Essential Research: 56-44 to Coalition

This week’s Essential Research shows no real change in voting intention on last week, with the Coalition up a point on the primary vote to 49 per cent, Labor and the Greens steady on 31 per cent and 11 per cent, and two-party preferred steady at 56-44. The poll also measures Bob Brown’s approval rating at 42 per cent and disapproval at 34 per cent (including very favourable figures among Labor voters of 60 per cent and 15 per cent); has 31 per cent favouring Kevin Rudd as Labor leader over 16 per cent for Julia Gillard (Gillard leads 40 per cent to 33 per cent among Labor voters); and 30 per cent favouring Malcolm Turnbull as Liberal leader with 23 per cent for Tony Abbott (Abbott leads 39 per cent to 26 per cent among Coalition voters). Further questions on the mining boom have 66 per cent believing it has benefited them “not at all”, 51 per cent supporting the mining tax (down one on mid-March) and 29 per cent opposing it (down five).

Federal preselection happenings in New South Wales:

• The NSW Liberal Party state executive has voted to dump Garry Whitaker as its candidate for Craig Thomson’s seat of Dobell. He has been replaced by Karen McNamara, a WorkCover public servant who reportedly has backing from the party’s right, who was defeated by Whitaker in the original preselection vote in December. Whitaker has since been struggling with allegations he had lived for several years without council permission in an “ensuite shed” on his Wyong Creek property while awaiting approval to build a house there.

• More proactivity from the NSW Liberal state executive in neighbouring Robertson, a seat the party was disappointed not to have won in 2010. Local branches have had imposed upon them Lucy Wicks, who herself holds a position on the executive by virtue of her status as president of the party’s Women’s Council. Wicks was identified by the Sydney Morning Herald last year as a member of the “centre right” faction associated with federal Mitchell MP Alex Hawke, which in alliance with the moderates had secured control of the state executive. Like the Dobell intervention, the imposition of Wicks occurred at the insistence of Tony Abbott – local branches in both seats have called emergency meetings to express their displeasure.

Michelle Hoctor of the Illawarra Mercury reports Ann Sudmalis, the candidate backed by retiring member Joanna Gash, won Liberal preselection on Saturday in Gilmore with 16 votes against 10 for her main rival Andrew Guile. Rounding out the field were Alby Schultz’s son Grant, who scored four votes, and Meroo Meadow marketing consultant Catherine Shields on one. For those wondering about the small number of votes, the NSW Liberals’ preselection procedure involves branches being allocated a number of selection committee delegates in proportion to their membership, rather than a massed rank-and-file ballot.

Imre Salusinszky of The Australian reports the Nationals are in the “‘initial stages’ of discussions with popular independent state MP Richard Torbay about endorsing him for a tilt at independent federal MP Tony Windsor in New England”. Torbay has been the independent member for Northern Tablelands since 1999, and served as Legislative Assembly Speaker during Labor’s last term in office.

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.

5,940 comments on “Essential Research: 56-44 to Coalition”

  1. [Meguire Bob
    Posted Friday, April 27, 2012 at 12:40 pm | Permalink
    Bluegrien @ 5661

    Abbott keeps on saying slipper is a problem

    what kind of a problem , was he for abbott

    Doesnt that reflect on some kind of defamatory comment about slippers reputation, if he is not willing to prove it]

    Saying someone is a problem is barely defamatory and would be easily defended.

  2. The coalition supporters still have to explain

    how is abbott popularity which is equal/lower than Gillards and labor

    is linked to the libs/nat high polling , when it doesnt

    If it was the coaliton will lose by default

  3. “bemused
    Posted Friday, April 27, 2012 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    I am not a member of parliament. Fraternising with the enemy is not really advisable for them in my view. Civility and respect are OK, but you can never afford to forget they are there to do your side in.”

    While you may think that they should all hate each others guts – the fact is there are many cross party friendships and relationships. This is good in a robust democracy where discussion, argument and exchange of ideas can lead to workable policy outcomes. Compromise is the art of politics – unfortunately for Gillard, she has been comprimising with the wrong party.

  4. Funny how lewis reported first on the utegate with godwin gretch,then has the ashby scoop,really do not believe in that kind of coincidence.

  5. [I am not sure he will go about repealing everything he has said he will.]
    And that will be his frist problem.
    [Because expectations of him are currently so low, his change in persona might work for him to have people say “He isn’t such a dickhead after all.” That is my fear.]
    He won’t change. People like him come a cropper sooner or later.
    The electorate have shown that they can swing violently. They won’t make an exception to a person they already dislike if they don’t like what they see. Abbott has doen a Rudd. Expectations will be high but delivery will be sadly lacking.

  6. bluegreen

    Depends, the way Abbott is is saying it, Slipper has been doing damage to the party

    so its an personal attack on slipper and his reputation

    Abbott would need to defend that and show how slipper was damaging the party

  7. [how is abbott popularity which is equal/lower than Gillards and labor]

    Abbott’s approval is higher than Gillards by some margin. In all the leaders charecterisitcs polling she is behind Abbott as well, especialy on issues of trust.

