Newspoll: 55-45

The latest Newspoll confirms the trend of recent Morgan and Essential Research results in showing an easing in Labor’s lead, from 58-42 in the previous two fortnightly surveys to 55-45. Labor’s primary vote has dropped five points to 42 per cent, its lowest level since November, but the Coalition’s is up only one point to 38 per cent. The Greens’ account for two points of the difference, up from 9 to 11 per cent. Malcolm Turnbull’s approval rating has dropped a further point to a new low of 36 per cent. Kevin Rudd’s preferred prime minister rating is down three points to 64 per cent, while Malcolm Turnbull is steady on 19 per cent.

UPDATE: Graphic here (how long have they been waiting to use that photo of Kevin Rudd?). Interesting supplementary question on what the government should have done with the stimulus package money – 78 per cent say they would have preferred it be spent on infrastructure, which is the kind of opinion poll response political operatives hesitate to believe. Opinion is divided on whether promised tax cuts should go ahead as planned.

Other news:

Essential Research has Labor’s two-party lead nudging downwards for the fourth week in a row. It’s now at 57-43, compared with 63-37 on April 6. The survey also reveals slightly more optimism on the economy than was recorded in mid-March, mixed messages on what should be done in the budget, a persistence of illiberal attitudes towards asylum seekers, and a widespread belief that Pacific nations such as Fiji should be “left to sort out their own affairs”.

• An anonymous business figure tells Glenn Milne of The Australian that “major business donors” have a hit list of 14 MPs who must make way for new blood if the Liberal Party is to get their donations. These are Bronwyn Bishop (Mackellar) and Philip Ruddock (Berowra), Kevin Andrews (Menzies), Alby Schultz (Hume), Joanna Gash (Gilmore), Judi Moylan (Pearce), Wilson Tuckey (O’Connor), Margaret May (McPherson), Andrew Laming (Bowman), Michael Johnson (Ryan) and Alex Somlyay (Fairfax), along with Nationals John Forrest (Mallee) and Bruce Scott (Maranoa) plus one lone Senator, former Howard numbers man Bill Heffernan. Some of these point to the Coalition’s undoubted surplus of MPs past their use-by date, as noted in detail recently by Peter van Onselen in The Australian. Others on the list fall well below van Onselen’s nominated cut-off point of 60 years of age, the most striking examples being Johnson (39) and Laming (42). Milne’s source also reckons Barnaby Joyce is “divisive and not a team player or a regional centre vote winner” – the latter judgement at least seems a very big call. While Milne describes the list as “non-factional”, Liberal sources are evidently putting it to Andrew Bolt that responsibility for the article ultimately lies with party treasurer and Turnbull ally Michael Yabsley, who scores an indirect compliment from Milne’s source.

Submissions for the redistribution of New South Wales federal elections have been published, compelling the major parties to suggest which electorate they think should be eliminated. The Liberals have excitingly decided the axe should be wielded on their own turf, suggesting Kay Hull’s seat of Riverina and Alby Schultz’s seat of Hume be merged into a new seat called Bradman. Schultz has reacted by calling for a return to rural malapportionment. Ben Raue notes that the Liberals want territory transferred from Wentworth to Sydney, which would at once make Malcolm Turnbull safer while leaving Tanya Plibersek more vulnerable to the Greens. Labor’s submission calls for the abolition of Pat Farmer’s seat of Macarthur further to the north, where the Liberals propose to strengthen their position by adding territory from Hume.

• Swoon over the new-look Crikey. Now no longer featuring my goofy 2004 vintage mug on the front page, praise the Lord.

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.

1,434 comments on “Newspoll: 55-45”

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  1. From Murdoch’s stables via CNN the US Sky news equiv.

    (CNN) — Media tycoon Rupert Murdoch expects News Corporation-owned newspaper Web sites to start charging users for access within a year in a move which analysts say could radically shake-up the culture of freely available content.

    Murdoch said the experience of the News Corp.-owned Wall Street Journal had proved that charging for content could be made to work. He said 360,000 people had downloaded an iPhone WSJ application in three weeks. Users would soon be made to pay “handsomely” for accessing WSJ content, he added.

    Murdoch said he envisaged other News Corp. titles introducing charges within 12 months. Murdoch’s international newspaper empire includes the New York Post, the News International stable of UK titles including the Sun and the Times, and a cluster of Australian papers including the Daily Telegraph and the Herald Sun.

    I wouldn’t pay to read whatever the HS reporters were dogwhistling about on any given day ……. the WSJ has specialized content and that is why the payment method of dosing out information works. If Murdoch ever tries that crap with the papers here, it will blow up in his face.

  2. Costello said quite explicity that he was locking all that money in the Future Fund so that Labor couldn’t spend it. (We now know, of course, that he also wanted to stop Howard spending it.)

  3. Psephos 1400
    Maybe you’re right – I’m only going on people I know – I have heaps of Catholic relatives and their friends – mostly in ACT actually!

  4. Psephos @ 1400 & TCEPSER
    [I would think the statistical correlation between Labor seats and proportion of Catholics would be very clear.]
    So would I, but there has been an overt ‘Catholisation’ of the Libs in recent years – Abbott, Andrews (spew) et. al. that would never have been possible in the time of Menzies. It would be interesting to see an analysis of trends – if any – of catholic voters to the Libs over the past decade or so. (No point in looking at the past 2 years when no-one has been going to the Libs!)

  5. [I actually think the Jekyll and Hyde thing MT is running is silly.]

    Agreed. People don’t generally “get” literry metaphors.

