Essential Research: 56-44 to Coalition

This week’s Essential Research shows no real change on voting intention, with the Coalition still leading 56-44 from primary votes of 32% for Labor (down one), 49% for the Coalition (steady) and 10% for the Greens (steady). Also featured are Essential’s monthly personal ratings, which likewise show little shift. Julia Gillard is down a point on both approval and disapproval, to 31% and 57%. Tony Abbott is respectively up one to 36% and down two to 51%, and his lead as preferred prime minister is up from 38-37 to 38-36 (I guess not too many people heard this then). A question on same-sex marriage finds 54% supportive and 33% opposed, respectively steady and down two on a year ago.

Preselection snippets:

Phillip Coorey of the Sydney Morning Herald reports Gary “Angry” Anderson will seek Nationals preselection in Gilmore, the southern New South Wales seat which will be vacated at the election by the retirement of Liberal member Joanna Gash.

• In the neighbouring seat of Hume, where Liberal member Alby Schultz is retiring, Coorey further reports that state upper house MP Niall Blair is a further possibility as Nationals candidate, together with presumed front-runners Senator Fiona Nash and state government minister Katrina Hodgkinson. Leslie White of the Weekly Times recently reported both Nationals and Liberal internal polling had the Liberals ahead in the seat, but the Nationals remained confident they could win with Nash or Hodgkinson running.

The Australian reports Matt Adamson, former Canberra, Penrith and national rugby league player, has been sounded out by the Liberals to run against Rob Oakeshott in Lyne. The Nationals have already endorsed David Gillespie, a local doctor who was best man at Tony Abbott’s wedding.

• The Victorian ALP has taken care of a whole bunch of preselection business, re-endorsing all sitting members and confirming Slater & Gordon lawyer Andrew Giles to succeed Harry Jenkins in Scullin, and United Voice official Lisa Chesters to succeed Steve Gibbons in Bendigo. The preselection for Melbourne will be held on August 26, with 2010 candidate Cath Bowtell considered the front-runner but Harvey Stern, president of Labor for Refugees Victoria, is also in the field.

• John Hogg, Queensland Labor Senator since 1996 and the chamber’s current President, has announced he will not re-contest the next election. Michael McKenna of The Australian reports Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Union state secretary Chris Ketter is “among the frontrunners” to replace him as a Labor Senate candidate – remembering that Labor won three Senate seats in Queensland in 2007, and the party fears it may only win one next year.

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.

7,198 comments on “Essential Research: 56-44 to Coalition”

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  1. These people complaining about the panel’s report should have been spending their time putting pressure on the opposition instead of kicking the gov’t. Now they have to wear it.

  2. rosemour, I’m a little bit more optimistic than you about where all this will eventually go.

    Yes, Morrison can jump up and down and claim victory today. But, once the Government gets to work on Nauru and Manus Island (presumably by getting Oakeshott to put a bill through Parliament), the Houston report will take the issue off the policy agenda for at least the rest of 2012.

    Then, if she wishes, Gillard can bring the issue back on the agenda next year at a time of her choosing. She will need to get Nauru and Manus Island up and running and, ideally, filling up rapidly. Then she can raise Malaysia again and try to make the debate purely into one of “Malaysia vs turning back the boats”. That’s what I believe Labor should have done all along: they should have agreed to Nauru and Manus Island last year and perhaps even TPVs. If they’d done that, Nauru and Manus Island would be full by now and we would already be into Malaysia vs turning back the boarts.

    As Fran Kelly showed once more on RN this morning, the Libs’ self-contradictory position of caring about people’s human rights if they go to Malaysia but not if they go to Indonesia is not difficult to expose as being totally ridiculous, especially if you’ve got Scott Morrison trying to explain it. (I cannot believe that journalists, including those on Crikey, used to suggest that this bloke could potentially become the leader of the Federal Liberal Party. I don’t have any time at all for Tony Abbott but, compared to him, Scott Morrison isn’t even worth a pair of Tone’s used budgie smugglers.)

  3. [I have to say thus again, I cannot believe the panel recommended using Nauru.
    I just can’t.]

    Neither can I, you have to GET on a BOAT to be sent THERE!.
    How does that stop the boats?.

  4. [Latika Bourke ‏@latikambourke
    Remember when Kevin Rudd said ‘This party and government will not be lurching to the right on the question of #asylum seekers?’]
    This tweet tells me Latika doesn’t understand the full picture. She’s buying Morrison’s myth that Labor has caved in.

