Essential Research: 52-48 to Coalition

The weekly Essential Research remains the only regularly reporting opinion poll in town, and it continues to show the Coalition with a weaker lead than they scored at the election.

Essential Research is still the only opinion poll operating to its regular schedule, Morgan having sat out last week and Newspoll presumably holding off at least until Labor sorts out its leadership. The latest weekly result has the Coalition’s two-party lead steady at an unspectacular 52-48, from primary votes of 43% for the Coalition (steady on last week), 35% for Labor (down one) and the Greens on 9% (steady). Other questions relate to internet privacy, including a finding that US surveillance programs such as Edward Snowden revealed are opposed by 45% and supported by 24%, and the importance of our various foreign relationships, showing “very important” ratings of 56% for New Zealand, 51% for the United States, 46% for China, 42% for the United Kingdom and 35% for Indonesia.

UPDATE: And now Morgan comes through with its normal multi-mode poll which was skipped last week, carrying the striking headline that Labor leads 50.5-49.5 on respondent-allocated preferences. However, Morgan produces a strikingly different result from preference flows as per the recent election, with the Coalition lead at 53-47. But I find this hard to reconcile with the primary votes: the Coalition is at 42%, 3.5% lower than at the election, Labor at 37%, which is 3.6% higher, and the minor parties only slightly changed at 9% for the Greens, 4.5% for the Palmer United Party and 7.5% for others. Somehow though, two-party preferred comes out as very similar to the election result, which as best as anyone can tell is about 53.5-46.5.

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.

1,828 comments on “Essential Research: 52-48 to Coalition”

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  1. citizen

    Posted Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Abbott’s grovelling act in front of the Malaysian PM doesn’t seem to be reported yet in the Malaysian media. However the “weird news” section of one outlet today has this:

    Abbott in running for Australian sexism awards

    “Vicious” commentary about Australia’s first female leader Julia Gillard dominates entries for the annual “Ernie” awards for sexism with Prime Minister Tony Abbott the “most constant” offender, organisers said Tuesday.

    Abbott doesn’t seem to have a high reputation in SE Asia at present.

    He’s a bit on the nose here in Oz too ……

  2. [I agree that the best solution to this is to pay MPs more and abolish the whole entitlements system. The cost of ministerial travel would still be borne by departments, but all backbench travel would be paid for by the MP. Overseas “study trips” for backbenchers are a complete rort and should be abolished.]

  3. This incidentally is how travel allowance (TA) works for MPs’ staffers. All staff who travel with their boss are paid TA at a flat per diem rate, so it is in fact an income supplement. How staff spend it is entirely up to them. You can stay at the Hilton or sleep on someone’s couch.

  4. Psephos did you see that chart showing how much these politicians actually cost. We would have to increase their slaries by very large amounts. Of course we could insist that the political parties pay for the pure politics which would reduce the claims by hugh amounts.

  5. [Psephos did you see that chart showing how much these politicians actually cost.]

    No I didn’t. I know the total cost to the taxpayer of keeping a backbench MP is well over a million a year.

  6. The question of the rorts, is not so much that they take place, it is more to do with the politics of who does what and when.

    Serial rorter – by the sounds of it – Peter Slipper is being/was pilloried because the conservatives thought they had a short cut way to office.

    The conservative media went into self-righteous and frenzy mode at the time.

    Same acts, different people and different times, suddenly a poorly understood/misunderstood system is to blame.

    It is the rank double standards which are at issue, and especially as the Abbott precious is “trust”.

    The conservatives cannot have it both way, though, of course, you can’t blame them for trying.

  7. frednk

    You may have missed this interesting read from Margo kingston

    [8 October, 2013
    It looks like the Prime Minister is a serial cheat. It’s hard to imagine a bigger test of the integrity and fairness of our democratic institutions than that. Will the press gallery get forensic and press for answers from the PM and action from the authorities? Will the AFP investigate? Will the Finance Department audit his enormous expenses claims while in opposition to search for more rorting?]

    – See more at:

  8. Tricot I think there is a lot of hot air around it’s just not blowing for the government.

    William it didn’t take long for Morgan to get their two methods out of sync.

  9. Abbott & Co are not the only public officials in trouble over weddings:

    [China’s anti-graft watchdog is investigating a Beijing official who spent more than 1.6 million yuan (S$326,000) on a lavish three-day wedding for his son, state media said, the latest step in the government’s crackdown on waste and extravagance.

    Mr Ma Linxiang, a deputy village chief from the Beijing suburb of Qingheying, hosted the estimated 250-table wedding at an upmarket convention centre that was part of the main 2008 Beijing Olympics venue during the week-long National Day holiday last week, Chinese newspapers reported.]

