Newspoll: 53-47 to Labor in Victoria

Newspoll finds Denis Napthine’s polling honeymoon coming to abrupt halt, with his personal ratings down sharply and voting intention back in Ted Baillieu territory.

GhostWhoVotes tweets that the September-October Newspoll of state voting intention in Victoria has Labor’s lead widening from 51-49 to 53-47, from primary votes of 39% for the Coalition (down two), 38% for Labor (steady) and 14% for the Greens (up one). An even bigger headline-grabber is that Denis Napthine’s honeymoon personal ratings have ended with a thud: he is down 11 points on approval to 42% and up five on disapproval to 36%, with his lead as preferred premier narrowing from 47-25 to 41-27. Daniel Andrews is down three on approval to 35% and one on disapproval to 31%. Full tables here. Below are two-party and primary vote poll trend charts, based on the same principles as BludgerTrack, from the 13 Newspoll and five ReachTEL results published during the current term:

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.

42 comments on “Newspoll: 53-47 to Labor in Victoria”

  1. Napthine is in trouble…as Labor reverts to it’s winning position in Victoria…and Abbott’s rule will be no help..he is not loved here and that will not help Napthine either

    I think nbext year will see the long run of LNP victories end in Victoria

  2. deblonay

    nice sentiments but you live in hope-land.

    Who’s Daniel Andrews?

    As zoomster posted some time ago, on the main thread, Brumby showed her a sheaf of press releases that never saw the light of day, and that was when he was Premier.

    Andrews never makes the news. Apart from getting thrown out of parliament, which was a one day wonder, but gave grist to the unruly Labor mill, in the wake of federal politics.

    He’s up against a recycled leader, who doesn’t have much to offer, who replaced an equally insipid Baillieu. And Andrews still can’t make a dent.

    He needs a good kick up the arsk. You know, it’s very difficult being a Labor supporter in the Latrobe Valley when we have absolutely nothing to hang our hat on.

    Very depressing.

  3. @Kezza2/2

    Best for ALP to shut up for the time being, rather than getting thrown out is just making them no different than the libs.

  4. It is looking like the current government will be the first one term government since the Cain Senior Government 1952-1955. That was only a one term government because of the split. This is a one term government because it is a bad government.

  5. I think Daniel Andrews is doing an okay job, he is in the media.

    Although compared to Bracks when he was opposition leader Andrews and his front bench is less visible.

    Going into 1999 the ALP had several high profile frontbench MP’s the same can’t be said of this current group.

    The Government has improved under Naphine’s leadership but still appears limited in its policy direction.

  6. Kezza2

    The main reason why Andrews hasn’t been as high profile in trhe media has more to do with the domination of fedseral politics.

    The State Government has been tripping over itself and one other thing the La Trobe Valley is currently safe National Party turf, i don’t image that changing.

    The next election will be won or lost around Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong and central Victoria and the south/eastern suburbs of Melbourne.

  7. Lots of good reasons for this result. The Shaw case, economy headed south, dodgy building approvals, and that expensive road tunnel with no funding details. Napthine is more decisive than Bailleau, but he is not any better decisions.

  8. The Libs had a chance to go for generational change when they deposed Baillieau and muffed it. Andrews is young, smart, focussed and leading a very united team. The Labor caucus have used their time in opposition to listen to the electorate and develop the sort of policies that the community wants.

    I’d expect Napthine may get the chop early in the new year as the Libs try another coat of white wash.

    The other factor Socrates has missed is the Labor favourable re distribution. Mary Wooldridge’s seat has been abolished and there is still the problem of getting Matthew Guy in to a safe seat in the lower House. This means the up and comers in the Libs will be focussed on themselves rather than the electorate in the run up to the election.

    Labor aren’t over the line. But, you can’t see the Libs pulling a rabbit out of the hat over the next twelve months.