  5. A SKorean was stripped off his Bronze Medal for displaying a political sign. you mean a victory lap with your country flag is not political?

  6. lizzie

    Her tweet relates to Rudd and his position on the issue, rather than the party. It is through the prism of him a a leader me thinks

    Speaking of which has Bowen and the PM popped up yet?

  7. [Have Nauru and Manus/PNG signed up to the UNHCR?]

    Diog, Houston Panel said it’s no longer relevant as the ASEAN Countries have not signed up & we still need the Regional Solution

  8. What a huge slap in the face for the Greens.

    It’s a farce that we have to contend with the situation of such a loudmouthed minority protest group holding the balance of power in the Senate.

    What’s going to happen?

    1. Abbott will not support Malaysia.

    2. Julia will revisit Malaysia when necessary.

    3. If the boats continue to arrive, the Liberals will be to blame.

    4. The Liberals must then pass the full recommendations of the Houston Report.

    5. If the Liberals refuse, the Greens must pass the recommendations.

    6. If the Greens refuse, they are to be put LAST on all Labor how to vote cards.

    The Greens – Peak Pewny R.I.P.

    Can’t wait!

  9. there will be so much argy barge on here its not worth the the time

    i agree with Meher just accept the report, do it get over it done.,

    morrison and abbott can carry on . we thought of it first like children in the play ground
    but in the long run the voters dont give a fig.

    who did what who said what,. just want it over,

    and so should all labor voters i sick of the ideological stuff.

    but the senate, if abbott does not vote for this he is the one going to look ridiculous.
    if he doesnt allow a senate vote it looks like he just wants the politics not a solution

    we need this off the agenda for the election.,

  10. [I have to say thus again, I cannot believe the panel recommended using Nauru.
    I just can’t.]

    Neither can I to be honest, but the mission was to find a solution and this is clearly designed toward the required bipartisan support. I don’t like it but I’m sure they know more than I.

  11. Speaking of which has Bowen and the PM popped up yet?

    She has to give the Fibs time to climb on their own petard.

  12. With an ounce of bi-partisan goodwill there is sufficient substance in that report to come up with a regional solution that just may work. I don’t think it matters which side won or lost, personally I think there is political gain and loss for both the majors and little for the Greens to be happy about, the important thing is to agree on a set of policies that Australia can have some pride in. That hasn’t been the case for too long.

    I don’t hold out hope that humanity will win out over politics though. We will just have to wait and see.

  13. I reckon Christine Milne is trapped. She has SHY and her ilk just waiting to drag her down if she budges one inch. Milne is in an unenviable position.

  14. Well, perhaps I got the wrong end of the stick.

    My understanding was that the report recommended Malaysia as part of a regional framework that needs some tweeking.
    The report also stated that all recommendations need to be implemented to be effective, which includes Malaysia.
    Right? Wrong?

  15. [El slacko went feral a few months ago. Why is she not happy with you?]

    vic, for my insinuation that she has gone feral.

  16. [She has to give the Fibs time to climb on their own petard.]

    A petard is a grenade like bomb – you can’t climb on it, I’m afraid.

  17. You should tell SHY RT @latikambourke Houston report ‘perfect should not be allowed to become the enemy of the good.’ #asylum

  18. On today’s showings (yet to hear from the government) there may be more hope of reaching a breakthrough with the coalition.

    Morrison, with the proviso that his word is hardly to be trusted, did at least hint that he’d maybe pass the Panel’s recommendations if the government was able to get the safeguards up with Malaysia.

    Refugee lobby group up now and very cross – closer to the Greens position. Still claiming the government and opposition are wanting to put the boats issue further offshore than it is.

    The problem is, in a democracy we still have to take into account the wishes of voters. In general a large proportion of them would like us to be a lot harsher with them than what we are. That was what Howard was able to exploit, and it is very hard to defuse.

    This series of options at least recognises those political realities and tries to balance them with humanitarian safeguards. Contrary to SHY’s claims, it is the Greens that have been ‘suckered in’. It is not feasible to claim our way or nothing.

    Labor has some strong debaters to bring out such as Carr, Gillard and Bowen. I think they can win this one while damaging their two opponents.

