ACNielsen: 56-44

The latest ACNielsen survey of 1400 voters has Labor’s lead at 56-44, following an aberrant 58-42 result the previous month. Labor leads on the primary vote 46 per cent to 38 per cent. Malcolm Turnbull’s approval rating is down a point to 31 per cent and his disapproval is steady at 60 per cent, which Tony Wright of The Age notes has him the same territory as Brendan Nelson and Simon Crean in the terminal phase of their leaderships. Peter Costello remains favoured as Liberal leader by 35 per cent, against 19 per cent for Joe Hockey, 17 per cent for Turnbull, 10 per cent for Tony Abbott and 3 per cent for Andrew Robb. Kevin Rudd’s approval rating is up a point to 68 per cent, against a disapproval rating of 24 per cent, and his lead as preferred prime minister is up from 66-25 to 67-24. Fifty-nine per cent want the government’s emissions trading scheme bill passed as soon as possible, and 58 per cent approve of Rudd’s handling of the relationship with China.

Essential Research should be through any moment now (4.30pm EST), but I won’t be able to help you with that until this evening: Possum‘s often quite quick on that front though (and The Finnigans has a small amount of detail in comments). UPDATE: Here it is. Labor’s lead is down from 60-40 to 58-42. Also featured: the performance of Australian law enforcement in preventing terrorism (most excellent), whether such efforts have been unduly concentrated on the Muslim community (no), who should lead the Liberal Party (Joe Hockey), a really interesting one comparing Kevin Rudd’s performance across various issues with John Howard’s (slight lead to the latter on economy and defence/security, thumping ones to the former on everything else), and whether Malcolm Turnbull is fair dinkum on climate change (no).

Other matters:

• Mumble man Peter Brent has a paper in the latest Australian Journal of Political Science criticising the anachronism of the Divisional Returning Officer, part of what government consultants described as far back as 1974 as the Electoral Commission’s “flat” organisational structure: one national office at the top, six state ones in the middle, and no fewer than 150 divisional ones at the bottom. Occupants of the latter posts have too much to do during election periods, too little to do outside of them, and few paths to promotion, with resulting problems for staffing and morale. “Regionalisation” into offices covering four or five divisions has been advocated by the Electoral Commission itself, but has been resisted in part because MPs enjoy the convenience of a local electorate office, and also because they form troublingly close relationships with their local DROs.

• Two doses of cold water for Alannah MacTiernan’s tilt in Canning. The ABC’s Rebecca Carmody strikes back over past acts of condescension in the Sunday Times, noting she has a big obstacle to overcome in winning over the electorate’s semi-rural areas beyond her Armadale base. Tony Barrass of The Australian concurs, describing her as “a polarising figure, perhaps the most admired-disliked state political figure in the past decade”, and chiding the local media for “talking as though she’s home and hosed”.

Glenn Milne beats the drum for a Kerryn Phelps candidacy against Malcolm Turnbull in Wentworth. For what it’s worth though, Labor’s local federal electoral council is making noises about the need for a local rank-and-file vote.

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.

1,849 thoughts on “ACNielsen: 56-44”

  1. [Not taking over the public hospitals was also unpopular although that is more of a delayed/non-decision.]
    It is possible this will happen. He always said there would first be a referendum before this would be done.

  2. [Brendan Nelson refuasing to rule Costello out…]

    Straight-out mischief-making. Costello does not have the bottle to lead the party unless it’s a sure fire winner.

    What a load of codswallop.

  3. 48

    The government have not said that they won`t have a DD but that they don`t want one. They are trying to get a “this is not what we want but the opposition and Greens have made it necessary” narrative in the publics mind. This will slightly back fire, in case of a DD, on them because of the media`s coverage of it.

  4. [DD or not, the Greens will hold the balance of power after the next election.]
    They won’t be able to hide and blame everything on the Coalition then!

  5. [As much as I would like Rudd to show a bit more “bravery” on unpopular decisions, this bit is unfair.]

    Gittins just wants Rudd to commit political suicide so that Malcolm can just stroll into government where he rightfully belongs.

    After 11.5 years sitting on the sidelines, I am sure the Labor Members would just love a return to Opposition!!!

  6. 50

    There must be a line of Libs at the change of name/deed poll office in each state wanting the name someone else.

  7. [DD or not, the Greens will hold the balance of power after the next election.]

    Very true. but have you considered how the political landscape changes when this happens?

    The Libs will pass Govt. legislation.

  8. Gittens, like all journalists thinks he knows political strategy better than Rudd and Labor. He would like nothing better than the Government to sacrifice itself on the altar of his prejudices.

    As they say, opinions are like assholes, everyone has one.

  9. 61

    Most legislation will continue to be passed unanimously. The Libs will pass some government legislation (both with and without amendments) and the Greens will pass other government legislation (both with and without amendments). The non-government Senators will provide scrutiny of government.

  10. [DD or not, the Greens will hold the balance of power after the next election.]
    Seriously, Bob1234, I wouldn’t keep pushing this line 🙂 The likely electoral performance of the Greens party has often been talked up in past elections. When it does not eventuate, it’s just another thing that the major parties and the MSM can hammer the Greens about. Why give the anti-Greens forces here any more ammunition 🙂

  11. The Greens seem to be constitutionally incapable of not over-hyping their election prospects, so that even quite respectable performances, as in 2007, look disappointing when compared to the hype. I have warned them about this but they seem reluctant to take my advice. 🙂 (NOTE IRONY!)

  12. [Re Gittins, I thought every policy Rudd has is a tough policy]
    True, Muskiemp, but AGW transcends all other policy decisions.

