Newspoll: 58-42

Tasmanian reader Econocrat tells of a stunning Newspoll result foreshadowed on tonight’s Lateline: 58-42 to Labor. More to follow …

UPDATE: Kevin Rudd’s lead as preferred prime minister has increased to 50 per cent to 37 per cent. Like the two-party figure, this is a 2 per cent change in either direction from last week. Preliminary reports at Sky News and The Australian.

UPDATE 2: Graphic here, Dennis Shanahan here. Kevin Rudd’s satisfaction rating has recovered three points after a dip last week; the Coalition’s lead on the question of best party to handle the economy has narrowed to 46-37 from 48-33 three weeks ago; its lead on best party to handle national security has unaccountably narrowed from 45-33 to 43-39; and Labor’s leads on education and health have widened considerably. No doubt much of this can be put down to a very Labor-friendly poll sample. Most interesting is a question on strength of voting intention which gives no reason to think the support for Labor might be “soft”.

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.

782 comments on “Newspoll: 58-42”

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  1. I believe strongly in the equal right for gay men and lesbians to marry or have a civil union.

    Tony Blair did and it didn’t hurt him.

    I will still vote labor but bvecause of Labor’s stance against Gay marriage I will not letterbox drop or work on polling day for them.

  2. So, according to Sol L, Labor rigged the latest Newspoll by the timing of its tax policy release.

    Jeez, easy peasy … Ashley can retire.

  3. Although personally I think that marriage between any two persons should be allowed, I agree that it is not a good time to be offering radical policy shifts on this matter. After all, the portion of electors that need to be won back are not those in the inner city seats, for which a Green vote would preference back to Labor anyway, but those socially conservative, so-called Howard’s battlers who have been affected by falling housing affordability and BendOver (TM) (also known as WorkChoices).

    Let’s agitate for social policy change when Rudd actually gets into government; we can only be sure of one thing – any Labor government is better (or at least, less bad) than the regime we have currently in place.

  4. HOward has announced a $4 billion package for pensioners, including huge jump in utilities’ allowance from around $107 to $500.

  5. Re: Pensioners.

    Mr Howard said all the decisions had been made prior to the election being called.

    “Therefore it is a commitment of government,” he said.

    Its not an election promise, so Rudd just says yep, good idea. 😉

  6. the treasurer v Shadow has been a regular at the PPC in every election.

    In the last tow it was common preception that Costello was made to look orddinary by Crean.

    You might remember the gaffe Ccostello made on ALP costings that tuend out to be larger than the ALP estimated.

    Cozzie is vastly over-rated. not too impressed with Swanny though ,much prefer Emerson. He would wipe the floor with him.

  7. HI Pi at 739

    Yes, I just noticed the sample size of @1700.

    Its normally around 1,100, and Newspoll states its margin of error has dropped from the normal 3% to 2.5% for this poll

    Most of the 3 point increase for ALP’s primary this time seems to come from the “Others’ line.

    I wonder if there is a pattern in past elections of “others” primary dropping when margin size increases? or is it just the closer the election, the more people choose a known leader

  8. I think Costello’s comments about not being afraid of the worm were more about having a dig at Howard than anything else. 😉

  9. Did Howard really say the $4 billion gift to pensioners was a Government decision? Bewdy. It means that it was costed as part of the Treasury updates and Rudd can implement, in office, without any problem whatsoever.

    Correct me if I’m reading this wrong, but by taking this tack isn’t Howard pretty much giving Rudd a free kick?

  10. Now I get it, more rodentry.

    “The funding decision was taken before the government moved into caretaker mode and would be reflected in the official pre-election budget statement from the Treasury, Mr Howard said.”

    So now we know what Howard was on about when he seemed to be waffling before calling the election.

    He was trying to deprive Labor of funds, I wonder how many other non election promises he will announce during the election?

    Lets see how different PEBO is from MYEFO? Tricky man. 🙁

  11. Ruawake: that’s fine. Rudd doesn’t have to “me-too” on this if it is something that is already costed and promised BY THE GOVERNMENT. It’s simply a question of honouring it, which is no problem at all because it isn’t something the ALP would oppose anyway.

    Like I said, I think they’ve given the ALP a free kick. Howard has (as seems to be the case quite a lot lately) effectively blunted his own argument. He could have announced it as an election promise and then dared Rudd to “me-too”. He didn’t and it’s just another example of how badly, politically, he is doing in this campaign.

  12. To quote my favourite former PM: A beautiful set of numbers.

    Howard has tried everything in the Big Black Book of Election Dirty Tricks -disenfranchising young and renting voters, manipulating debates, and now he’s pulled out this “pre-election decision announced after the election is called”. He’s really thrown the switch to vaudeville (see above). But nobody is listening any more. It’s almost sad. Almost.

  13. Sol is right about Kevin Rudd getting the extra bounce from the tax package and favourable comments being all over the Saturday media.
    They probably did indeed time it to have maximum impact both on the poll and the weekend media. Why not?
    To get some idea of the real poll, average the three latest polls.
    Probably 55-45 would be nearer the real figure, before the Big Debate.
    Maybe 56-44 after.
    Nevertheless the latest poll will add to Kevin Rudd’s momentum and depress John Howard and his crew.
    People will start thinking of Kevin Rudd as Prime Minister and once he is in their minds as such, it will become a reality.
    The Costello and Swan debate won’t, surely, attract much interest. It cannot rate the same as the “Big Debate”.
    Again it will be the impressions of the two which will be left.
    Peter Costello can’t help being nasty. It doesn’t work Peter.

