Newspoll: 54-46 to Coalition

Newspoll’s famous 50-50 result of three weeks ago is left looking more than ever like an outlier, with the latest result coming in four points higher for the Coalition. Meanwhile, the less erratic Essential Research continues to trend slowly Labor’s way.

AAP, for some reason, reveals that the Newspoll to be published in The Australian tomorrow will have the elastic jerking back after the 50-50 anomaly of three weeks ago, with the Coalition now leading 54-46 on two-party preferred from primary votes of 33% for Labor (down three), 45% for the Coalition (up four) and 10% for the Greens (down two). However, Julia Gillard has improved further on her strongly recovering personal ratings last time, holding steady on approval at 36% and dropping two on disapproval to 50%, producing her best net approval rating since April last year. The wide gap which opened on preferred prime minister last time has narrowed only modestly, coming in at 43-33 in Gillard’s favour rather than 46-32. Tony Abbott’s personal ratings have also improved, his approval up three to 33% and disapproval down five to 55%.

Today’s Essential Research had Labor gaining a further point on the primary vote to 37%, with the Coalition steady at 47%. Essential has shown Labor gaining five points on the primary vote over six weeks, to reach a level not seen since March last year. The Coalition’s two-party preferred lead is unchanged at 53-47. Essential has smartly chosen this week to repeat an exercise from a year ago concerning trust in media personalities, finding Alan Jones among the most famous but least trusted (22% trust against 67% do not trust). The others best recognised were Laurie Oakes and George Negus, with the former slightly edging out the latter on trust (72% compared with 69%). Only 17% registered support for funding cuts to the ABC, with around a third each wanting funding maintained or increased. Opinion on government regulation of the media was fairly evenly spread between wanting more, less and the same.

UPDATE (9/10/12): The latest Morgan face-to-face result, combining its surveys over the past two weekends, has Labor down half a point to 37%, the Coalition up 1.5% to 43% and the Greens up half a point to 10.5%. The Coalition’s lead on respondent-allocated preferences is steady at 52-48, but they have gained a point on the 2010 election preferences measure to lead 51-49.

Senate-heavy preselection news:

• Barnaby Joyce’s lower house ambitions for the next election have foundered with Bruce Scott’s determination to serve another term as member for Maranoa. Joyce will not challenge Scott for preselection, saying to do so would be “self-indulgent personality politics”, despite the impression many received from his declared opposition to the locally contentious purchase of the vast Cubbie Station by a consortium led by Chinese interests. Unidentified Nationals quoted by Dennis Shanahan of The Australian “maintain Joyce had the numbers for preselection over Scott but it was going to be an ugly and drawn-out affair”.

• Two of the Queensland Coalition Senators whose terms expire after the next election have announced they will not seek re-election, leaving only 2007 ticket leader Ian MacDonald. Ron Boswell, who has been in the Senate since 1983 and was re-elected from number three in 2007, surprised nobody by announcing that at the age of 70 the time had come to bow out. Andrew Fraser of The Australian reports those in contention to take his place on the LNP Senate ticket include David Goodwin, the Boswell-backed president of the Queensland Chamber of Commerce and Industry, along with LNP vice-president Gary Spence, LNP treasurer Barry O’Sullivan, and Barnaby Joyce staffer Matt Canavan. Liberal Senator Sue Boyce today announced she would not contest the next election as she wished to spend more time with her family, while acknowledging her preselection would have faced opposition from forces who perceive her as too moderate. Steven Scott of the Courier-Mail reported that other applicants are likely to include David Moore, who worked on Campbell Newman’s election campaign. Steven Scott of the Courier-Mail reported that hopefuls for a Senate position included David Moore, an LNP operative whose activities as a lobbyist were recently criticised by Clive Palmer.

• Chris Ketter, state secretary of the Right faction Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association, has been preselected to top the Queensland Labor Senate ticket. The number one candidate from 2007, Senate President John Hogg, will retire. The second and third elected candidates from last time, Claire Moore and Mark Furner, will retain their old positions, a gloomy prospect for Furner in particular.

