Newspoll: 52-48 to Labor

After a fairly lengthy period where the phone pollsters marched in lock-step, GhostWhoVotes reports that Newspoll has broken away from the pack with a 52-48 lead for Labor. More to follow.

UPDATE: The Australian reports Julia Gillard’s lead as preferred prime minister is up from 49-34 to 54-31, but that “only 23 per cent of voters believe the government should go ahead with the NBN without meeting the Coalition demands for a full costing of the venture”.

UPDATE 2: Full tables here, as usual courtesy of GhostWhoVotes. Labor is up two points on the primary vote to 36 per cent, the Coalition down four to 39 per cent and the Greens up one to 14 per cent. Julia Gillard’s approval rating is up five to 46 per cent and her disapproval down four to 37 per cent, while Tony Abbott is down two on approval to 42 per cent and up three on disapproval to 45 per cent. Given the lack of corroboration elsewhere, the collective move in Labor’s favour should be treated with due caution (although their figures were probably a bit undercooked in the previous poll). On the National Broadband Network, 42 per cent support the Coalition’s demand for a cost-benefit analysis with the aforementioned 23 per cent opposed, while 19 per cent express wholesale opposition to the project “in its current form”.

Other matters:

• Peter Wellington, who has enjoyed enormous electoral success since winning the Sunshine Coast hinterland seat of Nicklin at the 1998 state election, says he will run in the corresponding federal seat of Fairfax if the Coalition’s “spoiler” tactics succeed in bringing on an early election. Fairfax has been held since 1990 by Alex Somlyay, a former Liberal and current Liberal National who has said he will not seek another term. Kate Dennehy of Fairfax reports speculation that James McGrath, a “former federal Liberal Party deputy director who reportedly had a falling out with its director”, might be interested in the LNP preselection.

Phillip Coorey of the Sydney Morning Herald has more on JWS Research focus group findings which were reported on in the context of the Victorian election by the Sunday Herald-Sun, this time in relation to federal politics. Labor is said to be suffering a perception that having dumped one leader they could very easily dump another, and that its minority government position has made it “too afraid to make a decision at the risk of offending someone”. While Gillard is “liked”, voters “do not think she is shaping up well as a leader”. However, Tony Abbott has problems of his own, with women finding him “a bit of a bully boy”.

Joe Spagnolo of the Sunday Times reports speculation Alannah MacTiernan will run for lord mayor of Perth next year, after failing in her recent bid to move from state to federal politics. The story goes that MacTiernan is keen to again run federally for Canning, but “a three-year wait for another federal election was proving too much”. The report also says Labor was hoping the present lord mayor, Lisa Scaffidi, might make way for by running for the party at the next state election, but the ABC reports she “angrily rejected” suggestions she might do so.

• Tasmania’s Legislative Council last week voted against a motion supporting an increase in the chamber’s numbers from 15 to 19. This follows an agreement between the Labor, Liberal and Greens leaders last month that the Legislative Assembly should revert to the 35-member seven-seat region model which prevailed until 1998, when Labor and the Liberals combined to support a 25-member five-seat model in the expectation that it would neuter the Greens. The ongoing rise in the latter’s electoral support gave lie to that, and the state returned to minority government with the election of one Greens member in each region at the election held in March – with the added sting of the major parties being deprived of the range of parliamentary talent that they would have enjoyed in the old days. However, Premier David Bartlett told Tim Cox on ABC Radio that it would be up to the Council to decide if it wanted to follow suit in reverting to its pre-1998 numbers. The motion was opposed by the chamber’s three Labor members, who were no doubt mindful that the proposed increase in lower house numbers was a hard enough sell as it was – although the solitary Liberal, Vanessa Goodwin, joined with four independents in support.