  9. Sorry I meant to say Napthine is not making any better decisions than Bailleau was making. I could also add that with the car industry closing down, and the Federal government not promising any more assistance, the heat on the Victorian government is going to get worse. Either Abbott must back down from a major policy, or Napthine must find something to create 10,000 new jobs. The Shaw trial will not be fun either, any more than the Obeid inquiries have been for NSW Labor.

    I did not comment on the redistribution, as I am not across the details. However at 53:47 and going backwards, only a gerrymander will save the Libs, and they do not have one.

  10. kezza

    [As zoomster posted some time ago, on the main thread, Brumby showed her a sheaf of press releases that never saw the light of day, and that was when he was Premier.

    No, it was in his first incarnation as party leader, in Opposition.

    The profile of the Opposition leader, particularly at state level, isn’t crucially important.

    Steve Bracks was relatively unknown when he became leader – my branch had a standing offer to invite him to a function, and our attitude had been that no one knew him, so there wasn’t much point – and had only a couple of months before the election campaign to make himself known.

    He only came to any kind of public attention during the election campaign proper.

    At state level, it’s difficult for an Opposition leader of any stripe to gain attention.

    Andrews has done a lot of good community work, and is willing to come to any electorate to do a forum if he’s asked.

    But, at state level, it’s definitely the government which loses elections, not the Opposition which wins them!

  11. I suspect the Napthine government has shot itself in the foot with its ridiculous East-West Link freeway. It was after all a government elected largely on a revolt by voters wanting getter public transport. So what did it do? Sink all Victoria’s transport money into an unneeded freeway extension. Probably had the effect of revealing its true nature to the public. I’m slightly amazed that Labor located it’s spine in order to oppose the EWL, but I suspect it was the right decision and the ALP will reap the benefits.

    Something else no-one has discussed is the chance of the Greens winning lower house seats. It went somewhat unnoticed at the time, but in federal seats like Batman and Wills the party was scoring in the mid-20s in the federal primary vote. Given state seats are smaller, more localised sub-sections of federal seats, they have to be in with a strong chance of winning seats like Northcote and Brunswick. And given Adam Bandt’s emphatic reelection in Melbourne, I’d be surprised if the state seat of Melbourne doesn’t go green (the Labor win at the by-election in this seat was an anomaly I think, with the seat’s high churn of residents depressing turnout).

  12. Re Xoanon (11) – I’ve looked at the swings on primary vote in the Brunswick part of Wills and have concluded that the Grns are likely to win that seat. I wonder of their leader in the Upper House is tempted to have a go at it? Also interested to see what happens in Footscray.

  13. The Baillieu/Napthine government has perpetrated a cynical con on the Victorian electorate. It came to power making a virtue of the fact that it had not promised any major road projects, but had pledged to undertake (or at least investigate) a number of significant public transport initiatives.

    Three years later the government has only one transport project on its books – the massively expensive east-west toll road, which, quite apart from not achieving its stated aims, will mean that no money will be available for any significant sustainable transport undertakings. Consequently, every single one of the promised public transport projects has, at best, been shelved for at least a decade, or been dropped completely.

  14. 11

    The ALP`s opposition to the road tunnel ends at the signing of the contracts, which the Coalition are determined to have done before the election. In the probable event that the contracts are signed and underway, it is likely to be the Greens (who would sensibly stop the road tunnel) beating the ALP over the head with the tunnel more than anything else.

    The Greens are in with a chance good in Melbourne, Richmond
    and Brunswick. The margin in Northcote is larger but not entirely unreachable. There is also the possibility of the Greens passing the ALP in Prahran and winning on their preferences.

  15. The Coalition won a swag of seats at the last state poll along the Frankston line from Bentleigh to Frankston on the basis of improvements to the Caulfield group of railway lines.

    This included a station at Southland, triplication of the Dandenong line, grade separation and signalling upgrades. To date the Southland station proposal has been scaled back significantly to essentially be a platform with a small shelter.