    She is even or behind lately on PPM.

  8. Gary

    I agree with you on an Abbott government.

    The budget alone will take of the shine when he cant meet promises to fund/ and not to cut services.

    He, however, does have the standard trick of budget black hole and culture wars to go with.

  9. [I have used CabCharge quite often and I have found that trying to sign a small bit of paper in a car is not the best conditions for penmanship.]

    Considering that you usually sign it in a rush, on the dashboard or centre console, it’s never going to be quality.

    I thought the signatures weren’t being disputed though? I thought the allegations was based on signed BLANK cabcharge cards.

  10. This is just another play at the polls. Another way to attack the govt and to make the govt look bad by association.

    Those dumb hacks, salivating for the next Walkley, with the grand story of bringing a govt down, are pushing it for all it’s worth.

    In recognition of the next Walkley’s and the rubbish they produce and reward, I think I might launch the BullButter Awards for the most ridiculous article of the year, in several categories.

  11. [And if Slipper is found to be innocent her judgement will have been spot on. Is that what you are saying?]

    But Gary, the means by which Slipper became speaker, the slight of hand, the too clever by halfness of it, has all made Julia Gillard part of the issue – again she has kicked an own goal on the politics of the issue.

  12. [But Gary, the means by which Slipper became speaker, the slight of hand, the too clever by halfness of it, has all made Julia Gillard part of the issue – again she has kicked an own goal on the politics of the issue.]

    Very true. Typical politics of being ‘clever’ instead of wise.

  13. bluegreen

    Lo

    newspoll
    showed gillard to be the preferred pm

    and the satisfied are 32-31 in favor of abbott not much difference

  14. [Gary, not sure about that re Abbott as PM. We will see a different persona. He will get a lift in the polls because everything will settle down with a compliant media and be relaxed and comfortable. He will have a very big majority. I am not sure he will go about repealing everything he has said he will. Because expectations of him are currently so low, his change in persona might work for him to have people say “He isn’t such a dickhead after all.” That is my fear. Abbott has defied most commentary about him to date. He is unlike any Liberal leader I have seen in my time.]

    He’s never been under any media pressure. He’s got off Scot free. Well, there was one occasion, the Mark Riley incident. He (or at least his office) were given than two hours notice of the nature of questions Riley would ask, so it wasn’t exactly what you’d call unscripted.

    And we all know how he went to pieces most spectacularly even under that mild questioning. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUdPabnXUNA

    As PM he would be subject to unscripted questions all day every day (at least theoretically). He’s become so used to life in the easy media lane that it’s doubtful he could handle intense, relentless pressure. The gaffes (and possibly worse) would come thick and fast!

  15. Meguire Bob
    Posted Friday, April 27, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Permalink
    “The coalition supporters still have to explain

    how is abbott popularity which is equal/lower than Gillards and labor

    is linked to the libs/nat high polling , when it doesnt

    If it was the coaliton will lose by default”

    Meguire – as much as you would like to believe that the individual’s popularity of the LOTO is a key factor – it has been shown by a number of different professional polling analysts that it is quite common for the current polling scenario to exist – low LOTO approval with high 2PP. Historically, the post-election approval rating has jumped.

    One of the reasons, not the only reason, is the Governemnt is on the nose because of Abbott’s strategic and tactical abilities to hold the Governemnt up to scrutiny.

  16. [But Gary, the means by which Slipper became speaker, the slight of hand, the too clever by halfness of it, has all made Julia Gillard part of the issue – again she has kicked an own goal on the politics of the issue.]

    Yeah an open vote in Parliament is sooooo “slight of hand”, and too clever by half. Abbott and the Liberals knew because the MSM did report that Mr Slipper might defect. Along with some other possible names. We know JG is a good negotiator. So I say you are wrong and the voters will see it that way.

  17. Sossman. in defence of rugby crowds, they did boo JWH something fierce at one test match during his prime ministership. it warmed my heart no end….

  18. [I am reserving judgment on the govt kicking an own goal. This has a way to go yet.]

    Victoria, the goal has already been kicked and gone through to the back of the net. The fact that this issue has taken up most of the nations political airspace is evidence of that – and slipper as speaker is a problem of this governments making – absolutley no one elses.

    This may have a way to go yet, the question is – is there only one own goal kicked or are there to be more?

  19. [As PM he would be subject to unscripted questions all day every day (at least theoretically). He’s become so used to life in the easy media lane that it’s doubtful he could handle intense, relentless pressure. The gaffes (and possibly worse) would come thick and fast!]

    If you think Phoney Tony and the Funky Bunch are going to face the same ‘intense, relentless pressure’ that the current government faces, you’ll be disappointed. He will get a very easy ride. Just look at the coverage of Newman’s premiership up here!

  20. [Sossman. in defence of rugby crowds, they did boo JWH something fierce at one test match during his prime ministership. it warmed my heart no end….]

    Haha! True, but Australians boo anything when in a large crowd. Was it Australia v Ireland by any chance?

