Morgan: 52.5-47.5 to Labor; ReachTEL: 52-48

The Labor-friendliest polling series offers the Labor-friendliest poll result of the Labor-friendliest polling period in some considerable time.

Morgan has sort-of-published a result showing Labor leading 52.5-47.5 on both respondent allocated and previous election preferences, up from 51.5-48.5 a fortnight ago, with primary votes of 40.5% for the Coalition (down one), 38.5% for Labor (steady), 10% for the Greens (up 1.5%) and 3.5% for Palmer United (steady). The poll was conducted over two weekends from a sample of 2879 respondents, suggesting they’ve changed methodology on us again. This information comes from the trend tables on the Morgan site – we are yet to see the usual weekly press release that would tell us more about the methodology.

UPDATE: Here we go. The methodology is still face-to-face plus SMS with no online component, so the larger sample is obviously down to the fact that the poll was conducted over two weekends instead of one.

UPDATE 2 (ReachTEL): And now courtesy of the Seven Network we have a ReachTEL automated phone poll timed to coincide with the 100 day anniversary (no hair-spitting please, Latin scholars) of the Abbott government, which reflects the overall trend in giving Labor a two-party lead of 52-48 from primary votes of 41% for the Coalition and 40% for Labor. It also has 50% rating the government’s performance so far as disappointing, 30% as good and 20% as satisfactory.

UPDATE 3: Full results from ReachTEL here. The full primary votes are 41.4% for the Coalition (down 2.8%), 40.4% for Labor (up an impressive 6.2%), 8.7% for the Greens (down 1.1%), 5.1% for the Palmer United Party (down 1.5%) and 4.4% for others (down 1.3%). Also included are personal ratings on a five-point scale for Tony Abbott and Bill Shorten. Abbott’s ratings have measurably weakened since the previous poll of November 21, while Bill Shorten tellingly has a net negative rating overall: obviously a lot of respondents whose incline to give the new guy the benefit of the doubt when given a straight approval-versus-disapproval option instead go for an intermediate option (“satisfactory” in this case) when one is available.

UPDATE 2 (Essential Research): Essential Research assumes its traditional role of stick-in-the-mud in recording essentially no change on last week, with the Coalition still leading 51-49 from primary votes of 44% for the Coalition and 37% for Labor, with the Greens and the Palmer United Party each down a point, to 7% and 4% respectively. Also featured: who or what it’s been a good or bad year for (net bad for everything except, curiously, “your workplace” and “you and your family overall”, with “Australian politics generally” scoring 8% good and 70% bad), how the next 12 months are expected to compare (somewhat more optimistic, especially with respect to Australian politics), what the government should do about Qantas (an even divide between four listed options), the importance of car manufacturing (60% important, 33% not important), whether the government should provide subsidies to Holden (45% yes, 42% no) and the level of government support to Toyota should be increased (31% increase, 44% leave as is, 11% decrease).

On a somewhat similar note, The Australian last night published Newspoll figures from last week’s poll showing 15% expect their standard of living to improve over the next six months (up one from last time), 64% expect it to stay the same (up four) and 20% expect it to get worse (down three).

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.

2,320 comments on “Morgan: 52.5-47.5 to Labor; ReachTEL: 52-48”

  1. @Sean Tisme

    [Why can’t we get a new thread for the Essential results??!?]

    Yeah, if only there was a blog post with a 51:49 to Coalition headline… all Tony’s problems would suddenly be over and the Libs would begin soaring in the polls again. Oh, if only.

    Unfortunately for you, I suspect the next thread will be the updated BludgerTrack, which will have a somewhat less Liberal-friendly headline figure.

    But really… who gives a shit? Its not like it will actually change the poll results. Well, except in Sean-world, where yelling something loudly and often enough will eventually make it magically come true

  2. Boerwar

    Yes I read the tragic tragic news that the Kiwi looks like being a descendant of an Australian bird, sharing a common ancestor of the Emu. The good news is that it is not yet “case closed” 🙂

  3. The lived experience of many people in WA:

    [The charity food provider, Foodbank, says there has been a big increase in middle class people seeking help in regional WA this holiday period.

