Newspoll: 55-45 to Coalition

James J reports Newspoll has the Coalition’s two-party lead back up from 53-47 to 55-45, from primary votes of 33% for Labor (down two), 46% for the Coalition (up one), 8% for the Greens (down three, which as Poliquant notes in comments is their worst result since March 2009) and 13% for others (up four). Julia Gillard has the nonetheless opened the narrowest of leads as preferred prime minister, moving from 38-38 to 39-38. Personal ratings are more in line with the media narrative of the last few weeks, with Julia Gillard recording a 7% improvement on net approval and Tony Abbott recording an 8% decline. Gillard is up four on approval to 31% and down three on disapproval to 57%, while Abbott is down three to 31% and up five to 59%.

UPDATE: The Morgan face-to-face poll covering last weekend’s polling (for some reason the August 26-27 weekend seems to have been dispensed with) has Labor further improving on the previous result, which was its best since March. Labor is steady on the primary vote at 34.5%, but the Coalition is down 2.5% to 41.5% and the Greens are up 1.5% to 11.5%. On respondent-allocated preferences, the two-party preferred gap has narrowed slightly from 54-46 to 53.5-46.5. However, the move on the previous election measure of two-party preferred is more substantial: from 53-47 to 51.5-48.5.

The weekly Essential Research report has fallen into line with other pollsters in giving Labor its best result since March – up two on the primary vote to 34% and one on two-party preferred to 55-45. The Coalition’s primary vote is down a point to 48% after no fewer than 12 consecutive weeks at 49%, its lowest since April. The poll finds 52% believing female politicians receive more criticism than men against only 4% for less and 40% for the same, and very similar results (51%, 6% and 38%) when the subject is narrowed to Julia Gillard specifically. A question on which groups would be better off under Labor or Liberal governments find traditional perceptions of the parties are as strong as ever, with wide gaps according to whether the group could be perceived as disadvantaged (pensioners, unemployed, disabled) or advantaged (high incomes, large corporations, families of private school children). Respondents continue to think it likely that a Coalition government would bring back laws similar to WorkChoices (51% likely against 25% unlikely).

Other news:

• The Victorian Liberals have preselected candidates for three Labor-held federal seats. Ben Collier, managing director of Sunbury-based information technology consultancy Collier Pereira Services, won preselection last weekend to contest McEwen, where redistribution has boosted Labor member Rob Mitchell’s margin from 5.3% to 9.2% by adding the area around Sunbury. In Bendigo, transport business owner Greg Bickley has been chosen to run against Lisa Chesters, who will defend Labor’s 9.4% margin after the retirement of sitting member Steve Gibbons. In Bruce, Emanuele Cicchiello, school teacher, Knox councillor and candidate for Holt in 2007, will run against Labor member Alan Griffin, whose margin is 7.7%.

AAP reports the Liberal National Party in Queensland has attracted seven candidates for preselection in Kevin Rudd’s seat of Griffith, five in Kirsten Livermore’s seat of Capricornia and four in Bob Katter’s seat of Kennedy, although the names of the candidates have not been published. However, it is known that former Australian Medical Association president Bill Glasson is among the starters in Griffith. Meanwhile, Clive Palmer has finally put an end to his over-reported pretend bid for preselection, on the pretext that he “can’t support Coalition policy on refugees and political lobbyists”.

• The ABC reports former Australian rugby union coach John Connolly is “expected to announce soon” that he will contest the LNP preselection to succeed retiring Alex Somlyay in Fairfax, having failed in his bid for the Labor-held Brisbane seat of Petrie. “Local solicitor Swain Roberts and businessman Terry O’Brien” are also expected to nominate. Former LNP director James McGrath, who appeared to have the numbers sewn up before deciding to take on Mal Brough in Fisher, now seems to have his eyes elsewhere.

• Alex Arnold of the Illawarra Mercury reports Neil Reilly, who also ran in 2007 and 2010, has emerged as the only nominee for Labor preselection in the south coast New South Wales seat of Gilmore, which will be vacated by the retirement of Liberal incumbent Joanna Gash. Reilly was initially rebuffed before the 2010 election when the party’s national executive installed former South Sydney rugby league player David Boyle, who later withdrew after widespread local criticism over the imposition of a non-local (though he is now a Shoalhaven councillor).

• Counting has been finalised for the Northern Territory election of the Saturday before last. Two remote seats thought to be in doubt fell the CLP’s way, Arafura by 1.0% and Stuart by a surprisingly easy 3.5% (larger than the 3.1% in the never-in-doubt Darwin seat of Sanderson). That makes for five CLP gains from Labor (Arafura, Stuart, Arnhem, Daly and, if we use the 2008 election result as the baseline, Namatjira) and a total of 16 seats for the CLP, eight for Labor and one independent. The CLP scored 55.8% of the two-party vote, which is a 5.1% swing compared with the raw 2008 result – remembering that two Labor-held seats were uncontested last time, both of which were won by the CLP this time.