• Also in Tasmania, state Treasurer Michael Aird has announced he will be quitting his upper house seat of Derwent, to which he was re-elected for a six-year term at the periodical election in May 2009. This means an election for the seat will be held concurrently with the annual periodical upper house elections on the first Saturday in May, which next year will cover the seats of Launceston (previously known as Paterson), Murchison and Rumney, respectively held by independent Don Wing, independent Ruth Forrest and Labor’s Lin Thorp. The ABC reports talk Labor preselection might be contested by David Llewellyn, who lost his seat in Lyons to party rival Rebecca White. More surprisingly, Damien Brown of The Mercury reports former Premier Paul Lennon might fancy a tilt at the seat. The Liberals have confirmed they will field a candidate for the seat, which has traditionally been safe for Labor.

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.

4,545 comments on “Newspoll: 52-48 to Labor”

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  1. Regarding the protests in Ireland over the weekend, I can see now why they are annoyed. As this piece by Krugman explains, they are being “helped” by being loaned money at a rate they could have borrowed it for themselves anyway, while still having to tip in some of their pension fund, as the banks get their losses absorbed without suffering any penalty! Did the Irish PM previously work for Goldman Sachs?

    This GFC is getting to the point where it exposes a serious erosian of democracy: government of the banks, by the banks stooges, for the banks executives.

  2. I think the govt should not have paired anyone today. The opposition wanted this stale dish, they should have been made to eat it. As Oakshott said, the independents turned up for work today where is everyone else?

  3. [This GFC is getting to the point where it exposes a serious erosian of democracy: government of the banks, by the banks stooges, for the banks executives.]

    Soc, it simply reinforces the fundamental principle which the capitalist system is solidly founded upon:

    You privatise profits and publicise the losses

  4. [I think the govt should not have paired anyone today. The opposition wanted this stale dish, they should have been made to eat it. As Oakshott said, the independents turned up for work today where is everyone else?]

    I absolutely agree. Don’t want the indies upset, and as you say they served it up and should have been made to come back.

  5. [victoria
    Posted Monday, November 29, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

    I thought the subject of Julie Posetti was not allowed to be discussed. Has William lifted the ban?]

    Nup. PBers are unshakeable rebels.

  6. It is easy to be wise after the event, but the gov’t should have told their members not to make any arrangements for anything else until a week after parl’t was supposed to rise for the summer break, just in case this sort of skullduggery might happen.

  7. So let me get this straight, the bill is passed by the hor and is passed by the senate with the amendments and then the hor votes on the amendments and once the senate amendments are accepted by the hor, the bill is ready to go to the GG?

  8. There will be no record of how many Libs voted against it. That’s probably all they wanted. A big rant today in the House in readiness for their community meeting tonight on Sky.

  9. A media Law Professor gives his opinion in less than 140 charecters

    I can’t see him suing now his own newspaper has republished imputations twice to 400,000 readers ]

  10. [Will you be watching the community meeting?]

    Not likely victoria. It is being organised by Abbott and shown by Sky so probably will have a sycophantic audience.

    I’ll wait for the Govt. Community Cabinet which I think is coming soon. It looks as tho Abbott is going to hold a meeting every time the Govt. does one.

    What did you think about bullyboy’s reaction today when the PM gave it back to him. I couldn’t believe he jumped to his feet for a POO. The poor darling can give it but can’t take it. I hope that is how it is reported in the media but I bet I’ll be living in hope for quite some time before that happens.

  11. [BH
    Posted Monday, November 29, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Permalink

    There will be no record of how many Libs voted against it. That’s probably all they wanted. A big rant today in the House in readiness for their community meeting tonight on Sky.]

    I was thinking the same thing BH, sleazy bastards arn’t they?

  12. b_g – what about this paragraph.

    [Those who write for The Australian have a simple?—?though admittedly not easy?—?choice on this matter. It is no longer good enough, as Australian journalists from gallery figures down to junior IT writers have done, to apologise privately that they are ‘just doing what they’re told’ or that their stories shouldn’t be taken seriously because they’ve been rewritten. A failure to publicly question this ongoing attack on free speech can only be construed as support for it. In this case, silence indeed indicates consent.]

    Backs up what their tweets were saying at times – completely different to their stories and it’s no wonder they were stopped from tweeting so often.

  13. BH

    I will not watch it either. It will only help in raising my blood pressure 🙂
    I missed what happened with Abbott today. I was out running errands. Can you elaborate if possible?

