Newspoll: 52-48 to Coalition in NSW

The latest bi-monthly New South Wales state Newspoll shows the Coalition maintaining its 52-48 lead, although Labor has recovered a point on the primary vote. Barry O’Farrell’s lead over Morris Iemma as preferred Premier is steady at 39-32, and his satisfaction rating is up three points to 40 per cent. Morris Iemma’s approval rating remains at a disastrous 26 per cent, although his disapproval is down three points to 60 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.

133 comments on “Newspoll: 52-48 to Coalition in NSW”

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  1. ESJ – “Given the disaster which is the NSW government the real question is why are the Libs not further ahead?” The very point I made earlier on a previous thread and alluded to earlier on this thread. The Libs/Nats should be a mile in front. They just make it to 40%. That’s 3% more than the last election.

  2. “The parliaments of Australia – especially the Labor side is made up of people who couldnt cut it in the private sector.’ And the Libs would? What is this observation based on except political bias?

  3. GB thats misleading. The 2PP Was 52.5 /47.5 as i recall. The poll shows there is a large undecided vote waiting to see if the Libs are acceptable and secondly the Labor vote has collapsed ie a primary of 33%. Therefore the point as has been made elsewhere is that 52:48 is misleading.

    Nevertheless NSW is a natural Labor state and this is the election in which Labor should go into meltdown. This should give the Libs 2 terms to clean house. The fear is that we replace a do nothing Labor government with a do nothing Liberal government. That’s a real possibility on these figures

  4. GB – um look at the backgrounds of MPs before they get in – very ordinary. And yes there is an extreme degree of Labcest in NSW. It seems to be a departmental head now you need to be an ex Labor staffer.

  5. Or ESJ are you saying the Lib/Nat side of politics are sucessful in the private sector but that they are lousy in parliament, in which case may be that is the answer. They need people outside of the private sector.

  6. ESJ,

    Love the lectures. Cossie ran the economy for 12 years and can’t get a job. Not what you would call a ringing endorsement of his achievements.

  7. Why do I have to defend Costello GG? Never asked for the role of chief defender. He was someone who couldnt cut it as a barrister – he admitted as much himself.

  8. 53 Edward – if you are talking about the Newspoll Edward it was 48 – 52 with 4% uncommitted. Have a look on the Newspoll site. No one has said any different with proof.

  9. 60 Edward – and I was talking about the Liberal Party’s primary vote last election. There wasn’t a large undecided vote. Where did you get that from?

  10. ESJ 50

    I’m not sure that the ability to feather one’s own nest and make a pile of money for ones self is necessarily the quallity we are looking for in our prospective politicians. It takes a few more skills than that.

  11. ESJ,

    Balance you old sod.

    “The parliaments of Australia – especially the Labor side is made up of people who couldnt cut it in the private sector”.

    Hawke, Keating , Wran, John Brown and others have made squillions.

    Downer takes a bureaucratic role. Cossie can’t secure a postion. Andrew Peacock helped send ABC broke.

    The truth is hurtful. It’s the libs that are duds in practicing their attachment to private enterprise.

  12. LOL, geez Edward I’m equating you with a 15 year old and GG is calling you an old sod. I suspect the reality lies somewhere in the middle.

  13. And supermodels marry men 40 years older than them because its love. Ex politicians make lots of money because they have great business brains. ROFLMAO.

  14. Well its taken a long tome for Polls in NSW to finally catch up with ‘sentiment’

    Thought Labor was fortunate last electon to win with Yemma , and suspect incompetent Libs State leadership , howard on ‘nose’ , workchoices amongst other saved Labor then All of these factors reely gone now , and voter sentimant against Yemma has no impedements

    Surely reality requires Yemma’s replacement , 26% vs 40% re approval , and 32% to 39% on preferred says it all UNTIL he is rtemoved th disasterous 33% primary vote adressing by NSW Labor and policys as well , ar reely academic I think , won’t even both to see how hell they got 33% primary up to 48% 2PP

  15. I think Gary Bruce is making a key point here though: the next election is two and a half years away – there are lots of ways the Libs could mess it up. The most likely is to pick another right-winger like Debnam, because O’Farrell is “too boring” (as if being boring would stop the Libs winning in NSW against this Govt!).
    But, sure, hard to see Iemma keeping his job much longer.

