Essential Research: 52-48 to Labor

Not much doing in Essential Research this week, apart from results showing uneasiness about data retention. Elsewhere, a union-commissioned poll finds Joe Hockey taking a hit in his seat of North Sydney.

Absolutely no change whatsoever in this week’s Essential Research result, except that the “others” reading is up a point to 9% without making any change the other primary votes, because rounding. That means Labor leads 52-48 on two-party while trailing 40% to 38% on the primary vote, with the Greens on 10% and Palmer United on 4%. We also get Essential’s monthly personal ratings, which have Tony Abbott down one on approval to 39% and up two on disapproval to 50%, Bill Shorten up two on both measures to 37% and 38%, and Abbott’s lead as preferred prime minister narrowing from 38-32 to 36-34. Further questions are inspired by data retention, the most direct of which finds 41% broadly supportive and 44% broadly opposed. A slight majority indicated a lot or some trust for police and intelligence agencies not to misuse data (53% against 42% for little or no trust), but few did so for private companies. Only 34% expressed support for the AFP using data retention to pursue illegal downloaders, with 47% opposed.


• United Voice has commissioned ReachTEL to conduct automated phone polls of the North Sydney (Joe Hockey, Liberal) and McMahon (Chris Bowen, Labor) electorates, by way of promoting its campaign for childcare funding. The full results, including responses to questions on childcare, can be downloaded here. Excluding the undecided, the North Sydney poll has the Liberals on 49% (down 12%), Labor on 34% (up 14%) and the Greens on 13% (down 3%), translating on 2013 preferences to a Liberal two-party vote of 53.7% (down 12.2%). However, the McMahon poll is almost bang on the 2013 election result: Labor 49% (down 2%), Liberal 40% (down 1%) and Greens 4% (up 1%), with Labor’s two-party vote unchanged at 55.3%.

• The Australian Electoral Commission has been rebuked in an Australian National Audit Office report for failing to implement promised improvements to ballot box and polling booth security before the 2013 election, and not doing as much as it claimed to have done to implement the recommendations of the Keelty report following the WA Senate disaster. More from Harley Dennett at The Mandarin.

• South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill has flagged the possibility of Legislative Council reforms, in particular an end to staggered eight-year terms, to be implemented after a referendum.

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.

587 comments on “Essential Research: 52-48 to Labor”

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  1. Cf the Russian Fleet being set to invade Australia again, perhaps the final two paragraphs by William Bowe in today’s Crikey pertain:

    [Perhaps significantly, the only one of the 10 questions identified from the Australian surveys that appeared to indicate a shift to the Right involved foreign policy, with 49% of respondents now rating the Australia, New Zealand, United States Security Treaty as very important compared with 37% in in 1993.

    A hardened public attitude towards Australia’s position in international affairs would provide further explanation, if any were needed, for the Abbott government’s motivation in banging the national security drum over the past few months.]

  2. [The Australian reports that the Russian “Fleet” is south of Bougainville. Yet they write as if they are visible from the Brisbane CBD.]


    Gotta love the Oz and all its drama.

  3. One wonders just how former PMs JG and yes, even KR, would have treated all of this?

    I suspect a much more nuanced approach.

    It is all very well for Abbott to appeal to the Oz electorate with his Speedos on and his hairy chest, but the likes of Putin are cut out of the KGB mould and Abbott is merely a flea trying to pinch the hide of an elephant.

    And to think many think this man is come kind of worthy leader for Oz.

  4. Just Me:

    Love the ABC reporting it as historic and landmark and all that, after all these years of denialists telling us Australia shouldn’t act without China and the US acting, their hysterical rhetoric is now being revisited upon them in spades!

  5. Abbott and his “I have proof” line has ruined any negotiating position he may have had. If he makes an allegation the Russians will say show us your proof.

    When he cannot, its game over. The man is a fool.

  6. The news of the Russian Invasion Fleet (surely to goodness that is what they are here for) was breathlessly reported on local Channel 10 news not so long ago.

    Perhaps it’s time to roll out the cannons on Fort Pinchgut?

  7. As I mentioned earlier re CC the conservatives covered their bases ages ago by suggesting that Oz should not do anything until the Big Polluters decided to act.

    On reflection, this was clever politics as it gives them an out now to go along with it all pretending that that is why they opted out of Oz leading the world in the area of carbon abatement.

    We all know that Abbott claimed that CC “is crap” but that will not stop he and Hunt claiming – now the Big Boys have come on board – it is now okay for Oz to tag along.

