of a 5-7 seat majority for the Coalition.

  11. [Surely he had to agree with Rudd in advance to make this donation.]

    It was a pre-recorded presentation I believe (never saw it, am asking for a video capture), probably recorded prior to an election announcement.

  12. Tremendous result for the ALP. Simple as that.

    No sign of a narrowing, no sign that Howard’s about face on reconciliation has had any effect. Just the exact same story we’ve had for 9 months – the Government is facing annihilation and humiliation. Absolutely nothing new to report.

    Still, why don’t we discuss the fabled narrowing. OK so it’s a bit early to say there will be no narrowing, especially since this poll was likely conducted before the election date was announced. However, we maybe can factor in that rumours were rife that the election date would be announced this weekend.

    Here’s a point I’d like to hear some opinions on re the narrowing. Does the fact that we have endured a long phoney war leading up to this weekend mean that the actual announcing of the election date won’t actually have any effect? That is, the theory behind the narrowing is that the ‘shock’ of knowing that we really will have to vote out the government, that it really could go, will result in voters turning back to the government. Surely people have already come to such a realisation long ago given the length of the phoney war.

  13. Todd: your guess is as good as mine. The most recent polls in the Advertiser showed the Libs ahead in both, though not by much. It’s going to be a long six weeks.

  14. For the record,

    The three newspolls prior to calling the 2004 election

    Newspoll 30 Jul – 1 Aug 2004 50 50
    News poll 13-15 August 2004 46 54
    Newspoll 27-29 August 2004 48 52

    Three Newspoll prior to the 2007 election

    17-Sep-07 55 55
    01-Oct-07 56 44
    14-Oct-07 56 44

    If you assume that Howard will win the campain in the same way as 2004 then you can take 5% of the current figures – which give us a very close election.

    But “the narrowing” isn’t automatic. Something has to drive it.

  15. Opps, should have had some headings on the last post

    Coalition / ALP in the 2004 set of figures
    ALP / Coaltion in the 2007 set of figures

    Headings aside – my point is clear 🙂

  16. Ricky at 13.

    Of course the re con issue has had no effect, except to harden voter opinion on whatever part of the divide they exist. Howard has only himself to blame for creating that very divide. Asking for it.

    My personal opinion is that ‘The Narrowing’ will occur, in varying degrees over the next five weeks.

    In the last week of the campaign, we will see a very determined electorate, wanting to vote Labor. They have been there for a very long time. And they will be there on the day that matters.

  17. Well, Election called and no narrowing. I was really expecting some joy for the Libs in Newspoll (even if only 1 % or so and simply because the last one was a dip for them), but twas not to be.

    Anyone really think that 56% of the population are telling porkies to the pollsters, since april??

  18. Albert that assumes that L*th*m = Rudd, which is rather not the case. It also ignores the fact that Labor’s lead has been both large and stable for a long time, which was not the case in 2004. There is no automatic narrowing. Howard has to make it happen, when the key issues – WorkChoices, climate change, interest rates, “it’s time” – are all dragging him down. Smearing Rudd hasn’t worked. “Union bosses” hasn’t worked. What else does he have?

  19. The irony is, some of the so-called ‘union bosses’ aren’t too bad. Combet and Shorten are far more competent and personable than most of the reptilian toffs of the Liberal front bench. Unions are not a credible source of fear for anybody but the HR Nicholls Society.

  20. Why do people exagerate two party prefer leads. For example: ” So large is Labor’s current lead, a 12-point lead on a two-party-preferred basis at the end of September, that even if it were halved by election day, Labor would romp in. – Sol Lebovic”

    To me 56 / 44 is a 6 point lead. Because since this is a 2 pp measure, if the support of one group goes down, the other increases by the same amount.

    If a single seat had a margin of 56 / 44 at the last election, we would say it was on a margin of 6%, because a 6% (+ 1 vote) swing would make it “fall”.

    So I don’t undersatnd why in polls we say 56 / 44 is a 12 point lead. It isn’t, it’s a 6 point lead.

  21. [The irony is, some of the so-called ‘union bosses’ aren’t too bad. Combet and Shorten are far more competent and personable than most of the reptilian toffs of the Liberal front bench. Unions are not a credible source of fear for anybody but the HR Nicholls Society.]

    Shorten and Combet are going to make brilliant ministers some day. If Rudd is P.M. for a couple of terms, Shorten is the early candidate to be his successor as P.M. or leader of the opposition.

    I just look back at the 1983 Labor cabinet with the likes of Hawke, Keating, Dawkins, Evans, Walsh, Button and see Shorten and Combet in that class.

  22. Adam, yeah true – i think they’ll be line ball come election night, but do u really believe tiser polling anyway? such a poor record here in SA. in fact if they back you…almost a bad omen. The Advertiser is incredibly poor at polling – they ran a positive story on Handshin in sturt, even though she was supposedly two points behind (doubt that – she’d be ahead on current swing predictions and if shes two points behind id be happy to be Pyne) and a negative story on Cornes, even though the tisers bad polling showed she had still had a swing (story ran with talk of losing ground even though their own sloppy poll showed Cornes was made 2% ground). Mark Kenny, journo in question has an incredibly bad record at sloppy polling/analysis and seems to be writing favourably for the likes of Southcott in Boothby (who are factional allies of his brother) and negatively for likes of Pyne (wet lib).

    (NB: Southcott and Downer are best mates and factional allies -Mark Kennys brother was Downers chief of staff ).

    check this doozy out –
    Sturt prediction by Kenny,22606,22535732-5006363,00.html
    Boothby prediction by Kenny (the doozy),22606,22535741-5006363,00.html

    surely any candidate would only create a 1-2% variable either negatively or positively if such a massive swing occurs as is predicted and certainly no SA metro seats would have swings towards Libs…

  23. Sure enough, ShowsOn, Combet and Shorten are very well regarded. Any swinging voter of my acquaintance thinks them heroic, in a folk loric way, for their respective recent roles.