• Mark Kenny of The Advertiser reports that Labor in South Australia will not promote Penny Wong to the top of its Senate ticket, despite the “bad look” of having the position instead go to one-time Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association state secretary Don Farrell on the strength of his Right faction’s control of between 55% and 60% of the votes at the party’s state convention.

• Long-simmering hostilities between the NSW Liberals and Nationals over the seat of Hume have come to an end, with the Nationals agreeing not to field a candidate against Liberal candidate Angus Taylor in his bid to succeed retiring Liberal Alby Schultz. Senator Fiona Nash had most frequently been nominated as a potential candidate, together with state government minister Katrina Hodgkinson.

• Bob Carr told reporters last week that were Robert McClelland to retire in Barton, he could not think of a better candidate to succeed him than his own successor as Premier, Morris Iemma. However, McClelland insists he has no plans to do so.

• As anticipated, former Australian Medical Association president Bill Glasson has been confirmed as the LNP candidate to run against Kevin Rudd in Griffith. Glasson’s father, Bill Glasson Sr, was once Nationals member for the rural seat of Gregory and a minister in the Bjelke-Petersen, Cooper and Ahern governments. Other names mentioned in relation to the preselection were John Haley, Alfio Russo and John Adermann, who stayed with the process to the end, along with Angela Julian-Armitage and Wayne Tsang, who dropped out at an earlier stage.

• The Mercury published extensive results on Saturday for polling of state voting intention in Tasmania, conducted on behalf of the Liberal Party by ReachTEL. The figures, which make for dismal reading for Labor, are detailed below, and have been thoroughly analysed by Kevin Bonham at the Tasmanian Times. The poll also found Liberal leader Will Hodgman favoured by 57.3% ahead of 22.9% for Premier Lara Giddings and 19.8% for Greens leader Nick McKim, and that 34.4% opposed the forestry “peace deal” against 28.2% support.

	 Lyons	 Bass	Braddon	Denison	Franklin Total
Labor 	 22.3% 	 17.4% 	 23.2% 	 18.5% 	 27.6% 	 22.7%
Liberal  55.7%   62.9%   56.8%   36.5%   46.3%   51.5%
Greens   13.6%   13.6%   14.6%   23.2%   19.4%   17.7%
Other	  8.4% 	  6.1% 	  5.3% 	 21.9% 	  6.7% 	  8.1%
Sample 	  233 	  230 	  232	  241	  238	  1174

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.

6,136 comments on “Newspoll: 54-46 to Coalition”

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  1. WOW- Laurie decides he is impressed. Slow to the party but welcome anyway,

    Oakes did not miss what the other political journalists have failed to understand – the communication channels brought by the internet:

    “Were you watching Question Time?” McTernan asked. “No”, the young woman said. “I’ve been reading”

    Jezebel is the popular American website for women that lauded Gillard as “one badass motherf—–” after what it called her “epic speech on sexism”.

    It might be US-based, but in this internet age – as McTernan’s exchange with the barmaid illustrated – national borders mean little.

  2. victoria:

    Thanks for posting the Oakes article.

    One press gallery journo who seemingly hasn’t fallen into the myopic trap his colleagues tumbled into.

  3. Re USA Swamprat
    Australia has always had some conmercial and other links with the USA
    Francis Trail an American came to Melbourne during the Gold Rush and set up a number of restuarant serving a US fad…cold driks using Ice

    Several US entrepeneurs were involved with the importing of operatic companies in the 19th century …catering to a local passion for opera
    Cobb with his famous US coaches set up a major inprovement to transport before the railway age
    there are many other examples

  4. The same old same old out of the press gallery is.

    “We are needed, we the insiders put it in context.”

    To put it another away the sozzled self important fools think they are worth listening to.