    All the acres of crap from the conservatives when Labor was in office will conveniently slip into the mists of memory.

  8. Tony tried to get the Australian Navy to sail to the Crimea, but was told that all the ships were unavailable, Scott had seconded the lot. 😆

  9. [confessions
    Posted Wednesday, November 12, 2014 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

    The Australian reports that the Russian “Fleet” is south of Bougainville. Yet they write as if they are visible from the Brisbane CBD.]

    Everyone knows you can see Russia from Darwin.

  10. HOLY MOLY Newspoll Labor ahead 54-46 Labor ahead 13 polls in a row !! Nice line from Newspoll guy. Foreign affairs can be like formaldehyde. It may stop the rot but it doesn’t bring something back to life. .

  11. Over the past century and a half, the US Fleet has done more damage to Australia than the Russian Fleet.

    Fort Denison acted, during the midget submarine invasion, as a target for the eight inch guns of the somewhat confused USS Chicago.

    One hit was obtained, the rest being overs and unders.

  12. [496

    Just Me:

    It’s acutely embarrassing how quickly these idiots have taken us back to being a vision-less nation again. A global backwater with no aspirations other than intensely selfish ones.]

    Embarrassing, and more than a little dangerous. The real crunch will come if Abbott is still PM at the next election, and we re-elect him. The world will forgive us once, but not twice.

  13. Bugger, it was Victoria. Just that when I tuned in the guy was talking about Federal stuff. Still a good line bout foreign affairs and formaldehyde though.

  14. ABC bias denier and apologist Nicholas was on here the other day defending Leigh Sales and Annabelle Crabbe’s vaudville pod casts “because it was on their own time” and they just must be super talented that they can do this without compromising their day job.

    Well — bull $hit as it turns out — now Leigh Sales, not content with vaudville comedy in her own time has now put “comedy” stories in 7.30.

    Shameless and yet again a sign of the ABC’s now terminal decline.

    And yet the ABC is axing the more serious local 7.30 editions rather than Leigh Sales’ comedy show?!

    Mark Scott — rot in hell.

    Don’t cry for Auntie, she is already dead.

  15. Just Me:

    Am thinking the odds on Abbott still being PM at the next election would be pretty strong, despite PBers love of playing the who’s next game.

  16. Meanwhile, Defence is quietly flogging off $200 million worth of missiles surplus to requirements.

    ‘Why are they surplus to requirements?’ one might reasonably ask.

    Because they were meant to be launched from Mr Howard’s famous fleet of SeaSprite Helicopters.

    I understand a committee was formed and recommended aralditing some launchers onto some billycarts but even that was a bridge too far.

    Swarthy gentlemen who can get Australia a special price west of the Euphratres need not apply as middlepersons in the sales effort.

  17. Here is the deal; we will buy your subs if you sail into Australian waters; just as Australia sailed into ours.

    We have a few orange boats we would like returned!

  18. I particularly like the three cannon that still reside in Fort Denison because they cannot get them out.

    Their embrasures were so small that by the time the cannon were prepared and lined any enemy ship would have sailed past.

    There was another issue with respect to their use. The room in which they were placed was too small to allow firing with any degree of safety for the canoneers.

  19. Time to go off and find out who it was that threw Gavin off a railway bridge to his death, and why. It had to be more than just bad breath.

    Good night all.

  20. [
    William Bowe
    Posted Wednesday, November 12, 2014 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    Darren, have you ever heard of a couple of people called Clarke & Dawe, or do you know perhaps the first thing about an old show called This Day Tonight?
    When you tell me I’m full of it; your a lot blunter.

  21. William Bowe@533

    Darren, have you ever heard of a couple of people called Clarke & Dawe, or do you know perhaps the first thing about an old show called This Day Tonight?

    Using satire as a counterpoint to serious journalism is one thing. Using it as a replacement is another.

  22. @520 “and we re-elect him” we?? no we here thanks. Nobody with any kind of basic awareness or half a brain would vote for this fool. Kevin Rudd be proud, so too the fools who voted Palmer take a bow, you fools you came thru to deliver Abbott. (sorry for the typos fran)

  23. At the APEC meeting in 2009 the Russian navy docked for a visit.
    When Medvedev visited SF in 2010 the navy docked.

    It seems to me that the unfriendliness of the ship’s presence is not that they are so close but rather that they won’t come much closer.

  24. All Brisbane people aged between 18 and 70 have been called up to face the Cossack scourge. We are receiving basic training in shirtfronting.

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