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. I have 90 assignments to mark and a house to clean this weekend, so goodnight everyone. Catch you sometime when I’m getting bored with cleaning the oven reading and assessing.

  2. poroti

    Posted Friday, September 7, 2012 at 9:35 pm | Permalink


    Dunedin More Scottish than Scotland, a bit of a problem though getting them in focus

    True but I it is to me amazing that the culture is so strong that teenagers are doing this stuff so long after their ancestors left Scotland.Not that I should be surprised. Check out this from a small town settled by my ggg G’father in 1853 after the family left Scotland in 1815 via Nova Scotia.

    Firebrand Scottish preacher Norman McLeod, with over 800 of his followers, founded the town of Waipū in 1854. The group had previously settled in Nova Scotia, but hardship led them to look further afield

    Waipu Highland Games – New Zealand 2012

    You are right, is that the ggg Grandfather you inherited your “firebrand” ways from ?
    Says she as she skips off to bed, I am teasing you tonight Poroti

  3. This little black duck
    [League does not know tackle technique: first goes low and hard]
    A duck after my own heart. Ye can nae run with your ankles locked together and secondly why go high when big fat bastards have all their weight advantage up high ?

  4. [Space Kidette

    Posted Friday, September 7, 2012 at 9:37 pm | Permalink


    Comedy gold]

    Must really be firing tonight have been favourited and retweeted a few times with one of my comments tonight about Lib Trolls Night all

  5. mari:

    Yes, she did mention Karl.

    Double *ugh*. As if a professional woman has to defer to her male colleague FFS.

    Good night, and it’s great to see you back again. 🙂

  6. The PM is giving a press conference and has just had a dig at Shamahan on Ruddstoration. I tuned in late and missed part of the question.

    Anyone catch it?

  7. The Wilkinson interview this morning was very interesting. Reminded me of the phrase ‘giving someone enough rope’.
    I thought Wilkinson gave Abbott plenty of opportunities to provide answers, while (sensibly) actually following up with challenging statements.

    I wonder if 2 years of soft interviews have left Abbott ill-prepared for follow up questioning? He used to handle it as a Minister, but seems to have lost the ability… out of form perhaps?

  8. Ducky,

    I don’t know who this one is but the Tom Crone one last week? was interesting. Legally, he knows where all the skeletons are buried and who knew what when. If he decided to spill the beans it could snag Mordor himself.

  9. This little black duck

    [The ‘Wobbles are crumbling.

    Now, if only the Hawks could kick straight!]
    Noooo ! I have picked 32 as the winning margin in my tipping comp. It is perfect as it is 🙂

  10. Did anyone catch that last question of PMJG’s presser, to which she replied, “Dennis Shanahan has already done it for the nation.”?

    It sounded like someone was getting slapped down.

  11. SK

    [but the Tom Crone one last week?]

    Remember that Murdoch has already dumped on him – either Crone’s now a lot richer or it may get very worth watching.

  12. This little black duck

    [Sack the Centre Fullback: he had no idea about the flight of the ball.]
    Ball skills ? Soccer kicks arsk, physical toughness the rugbys kick arsk . Aerial ping pong ? Not so much.

  13. Hello, bludgers. Haven’t been able to post anything for ages, due to getting lost in an “Alice in Wonderland” loop when I tried to log in. Now I can, and am bereft of footy repartee, I’ve no idea where to start, apart from noting the LOTO is clearly in trouble and the Labor Party is clearly salting away bankable wins.

  14. Puff,

    Del Piero is 37. At his age and how to “eke” an existence, where would you choose to go?

    I think he wants to settle in Australia after his playing career.

    All the football commentators think he is a really good bloke.

    That is one signing about which I have no doubts at all.

  15. Oakeshott Country

    [I think that was Henry Parkes’ house during one of the rare periods he had funds.]

    Gold star for you OC 🙂

    According to wiki, it was the house Parkes rented in the final years of his life

  16. poroti,

    I can watch the highest level of soccer to the end of my days.

    I refuse to pay for it.

    My 8-year old grandson is playing his last game of the season on their oval on Saturday. I’ll be there.

  17. CTar1,

    Way back in the weeks before the enquiry got under way, Crone and Rupert parted ways. I thought it very odd considering how long they have been partners.

    I suspected at the time that Crone wasn’t prepared to put his legal career on the line in response to some illegality Rupert was about to or had committed. Though I was really just guessing at that time.

    While Crone in all likelihood knows how it all went down, I was surprised when he actually was arrested. I hadn’t expected that. So it means they have some evidence of Crone’s involvement.

    From the very beginning I thought that nailing Rupert was always going to rely on someone linking with evidence of Ruperts knowledge and the only people really who’d know that would be Brooks, James and Crone.

    James won’t tell, and I have a very strong suspicion that brooks is on some kind of promise. Crone could be another matter entirely.

  18. The journalist said that in the journalists dining room there was an item on the menu which translates as Ear Of Rudd and would she be trying that, to which PMJG replied that Dennis Shanahan had already done that for the nation.

    Slap down, Shannars.

  19. PM asked about the Rudd ‘stalking’ stuff.

    Sensibly refuses to engage. After all, Rudd is after attention so why give it to him?

  20. This little black duck


    I am not even going to url that.]
    It is OK, the duck emerged in one piece . Dignity intact as far as I am concerned.

  21. PtMD
    The question from a journalist with an Australian accent was wtte ” There is a local fish dish called ‘Ear of Rudd’. Do you think you will try it?”
    JG’s reply approx. ” I think Denis Shanahan has already done that.” In other words Denis Shanahan has already written about it.
    My Concise Oxford does say that a “rudd” is a fish with a red eye hence the name.

  22. Puff,

    Our PM is very good on nuance.

    My goal in life is to get her to come to our house for a meal. Might not be while she is PM but I’m working on it.

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