Seats Votes % Swing 2PP Swing
Country Liberal 16 (+5) 46,653 50.5% +5.1% 55.8% +5.1%
Labor 8 (-5) 33,862 36.6% -6.5% 44.2% -5.1%
Independent (11) 1 (-) 6,092 6.6% -0.5%
Greens (10) 3,039 3.3% -1.0%
First Nations (8) 2,048 2.2%
Sex Party (5) 717 0.8%
Formal 92,411 96.8% +0.9%
Informal 3,072 3.2% -0.9%
Enrolment/Turnout 123,815 77.1% +2.1%

• Also finalised is the count for the New South Wales state by-election for Heffron, also held last Saturday, where Labor’s Ron Hoenig will succeed Kristina Keneally after scoring an easy victory. Even allowing for the absence of a Liberal candidate, the 17.7% hike in the Labor primary vote looks fairly encouraging for them, although taking into account the plunge in turnout the result on raw votes was more modest (an increase of 1631). It was a less happy result for the Greens, whose share of the vote was up only slightly in the absence of strong competition, and down 559 votes in absolute terms.

Votes % Swing 2PP %
Ron Hoenig (Labor) 20,501 58.9% +17.7% 21,863 70.0%
Mehreen Faruqi (Greens) 8,122 23.3% +4.4% 9,366 30.0%
Drew Simmons (Democrats) 3,749 10.8%
Robyn Peebles (Christian Democrats) 2,442 7.0% +5.1%
Liberal -33.3%
Independents -4.6%
Formal 34,814 94.8% -1.9%
Informal 1,910 5.2% +1.9%
Enrolment/Turnout 55,712 65.9% -22.8%

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.

3,182 comments on “Newspoll: 55-45 to Coalition”

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  1. Ducky, don’t understand what you’re saying about being downcast for the time …and so on.
    I’ve missed being able to post even though I don’t do so very often as I have a full time job, family and so on. I do miss being able to ask questions of people more knowledgable than me
    I’ve no idea what you mean about switching personality. I’m a therapist whose done their own therapy. I know pretty much who and what I am. I’m also of an age where you’re pretty much who you are going to be for the rest of your life.
    Switching an avatar is not switching a personality.

  2. [Got to be a godsend for Barack.]

    Its not that good a number actually, and the rate only dropped as participation dropped.

    On the other hand, the Dem Convention was miles ahead of the Republican one…

  3. LATEST:

    US economy adds 96,000 jobs in August. Jobless rate falls to 8.1%

    The nail in Mitt Romney’s political coffin? Nah, why don’t we go the whole hog and call it the nail in the Republican Party’s coffin? 🙂

  4. The U.S. economy is a basket case. Sadly the Democrats have squibbed it in terms of standing up to Wall Street.

    Main street will be paying for the excesses of Wall Street for decades to come.

    Sad thing is, main street will barely raise a whimper.

    In the meantime democrats will cheer the tiny victories like they are triumphs. Taking the eye off the ball.

    Unemployment is going to be at depression levels in the U.S. for a long time now because the economy has locked into backing up the bad moves of Wall Street with Main Street money.

  5. Mod Lib,
    It’s all about the perception in politics. The jobless rate went down in the US. Ergo propter, it didn’t go up.

    Take, for example, the cardigans of Barry Unsworth. Cost him the election in NSW, I reckon. 😀

  6. Adelaide Blue Cheese
    Here in melbourne we have tasted a lovely S.A cheese simply called “Adelaide Blue”
    For some reason few Melboure shp[s stock it
    IMHO is a world class Blue,,,as good as gorgonzola
    Does anyone from S A know of it,,,and why isn’t it better known

  7. [Mod Lib,
    It’s all about the perception in politics]

    Completely agree.

    The lingering perceptions being that Ryan makes stuff up, Romney is uninspiring (least approval for a candidate’s speech at a convention in a generation) and Michelle Obama is a star, Clinton is out of this world and Obama may not god but he is not that naughty.

  8. So has anything been happening in Australian politics while I was away?

    It seems like we are stuck in a rut:

    Polls 55-45 still
    Rudd making veiled references to being dumped again
    Another backflip (this time on carbon tax rate)

    ….same old Australian political scene it seems.

  9. monica,

    As far as I can see, you are now the optimist and with free time that HSO never was.

    William assures me that you are who you say you are. Good enough for me.

    Psychology seems to be your bent. If so, I might need a virtual couch with you. Happy for our host to give you my e-mail address.

