With just about every pollster in the game taking the field last week to gauge budget reaction, there is a corresponding lull this week, the trusty weekly Essential Research being the only new data point nationally. Since this of itself doesn’t bear much weight in the model, the change since last week is more to do with pre-budget polling fading from the system than any recorded shift from last week to this. The trendlines instead move a little further along the trajectories set for them last week, with Labor up a further half a point on the primary vote, the Liberals down correspondingly, and a lift for the Greens boosting the two-party preferred shift to 0.8%.
There has been one substantial new poll result this weak, and that’s been a relatively mild result for the Coalition in Galaxy’s Queensland-only poll (which, interestingly enough, was exactly replicated in the small-sample Queensland component of this week’s Essential poll). However, the BludgerTrack model only uses state-level polling to determine the manner in which the national vote is apportioned between the states, so the effect of this result has been to soften Labor’s numbers in Queensland while fractionally improving them everywhere else. Since Queensland’s is the mother lode when it comes to marginal seats, the swing in the national result has yielded Labor little gain on the total seat projection, as gains of one seat each in New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia and South Australia have been counter-balanced by a loss of three in Queensland.
The other BludgerTrack news for the week is that the retrospective poll tracking charts have as promised been extended to the start of the Howard era, the results of which you can see on the sidebar. There is no new data this week on leadership ratings, so the results on the sidebar remain as they were a week ago.