The Sydney Morning Herald has published a Nielsen poll of NSW state voting intention, evidently commissioned to ascertain whether Nathan Rees’s recent purge has yielded the hoped-for electoral dividends. The answer is a fairly emphatic no: Labor’s primary vote remains at a ruinous 31 per cent (remembering that the primary vote figure is of greater significance under optional preferential voting), little different from any poll from the past year. The Coalition’s primary vote is 43 per cent, and it leads 55-45 on two-party preferred. Rees at least appears to have shaved a few points off his disapproval rating, though it remains at 49 per cent against 39 per cent approval. He nonetheless has a 43-40 lead as preferred premier over Barry O’Farrell, who has an approval rating of 44 per cent against 36 per cent disapprove. The Herald’s Andrew Clennell further quotes a line from Liberal internal research: ’Notwithstanding the past two weeks, the principle criticism of Rees remains consistent: that he is a puppet of corrupt and untrustworthy Labor ‘machine’ politicians.