    The Springvale Rd grade separation has commenced but there has been little else. There was also the issue of grade separation of Bay St in Asher’s seat on the Sandringham which resulted in signficant community anger (and now has been quietly shelved) as there were more pressing and urgent transport projects.

    As Corio points out all of the other heavy rail projects have been more or less shelved at least for a decade at the expense of that east west tunnel.

    My prediction is that the Coalition will likely lose Frankston and Mordialloc out in the South East and I think that this will be a one termer. I also predict that Abbott will be gone (replaced) within 12 months by a more moderate (Turnbull?) but that is for another thread.

  16. The Liberals have hurt many voters with
    – 80% cuts to TAFE
    – dissatisfaction with accreditation standards of private providers
    – lowest paid ambulance officers
    – congested hospitals
    – failure to improve public transport especially rail
    – building level crossing at New St – it’s been there 120 years
    – failure to fund cultural projects and local libraries
    – threatening to privatise National Parks
    – permitting cattle grazing in National Parks
    – turning back environmental protections – its a sad reality that the more urban a community the more environmentally aware it is

  17. There’s a strong tactical reason for voting for the Greens if you’re anti-East West Link. If they win enough seats they may well hold the balance of power in the lower house, and their price for delivering government to Labor could be the tearing up of the EWL contracts.

  18. 14

    Hopefully the exposure of the Southland station plan caused enough pressure on the government MPs in Bentleigh and Mordialloc to pressure the government into building a proper station. The Shorter shelters were the worst bit of the cuts. They would cause delay to trains in both directions on any rainy day by crowding people at the doors near the sheltered areas.

  19. Re Greens and Lib prefs
    Oddly the best tactics open to the Libs in recent times would have been to give their prefs to the Greens…thus depriving Labor of seats and the chance to be the largest party…and four or five Greens would have held the balance

    I suspect the right-wing Catholic element in the Libs.people like Andrews and their DLP-types in the ALP make that impossible…re issues like SS marriage and euthenasia and abortion…
    with Green prefs the Libs would have won the Federal seat of Melbourne Portsa from the ourspoken zionist Danby(ironically a harsh critic of the Greens… who strongly support the Palestinian cause)and in turn the Greens could have won Batman where they polled very well

    In central Melb the example of Bandt who is a superb local member might help the Greens in several inner city seats at the next poll

  20. The Greens are interesting, I don’t think they will win any LA seats but one thing which Adam Bandt did very well was expanding his vote in places beyond Fitzory/Collingwood

    In Richmond the Greens pushed the ALP into third place across most if not all the booths which is remarkable as Richmond is very solid for the ALP over the Liberals.

    Generally it is very difficult to find any positives for the current state government, it can’t point to being a reformist government like the Kennett or Hamer government.

    It might sneek back with gains in seats like Ripon and Macedon but the potential gains in Melbourne look limited.

  21. 21

    If the ALP, in the likely event that the contracts are signed before the election, says that it will proceed with the contract then it will not win Melbourne or Richmond with a dramatically reduced chance in Brunswick and a swing to the Greens in many seats. One of the issues that Bandt campaigned on was stopping the road tunnel.

  22. All this talk about the Greens going to win all these Labor seats is all so familiar.

    We heard it ad nauseam during the last State election, to no avail.

    The Greens can’t be taken seriously until they start winning Liberal instead of Labor seats.

  23. Tom since the early naughts the Greens have been eyeing off Richmond, Brunswick and Melbourne and have not won them.

    As Feeney wrote the Greens want to be taken seriously why are they not putting equal attention to Liberal seats.

  24. The Greens will indeed be heavily targeting at least one Liberal-held seat – Prahran. They did very well in the Prahran area of Higgins at the Federal election.

  25. 23 & 24

    Had the Liberals not changed their preferencing from defeat the ALP, to defeat the Greens, the Greens would have won them because they got enough of a swing to them on primaries to win if the preferences had not changed.

    A seat, is a seat, is a seat. It does not matter who previously held it, as long as it is won, it is worth the same as any other seat.