  13. [The non-government Senators will provide scrutiny of government.]

    All I have seen of them so far is either “horse trading” or outright obstruction.

    Really helpful with a Government that really wants to make a difference and have a sensible agenda installed into legislation!!!

  14. [It is a widely acknowledged that they will in the Senate.]
    Tom the first and best, This might actually be the case according to whatever analysis. It does not mean that such analysis will reflect the reality on the day. It is better to stay silent and hopeful.

  15. from today’s Essential research poll:

    [Malcolm Turnbull has the most support amongst Coalition voters – 26% of these voters think Turnbull is the best leader of the Liberal Party.]

    ….which means 74% of the LNP don’t think he’s the best leader. Turnbull has zero chance of containing contrary public positions and white-anting from rampant “I know best” egos in the LNP if three quarters of them have lost confidence / respect in him.

  16. 69

    The Greens do seem to go a little over the top with election predictions but equally the Greens should not rule themselves out of winning seats as this would be conforming to the two party system stereotype.

  17. What is hard to figure from that Ross Gittins’ article is how he thinks the government could have got anything tougher through the Senate. If they won’t back the current CPRS, what makes him think tougher targets and less compo would get passed?

  18. [What is hard to figure from that Ross Gittins’ article is how he thinks the government could have got anything tougher through the Senate. If they won’t back the current CPRS, what makes him think tougher targets and less compo would get passed?]

    Gittins has probably been following the Greens argument on PB for the past week!!!

  19. 80

    The investigations into the government usually worked before 2005 as there was not a government majority in the Senate to rig thing in its own favour.

  20. [The likely electoral performance of the Greens party has often been talked up in past elections. When it does not eventuate]

    A repeat of the last election, or current polling, indicates the Greens would hold the BOP.

  21. Antony’s analysis is terrific. However, there are two key assumptions.

    1. The vote at the next election will duplicate the 2007 result.
    2. The preference flows will be the same.

    Given that on exposed polls, Labor has increased its Primary by approximately 3% then you can see straight away that Labor will probably achieve a higher vote. At the same time, I’ve noticed that the Greens vote has come off around 2% in recent polls.

    Labor will be in a position to preference whomever they wish. While it is unlikely that Labor will have a majority in the Senate, I could forsee a coalition of Nats and X, the Greens and one or two Independants having a say about the BOP.

    Greens with their srtrange attitude to the ETS and their stated aim to take HOR seats from Labor may find themselves down the list of Labor preferred partners.

  22. [A repeat of the last election, or current polling, indicates the Greens would hold the BOP.]

    Patience, Bob, patience. A lot can happen between now and then!!!

  23. 85

    The assumptions in Antony`s calculation see the Greens being variable to the Libs not the ALP and that an increased ALP vote helps the Greens in the Senate. The ALP will put the ALP ahead of the Coalition because they want as few Coalition Senators as they can get.

  24. [GG

    Don’t remind the Greens that the majority of their Senate team was elected on ALP preferences. 🙂 ]

    And what the ALP Giveth, they can easily take it away 🙂

  25. [The ALP will put the ALP ahead of the Coalition because they want as few Coalition Senators as they can get.]

    Yeah, that’s generally what they do, Tom!!!

  26. Adam/Psephos if you are around:
    You said in the previous thread that you were an anarchist, then a Marxist and finally Labor-Right. I am a young idealist and I rather hope I don’t follow your swerve to the Right. Can you think of any indicators or signals that I might do so? Currently the prospect of being on the Labor-Right any time in this lifetime seems unimaginable. Would Adam aged 21 be very surpised to learn of his fate?

    I am a foreign policy dove, with exceptions. On social issues I am usually very liberal, again with exceptions. On environmental issues I am very green. I believe in a steady-state economy (no growth or shrinkage but still with technological and cultural progress) the principles of GNH (Gross National Hapiness) and sustainable policy in general. On economic issues I believe in a mixed-economy but with the mix much more in favour of communal ownership than it is currently. I also strongly believe in decentralization, power to the grassroots. Marxism just takes the ownership of the means of production away from the capitalist and gives it to the politbureo – no improvement for the workers in that! So I have something of an anarcho-syndicalist streak and I have read quite a bit of Noam Chomsky and Murray Bookchin but have never gone as far as saying “I am an Anarchist” (Sex Pistols reference is purely coincidental) and probably never will. Even so I would probably head things in that direction – more direct democracy, great powers to local groups, more common ownership but the commonly owned resources controlled by the people, not the pollies as would happen in a communist system but the state would not dissolve or anything like that.
    However most of that is just fantasy land stuff and i know it but it still sets a picture of what direction I’d like us to head towards even if I know we’ll never make it there. So does my realizing the impossibility of my aims imply that I will become more pragmatic (read lacking in principle) in 20 years time and could even end up Labor-Right?
    PS can I just remind everyone that I am not associated with any political party and the above statement is entirely my own and an incomplete, rushed manifesto. I am aware that my vision is very different to the current state of affairs and is therefore scarey to conservatives but might I remind you that the current economic/ecological situation is pretty obviously unsustainable and so change of some variety is inevitable.

  27. For Gittins to be proved wrong, Rudd would have to call a double dissolution election. I don’t see it happening.

  28. [I am a young idealist and I rather hope I don’t follow your swerve to the Right. Can you think of any indicators or signals that I might do so?]

    THM, if you start agreeing too often with GP, then I think it would be time to be concerned. lol

  29. Herr Doktor/Psephos if you are around:

    how long have you been an Aunt Agony?

    I, too, was a naughty boy. what do i do? :kiss:

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