  21. if Abbott gets to be PM he won’t implode – well it won’t be reported… he’ll have two newspapers in every state singing his praises. sickening.

  22. [womble
    Posted Friday, April 27, 2012 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    I should add, it does look a pretty safe bet the whole cab charge thing is a beat up – the sooner they get rid of the vouchers the better. I thought all frequent uses were on cards now anyway, if they aren’t they should be.]

    Even for infrequent and variable users, the E-ticket system is safe and has an electronic trail linking to the cab meter.

  23. [And if Slipper is found to be innocent her judgement will have been spot on. Is that what you are saying?]

    I hope he is for the sake of Harry Jenkins. A honourable speaker who was pushed by Gillard and her political judgement. Gillard has shown to be reckless and desperate to protect one seat and one seat only. Her own. In the effort she has destroyed Rudd, destroyed Wilkie, destroyed Jenkins and from the looks of it the Labor party.

  24. Hadley said:

    […the dockets showed Mr Slipper was “an unmitigated liar” and “a disgrace”.

    The dockets produced by Mr Slipper are manual dockets, required when a cab’s electronic system fails.

    “It’s funny that this particular cab kept having failures whenever Peter Slipper was near the cab, which is rather mysterious to start with,” Hadley said.]

    Slipper said:

    [Please find attached cab charge dockets that I have received this afternoon from the Department Of Finance and Deregulation.

    These dockets have all been completed by me and are clearly in my own handwriting as I said they were.

    The so called criminal ellegation is a complete fabrication…]

    * There is nothing in Slipper’s statement about “manual” versus “EFT” dockets.

    * All Slipper said was that they are clearly in his own handwriting and have been completed by himself, as he said they had been.

    Hadley is calling him a liar over something David Speers, or perhap Steve Lewis said, not what Slipper said himself.

  25. Sossman,

    Am fully aware of the democratically-corrosive alliance between the conservatives and the mass media. So I did qualify my observation with the note that as PM he would “theoretically” be subject to intense media scrutiny.

    It would only take one moment of pressure equal to or exceeding that mild question from Mark Riley to bring the whole empty facade crumbling down.

  26. [I am reserving judgment on the govt kicking an own goal. This has a way to go yet.]

    Exactly. When the whole case falls over (and if it’s anything like his cabcharge allegations Ashby’s case is toast) and Slipper is turfing Tories out of the chamber every sitting day for the next 16 months, whilst Gillard gets on with passing bills and governing it ain’t going to look like much of an own goal.

    Sure to the real reactionary idiots out there that just swallow whatever crap they are fed any line about how it reflects on Gillard will be lapped up deliriously. Who cares? Their votes don’t change governments. Enough people will see through the crap and join the dots to see what’s really going on, and it won’t make them more amenable to voting 1 Abbott.

    After this it’s going to be pretty tough to take on Slippery. Every new allegation will be treated with a yawn by the people whose votes matter. Lewis has had his chance to take down Pete and he couldn’t make it stick. Further efforts aren’t going to be so quickly believed.

  27. Compact Crank @ 5704

    While you may think that they should all hate each others guts – the fact is there are many cross party friendships and relationships.

    Stop verbaling me. Where did I say they should hate each other? Friendships involve trust and it has been shown time and time again you can never trust a Fib.

    This is good in a robust democracy where discussion, argument and exchange of ideas can lead to workable policy outcomes.

    What do you think takes place in Parliament, particularly in committees?

    Compromise is the art of politics – unfortunately for Gillard, she has been comprimising with the wrong party.

    What an absurd statement. Don’t you remember what happened when Rudd tried to compromise with the Turnbull led Libs on an ETS?

    Apart from that, agreements can be negotiated without necessarily compromising.

    Are you the latest incarnation of Truthy?

  28. [Yeah an open vote in Parliament is sooooo “slight of hand”, and too clever by half. Abbott and the Liberals knew because the MSM did report that Mr Slipper might defect. Along with some other possible names. We know JG is a good negotiator. So I say you are wrong and the voters will see it that way.]

    Typical labor spin.

    A nice vote was only enabled because Jenkins was removed by gillards political judgement. Just like how gillard won the pm job through a vote free take over because she knifed him behind his back and wiped out his supporters

  29. Compact Crank

    What has the coalition actually done, to get the people to favour it at this point of time

    nothing what soever, the media will not tell the public about the direct action plan, which will bring in a carbon price

    The media will not put the same amount of time on negativity as it has with the government

    and so on

    its the media who is doing this for the coalition , not tony abbott

  30. could be a bit of a crack down coming on the use of cab charges + hire cars I’d suggest

    had another look, Slipper’s writing is terrible, nearly as bad as mine 🙂

    but looks like all the ones he has supplied are completed by the same person – which makes since since that’s what he said

  31. [Abbott’s approval is higher than Gillards by some margin.]

    Latest Essential that measured this:

    Approval: Gillard 32, Abbott 32

    That’s some hell of a margin! 😆

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