No sign yet of a sample size (UPDATE: It turns out to be a modest 505, with a margin of error approaching 4.5%), but The Australian reports a weekend Newspoll survey of the neighbouring Labor marginals of Robertson and Dobell on the New South Wales central coast points to a combined swing to the Liberals of 7%, more than enough to account for the respective margins of 1.0% and 5.1%. On the primary vote, Labor is on 35% (compared with 43.0% at the 2010 election) and the Coalition is on 50% (41.9%). No detail is provided for other parties and candidates, but evidently Craig Thomson is unlikely to trouble the scoreboard much in his bid to retain Dobell as an independent (UPDATE: The poll has the Greens at 8%, compared with 8.8% in 2010, and others at 7%, compared with 6.3%). On two-party preferred, the Coalition leads 54-46 (53.0-47.0 to Labor in 2010).
The poll also finds the leaders’ personal ratings to be markedly different than the rest of the country, with Kevin Rudd on 39% approval and 54% disapproval compared with 53% and 41% for Tony Abbott, and Abbott leading 47-41 on preferred prime minister. In the national survey conducted on the weekend, Rudd was on 39% and 48% disapproval comapred with 38% and 52% for Tony Abbott, with Rudd leading 46-37 as preferred prime minister.
UPDATE: Now newcomer automated pollster shows a diabolical result for Labor in Lindsay, conducted on Tuesday night from a big sample of 1038. Liberal candidate Fiona Scott’s primary vote is put at no less than 60%, up 17% on 2010, with Labor member David Bradbury on 32%, down 13%. The Guardian quotes the pollster saying a question about how respondents voted in 2010 aligned with the actual result I will assume this took into account the tendency of poll respondents to over-report having voted for the winner. I am a little more puzzled by the claimed margin of error of 3.7%, which should be more like 3% given the published sample size.
UPDATE 2: Now the Financial Review has a JWS Research automated poll of 568 respondents in Forde with remarkable figures on every front: LNP member Bert van Manen leading Peter Beattie 54% to 33% on the primary vote and 60-40 on two-party preferred, for a swing of 8.4%. As low as van Manen’s national profile may be, the poll gives him a 49% approval rating against 19% disapproval, with Peter Beattie on 35% and 51%. Kevin Rudd’s net approval rating is minus 18% against minus 1% for Tony Abbott. This is one of seven electorate-level JWS Research polls for which results will appear in tomorrow’s Financial Review.
UPDATE 3: Another automated phone poll for Forde, this time from Lonergan in The Guardian, and it’s just as bad for Labor as the JWS Research result. Bert van Manen leads 56% to 34% on the primary vote, with the Greens at just 4% compared with 12% at the 2010 election. While no two-party preferred figure is provided, it would obviously be very similar to JWS Research’s 60-40. The poll has 40% saying Peter Beattie has made them less likely to vote Labor against on 22% for more likely. As with the Lindsay poll, the sample was very large: 1,160.