    Just like in Turnbull’s press club speech where he talked about the Pharaohs and the seven years of plenty. I’m not sure how many people out there are up to speed with the story of Joseph from Genesis.

    To be honest it’s nice of him to try and be “educated” in his speeches. But unfortunately he comes across more like a smug git who wants to shows how intelligent he is.

  6. Toyota, the best run and most efficient company in the World, not just car. The stuff they study at MBA:

    [1. The Japanese company said it made a net loss of 436.94bn yen ($4.4bn; £2.9bn) in the year to 31 March, compared with a record profit the year before.

    2. Toyota said it expected to make a net loss of 550bn yen ($5.5bn; £3.7bn) in the financial year ending in March 2010.

    3. Toyota last made a net loss in 1963, a spokeswoman said.]

    If anybody still has any doubt, this is some GFC and TGR. In comparison, Australia’s economy and the Rudd Govt have done a sterling job.

  7. JV, the conservative Catholic intelligentsia – old NCC types like Henderson, young student zealots like Abbott – has moved into the Liberal party since the demise of the DLP and since the Liberals it dropped their old anti-Catholic prejudices. But the majority of Australian Catholics are working-class and/or ethnic. Coming from a non-English-speaking background is the strongest single predictor of Labor voting, and most people of Italian, Vietnamese, South American, Filipino, Timorese origin will be Labor voters. Maybe not the Poles, Hungarians, Croats, but there’s not many of them left now. The Irish-descended are harder to pick, and quite a lot of them did go ALP > DLP > Liberal and have not come back.

  8. Psephos @ 1409
    All sounds logical to me – but do you know if there have been any studies or histories looking at the developing make-up of the parties?
    It would be especially interesting to compare the composition of ALP membership in Victoria and NSW over the last 50 years, given the lack of a split here in the senior state. There’s another PhD topic for some bright young politics student!

  9. I’m sure it’s been written about it, probably by Henderson among others. There would probably be stuff in Quadrant, the house journal of the conservative intellectuals. (P P McGuiness is another prize example of the type, and so was that dreadful guy at UWA whose name I now forget who is now dead.)

  10. In the meantime this is the page of the head of the weirdo organisation the prayerful one third of our federal representatives invited to speak in the great hall of parliament at the 2 day conference called “Prayer, Nations and Government” a few years ago – the prophet Cindy Jacobs:

    It makes the blood freeze. That one-third of parliament & senate supposedly representing me is more alien than the The Galactic Republic!

  11. 1411 – I don’t think I could bring myself to trawl through that stuff – dear old departed BAS no doubt wrote about it too, but could be a tad biased.

  12. Another country with lower than expected unemployment figures just released.

    [The United States economy lost 539,000 jobs in April, the government reported on Friday, a sign that the relentless pace of job losses was starting to level off slightly. A year ago, the loss of more than half a million jobs in a single month would have seemed like a disaster for the economy. On Friday, experts were calling it an improvement. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the unemployment rate surged to 8.9 percent in April, its highest point in a generation. But some economists saw glimpses of a bottom in the latest grim accounting of job losses. The economy, while still bleeding hundreds of thousands of jobs, is starting to lose them at a slower pace, offering the latest hint that the recession is bottoming out.]

  13. I saw the unemployment figures broken down state-by-state. They all showed a reduction. (Not sure about Tasmania). If this month’s national figure was a rogue result, as is being suggested, isn’t it curious that ALL states showed a reduction? I mean, there wasn’t one state with a rising figure.

    Wouldn’t it be highly unlikely that the results for EVERY state are anomalous?

  14. Tasmania’s went through the roof – 4 point something to 6.0, from memory. Of course, the issue here is the same one as you get in opinion polls, where the sample size is too small to be reliable.

  15. Thanks Steve. Must have overlooked that one.

    Surely all the states bar one can’t have been wrong in the one survey? What’d be the probability of that?

  16. Our parliamentary guest, Cindy Jacobs, Presiding Apostle Global Reformation Prayer Network, knew in August the GFC would happen, but she didn’t say until October 17:
    [No More Business as Usual
    At the beginning of August as I was in prayer, I heard the Lord speak to me, “There will be no more business as usual!” Little did I know the scope of what this meant—on a world wide scale.
    God is on the move. I have taken this, like many others have, as a major focus of intercession. Just as there came a moment in time when God judged the gods of Egypt, so He is judging the god of mammon.]

    When is she coming back to parliament? Kevin obviously needs her.

  17. Interesting unemployment has gone down in Canada too. Unfortunatley the coalition can not say here its global trend cause that would undermine their whole argument 😛
    And besides as pointed out otehrs are still going up. Guess it is just the quality of the governments plus abit of luck.;_ylt=AsftMopKPNgB_.uut1wTqVyjbA8F

    I think this clearley demonstrates this was not an outlier. Anyway the fact is that the ABS statistics are as reliable as they were last month and the month before. Some people.

  18. I didn’t look at every state closely but the big drops I saw were both surprising in that NSW and WA had eyecatching falls from last month.

  19. From the artcile
    “but analysts who had expected the economy to extend its recent pattern of posting heavy job losses generally said the figures were most likely an aberration.”

    Sounds so so familiar


  20. [How can you call the ABS monthly survey miniscule (with a 0.24% of the Australian population as a sample size) and then, in the same breath, quote Roy Morgan Research authoritatively whose April sample was 0.0003% of the Australian population, using a survey methodology not compatible with ILO standards!]

    Looks like a reasonable question, wonder if it will get an answer

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