The BludgerTrack aggregate is updated this week with Essential Research and Morgan, plus Galaxy with respect to the Queensland result (see full results on the sidebar). None of these results has made a noticeable difference, with two-party preferred and the seat projection entirely unchanged on last week. The one exception is that the Palmer United Party is now being granted a smaller share of the others vote, which is down to a relatively weak result in the Morgan poll. Since Morgan and ReachTEL are the only pollsters specifically publishing results for the PUP, the aggregate is highly sensitive to individual results on this measure.
Another point worth raising is that Morgan seem to have dropped the online element from their multi-mode polling, which leaves the face-to-face and SMS components and results in sample sizes of about 2000 rather than 3000. Kevin Bonham is excluding Morgan from his poll aggregate on the grounds that the change might be causing the series to lean more to Labor than it used to, given the long-evident Labor bias on the face-to-face only polling which Morgan used to run. Nonetheless, I am continuing to use bias adjustments for Morgan based on the earlier multi-mode series, which might be introducing a slight pro-Labor bias to the model. This will be accounted for when enough poll results are available to meaningfully determine the series’ deviation from the other pollsters.
There should be a bit more polling activity to take care of with next week’s update, with the fortnightly Newspoll due on Sunday or Monday evening and, I believe, a ReachTEL national poll to be conducted for the Seven Network this coming Friday (UPDATE: See bottom of post).
In other news, two developments in the Western Australian Senate election saga: the Australian Electoral Commission has filed a petition with the High Court calling on it to have the result declared void, which has helpfully been put online by technology issues website Delimiter, and officials from the AEC have appeared before Senate estimates to face the music on this and other matters. The key point in the petition is the Electoral Act’s requirement that once a recount is directed by the relevant authority, it must proceed through a re-count of the ballot papers. The AEC contends that in the known absence of 1370 ballot papers that this cannot be said to have occurred, and that the matter cannot be remedied by instating non-recounted results from the affected polling booths. The error further clears the statutory hurdle of having been likely to have affected the result, or at least that such a consequence cannot be excluded.
UPDATE: Channel Seven reports a ReachTEL automated phone poll conducted overnight found 53% saying the Prime Minister should deliver the explanation for spying activities demanded by Indonesia, while 34% say he shouldn’t; and 38% support Australia’s bugging activities with 39% opposed.