Essential Research: 52-48 to Labor in Victoria

With less than two months to go until the state election, another indication of Labor having a slight edge in Victoria.

The Age today carried a poll on state voting intention in Victoria from Essential Research, which provided no surprises in having Labor slightly ahead. The poll, which was conducted over the past month, shows both major parties on 39% of the primary vote with the Greens on 11%, translating into 52-48 in Labor’s favour on two-party preferred. As The Age report relates, it also found the government viewed very poorly so far as job creation and public transport were concerned, but rather better for police and public safety.

UPDATE (October 1): Roy Morgan has SMS polls of state voting intention for each state, the Victorian component of which captured 1706 respondents and had Labor leading 54-46, from primary votes of 37.5% for the Coalition, 34% for Labor, 18% for the Greens and 3% for Palmer United. Denis Napthine leads 51-49 as preferred premier.

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.

69 comments on “Essential Research: 52-48 to Labor in Victoria”

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  1. 48

    On most votes the ALP and Coalition will agree and the greens will not be relevant (and will agree with many, but not all of those anyway).

    The Greens will agree with the ALP on most votes that the Coalition opposes and occasionally agree with the Coalition on bills the ALP opposes.

    It will be much link the 2006-10 Council but without the DLP.

    The Greens may win the balance of power in the Assembly and then that is where the action will be. The Greens will demand concessions for their support, much like they have in Tasmania and the ACT.

  2. Not to mention Ballieau made plenty of promises to spent on PT, only to end up just spending on review after reviews but not much at all on actual implementation, other than the ones that has been passed during Brumby’s time.

    While BBS is right to say that the focus seems front and centre on the EW link when there are other issues for the regionals worth highlighting, this is the reality of plurality democracies. The majority wins, and most of Victoria’s voters are densely concentrated into the suburbs most affected by the EW link.

  3. Re the swing
    Even a small swing will secure those Labor-held seats like Eltham/Ivanhoe/Yan Yen in the northern suburbs and a seat like Wendouree, in Ballarat…all of which are “nominally” Lib in the redistribution,but Labor with even the smallest of swings

    the Lib marginals like Bentleigh and Frankston, Carrum,and probably Prahran will all fall with the smallest swing to Labor…2-3 % would do it easily
    The coastal seat of Barwon is another likely Labor win

    In the country the Libs might have a good chance of a win in Ripon where the popular Labor MP Joe Helper has retired,in what was always a fairly strong Lib seat around Ararat,but lost by the unpopularity of Kennet;s anti-train complex..He seemed to hate railways

    There are a few other Lib seats in the eastern suburbs which could go easily…I think from memory Ferntree Gully might go to Labor….
    and nothing much for the Libs in the regional seats like Bendigo or Geelong
    The Green’s hope of a lower house seat would hinge on Melbourne,the state seat inside Bandt’s federal seat ,,,another would be unlikely,though they may do well in Prahran, where they polled strongly last time
    I think they may get five Leg Council seats however in Melb

  4. 52

    I agree about the reviews instead of building. To be fair I think that was partly capture by the PT bureaucracy.

    I would dispute that claim that most of Victoria`s voters are in the seats directly effected. The eastern section only really gives perceivable benefit to seats along the Eastern Freeways and Eastlink corridors. That is, at its greatest possible extent, at most about 22 seats out of 88 but probably less and many of the seats with the most perceived benefit being safe seats. Some benefit from the western section would be seen in the West but this government is not targeting them as they do not vote for it in the Assembly.

    I actually think that the East-West Link is hurting the Coalition rather than helping it. It is the sheer cost of it plus the massive opposition to it.

  5. Blackburnpseph at 46:

    [ The most interesting aspect of the article was asking voters in Ararat their voting intention. Almost all were very keen on Nat candidate in Ripon – a former footballer (Richmond I think). ]

    There’s a certain North Vic MLC who’s possibly better known in Perth than Melbourne… Damian Drum. Is he any better as a politician than he was as a footy coach? (He was pretty shithouse at that… I had to watch my team get the wooden spoon while he was here.) Football ain’t everything.

  6. My completely uninformed position is that after 2 decades of Vic government mega-projects, the audience for the ‘cranes on skyline’ measure of progress (as old J B-P would put it) has started to thin and it is getting harder for governments to sell a vision of ‘doing something’ alone.

  7. Bird of paradox

    Alas, when voters know little about the candidates on offer, and know a lot about football, being a former footballer gives a definite edge.

    I once asked a student who they’d be voting for in the upcoming state election – “Whoever’s got Justin Madden” was the response.

  8. Well, I’m confidently predicting a Napthine loss in November. I don’t think it will especially close either.

    Sure, time may prove me wrong, but if anyone cares to go check: you’ll find I was one of the few publicly predicting Brumby’s demise months out from the last poll, here at PB.

  9. Added to the post:

    Roy Morgan has SMS polls of state voting intention for each state, the Victorian component of which captured 1706 respondents and had Labor leading 54-46, from primary votes of 37.5% for the Coalition, 34% for Labor, 18% for the Greens and 3% for Palmer United. Denis Napthine leads 51-49 as preferred premier.

  10. William @ 60

    The Greens vote in the Morgan SMS poll seems more in line (even if slightly higher) with other recent polls whereas the Essential seems low at 11%. Where do you think the Greens support really lies? and is it just swapping Labor and Greens votes to get the whole?

  11. [Well, I’m confidently predicting a Napthine loss in November. I don’t think it will especially close either.]

    Oh, I agree.

    My reasoning (apart from the consistency of the polls) is similar to last Federal election.

    The government needs to gain votes to stay in office (assuming that an exact status quo is unlikely). But they have certainly gone backwards. They don’t have the margin to allow that.

    The ALP, OTOH, by not being the government (and, however unfair it seems, by not having Brumby) are by default a more attractive option than they were four years ago.

  12. 64

    I agree. The Coalition need to gain but have gone backwards instead.

    The ALP are not a thirst term government seeking re-election, with baggage (with much of that being Peter Batchelor`s baggage), with a Premier who was not Premier at the last election but had previously been an unsuccessful opposition leader.

    Also at the Last election the ALP were seen as not getting PT while the Liberals were. The Liberals then turned around in office and only conducted studies into the PT projects they talked about at the last election (Ted even at one point said they would find the money and and build Doncaster Rail) and put them off into the future but when for a road project that, when asked about before the election, they said they had no plans for.

  13. [while the Liberals were.]

    Were they?

    I understand that people want to punish ALP governments over PT failures but does anyone ever seriously believe that Libs will do a better job? As they say, it’s not in their DNA…

  14. 66

    The Liberals cannot be trusted on PT, like they cannot on many issues but they are able to win the trust of voters.

    The Liberals were promising lots of things with PT while the ALP were saying that they were doing a good job as they were and had a plan. The Liberals were very good at promising things to fix PT issues. There were issues with lifts at new stations so they promised ramps (and have indeed delivered that), the were security issues at some stations and so they promised PSOs at every station every evening and are bringing that in (even though it is a silly over reaction at most stations), they promised a united public transport authority that would take a more coordinated approach to PT and have set one up and it is making some progress on coordination while underfunded (but staffed with the same old people). So there were reasons that people voted for them on PT issues.

  15. I only really remember the PSOs – which they certainly made a big deal of – and can’t say I found that an indication of them ‘getting it’. Ok, I’m not the target audience… I only vaguely recall noises about the other improvements and thought they were far less specific.

  16. I went and looked at the Libs 2010 transport policy. I’d forgotten about the “promise to do the things the government is going to do anyway, but we’ll do it cheaper and better” bits. Classic opposition manoeuveur.

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