  16. Yes Dyno

    Implicit in my 370 is all is not lost , there’s 2.5 years to go

    Having said that , NSW Labor should take note of 11% or whatever approval for Nelson , but consistent 45% 2PP for Libs vs 26% approval BUT only 33% primary vote So problem in NSW is both Leader and Partys perception and policys

    they need to do first (remove Yemma) then proceed to policys and 3rd its politcal strategy should be to concentrate irrespective to concentrate on NSW seats , where Greens vote may increase and ensure Labor wins more votes than Greens in those specific seats …being in govt allows such policy concentration

    so whilst gloomy not impossible , especialy with Labor + Greens at 47% primary vote , and share of 14% others to divide (anyone know pref break up last time of 15% vote that ‘others’ got

  17. Ron – refer to Geoff at 15. Unless the Greens run a HTV specifically saying ‘Greens 1, Labor 2’, don’t count on being able to add their primary votes together and call the sum Labor. Plus, there’s a few seats where the Greens vote will be in direct opposition to Labor… the seats they almost won last time may swing to them next time.

  18. Having look at data from last election on prefs from parliament , and I’d defy Newspoll to justify how they got 52% to 47% 2PP , and more importantly its relevance as it seems its totally irelevant , ESPECIALY with a low Labor primary at 33%

    Last electon , of 93 seats , Greens got 8.5% but only contested 73 , CDP got 4.6% but only contested 43 seats , Total Unity got 3.7% but only contested 25 seeats , AAFI got 2.5% but only contested 46 seats , Democrats got 2% but only contestd 19 seats , Fishing Party 5.3% but onlty contested 3 seats ,Independents got 7.9% but only contested 45 seats (BUT actualy won 6 seats)

    More complicating is most of these Partys issued HTV ‘s in some seats AND none in other seats Result being in seats where no HTV was given (recommendation to there voters for prefs to xhaust) This caused a significantly lower number of prefs flowed to Labor in those seats approx 13% (from Green votes) , a lower number of prefs flowed to Liberals approx 18% (from CDP) , a lower number of prefs flowed to Labor (from total Unity

    But CDP and Total Unity a few times also pref th reverse party a well in a few seats

    Further other Partys above pref flows varied by seat

    So with a drop in Labors primary vote , one would need to look by seat in a huge number of seats out of th 93 , look at last electon actaul results , THEN have a fair idea of general polling currently by Party by close seat , and in many cases including polling of alot of these minor partys by seat

    Then one would need to know if those Partys for that seat ar or not going to issue HTV’s , becausee per above th minor Partys were not consistent (example Greens 73 seats with 8.55 , they isued HTV’s in 43 but nonne in other 30) , CDPonly issued HTV’s in 35 out of 43 but 2 to Labor , Total Unity issued only 14 out of 25 but 4 to Liberals) Other minor Partys one can imagine

    So can see zero value in 52% to 48% Newspoll headline , nor how it means anything All one can say is Labor at 33% primary would almost certainly lose

  19. th % listed of a lower number of prefs flows to Labor or to liberals is th % diference of lost prefs between an HTV being issued vs none isued , and is an average of those seats where they were or were not issued

  20. Of course Labor members of parliament do well after retirement, they still belong to their factions and still talk to their mate.

    For example
    Burke in WA
    Mac Bank has been getting many infrastructure deals in NSW as well


  21. Many of Howard’s men found good jobs too, particularly when Howard was PM.
    Anyone would think corruption is all on one side of politics – let’s just say “Askin” and “Jo” shall we and leave it at that.

  22. Every Polican who retires is going to get another job , and use ghis contacts to get one , hell thats normal reality , this is all MSN beatup stuff And where they’re Govt jobs why wouldn’t they be most qualified anyway

    Labor , Greens liberal politcans do it and there’s nothing wrong , except by MSN trying to sell newspapers

    As for corruption , only evidence we actualy hav is thats its been minimal , far less than average population , again MSN sensationising to make it appear its endemnic when , there’s no evidence at all it is Sometimes think MSN delberately confuse public with poor governance and administraton procedures to imply what is not , other than its poor mangemant process which occurs in private industry every day

  23. Doesn’t really seem to make much of difference what colour they were when they were in. The post-parliamentary go getters just go and get. BTW Barnett of the CT thought that Dolly’s new job in Cypress was rather more difficult than being PM of Australia. Pratt.

    There are several sides to this issue:

    1. people who leave parliament often still want, or have to, work. Remuneration of pollie ministers is pathetic compared with the private sector.
    2. they sometimes have particular expertise and understanding that could be useful. Lots of them can go back to applying in one way or another the legislation they have just helped pass.
    3. they sometimes have networks of domestic and international contacts that can be useful to businesses.
    4. they sometimes have inside knowledge of current government processes which are not available to others.

    Points 1-3 should be used, people are wasted otherwise.