  14. I think this exposes the tax cuts on day one for the Libs. They needed a big bang.

    So get treasury to release MYEFO early then announce the tax cuts.

    The problem for them is that their existing strategy was all to do with PEBO. Making Labor’s tax policy different.

    This proves they are a rabble and that they have no longer got an election strategy – they are now making it up as they go along. 🙂

  15. passthepopcorn: Especially since Wenworth is moving and now has more gay people in it. Not a good look if he wants to sure up those votes.

  16. Do you really think people are that influenced by tax policy?

    If so, how is the polling on the weekend any different to the polling conducted last week? Why did the poll owners not come out and say “Our polls are likely to have been influenced by the Government’s tax policy announcement… don’t read anything into it”.

    I still don’t really understand why the Government is constantly talking about their internal polling being better. You’d assume they’d not mind people thinking the ALP are in front if they know better.

  17. BV @ 684,

    You’re thinking about it too much. I think it’s much simpler than that – Abbott knows full well the extent of what’s coming, but he has to play the booster card. If a prominent Lib basically says “We can’t win” their swinging vote will completely collapse.

    Oh, wait, it has already. 😉

  18. If these figure hold up it will be the biggest swing in a single election in over 50 years (1969 – 7.1% to Labor, 1975 – 7.4% to you know who). Howard would be responsible for the worst 2PP result of any party in post war history (record currently held by Labor with 43.1% in 1966). The journalistic lowbrow analysis of Howard’s “supreme political skills” and “cleverness” will be shown for the shallow and trite fluff that it has always been. Howard was gifted the elections of 96 and 04, stole it in 98 with 49% of the vote and I presume he had nothing to do with Sept 11 or the itinerary of the Tampa.
    Howard will go down in history for entirely different reasons than those espoused in the monotonous chorus of praise from the Howard ‘lovers’ and sycophants during the dark period of his reign.
    Praise be to almighty Kevin.

  19. for me, it’s not enough for el rodente to just lose the election – it has to be the biggest swing ever, so that the howard myth is destroyed. it would be icing on the cake for him to get booted out of bennelong. bring it on.

  20. I’m sick of people whinging and crying about the Worm going up for Rudd as soon as he opened his mouth without saying a word.

    The worm registers positive or negative feelings. Did you ever think maybe Howard is so tired and old and Rudd is so fresh and new simply seeing him imposed positive views???

    Stop crying about it and realise the fact the worm is human influenced… and Howards on the nose!

  21. With regard to the upcoming debate between Costello and Swann, I think Costello is on a hiding to nothing here in every respect.

    The Liberal campaign strategists have got to be nuts.

    For one, if Costello somehow is able to come across as a like-able, competent operator, across all aspects of his portfolio and demonstrates a superior ability to be PM material, it will be better then the Lazarus awakening.

    For two, Swann is not going to give him any opportunity whatsoever to let any potential abilities that Costello has not already exhibited to date, to shine through. Swann knows Costello inside out and is well aware of every button he needs to press to undermine Costello in the debate.

    Buttons; Watch to see Swann continually needle Costello, pushing hard on the “turn on agro” button. Costello showed during the Insight interview that this button is Costello’s main weakness.

    Once Costello loses it, then it is all over red rover for both him and the Coalition. Costello is taking a high stakes risk that he can stay calm, on message, and look Prime Ministerial all at the same time. Costello will find that too far beyond him, I believe.

    Button two; Swann is not going to have the debate bog down on economic jargon. His strategy will be, at every opportunity, turn the debate towards Costello’s PM ambitions and what his platform and policies will be after any proposed handover. This is Costello’s biggest vulnerability. He is not prepared for this type of debate, will potentially derail Howard’s Presidential type campaigning and make himself look a proper “goose”.

    Costello’s best way of handling the debate is to suddenly come down with the mother of all doses of the flue the day before and have Minchin step in to take his place thereby derailing Swann’s tactics.

    All in all, not a good move by Costello, but a brilliant wedge by Rudd yesterday. Talk about playing with their minds, I wouldn’t want to be a Liberal operative at present trying to find some way of pulling this out of the fire. They are covered on all counts and have nothing left in the locker.

    The suggestions of a number of posters that they should graciously accept defeat and try to undo some of the damage they have inflicted on the electorate would be the wisest move they could make and would ensure that they had enough of a base left to keep them in the game over the next 6 years.

  22. Rudd seemed to do well in The Great Debate at least in part because he finally got some balanced airtime. He got to be equal with Howard.

    Swan could do very well for much the same reason.

    Everyone knows Costello reasonably well. Even just standing toe-to-toe with him (metaphorically) for a while will do wonders to Swan’s image. Swan doesn’t need to “win” the debate to do very well out of it.

    If Swan comes out of it looking like Costello’s equal, he’s just made a huge gain.

  23. The Ruddslide is coming, it doesnt matter how many times the Journo’s and lib hacks tell themselves how clever Johnnie is and that he will somehow resurect the situation, its not really going to be like that, surely some of them remember telling themselves that in the lead up to the recent SA, WA, QLD and Vic elections, not to mention their NSW “win”

  24. Spot on Pinch Me! The dessicated coconut has basically ridden on the wave of Labor’s reforms and the mining boom but done little of note himself except for the GST. The rest of it has been all bread and circuses pandering to the base instincts of the masses. I think history’s judgement will be that he was basically a dud who dudded Australia.

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