  10. @tom_watson: “suspected of offences under the theft act”.  There’s more to say on this soon. cc @rupertmurdoch

  11. deflationite@3156,

    In the meantime democrats will cheer the tiny victories like they are triumphs. Taking the eye off the ball.

    Better those, with the Repugnants behaving worse than Tony Abbott, and conniving to put a spoke in the Democrats wheels whenever they do get a chance to get some momentum up, than the ‘Corporations are people, my friend’ man, Mitt, leading the country down the Road to Serfdom with the Neo Mercantilists calling the tune.

  12. Mod Lib,
    I reckon if the Repugnants had done an Obama and gone with Senator Marco Rubio as their nominee they would have been in with a chance. He sells the same sort of story, but from a Republican perspective, as does Barack Obama. His was the best speech of their convention. A ‘Coming Man’ as they say.

    Wouldn’t that be a blast. In 2016, Juan Castro v Marco Rubio. 😀

  13. [Wouldn’t that be a blast. In 2016, Juan Castro v Marco Rubio]

    Castro was good but I am not sure he can do an Obama and go from the “up and coming” speech slot at the convention to becoming the president 4 years later…

    Anyway, 2016 will be President Hillary Clinton or President Michelle Obama 🙂 !

  14. Def 3156
    “We have an old US friend in Cleveland. a retired lawyer….( Cleveland BTW…. is a shock as the city centre is a wasteland…full of poor people pushing their trolleys and sleeping in squats and doorway,,,no place to go after dark.).
    He lives in a leafy outer suburbs and rarely goes there however

    .He and his family were all FDR democrats…and he recently has despaired…he thinks Obama is talented and clever but a weak reed…and apart from OBAMACARE has little to show for his 4 years..but better than what he called the “deranged” Repubs
    He hoped for trials of the bankers and stock-brokers at the centre of the crisis…but no way

    He sees the Tea Party as a semi-fascist group…and the product he says of the evil Murdoch’s media. He sees Murdoch as a real part of America’s problem

    He jokes about Murdoch as “your fellow countryman” when he emails me

    He is desponded and despairing …sees nothing but trouble ahead
    He sees the “end of the Republic”…a day when some ambitious military man will remove a President as the economy leads on to a domestic disaster..and the military won’t want cuts in their budget despite the decline of the USA
    He also thinks that a nation where so many have recourse and access to arms is a dangerous place as the dangers worsens
    He also sees the US locked into endless wars….because the Pentagon has to use up more and more funds on it’s warlike activities…and he sees the power of the zionist lobby locking the US into endless wars across the M east and the wider Islamic world …given the wide islamophobia there He also critical of the power of the zionist lobby in the USA snf thetr sbility to drag in US into wars in the M East
    …he said recently of the huge “gifts” that are made to israel..”.I believe they will still extract their
    pound of flesh even when a great many Americans are scouring the trash dumps”

    He belives that the endless references to the greatness of the US is part of the inability of people to come to terms with these facts
    The solution is always a military one…and that always costs vast sums of money
    but facts are stubbon things…and in the end have their way

  15. #3175

    Very few realise how close we are.

    We have a state that controls over 50% of the arms of the planet in a precarious economic position.

    The next couple of decades will be fascinating. Would not like to predict where it is going.

    Those saying Australia is in Bison territory are swimming in petroleum jelly.

    We have massive private debt and little to back it up to pay for it. Yes, gloat in our relative position of being better off than than rest of the world now. But I am telling you now in 5 years we will be worse off than just about everyone. Things turn very quickly, especially for commodity dependant economies. We need the NBN and Gonski to dig us out of a big hole, only then just to get our breath.

  16. [We have massive private debt and little to back it up to pay for it.]

    There is a difference between having large private debt because you are buying french champagne and BMWs versus you are borrowing from the Chinese to pay government salaries (Aus vs. USA).

  17. [Another backflip (this time on carbon tax rate)]

    Well if you weren’t watching, paid no attention to how the carbon scheme worked and were foolish enough to believe something published by News Corpse (or the ABC mindlessly echoing News Corpse as they do constantly) you might be forgiven for coming to such an ill informed conclusion.

  18. Watching Lisa interview Wingnut confirms my recent belief that the skids have been constructed for his departure. When you look at his repeated gaffs and criticism from all quarters of his previous supporters, including Malcom Turnbull, Barnaby Joice,some of the most rabid anti Labor media such as The West Australian and others, the demise of Mr NO is evident. We must remember that he only won the leadership by 1 vote and that was because one of the Liberal members who it is said would have voted against him was absent when the vote was taken. It is evident that a big number of his own party members have no time for him and his continuous negativity,personal attacks and lack of any policies in parliament are becoming an imbarrasment to the Liberal party.
    It is obvious that he will follow the path of Mark Latham in the Labor party and likewise be refered to as the bad Liberal experiment in the future.
    Len Paggi 0899411587

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