    Point 4. Where there is a clear overlap between areas of Ministerial responsibility and a company, there should be a decent interval after which it is deemed that a minister is unlikely to have conflict of interest, or unfair competitive advantage in terms of having inside knowledge knowing what Governments are up to. I think 12-18 months would be a good, mandatory cooling off period. 12-18 months would also reduce the likelihood that a pollie makes a decision favourable to a company and then walks into a position in the company after retirement.

  24. Antony

    I might add your info is not only well detailed , but th level you needed to go to find out so many variable and differing pref flows is indicated by summary of just some data I posted Presume NSW Parliamentary Research service ar aware , bit probably not most Pollies

    Interestingly I started searching NSW parliament info internet sites for purpose of understanding how Newspoll came up with 52% to 48% 2PP as an ‘informative credible’ figure , and with me thinking despite my extreme doubts as to how Newspoll could hav possibly come up with such a 2PP figure as being ‘informative credible’ , thought well there must hav been a some logicol basis for Newspolls assessment and it had to be in NSW 2006 electon figures !

    In fact , after coming accross your detailed analysis , I’m none th wiser where Newspoll got impression such a 2PP figure could be regarded as ‘informative credible’ , as for mine its a meaningless figure , with only informative Poll section being resspective Primary votes by Party

  25. Actually, the current Newspoll is the first where the 2PP has been calculated using a formula for optional preferential voting which I provided for them. Whether the figure is useful or not is another matter entirely, but people expect Newspoll to provide a 2PP, and they are at least now using the best calculation method available.

  26. I rather think the question of ‘corruption’ is misplaced, as we are really talking about unethical behaviour. And of course we, the public, are quite good at not spelling out quite what that unethical behaviour is. However, it is the perception (and in politics its all so often about perception) of unethical behaviour (ie; Noreen Hay’s failure to disclose a donation from a developer who asks for assistance later on; or Joe Scimone, associate of Joe Tripodi, getting a job in the same department as Tripodi is the Minister for) that causes people to leap to the conclusion that there must be ‘smoking gun’, or ‘brown satchel’ if you prefer…

    And this is not suggest that in either case there was any attempt to defraud or pervert the actions of others. I’m sure many ALP members work for departments whose Minister they know – but this doesn’t make their appointment ‘corrupt’. While I have my own opinion of the shenigans down in Wollongong, the declaration of the donation would have made no difference to her approach to the local Councillor – ICAC themselves said there was no case to answer. But in the mind of the general public there is perceived to be something wrong about it – not corrupt, maybe unethical, definitely problematic (well, we’ll see what happens come March 2011).

    But of course ‘ethics in parliament’ sounds like some academic course, and how it would actually play out in “Ministerial Codes of Conduct” and the like is another question. Maybe the court of public opinion, replete with undefined perceptions of ethical/unethical behaviour is still the best way to go? Except maybe for the donations part…

    I agree – former pollies should be able to go on to work in the private sector or where-ever. These days there are MP’s starting in their 20’s & 30’s – so they may have a very real need for a 2nd career after politics. And whose to say that they may in fact serve the community better in the private sector with their experience and knowledge (hopefully about good governance!). But the cooling off period is equally important, if not just for perception’s sake.

  27. Stewart J @ 87

    Spot on. Perceptions are what count. Most folk I know use the common sense duck test on governments that are on the nose:

    ‘If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it is probably a duck.’

  28. Hmm, Internal ALP polling reveals Iemma would lose an Election if held Today.

    NSW Labor would lose 21 seats and be swept from government if a state election were held today, the party’s internal polling shows.

    Premier Morris Iemma admits Labor’s poor standing with voters has only worsened and infighting over his plan to privatise the state’s electricity industry has not helped.

    Documents leaked to the Nine Network show Labor would shed 21 seats and lose by five seats if the election were held today.

    “This certainly is sending a message to the government to lift its performance, lift its game. To myself to work harder,” Mr Iemma told Nine.,21598,24213939-5005361,00.html

  29. It is interesting all this talk about corruption. Bob Askin was not universally seen as corrupt until years after his departure from the political scene. Nick Greiner lost his whole political career on an advesre corruption finding that years later was thrown out.

    So these theories about the community’s “bulldust detectors” seeing through the nonsense are really nonsense pedalled by a box of quackers.

  30. It is interesting all this talk about corruption. Bob Askin was not universally seen as corrupt until years after his departure from the political scene. Nick Greiner lost his whole political career on an advesre corruption finding that years later was thrown out.