    The service provides donated food to support struggling people across WA.

    Albany manager Tammy Fone says there has been an influx of people needing to use the services, from a broader range than usual.

    “I’ve seen a lot of people come in that are middle class,” she said.

    “It’s not just your unemployed and people doing it tough, it’s even your middle class because they’re going to lose their house or something.

    “There’s a lot of different circumstances but we’re seeing a lot of different people coming in.

    “Some people walk in going ‘I’ve never done this’, but we’ve all been there.”]

    Why they continue to vote Liberal, against their interests is beyond me.

  4. confessions

    The problem in Perth is the cost of housing and rentals has shifted to Cashed Up Bogan levels but the reality is 3/4 of half of feck all actually earn that sort of money.

  5. poroti:

    Yeah, not just Perth, but real estate even here is just astronomical. I was looking at semi rural acreage in the Adelaide Hills recently and couldn’t believe how cheap it is. You can pick up a reasonable house on 5-10 acres for less than you’d pay for a home in a suburban block in Perth.

  6. Re Confessions @2077 – the libel laws mainly serve to protect the unwise and venal among the rich and powerful. They are of no use to the general public. Anyone as concerned about free speech as Tim Wilson purports to be should make our libel laws their first point of focus, ahead of bogans’ rights to call people they din’t like ‘niggers’, ‘wogs’, ‘poofs’ or whatever.

  7. Hockey

    The “Age of Entitlement” is over, so to speak. The “free lunch” has ended.

    This from the same man who, when last in government was part of a Cabinet that decided to give $4,000 lump sum to every mother every time they had a baby. How much does that add up to over 10 years? You want to talk about waste? It was nothing but an voter bribe that broke the budget when the economy hit rough seas.

  8. Confessions

    You and me both. Rural and regional Australia gets stiffed by the Tories all the time! and every three years the line up to cop it again. Though I wonder sometimes if labor would be better.

    Interesting that your story comes from Albany where the tenacious peter Watson in holds the seat for labor. In a recent exchange in the parliament he was getting into Barnett! whose witty tresponse was to call Watson a loser. Watson reminded Barnett that he had been elected four times and added that every time Barnett visited Albany Watsons vote improved.

  9. What Joe Hockey meant was that the age of entitlement was over for anyone outside any demographic who was likely to vote Liberal. The age of corporate and middle / upper class entitlement will continue unimpeded.

  10. Why can’t we get a new thread for the Essential results??!?

    Yeah, if only there was a blog post with a 51:49 to Coalition headline… all Tony’s problems would suddenly be over and the Libs would begin soaring in the polls again. Oh, if only.

    It’s quite interesting because, before the election, the roles used to be reversed and when there was an Essential that was friendlier to Labor than the other polls, there were cries for it to be given its own thread, rather than just tacked on to another.

    I am not really making any major point here, just an interesting (to me) observation of how quickly the roles change, depending on whose side is ahead. (Note: none of that was directed at you, Asha.)

  11. Steve777:

    Libertarian concerns for free speech seem entirely focused on protecting those who routinely attack others on the basis of their cultural origin or race. It rarely if ever goes the other way.

  12. [Libertarian concerns for free speech seem entirely focused on protecting those who routinely attack others on the basis of their cultural origin or race. It rarely if ever goes the other way.]

    Indeed. I genuinely respect those who are tireless advocates of free speech, as long as they are consistent about it and not using it as a pretence to protect their power or privilege.

  13. @Carey

    Oh, I agree, many here on the left have been just as guilty of it. Its an interesting logical fallacy – one I’ve fallen prey to myself – where polls are treated as influences on the public mood, rather than reflections of it.

    I probably should stop picking on poor Sean. He seems so much more… harmless (and hilarious) now that he’s on the losing side. The insufferable smugness has evaporated and all that’s left is increasing desperation and apoplectic rage.