  24. Quite right, Todd. I agree as a South Australian.

    Mark Kenny seems to have, well, bias.

    One cannot conceive of, let alone read, the Advertiser reporting anything other than some fable, tilted, usually titanically so, towards the Libs.

    Fortunately, such reportage has the inherent qualities of disaster.

  25. I would argue that it’s quite correct to say that 56-44 is a 12 point “margin”. The figure 6% is instead the “required swing”.

    But ShowsOn is right in that the term margin tends to be used in place of required swing in the context of single seats. And having two simultaneous definitions of margin is rather confusing.

  26. Beautiful set etc…

    So much for Shanahan’s ‘momentum’ nonsense! Does his arseclownitude know no limit?

    And welcome to day two for Rodent. Another absolute shocker! Bahaha!

    I predict no “narrowing” over the campaign, but rather a 2- 2.5 point correction based on the phenomena of Howard voting being a dirty, shameful little secret for some people – who just dont own up when polled.

    Final result, ALP 53+ / LNP 46+.

    8 -10 seat majority.

  27. Greg Combet looks like a banker and Joe Hockey looks (and acts) like a Wharfie. Go Figure. (Apologies to the new improved MUA).

  28. Most of the polling would have been done before the election was announced, so those still advocating a “narrowing” theory get one more poll.

  29. Interesting the “narrowing” that happened after the election was called in Newspoll, was nowhere near is substantial in AC Nielsen, which I think dropped only 1%, a wonder how much of the “narrowing” was one or two optimistic polls.

    Actually, thinking back to the time, the blips in the polls (just before the election) could have been Latham’s clever sucker-punch when Howard at first refused to support his Senate amendments in regards to ratifying the US-FTA to protect generic medicines. I think this was just before the election was called, as I even remember on day one or day two of the election campaign TV coverage of Latham turning up at a pharmacy to trumpet his credentials in protecting the PBS from those greedy pharmaceutical companies.

  30. Seems they are running on:

    *) the grubby fear
    *) a Reconciliation agenda that anyone can see is insincere

    There isn’t anything to inspire voters in that. Their “vision” extends only to election day. Even mildly switched-on voters would discern that, I feel.

  31. re: #1, Adam, Julia Gillard was a student union leader. Pretty pathetic really. By that standard, half the coalition frontbench are also “union” bosses for their involvement in student politics.

  32. Like imacca at 21 I’m a little surprised. I thought a point or two would have dropped off. 56/44 with nothing else changed means no momentum going in, leaving momentum building in the campaign as only hope for JWH. He looked quite pained in his press conference yesterday. I would too.

  33. “In which union has Gillard ever held an elected or appointed position?”

    She was President of the National Union of Students in 1982.

    The Liberals haven’t actually said she was a boss of a trade union.

    As for the other members of the Labor front bench, maybe at some point in their lives they’ve been on the committee of the Union Club of Sydney (

  34. Spiros: If they start saying those involved in student unions are ‘union thugs’, then they also need to look at their own side.

    As a sidenote, I think in 94 or 95, the Liberal-backed faction at National Union of Students wanted to rename it to Australian National Union of Students (look at the abbreviation).

  35. Good news that Newspoll is holding. Glenn Milne’s column in the OZ today about Howard and his conversion on the reconciliation issue is good reading. It appears Howard just sat down and wrote his speech without consulting any of his cabinet including Brough. Some ministers are horrified at that speech and the words Howard used. What this means is that the Libs are not a team in their OWN minds; this will project to the electorate.

  36. The Labor party is really turned on to the high tech ways of communicating with the electorate this election (mobile phones, YouTube, etc) that haven’t been traditional contact modes in the past. I am a confirmed Labor voter and when I filled out order forms for Kevin07 shirts for my family, I filled out a form giving information about myself to them. I got a mobile phone text message this morning telling me the election had been called and if I wasn’t registered that I needed to do so by the deadline. Impressive prompt action on Labors part imho 😉

  37. Okay unions. Then Rudd says “Workchoices” and coughs the word “Costello” into his fist. And we’re 1:2.

    What I was going to say is that people being polled might be punishing Howard for not calling the election soon enough: 57-43 is a ridiculous 2PP to be on. But it isn’t the 2PP that would worry me as much, because that will soften – probably no further than 53-47, but it will soften. What would have me worried is that (1) the Coalition can’t get a 2PP number that looks like the ALP primary number, and (2) The other parties are polling about 12% of the primary vote, and their preferences seem to be flowing 4:1 to the ALP.

    And I think that’s probably important. According the rolling average I’m looking at, even if every single preference in every single seat went to the Coaltiion, it would only get 50.74% of the vote. I’d say Howard is probably polling with half an eye on the 2009/10 election.

  38. Good to see Gillard on message rhis morning, saying that the election will be hard to win because “Mr Howard is a very clever politician”.

  39. oops, Howard would be campaigning with half an eye. details: Demographic trends could point to a clear and obvious combined 50%+ raw share of the vote between the Greens and the ALP – if the Democrats finally drop off the cliff, with One Nation now nothing more than a cute story to tell over a bottle of barossa gold, and now that Family First has become…uh…whatever it is…when the party system calms down, how does the left-right split look?. And if the Green-ALP scenario is true, then the Lberals are going to be eaten alive by the electoral system. It would make the ALP the natural party of government. And I’m going to ask for a masterninja psephologist to step in and answer me this: is it a realigning election?

Comments are closed.

Comments Page 1 of 10
1 2 10