Westpoll: 52-48 to Coalition in WA

In addition to the two polls discussed in the previous post (more on those as details come to hand), we now have a Westpoll survey from the normal regrettably small sample of 400 Western Australian respondents. This has the Coalition’s two-party lead at 52-48, compared with 53.3-46.7 per cent in 2007. The Coalition primary vote is 48 per cent (47.4 per cent in 2007) to Labor’s 35 per cent (36.8 per cent) and 14 per cent for the Greens (8.9 per cent). Further questions suggest Tony Abbott’s Catholicism is slightly more damaging electorally than Julia Gillard’s atheism, and there is a 54-33 split in favour of Kevin Rudd returning to cabinet, a relatively narrow result reflecting his unpopularity in Western Australia. More to follow.

UPDATE: Full set of Westpoll results here. The Coalition has a 15-point lead on the economy and a 28-point lead on asylum seekers, while Labor has leads of eight to 13 points on health, industrial relations, education and environment.

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.

217 comments on “Westpoll: 52-48 to Coalition in WA”

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  1. [Understand this, if the Libs win they’ll be in for another decade and this country will be ruined because of it. Tony Abbott is Australia’s George W Bush. He is the most belligerent, politically incompetent, disinterested, uncommitted, uninspired and uninspiring man to ever seek the high office of Prime Minister. It’s obvious to anyone with two working eyes and a functioning brain that he doesn’t want the job and God]

    I understand, Labor should get 80% of the vote.

  2. Poor Mike “Shirley Temple” Williams on 2GB via his Facebook entry:

    Weekend Overnights with Mike Williams Lots to talk about tonight – the Return of Rudd (sounds like a horror movie title), Latham joining 60 Minutes, and we will take a look at Gen Y. Anything else on your mind? Post on the wall or call me on 131 873 after midnight

    It’s panic stations on Radio Liberal.

  3. I wish Labor could get Bernie Fraser to say this in an ad:

    [“Labor’s stimulus package was a stunningly successful response to the GFC. It kept businesses afloat and preserved jobs for hundreds of thousands of Australians who may well otherwise have become unemployed.

    I think the electorate should be reminded that the Coalition under [Malcolm] Turnbull voted against the stimulus package. And that, to me, is an indelible blot on the Coalition’s economic management credentials.”]

  4. Well, Monday night will be interesting. Just saw the promo on ABC that Julia G will be doing QANDA (and confirmed it from the QANDA website).

    So, she is going on a live, unscripted show. Brave, but actually playing to her strengths i think.

    If Julia G is getting an hours exposure in this format on the ABC, isnt it right and proper that Tony Abbott get the same opportunity??

    In fact, it will look a bit strange if he doesn’t wont it?

    How hard do you reckon that the Fiberal’s campaign director will be pushing for Tony to get a gig on the program?? 🙂

  5. Beaglie,
    Forgot to add that the ALP HQ Sussex Street bunglers (that genius Mark Arbib etc.) parachuted a former League player into Gilmore.

    After vociferous protests from local ALP stalwarts and weeks of hugely negative press coverage, Sussex St. finally caved in.

    So it’s been less than a month since Reilly (who was ALP’s 2007 candidate) was duly pre-selected by his own branches.

  6. [Well, Monday night will be interesting. Just saw the promo on ABC that Julia G will be doing QANDA (and confirmed it from the QANDA website).

    So, she is going on a live, unscripted show. Brave, but actually playing to her strengths i think.]

    Pfft. That just smacks of desperation and shows how desperate she is to turn her dead campaign around. 😉

  7. JG is on Q&A solo?

    KR did similar appearance with great effect.

    Abbott would nevr do something as risky as this. He’d be far too gutless*

    * attributed – Glen

  8. [i pop in late for some good news and find this… f&&&ing hell. this sucks. we’re running out of time.]

    What’s wrong? If you refer to the numbers of this thread’s poll, they’re better than 2007…

  9. [Pfft. That just smacks of desperation and shows how desperate she is to turn her dead campaign around.]

    Don’t agree TSOP. She is at her best unscripted and direct. She knows her stuff so she doesn’t trip up. And when she is off the cuff, she can be very quick witted and endearing.

    I think what turned people off (and lots of them women) was the regal Julia that appeared during the debate … suddenly that quick witted, smart chick, had become a Maggie Thatcher clone (to look at, anyway).

    Better she gets in there and gets down and dirty, so to speak.

  10. The Lib Cheersquad don’t like Fraser 🙂

    * Ideas Avatar

    may puttock 06/08/10 10:24 PM Report Abuse

    It is not my position to second guess Malcolm Fraser and his comments today but I have studied his position before and I would say his involvement with CARE Australia places him firmly in the NGO movement. I would guess his position is not far remeved from Tim Costello. These people believe they are the spearhead of the humanitarian movement BUT they don’t realise that they are being corralled and used.

    To belong to an NGO does not give one superior status in the humanitarian stakes, although these people think it does. I would suggest reading Christopher Hitchen’s Mother Theresa, or just being observant about where the tentacles of the NGO’S, the UN and power stuctures collide, is a beginning to understanding.