  14. Cameron Atfield ‏@CameronAtfield 6m

    LNP selects Kerri-Anne Dooley as its candidate in the Redcliffe by-election. She ran for Family First in the 2012 election. #qldpol
    Retweeted by Possum Comitatus

  15. [The newly appointed honorary Professor of Politics at Adelaide University, has, meanwhile, also thrown her support behind the automotive industry, buying a new Holden Cruze.

    The Advertiser understands she chose the car because of its “quality” and because she believes it is a vote of confidence in the workers and Holden’s manufacturing operations in the state.

    Ms Gillard, whose mother Moira and sister Alison live in Adelaide, was seen taking delivery of the new locally built “Red Hot” SRi hatchback last month.]

    http://www.geelongadvertiser.com.au/news/national/julia-gillard-seen-relaxing-on-brighton-beach-as-she-supports-holden-with-cruze-purchase/story-fnjbnxuh-1226785317918?sv=b29d24e17d57770f2f4e4625b920536#.UrA4cK01N8B.twitter

  16. [Indeed. I genuinely respect those who are tireless advocates of free speech, as long as they are consistent about it and not using it as a pretence to protect their power or privilege.]

    or prejudice.

    to continue your beautiful aliteration!

  17. Steve
    [What Joe Hockey meant was that the age of entitlement was over for anyone outside any demographic who was likely to vote Liberal. The age of corporate and middle / upper class entitlement will continue unimpeded.]
    Hockey should have said that the age of patronage has never ended, only the identity of the patrons has changed.

  18. While we’re all aware of the economic blow of the Holden stuff, it has been a massive political blow to the Libs too. They’ve absolutely made a dog’s breakfast of it, politically. Abbott’s announcement today will not be received well, either as it looks like he was forced to do something and his solution is nothing more than a cheap band-aid.

  19. The age of exaggeration is really kicking into high gear. Abbott said he was announcing a $100 million Holden compensation package. In fact he is only giving $60 million, and hoping others come up with the rest. Don’t get me started about the debt exaggeration.

  20. [A guest post from John Kelly.

    Many years ago, in the 1950s a reporter once asked the then British Prime Minister, Harold MacMillan what he most feared politically. MacMillan replied, “Events, dear boy. Events.” The same answer applies for what determines a government’s standing with the electorate. To both questions, however, I would add, “Timing.”]

    http://theaimn.com/2013/12/18/its-all-about-events-and-timing-tony/

    Interesting perspective in last paragraph

    [As much as all politicians will tell us that being in opposition sucks, some on the government side would be thinking that it would have been better for the Coalition to have lost the election in 2013 and watch Labor manage the economy to a point where a far more devastating electoral wipe-out would result in 2016 than occurred in 2013. But, that’s the thing about politics. It’s all about events and timing.]

  21. [where polls are treated as influences on the public mood, rather than reflections of it.]

    this is probably true now, but polls do influence media reporting (which then influences opinion, otherwise why have spin doctors?). They also seem to influence certain voters who wish to be backing the winning team too…

    but at this point in the cycle, they matter little for voters.

  22. Carey:

    Abbott’s statement re the employees affected by GMH closure was just appalling.

    The overall issue itself was badly handled, and the announcement of the package of support even more so.

  23. Confessions, the most astounding thing is how it’s benefiting Weatherill. Just a month ago, he was considered dead-in-the-water. The one left to steer the Government ship to its inevitable defeat next year.

    His constant campaigning for Holden to stay was seen as nothing more than a desperate gambit, a thousand-to-one shot. Then this stuff happened and the guy that was looking like an lame duck making one last desperate pitch now has the honour of being the guy who stood up for the state against the new Liberal federal government who have been perceived (rightly or wrongly) as scaring Holden away. What’s more is SA Liberal Leader Steven Marshall’s immediate action was to get himself photographed with Abbott, when distancing himself was the best thing for him to do for the time being.

    While the Libs probably still have better odds of winning, it’s definitely competitive again and, if the Libs win, it won’t be by a landslide.

    Weird how things can change so quickly.