    Didn’t see Gillard coming, have been telling us for 18 months about ruddstartion, Prime minister delivers great theatre and all they can do is wank on about the government giving slipper the options of resigning, and then start trying to tell us a vote moving from the Liberals to the cross benches strengthens the Liberals hands.

    Drunken miss-interpretation of events is the kind conclusions.

  5. Have just counted up the numbers for all the views of the Gillard video on all listed postings on the search site: over 1.4 million! That must be about twice what it was when I first counted them early this morning – about 17 hrs ago.

    I wonder how many hits, 3 days after the speech, can be attributed to people’s ire at LNP confected outrage and MSM reportage, which really did plumb the depths today.

    Freezing day with wild wind; about lunch time, effective temperature (ie with wind-chill) was Zero, then went lower.

    Have fun, Night Patrol.

  6. The same old same old out of the press gallery is.

    “We are needed, we the insiders put it in context.”

    The press gallery doesn’t seem to understand that the context is clearly laid out in Gillard’s speech which people can see and hear for themselves unadulterated by the journalists’ interpretations

  7. [confessions
    Posted Friday, October 12, 2012 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

    Suffice to say I felt no obligation to correct them on their understanding of misogyny. 😉

    It is not a word you see often, I think for many, Abbott is the definition of misogyny.

  8. [Bar Bar
    Posted Friday, October 12, 2012 at 9:40 pm | Permalink
    Given the govt also knows what could be coming, it just surprised me that it apparently tried to persuade the cross benchers to keep backing Mr Slipper?

    Why not give the man the option of resigning?

  9. [BH

    Posted Friday, October 12, 2012 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    deflationite – discipline but always a sense of humour wins the day. We sometimes take it too seriously but somehow it mostly works out. Getting to see them as decent adults is pure joy and grandchildren are just magic things. Makes up for all the hard work in parenting.

    I’m orf to bed to get some rest so I can hang around long enough to see at least a couple of greatgrandkids.

    Night all

    Good on you BH!

    We’ll see how they turn out. If they are decent people we will love them always. The great mystery of life.

  10. 6069
    [Might be split in UK Coalition

    “@BBCBreaking: UK Deputy PM Nick Clegg vows to fight £10bn ($16bn) welfare cuts announced by coalition govt partners. Details soon ]

    I have good on the ground info about what is happening in the UK with welfare cuts, and it is brutally callous, including to the sick. The human toll is terrible, and getting worse.

    All while the rich get tax cuts, and the NHS gets destroyed.

    So much for the great British sense of fair play.

    A serious backlash is building against Cameron.

  11. Just Me,

    The British NHS saved my colleague’s life last year. I am deeply thankful.


    Thank you for Oakes’ piece. Not bad, but could have done better, imho. (Him, that is, not you.)

  12. [Abbott is the definition of misogyny]

    I don’t think misogyny fully explains the Abbott problem, I think he is much much worse than that. But it is good he is taking the heat for that if not his full crimes against honesty and decency.

  13. [WeWantPaul
    Posted Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 12:41 am | PERMALINK
    Abbott is the definition of misogyny

    I don’t think misogyny fully explains the Abbott problem, I think he is much much worse than that. ]

    Please feel free to explane this one further.

  14. [Please feel free to explane this one further.]

    Well I think his attacks on Julia have been at least as bad as those someone who is merely a misogynist would make, but I think there is more there than simply someone hates and despises women.

    After all look at what he has done to Slipper and Thomson, neither are women, both are probably more culpable than the Hon the PM, but still his attack isn’t about whether or not they are culpable or women it is just a selfish, mostly baseless disgusting attack for power. He hates and is prepared to destroy anything that isn’t helping him obtain power.

    And Turnball is not better but he is a lot lot smarter and more dangerous, we are lucky he was conned by Gretch, showed his true colors.

  15. Laurie Oakes –

    [ON Wednesday night, the Prime Minister’s communications director, John McTernan, was with a group of Labor staffers in a Canberra bar.]

