Hold the front page: Labor shoots to election-winning opinion poll lead. Well, sort of the poll comes from the little-reported Morgan face-to-face series, which is noted for leaning heavily to Labor when measured against both election results and other pollsters, and the lead only stands if you allocate minor party and independent preferences according to the result of the previous election. On the primary vote, Labor is at 38.5 per cent (which is half a point higher than the 2010 election result), the Coalition is on 42.5 per cent (43.6 per cent at the election) and the Greens are on 12 per cent. If you assume preferences would behave as they did at the previous election, as most pollsters do, that translates into a 51-49 lead for Labor. However, the Morgan face-to-face series continues to confound by showing minor party and independent voters splitting about 50-50 when asked which of the major parties they would preference, with the result that the Coalition leads 52-48 on the measure Morgan uses at its headline figure. The poll covers the last two weekends of Morgan’s regular surveying, from a total sample of 1921.
Morgan poops Labor’s party a little further with the unheralded publication of voting intention figures from a phone survey of what I take to have been about 600 respondents on Tuesday and Wednesday of last week (from which we’d previously seen only this the sample quoted is 646 persons over 14, the youngest of whom would not have been included in the voting intention figures), which shows Labor doing only slightly better than the overall trend. This poll has the Coalition leading 46.5 per cent to 35.5 per cent on the primary vote, 53.5-46.5 on previous-election preferences and 54.5-45.5 on respondent-allocated preferences, with the Greens on 9 per cent. The Labor primary vote is the highest they have recorded at any phone poll (Newspoll, Nielsen, Morgan or Galaxy) since the middle of March 2011, although the margin of error on this occasion is a high 4 per cent.
Going back to the middle of the last year, Labor’s respondent-allocated preference share from pollsters who publish figures for this has been 63.1 per cent from Nielsen polls, 61.8 per cent from Morgan phone polls (of which there have been five) and 49.7 per cent from Morgan face-to-face polls. At the 2010 election it was 65.7 per cent.