    I wonder if it’s because people can turn a blind eye when a conservative politician is involved because “it’s the Free Market At Work”, while at the same time get all pious when a left leaning politician does exactly the same thing ?

  31. GG @ 90

    Interesting points.

    Could it be that electors quite often knowingly tolerate crooked governments provided they are delivering what the voters want? I suggest that many nat voters knew perfectly well that JBP was crooked but supported him because he delivered what they wanted?

    Similarly, lots of folk knew that Askin was on the nose but stuck with him. Not so sure about the circumstances surrounding Greiner, so will have to pass on that one

    Nothing much has changed with respect to labour in NSW as far as being on the nose is concerned. Is it just that folk have finally got sick of the incompetence, not the smell?

  32. As I said yesterday, what about Mr and Mrs Dubbo. What do they think?

    The MSM ran a relentless anti Government campaign in the last election. And, Labor was returned. Why was that? Probably, what the MSM and the blogging intelligentsia aren’t in touch with what the people want outside a small group with whom they regularly convrse.

    Is Labor on the nose? Probably. Can it be fixed? Not sure.

    Iemma has fought a brave fight for privatisation of electricity. This stuff was done years ago in Victoria, so why the angst?

    The headline seekers in the Union movement need to decide whether they will be modernised by a reformist Labor Government or excoriated by a bunch of Liberal zealots.

    They get to choose how they die.

  33. GG @ 93

    Well, the last time I was talking to some folk around Dubbo, and they may very well not have been very representative of anything, they were saying things like:

    1. The drought is very bad. Farming is tough.
    2. The drought is not due to climate change because the Federation drought was worse. They kept repeating this, so I suspect that they were shit-scared that the drought was due to climate change and that, long term, they are stuffed.
    3. If the drought keeps going, people are going to return their machinery (to machinery vendors). Some folk were already returning their machinery and some folk were already being forced off their land. They were saying that one more bad season would drive large numbers of farmers off the land. (BTW, some really good falls over the next couple of months will make an enormous difference to the people of Dubbo).
    4. Town business is bad because of the drought. (enumerating shops and businesses that were closing or struggling)
    5. They were worried about the AWB stuff up and what was going to happen to the Single Desk.
    6. They were profoundly distrustful and/or scornful of anything coming from the wrong side of the Blue Mountains.
    7. They were a little bit predisposed to believe the NSW farmers federation (or whatever it is called), the Nats, and the NFF.
    8. They didn’t say anything about electricity privatisation, but if they have seen how electricity prices have gone in Victoria since privatisation they might get that way. Probably, if they had been asked, they would have agreed to anything that was going to be bad for the unions.
    9. While I didn’t ask them, I am reasonably sure that they would have given a rat’s for bloggers, intelligentsia whatever that is, journos, pollies, or any of those other fast-talking flash city slickers who are up themselves.

    BTW, I would agree with your point on unions and electricity privatization in NSW. There is something very conservative about some unions which prevents them from joining in reform in a positive and strategic way that benefits workers. Frustrating.

  34. GG 93 – perceptive comments as usual.

    The NSW Unions are going to have a whole lot of reform coming their way real soon. We are talking about a group of people whose IR view of the world predates 1993 federally and 1988 in most other states.

    Iemma is actually telling it to them straight – they really believe ignoring reality is in their best interests because they assume it can go on as before.

  35. ESJ @ 95

    Golly, I am in agreement with yourself and GG.

    Forgive my ignorance, but why are 1993 and 1988 significant dates in this context?

  36. 1993 – Start of Keating Government enterprise bargaining

    1988 – most State governments started ditching their union dominated IR systems.

  37. ESJ @ 97

    Thank you.

    Talking about NSW unions, I heard two tales, apocryphal, perhaps, about the Sydney ferry drivers. I wonder if anyone knows whether there is any substance in them?

    1. Whenever there is a bit of pressure, management-wise, they start crashing, marooning or breaking down a few ferries. Then they blame the new CEO, of whom there is a steady stream.

    It sounded strange to me, but my interlocutor was emphatic about it. He was a regular ferry passenger and may have just caught the Manly Ferry during a strong nor-westerly swell. (It might be one of those urban myths and perhaps related to the endless stories about QANTAS that mysteriously turn up whenever the engineers are negotiating a deal. I have no idea if it is true.)

    2. That ads for ferry drivers are never in the newspapers because they jobs are handed down father to son.

    I was a tad sceptical about that one, this not being the mediaeval ages, and ferry drivers not being media barons and all, but I have to say I am curious about it.

  38. Yes Boerwar, I think you will find the State Government plan is to hand them “ferries” over to privatisation soon after the electricity is done.

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