A solid move on BludgerTrack this week, as the Labor primary vote spikes 0.9% at the expense of the Coalition and others. This translates to a 0.7% lift on two-party preferred and a gain of three on the seat projection, including one each from New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania, counterbalanced by a loss in Queensland (NOTE: This post originally gave Labor an extra 0.4% two-party preferred as well as an extra seat; this was based on an error which has now been fixed). Picking that apart:
The model does not presently grant any weight to Ipsos, except in calculating the state totals and the leadership ratings, as it’s only with the publication of a second result that the model will have something to benchmark it against. This has the unfortunate effect of depriving the current BludgerTrack reading of what’s probably a strong result for the Coalition, perhaps causing it to lean a little more Labor than it should. That’s unless a Coalition lean proves to be a consistent feature of Ipsos, in which case it will be bias-adjusted accordingly. However, this certainly wasn’t evident in its Victorian state poll.
Poll watchers have been looking askance at Newspoll’s two-party numbers recently, which have consistently been putting Labor a percentage point ahead of what the primary vote numbers would lead you to expect. Since BludgerTrack dispenses with pollsters’ two-party preferred calculations and determines its own after generating the primary vote numbers, Labor’s strong Newspoll showing has been making a less of an impression than some might expect.
Morgan reverted to type in its latest fortnightly result after successive polls showed the Coalition in its strongest position since February, producing strong Coalition data points after the bias adjustment was applied. This time out, it’s back in the middle somewhere. A re-evaluation of Morgan’s performance this term caused me to very slightly amend its bias adjustment about 0.2% to Labor’s advantage.
Essential Research has been a little counter-cyclical, nudging Labor downwards slightly where elsewhere they have edged up. Its bias adjustments, which had been factoring in a lean to Labor, are progressively moderating to accommodate the trend.
Ipsos provides a welcome new addition to the leadership ratings game, and early indications are that it has inherited Nielsen’s peculiarly low uncommitted ratings. The BludgerTrack aggregates eliminate such distinctions, and Ipsos combined with the Newspoll result causes Tony Abbott’s preferred prime minister lead to all but disappear, down from 3.1% to 0.7%. Abbott is also down 1.8% on net approval to minus 12.2%, while Bill Shorten is unchanged at minus 4.7%.