    – See more at:

  10. I just raised the blood pressure levels by watching Speers on Sky embarrass himself over Abbott’s travel expenses. Labor can but dream of getting similar media protection.

    Tony Burke got some good points across about Malaysia which made Speers’ advocacy for Abbott look worse.

  11. I just raised the blood pressure levels by watching Speers on Sky embarrass himself over Abbott’s travel expenses. Labor can but dream of getting similar media protection.

    Tony Burke got some good points across about Malaysia which made Speers’ advocacy for Abbott look worse.

  12. I don’t get how Morgan calculates 53-47 from 2013 election preferences: Coalition down 3.5% on the election and Labor up by about the same amount, but only a slight difference on two-party preferred.

  13. “@Clarke_Melissa: Stephen Jones re Tony Abbott on @ABCNews24 #CapitalHill: While he was throwing stones, he was standing in front of a glass house.”

  14. This Abbott/Asian apology tour is quite sickening to watch.

    After all the slander, insults and disrespect hurled at our neighbours they must be quietly shaking their heads in total bemusement at this buffoon of a PM.

  15. William on those primary numbers Labor would have to have a 2PP lead. I think we have to remain somewhat ignorant until the other pollsters report.

  16. Douglas

    Posted Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    BH #19

    Sky used to be Fox News lite, but have recently bitten the bullet and gone full strength Fox News.


    How’s about then FAUX News ?????

  17. Is it possible, given the AEC is still chugging away with counts, recounts, preference distributions etc, that there isn’t an official “2013 preference flow” yet, and that perhaps Morgan has picked up some preliminary figures from the AEC that exclude a bunch of the still-being-processed seats? It still seems like an astonishing error to get to 53-47 on those primaries…

  18. RexD and badcat

    Definitely FauxNews now. It’s their choice and ours to switch off. That’s hard sometimes because I enjoy watching Andrew Leigh when he’s on.

  19. [Manly only know how to whinge.]

    Shellbell LOL

    There were too many mistakes made by the refs all which went against Manly, if interested only to happy to list in point form.

    The worst were in the first half which gave Roosters enormous possession and an undeserved lead at half time.

    Still, Manly shot to an 18-8 lead in the second half and should have got the cash from there regardless.

    By the way, the penalty try to Lyon was totally bloody justified but how about another penalty when the Manly captain was blocked chasing a bomb which would have levelled up at 20-20.

    Let’s not go there about the blatant forward pass which led to the try which put the Roosters ahead.

    [Wolfman needs a haircut]

    Eff me, at least attempt to catch a bomb. I wonder if they were the tactics to let Tupou catch it then catch him?

    Bloody nightmare – unbelievable!

  20. BH

    Posted Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

    RexD and badcat

    Definitely FauxNews now. It’s their choice and ours to switch off. That’s hard sometimes because I enjoy watching Andrew Leigh when he’s on.


    Like ‘The Australian’ – its just another “right-wing propaganda machine”

    Probably more intelligent comment to be seen on “Dancing with The Stars ‘ ???????

  21. I think we can safely say that Abbott’s oft-repeated promise of ‘No excuses’ has been thrown overboard already.

    Does he have an excuse for that?

  22. Margo Kingston has been trying to find details on the informant who passed information about Slipper’s winery visits to the AFP, thus bypassing the Finance Dept.

    Note that the first “gut” reaction of the AFP was to push their response to Margot’s FOI out to 8 Sept, the day after the election. So who’s shielding who?

    [So who was this informant, and how did he or she obtain information about Slipper 2010 winery tour?

    On 10 July I sought the information by FOI. The AFP had 30 days to process it, but on asked for a very long extension to Sunday 8 September, the day after the election. I responded that the request was very narrow, and should be able to be done quickly. The AFP took the matter to the Australian Information Commissioner, who granted a shorter extension to 29 August]

  23. For those who missed it at the very end of the last thread, and might enjoy it as a commentary on expense scandals.‎

    I suspect quite a few of the professions mentioned therein are represented in our Parliaments, even if they don’t appear in published CVs.

    “Dobber” Brandis must be getting a bit concerned about what he’s started.

  24. Sky features regular appearances by Phil Dalidakis, who was Conroy’s deputy chief of staff and is a reliable advocate for Labor. I don’t watch Fox but I doubt they have an equivalent.

  25. [margo kingston ‏@margokingston1 14m
    I’ve done Melbourne ABC radio talkback with @Raf774 on pollies travel scandal, why Slipper singled out. There’s lots of anger out there.]

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