  14. confessions

    apparently Abbott is conducting a community meeting and it will be televised on Sky News tonight. Not sure what time. Guessing 7.30 ?

  15. victoria:

    Thanks. Can’t see anything on the Sky news website. Wonder what the meeting is aiming to achieve, or is this just another stunt from Tone?

  16. confessions

    I just heard it being announced on Sky earlier today. Did not hear much else.


    Yes, the Telstra bill has passed HOR. Apparently, Tone did play up, but I missed it. Don’t know exactly what occurred.

  17. Finns

    I share your pain. Stop the Drops! Stop the Boundaries!

    Further on the Irish bailout scandal (and it is one) there is a charming story here suggesting that the Irish Banks used their bailout funds to buy government bonds. In other words, the Irish government got bailout funds loaned to their banks, who in turn bought government bonds, so the government coudl keep spending without eyebrows being raised. No wonder the government doesn’t want them to go under now. Meanwhile the economy continues in rcession because the banks have none left to loan to business for investment.'took+bailout+billions+then+bought+Government+bonds‘.-a0242047411

    This illustrates well another problem of the dangers when the line between government and private sector finance gets blurred. The government then can’t afford to punish guilty parties in the private sector, because it would be punishing itself.

    Irish PM Brian Cowen has about as much chance of re-election as NSW Labor. Bizarrely, Fianna Fail is a centre-left party, in coalition with the Irish Greens.

  18. victoria – HoR recalled to pass 3 bills which had been amended and passed through the Senate.

    Abbott, being a smartarse, called on a censure motion on PM. She was 10 mins late getting there from a Sydney business breakfast, etc. He made his usual rant about waste, mismanagement, no vision, no program, will never get anything done, useless, blah, blah, blah. Truss then seconded the motion. Same stuff as Abbott but his face got redder the longer he spoke. So much so that my OH said ‘the old bugger is gonna give himself a heart attack in a minute’.

    It was pathetic.

    PM got up and said similar to last Thursday in QT – Oppn with heads buried in the sand stuff but twice she criticised Abbott over CC and health and he jumped up quickly.
    Couldn’t stand being criticised – classic bully symptoms. He can dish it out but goes to dishwater when challenged.

    Katter apparently furious and walked out while Abbott was speaking. Other Indies furious. Oakeshott made really good points about all 6 Indies making the trip to Canberra while heaps of other members absent. He said this with furious face looking at the Libs so I’m guessing that Albo paired quite a few. Labor should have stopped all its pollies from being absent and said no to pairs.

    Libs have all day been before the cameras saying that it is Labor’s fault they had to go back today and another example of how Labor wastes money. Urrgghh!!

  19. Info on Tone’s community forum:

    And you’re holding a community forum in Penrith tonight. Can you give us an idea of what you expect out of that?
    Well look, it’s really an opportunity for people to come along and tell me what’s on their mind. I think it’s important that political leaders be listeners as well as lecturers and certainly ever since I became a local member I’ve tried to hold regular community forums and since I became Party Leader I’ve been doing likewise. So it’ll be building on the kind of thing that people saw during the election campaign publicly for the first time which I guess less publicly I’ve been doing for the last 16 years.
    Do you feel that people then have an opportunity to speak to a politician they usually only see on the television screen or hear on the radio?
    Yes they do and they also get an opportunity to voice what’s on their mind. I mean, I think one of the big problems in modern Australia is that there’s so much media and yet so often people feel that their voice isn’t being heard and the opportunity to say your piece in front of a major party leader I think is an important part of an effective democracy.
    So you’ll be holding similar forums in other parts of the country?
    I had my first post-election forum in Beenleigh in outer metropolitan Brisbane a few weeks ago. I’ll be having another one before Christmas in Darwin in a couple of weeks time and my hope is that probably about once a month in the months and years ahead I can keep doing them.]

    Looks like a me-too on labor’s community forums.

  20. Finns

    This recent Wikileaks is a serious embarrassment for the Yanks and it’s got ages to go yet.

    They are leaking like a sieve.

    It wouldn’t happen in China!

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