    I welcome Tony ABBOTT’S conservatism, only those who are suspicious of Globalism can chart our way out of the impasse we are in.

    See Malcolm Fraser’s comments:



  11. middle man,
    Most of us ALP supporting Bludgers are mightily relieved to see the momentum reverse direction, even if glacially, in our favour. 🙂

  12. oh, I got you, middle man. Well if it’s any consolation, we are in a better position in Nielsen than we were this time last week.

  13. As for Solomon… bloody hell, I always forget about Solomon. Any Territorians here who can give a report on the situation there?

    From the (end of) the previous thread (685):

    Solomon is certainly damn close. But Hale seems to be doing okay at the moment, hasn’t blundered or been ‘caught out’ on anything, and seems to be getting a fair bit of support from senior federal Labor colleagues donating face time and funding promises. His opponent, Griggs, despite a supporting visit from Abbott, is not really cutting through and landing any serious blows.

    Labor are frequently running an ad up here along the lines of: ‘Tony Abbott wants to pull the plug on the NT [citing various bread and butter, family friendly programs that he will apparently slash/axe]. Griggs wants to help Abbott pull the plug’.

    You get the idea.

    Have not seen anything from the Libs yet.

    Too early and too close to call this one, but at this stage I would rather be in Hale’s shoes. Partly incumbency, partly being a well known local sporting identity prior to his political career, and partly a somewhat more competent media performer.

  14. [Don’t agree TSOP. She is at her best unscripted and direct. She knows her stuff so she doesn’t trip up. And when she is off the cuff, she can be very quick witted and endearing.]

    Jen, I was joking. Hence the 😉

  15. [Abbott would nevr do something as risky as this. He’d be far too gutless*

    * attributed – Glen]

    But, havent the ABC got to keep things “balanced”?? At some point i’d expect a statement from them, (purely to show they are unbiased and to defend their institutional integrity as is right and proper) that they have invited the Opposition Leader onto the show to give him the same opportunity to discuss in a live format. 🙂

    If he declines that offer then people will read into it what they will i’m sure.

  16. right. not so bad then. newspoll should be the first that catches that change. i’m off to bed. if a was religious man i’d pray…. but instead i’ll fret. ha! night. we need a big two weeks.

  17. I would expect Hale to lose Solomon, he is on a very fine margin. The CLP have a decent and photogenic candidate in Griggs (deputy mayor Palmerston), it will be close but I can’t see Damian winning.

  18. [Jen, I was joking. Hence the ]

    Duh — its getting late, and I must admit the emotional roller-coaster is getting the better of me. I seem to be bouncing between relaxed feeling of certainty, to sudden fear of an Abbott PMship.

    I seriously am afraid of what that man would do to this country. If he wins, because he literally will have done a Lazarus, his ego will be sooooo immense, and those snivelling right-wingers of the party will be soooo full of themselves, they will think they’re unbeatable. They’ll become like arrogant little rich boys who have a new box of toys to play with.

  19. While I don’t watch a lot of free to air television, I am also concerned at how few ALP and union ads I have seen.

    I am hoping that that’ll change in the next couple of weeks.

    Paul Howes’s mob need to step up to the plate. One of the big mistakes when KR was deposed was Howes getting onto Lateline and declaring it before it had happened. That was a bad look — and they need to pay and pay big, for it. Howes is a very intelligent man, but that was really not beneficial to Labor.

  20. Benji
    Posted Friday, August 6, 2010 at 11:18 pm

    Benji – I am actually feeling slightly confident with Robertson. Was up there during the week; not saying the Government will win it, butn it may be closer than what people think. My slight ‘pessimism’ in NSW is that I don’t think we can pick up any seats. We should be killing Hughes but not sure if we will. Worried about Bennelong, Lindsay, MacQuarie, Robertson and Dobell. Should win Dobell because of the mine issue. Janelle Saffin is a fantastic member and will win Page.

  21. One interesting effect of Julia G appearing on QANDA (and it being announced NOW) may well be to keep the meme of, gutless Tony, debate dodger, alive and kicking over the weekend (when some of the major pollsters are in the field?) and through until at least Wednesday next week when it would have otherwise run its course by now.

    It could take on a form like:

    He wont take up a challenge from Julia to a “Formal” debate, and now he won’t front the punters without a script. Gutless and poor form. Beaten by a girl AGAIN Tony??

    I’d think the Libs will be trying to work out a least worst option at the moment.

    Will they take more damage from the “Real Tony” having to front a live audience (who’s questions are likely to be tougher than any collection of NPC journo’s),


    From wearing the jibes of all and sundry (what would the Chaser do with this) and having pressers hijacked by smartarse journo’s questions on whether Tony has a full complement of gonads / size of same, for the nest week or so??

    Poor dears, such things to ponder. 🙂

  22. Jenauthor

    He won’t win. I am gettin more confident by the day that we have turned the corner. heck, if Dennis Shanahan think we have, then it must be better…..