    How unusual – Canberra bars and restaurants are infested Mon-to-Thurs by these FIFOs and their seagull mates from the press.

  16. [Why every text message and email you’ve ever sent is up for grabs

    “Law enforcement supports the philosophy of the old copper wire regime whereby telecommunications suppliers maintained all records and data,” an AFP spokesperson told]

    This is the usual disingenuous sort of justification I’d expect from the AFP.

    If the proposal was the same as the ‘old copper wire regime’ the new application to the internet would only provide information about who and when we had communicated with prior to Police obtaining a warrant and, if the warrant permitted it, then the recorded ‘content’ of the communication from the date of the warrant.

    The new proposal however requires all the ‘content’ (for example an e-mail) be kept for a period of years by ISP’s so that Police can access those in retrospect on production of a warrant.

    The ‘copper wire regime’ equivalent of this would be that all phone calls were required to be recorded and kept by the phone companies.

    Be very wary of this proposal and in particular associated proposals that attempt to make it easier for law enforcement agencies to obtain warrants.

  17. BBC News showing school children in Pakistan holding a sign –

    [We extremly condemn this situation of ‘Malala’]

    It’s the ‘extreme’ that is a big part of the problem.

  18. Throughout my travels in South Africa and Mauritius this month, invariably when asked of my origin, each of the waitstaff/porter/shop assistants would reply enthusiastically “Australia is my dream/nice country/wonderful place/would love to live there”…. many in South Africa were from elsewhere on the continent. All seemed to be well aware of Australia’s resilience whilst Europe/USA were suffering economic trouble.

    Eternally grateful I am for sound economic management here.

  19. The prime Minister must apologise immediately for her disgraceful labelling of Tony Abbott as a misogynist. Misogyny is defined as hatred of women. Does Gillard really believe that Abbot hates his wife, his mother, his daughters, Julie Bishop, Peta Credlin etc???

  20. [While the Prime Minister’s office claimed a success for Ms Gillard on the international coverage, some Labor MPs believed there was too much emphasis on Twitter and blog sites and not enough on domestic media reaction.]

    The Press are really feeling threatened.

    ‘Some Labor MPs believed … ‘ – if Shanahan actually talked to ‘some’ I think I could name at least 3 or 4 of the MPs that he would pick to call.

    It’s very much an attitude of it doesn’t matter what the voters think about events – it’s more what a group of about 30 or so journalists/media commentators decide to put out there that they think is important.

    If this was presented in an article clearly as facts first then opinion, example –

    [There has been strongly expressed support and interest domestically and a lot of interest internationally then followed by Shanahan saying that in his opinion and in the opinion of some people said to be Labor MPs, but not prepared to be named, that the circumstances that bought about the speech may have ‘soured as people argue over the substance of her speech’.]

    Then I’d give it some credit but not in the ‘style’ this article is written in.

    Frankly, his article is ‘crap’.

  21. [Desert Fox
    Posted Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 5:45 am | Permalink

    The prime Minister must apologise immediately for her disgraceful labelling of Tony Abbott as a misogynist. Misogyny is defined as hatred of women. Does Gillard really believe that Abbot hates his wife, his mother, his daughters, Julie Bishop, Peta Credlin etc???]

    In the Australian context, by definition a misogynist is Tony Abbott. A person who loves his wife and daughters and perhaps even his chief of staff, but stands under sighs that say “ditch the witch”, “browns bitch”, punches the wall on either side of a womens face, believes that women do not have the genes to hold high office and that a bunch of old men should control their reproductive organs. Thats is by definition is what a misogynist is in the Australian context.

  22. Generally, society is confused by modern politics. The constant personal bickering and lack of clearly defined policy has left the community feeling disillusioned. The polls demonstrate this, with the major parties often neck and neck in the fight for preferred party.

    We should make a point of seeking simple answers rather than allowing politicians to compete for personal popularity.

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