    The Greens target mainly ALP held seats because they are where the largest percentages of voters who either do vote for or might switch to the Greens are. They are providing seats with another choice they might be willing to make. If you do not like challenges for seats, do not live in a democracy.

  26. Brunswick the best chance to fall to Greens, odds on the others a bit further out for mine. Have a look at the southern Wills booths.

    Who knows what will happen in terms of govt though. This is a better govt than the tired one it replaced, but not by much.

  27. Tom,

    My point is that the Greens openly rate their chances in seats like Richmond but don’t appear to rate themselves in a seat like Hawthorn or Malvern.

    Hawthorn has one of if not the highest percentage of people with a tertiary degree.

  28. William,

    True the Greens at the federal election did very well across Melbourne, and the southern end of both Wills and Batman.

    In time these areas do look like becoming Green areas and once they fall they will be difficult for the ALP to regain them.

    The Greens have been aiming at that inner northern group since at least 2002.

  29. 28

    Hawthorn has not been not won by the Liberal Party since 1952 and the Liberals have held Malvern continuously since its creation. Even in the ALP landslides of 1982 & 2002 the Liberals won it. That is not a seat the Greens can actually win because they are a party of the left. A significant proportion of people with a degree are right-wing and they would likely be a much higher proportion of the degree holders in Hawthorn than in Brunswick.

  30. Tom

    Its interesting that you write that as the Greens like to portray themselves as the party of the educated.

    I image Hawthorn would be considered fairly progressive, transport and planning are always important issues.

  31. 32

    The Greens are a party of the left, dominated by the educated parts thereof. The right-wing voters of the world tend not to vote for parties of the left, regardless of their level of education.

    Hawthorn has voted for the Liberal Party since 1955. That is not very progressive.

  32. I’m sure the Liberal understand that they got into power on the basis of discontent on lack of infrastructure spending – particularly public transport.

    If they made at least at half arsed effort they could have cruised the next election. Instead they have gone for the EWL and I really struggle to understand why they have put all their eggs (and all the eggs for the next ten years) into one that one bad urban planning basket.

    So is it corruption, ideological blinkers or just outright stupidity?

    So multiple choice here

  33. Work to Rule

    The history of the EWT is an interesting one, it was originally purposed in the Victorian Transport plan released by the Brumby Government.

    It is suppose to connect the Eastern, The Tullamarine and the Western Ring Road or something similar.

    During the early days of this government the project was put on the back-burner due to cost until after increasing levels of criticism from business that this government was seen as docile, the EWT was dusted off and embraced.

  34. Libs are doing important infrastructure development for Victoria, and you know, when important infrastructure development needs to be done some sacrificis need to be made, as (billie@16 mentions).

    We have had to sack lots of TAFE teachers stop teaching many courses, underfund our health system, and sure Napthine has crazy plans in his electorate with school kids having to walk half a kilomoter to the bus, BUT… we will have a $8b tunnel that will make the Vaucluse Elitists club red with rage, it will go right under those smelly inner city suburbs of Collingwood and Fitzroy, you wont even have to see their lack of infrastructure and overcrowded development let alone smell them.

    The east-west link, a great development for all victorians (who are rich, lazy and elitist)

  35. Apparently Louise Asher is saying on radio that Geoff Shaw has been calling the shots since May this year.

    An extraordinary admission by a senior member of the government, and an indication of the lack of resolve on the government benches.

  36. In an unusual move, Jacinta Allan, citing past rulings and the standing orders, directed her first question of QT to the Speaker, who ruled it out of order.

  37. I wonder if Smith has dug in and won’t go. With the current numbers he could threaten not to support Napthine if Napthine won’t support him. Smith hardly comes across as the sort who is willing to passively allow himself to be pushed out of his job by the likes of Geoff Shaw.

  38. I wasn’t aware that Smith threatened to quit after the last election if he wasn’t made Speaker (reported in The Age today). He was also among the worst offenders of parliamentary behaviour standards prior to that.

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