  24. Victoria

    Thanks for the link to the John Kelly piece, but I find his analogy almost completely false. There has been no major economic event that has occurred in the three months since the election. The coalition is pedalling a fantasy. The changes are due to their own policy decisions to transfer money to the RBA and throw away Labor’s taxation measures. The events have been Liberal events.

  25. Fess 2182 … yes I had the same reaction … telling a 50 yr old Holden worker that his or her redundancy could be liberating was utterly crass. Abbott did it regularly in Opposition and he’s now doing it as PM. They wouldn’t have been Credlin’s words, just Tone going off script, yet again.

    And the funny thing is, the harder he tries to be a softer, gentler statesman, the more he reveals his shallowness and insensitivity.

  26. Good evening

    Confessions further to your point at post 2182 Abbott has not even had the balls to meet the workers to hear their concerns.

    Something Howard would do despite knowing he is walking into a lions den.

    Its amazing how good Abbott makes Howard look

  27. I read somewhere, can’t remember where, that SA opp leader Steven Marshall is in danger of losing his seat at the next state election even of the Libs win. Is that credible? Bad planning if true.

  28. Carey:

    I caught Weatherill’s press conference in the car as it was happening. He sounded disappointed and angry. He all but accused Abbott of lying to him when he met with Abbott just after the election to talk about the future of GMH.

    I’m glad he’s getting some voter support back because it sounds to me that he’s certainly given a lot into trying to smooth out a more secure future for this sector.

  29. The truth is Holden was going anyway and Weatherall was just engaged in politics. However Abbott was amazingly clumsy – he showed he simply did not care at all about the workers. As for unemployment “liberating”, it was as though he was channeling George Orwell, ignorance is strength etc. Next he will say people are happier when they are poor, so he is taking away their pensions.

  30. [I read somewhere, can’t remember where, that SA opp leader Steven Marshall is in danger of losing his seat at the next state election even of the Libs win. Is that credible? Bad planning if true.]

    There’s apparently some polling floating around that has it close. He’ll probably retain it because he is a fairly well-liked MP for the area but it might be a close race (it is a marginal seat that is held by Labor more often than the Libs.)

  31. [telling a 50 yr old Holden worker that his or her redundancy could be liberating was utterly crass.]

    It’s offensive and patronising. As I said, it’s the sort of thing you muse over once you know that everyone affected are firmly installed in, and loving bigger and better alternatives. Not when they’re staring down the barrel of insecure employment.

    Fail to Team Abbott.

  32. Sigh.

    Days like this, I appreciate William so much more!

    I was asked to moderate a facebook site (I’ve been nominally a moderator for it since it begun, but backed off over the past year due to disagreements with the other moderators about what was/wasn’t acceptable). Anyway, today I was asked to try and restore a little order into the place.

    So, usual stuff — start off by laying out some ground rules, explaining the purpose of the site and why I’m laying down the law.

    IMMEDIATELY the usual suspects (no, not bemused, but similar) put up posts which directly go against the guidelines I’ve just outlined.

    So I delete the post, and send a polite message to the poster explaining why.

    So he copies and pastes the whole thing – original post, my message and his reply – back on to the site.

    So I delete it all.

    So he then links to my twitter account, with a comment inferring that it’s OK to write the comments he wrote because I’ve written the same on twitter (nicely wrapped up to look like a compliment, but really an accusation of hypocrisy).

    Then another poster pipes up. Why are those guidelines there? Aren’t they stifling necessary discussion? Surely these are issues we should be airing…

    Yes, I say, but not here. This isn’t the site for it. There are lots of others that are far more appropriate.

    So the poster puts up a new post, on the same issue……….

    William, I feel about a tenth of your pain.

  33. The HOlden workers have 4 years to adjust, retrain, get counselling, etc.

    There’s many others including me who have been retrenched with a week’s notice at best.

    So what is the difference? Is it because of the name Holden that some employees are deemed special and are given 4 years notice?

  34. No, the truth is that Holden had not decided on their future in Australia as their CEO had explained to the Senate committee.

    The decision was made when they were told to put up or shut up by Hockey the next day in parliament.

    So they did, now they’re going!

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