  19. dee thats what i heard to

    malyasia needs working on but good.

    it was only morrisson who said it got a red light.

    where the pm has she spoken as yet.

    good to let the opp, go first she can correct them

    and i iwould NOT go on the 7.30 report stay away from the abc go on the
    7 o clcock show dont know the channel

    Julia was there last week.

    just stay away from the abc, then one day they become more respectfull

  20. Speaking of which has Bowen and the PM popped up yet?

    The government made the right choice to leave the panel to present their report without any ALP MPs present. The government will be quite happy to allow a nice gap to let the media stew – in a non partisan way – before they pop up to put the government’s position, which presumably as others have said will be adoption of everything in the report.

    I guess they’ve already said they’ll be responding today, but honestly leaving it to tomorrow or Wednesday allows them to swoop in and capitulate in a bravely compromising way.

    This is not to be too critical of the government – circumstance and politics has left them nowhere to go.

  21. [Is their method requiring them to ask the same pool of people about their voting intentions week after week essentially flawed?]

    YES!. because it is not a RANDOM sample.

  22. Finns

    [ Have Nauru and Manus/PNG signed up to the UNHCR?

    Diog, Houston Panel said it’s no longer relevant as the ASEAN Countries have not signed up & we still need the Regional Solution]

    I was more thinking of how the politics of it works.

    If Manus Island and Nauru are signed up, Abbott just has to say that he’ll support legislation to re-open them as they are UNHRC compliant and supported by Gillard’s own panel.

  23. Well I have just read the 162 page report and it is nothing like what is being reported.

    It is a short, medium and long term plan for Regional Processing. The regional centres to begin with are Nauru and Manus because they are easy to set up, Malaysia is in the Medium term, set up a legal framework not just a handshake and then it is the 3rd. The Philippines is a long term regional centre.

    The big change is that ALL boat arrivals get processed in a 3rd country. Christmas Island gets closed to boats.

  24. The finns

    Lol! I suspect el slacko has gone feral because she has been getting some inside word from some Labor pollies re he who must not be named

  25. jackol i dont agree entirely.

    If you set up a panel which was a very smart move.

    you take the advice of that panel ,

    i dont see any capitulating at all.

    people have short memories any way they cannot remember who said what when ect.
    \just say yes thank you to the panel your work has been very much appreciated
    the gov. will except your findings/

    end of story, no press conf. just a statement in the public view of course.

  26. Dee you are absolutely spot on.

    Malaysia is CENTRAL to the success of stopping the boats.

    But the Monkey :mrgreen: won’t vote for it!

    When the boats continue to arrive – LOOK OUT. The Houston recommendations must be implemented in its entirety.

    Deaths will be blamed on Abbott.

    Then, it’s the Greens turn. If they refuse, get them out of parliament so the government can get on with fixing problems.

    The Loons R.I.P. Can’t wait!

  27. Whar Morrison didn’t bother to mention:

    The official report: Section 3.80

    “In the Panel’s view, the conditions noted above and required for effective, lawful
    and safe turnbacks of irregular vessels headed for Australia with asylum seekers on
    board are not currently met in regard to turnbacks to Indonesia.”

  28. YES!. because it is not a RANDOM sample.

    This assumes that a random sample is what they are trying to measure. It’s not. What they are trying to measure is an estimate for what the population as a whole would do, if an election were held anytime soon.

    If their “captive population” reasonably represents a subset of the whole population then it will be able to provide a reasonable estimate and presumably will be subject to the same political winds as the rest of the population (ie it is highly likely that if the population as a whole adjusts their opinion then the representative subset will as well).

    It’s a different polling technique, but I don’t think it’s invalid simply because it doesn’t use random sampling. In some respects it’s more valid because you don’t get the same random noise.

    You just have to be careful that your representative sample is actually representative (calibrated at election times, censuses as much as possible) and is maintained carefully – presumably they have turnover with people dying, leaving the country etc etc.

  29. [Latika Bourke @latikambourke 12m
    And Sharon Claydon preselected to contest Newcastle for Federal Labor. (Sitting MP Sharon Grierson retiring.)]
    View details ·
    [Latika Bourke @latikambourke 13m
    Federal Labor NSW candidates: Susan Templeman in Macquarie (v Lib Louise Markus.) Neil Reilly in Gilmore (held by retiring Lib Jo Gash.)]
    View details ·

  30. My Say
    Morriscum is claiming a ‘Victory’ on the issue of AS.
    Well, Mr. Morriscum must back that claim of victory with support wouldn’t you think?

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