Newspoll: 50-50 in South Australia

Newspoll today brings more evidence that Labor’s moment in the sun at state level is passing, with Labor and Liberal in a two-party preferred dead heat in South Australia. The Liberals are in the lead on the primary vote for the first time since the election of the Rann government in February 2002, with 40 per cent to Labor’s 38 per cent. The previous quarterly Newspoll survey from April to June had Labor leading 41 per cent to 35 per cent on the primary vote and 54-46 on two-party preferred. Mike Rann’s approval rating has plunged 10 points to 41 per cent while his disapproval is up nine points to 45 per cent, on both counts his worst results as Premier. However, Liberal leader Martin Hamilton-Smith’s approval rating is also down four points to 43 per cent, while Rann maintains a 48 per cent (down six points) to 30 per cent (up three points) lead as preferred premier

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.

13 comments on “Newspoll: 50-50 in South Australia”

  1. #2 Not as bad as using my Gravitar…..Almost!

    Martin Hamilton-Smith’s popularity will begin to wane once the electorate find out what an idiot he is. Mike needs to increase his exposure and start wedging Mr Hyphen Name.

  2. Who are likely contenders for the premiership should the Australian Labor Party decide it needs a fresh face to present to the voters in 2010?

  3. DC

    Kevin Foley is probably too much of a boofhead, as is Pat Conlon. John Hill has lost the support of his party and the electorate over his mismanagement of Health. Weatherall is popular but has been demoted by Rann. There’s not much else.

  4. Too early to be predicting the next election on these figures. Given the world economic situation and the water crisis I guess it’s not surprising really.

  5. Does anyone know the Nationals primary vote in that poll I checked the Adelaide Advertiser they listed the other minor parties but not the Nationals.

  6. evan,

    Similar to how Howard turned it around last year?

    Anyone who lives in SA would not be particularly surprised by this pol – although ten points is a staggeringly large fall and I suspect probably a bit too large. A lot of people are fed up to the back teeth with the way the state has been running: education, water, transport, spin doctoring… it does not paint a good picture. Rann also taken to complaining just a bit too much about his treatment by the media – while that’s possibly justified it makes him look terribly petty. The Tiser is having a lazy crack every second day, it seems to be gearing itself up for the months ahead.

    Rann is clearly in trouble, and there must now be a few hardheads wondering whether he is the right man to lead Labor to the next election. He cannot evan, just turn it around for the same reason Howard couldn’t – he’s been there a long time, everyone knows his message, and the opposition is slowing become mildly competent. He probably has another six months to make up his mind before he gets sucked into the electoral cycle. Problem is, the only alternative – Foley – isn’t particularly well loved either, although his image is softening.

    If MHS can develop a coherent, stable image in the next year and a bit then he will be taking this election right down to the wire. Of course, this could easily become a mirror image of the last NSW election – voters cranky with the government but unable to bring themselves to vote for the alternative. That part of the battle remains to be seen.

  7. This poll is quite interesting, and obviously reinforces the Advertiser poll from the other day. Clearly the Rann government is going through a sticky patch. However, this does not disguise the fact that the opposition is short on numbers and once you scratch the surface, there is really very little talent on the Liberal benches. The Liberals really need another election to get a few fresh faces into their team in order to look like an alternative government. However, some of their preselections of recycled candidates are not particularly promising.

    A good example of the magnitude of the Liberals task is the seat I live in – Colton. Colton was held by the Liberals between 1993-2002, but is now held by Paul Caica and the ALP by a margin of some 16.3%.

    The government has had its problems, but they are just a number of spotfires rather than having a whiff of a government tainted by scandal, mismanagement or incompetence. So whilst they need to lift their game in a few areas, I would hardly call it a crisis. Labor had similar 2PP poll ratings in mid 2004, albeit with a higher primary vote than the recent newspoll.

    The comments on Mike Rann’s leadership are quite laughable – he is as safe as houses, and unlike some of the other state leaders who retired, Mike Rann is a complete political operator.

    So my analysis would be: must lift game – but this goes for the opposition as well – I mean has anyone seen Vickie Chapman for the last 12 months ?? Is she still alive??

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