  23. [hang in there Jen.]

    Am trying MM. My rational side keeps arguing that with the swings unlikely to be uniform, it would be a big reversal for us to lose this.

    But my emotional side just shudders every time the Libs make an outlandish statement that isn’t challenged by us or the media. Intelligent and politically engaged people can see when statements are ridiculous.

    Those less intelligent, or not engage, only hear the statement and react to them as you’d expect … “It’s one the news therefore it must be true.”

  24. [Does Westpoll take an 80% Green->ALP flow from 2007, or from its survey/s? If the latter, the number of Greens they encountered must have been under under 60. If the former, are things in WA particularly polarised on an environmentalism vs economy scale? And how reliable would 2007 flows be if the Greens WA are really on track to record a 5% swing? And why am I asking so many rhetorical questions?]

    These are indeed unknown unknowns. I can tell you Labor aren’t confident of getting as strong a flow of Greens preferences last time, but I don’t see how they can know this.

  25. Re Julia Gillard on Q&A, I don’t think that trying to splash her everywhere in the final fortnight is necessarily such a great idea. I don’t think the public needs to see more of her; they need to spend more time contemplating Tony Abbott as PM so why not a softly, softly strategy to unnerve him.

  26. [and those snivelling right-wingers of the party will be soooo full of themselves, they will think they’re unbeatable. They’ll become like arrogant little rich boys who have a new box of toys to play with.]

    Yep, they’ve got form: Howard and Minchin’s minions when they unexpectedly won control of the Senate in 2004.

    Their hubris with WorkChoices ultimately brought Howard’s downfall, but we can’t count on Abbott giving us that sort of free kick before 2013.

  27. Sorry to say but the government will most likely lose the election in a fortnight. On every election campaign I compiled the Nielson and newspoll numbers to get a perdiction of the outcome – by using the past month 2pp polling figures and then find the rolling average. By using dx(rate) to find the rate of growth/decay in the vote I can find the forcast poll vote with a confidence of 2%

    I tested this formula by plugging in every election (since 1993) neilson and newspoll figures from 6 weeks out to the final opinion polls that are published around the day of the election. (Keep in mind that poll events calculated can be up to a month before an election is called)

    The 2010 election result forecast is as follows:

    the ALP vote will likely be 48.5% +- 2%.

    The ALP will need at least 50.5% of the national 2pp vote as the Greens don’t poll well in the outer city marginals. I think they poll 1/2 the national Green vote more or less.

    I say this profound sadness.

  28. jen

    one of swmbo friends said that about the MSM and the BER

    our schools halls are great yet the MSM and fibs are trashing em

    the grassroots are getting disengaged by the MSM’s gilding the lilly

  29. Hale is just above Griggs on the ballot paper so has the advantage with the donkey vote, which might count in this very close one.

    Pretty brave to call this seat this early. Could go either way.

  30. Just for what it is worth. Spent the day in various meetings / planning sessions with some fellow travellers. People are getting very nervous now and the following time line / plans give an idea of the change in mood.
    Up until the election was called we were doing low level member contact – just enough to say we had done our bit.
    When the election was called we started making calls seriously – although we only had a few people doing polling to members each day and only into half a dozen marginals and others could ‘volunteer’ if they wanted.
    10 days ago when the leaks hit the fan and the polls tightened voluntary became compulsory for everyone at least one evening a week. But the plan was to get over the hurdle and stop polling mid next week.
    After today’s meetings the plan now is: all people calling until mid this week. Then staff in 2 key states to hit electorates for hand outs and the like from Wednesday, staff in all other states to continue making calls.
    Then in the week prior to the election it is everyone in marginals for the week doing what ever it takes. The exception strangely enough is E-M which no one is worried about and M Kelly has done an excellent job. But in other places we have people being shunted around to help out

    The call came in today from headquarters that people are very nervous and asking for all resources that could be spared to be allocated – and that it was not a drill. Two weeks ago everyone was very relaxed and just going about there jobs with calm efficiency, now it is back to last election when it was a routine of get up at 5 hit a train station, hit the office at 9, make calls until 10pm (as we called across the nation and finish into WA around 8pm). Then home to letter boxing for an hour or so (the ipod and a bag of pamphlets really can clear your head on a brisk mountain night). grab some sleep, rinse and repeat.

    So in summary:
    People are slightly more confident of winning than losing where I am, but only just
    No one is panicked yet, but at the same time some contingency discussions are being had about what a COG would mean – very depressing
    The call has gone out big time to the movement
    Over the next 2 weeks expect to see a lot more orange on the ground

    My advice – get thee to a marginal and start making a difference

  31. I have said a few time that JG should go on Qanda as it would give her a chance of getting the message out there with the ability to clarify her position in a more casual setting. No press pack or rostrums.

    Interestingly who will the LNP pollie on the panel be as we know MRabbot won’t front, Bishop, Turnbull and Barnaby have been on in recent weeks, Pyne ?


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