BludgerTrack: 52.9-47.1 to Labor

The latest weekly poll aggregate reading finds depths being plumbed by Tony Abbott and Palmer United.

Only very slight movements on BludgerTrack this week, Labor’s strong showing in Newspoll having been dampened a little by a relatively weak result from Morgan. The seat projection is unchanged in aggregate, although the Coalition is up a seat in Victoria and down one in Tasmania. Palmer United has once again reached a new low. There’s quite a bit more movement on the personal ratings on the back of this week’s Newspoll numbers, which continue to show Tony Abbott’s net approval heading south with some velocity, and Bill Shorten’s lead as preferred prime minister solidifying.

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.

1,592 comments on “BludgerTrack: 52.9-47.1 to Labor”

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  1. I did say in September last year that I thought it less rather than more likely that this regime would run full term. I strongly suspected that an election would occur within 18 months.

    I am pretty comfortable with that call 15 months on.


  2. The question needs to be asked: why is Murdoch lampooning Abbott through his newspaper columnists?

    Because Abbott isn’t listening, even to his patron, anymore.

    He’s gone feral. A quiet word behind closed doors is no longer effective.

  3. CUD – MT has done a good job destroying the NBN. But Rupe is more interested in protecting his business operations (and looking like a winner) than being a climate denialist. If he has to, he will support labor and then try to give them an IOU after the election.

  4. [1522


    If you’re still tuned in I have a question I’d like to ask you.

    Does the very low 0.3% growth recorded for the last quarter indicate that a recession could be just around the corner? As I understand it, if we get two successive quarters of negative growth that would technically be a recession wouldn’t it?]

    Darn, the rule-of-thumb definition of a recession, as you suggest, is two consecutive quarters of declining GDP. In the US, they use a slightly more nuanced definition – a sustained period in which income, employment and output all fall.

    Most of the prominent market economists are ruling out a recession, mainly because interest rates are very low and fiscal policy is still very relaxed.

    I am not so optimistic. I think a recession is possible. higher than 50/50 chance. I think this because incomes have been weak for three years, the labour market is weak (in per capita terms labour demand is falling), investment is weak and neither business nor households have been responding strongly to very relaxed monetary policy. Housing prices, for example, have been falling in most of the country. In the September Quarter, most of the economy other than NSW was in contraction.

    As well, we have completely dysfunctional economic policies. The Government do not know what they’re doing and could easily trigger a contraction in household demand. That would be a calamity.

  5. As per Elder’s piece

    [The first member of the government to decry NewsCorp for abandoning them when the going got tough would suffer a bit, but such a person would be the rock upon which the Coalition might build a post-Abbott future.

    It would have been the perfect excuse for Malcolm Turnbull to renege on cuts to the public broadcasters: if you’re going to turn on us then we won’t do your dirty work on the ABC. Turnbull is more committed to those cuts and to Murdoch than many erstwhile supporters dare admit. Cultured, handwringing Malcolm is not the authentic Turnbull; the mogul’s facilitator is.]

  6. BF – Rupe doesn’t associate with losers because then he looks like a loser. Tone’s decline in the polls makes Rupe look weak. Rupe wants to be able to say, when Tone falls: look what happens when I withdraw support.

  7. [1551
    Fran Barlow

    I did say in September last year that I thought it less rather than more likely that this regime would run full term. I strongly suspected that an election would occur within 18 months.]

    I think Abbott could well be cactus. Whether an early election might ensue is very difficult to say. I think, on balance, there would be a very low chance of that.

  8. Fran @ 1551 – I hope you’re right, but I can’t see how an early election will happen. The only way it can happen is for the Libs to willingly call an election, and I can’t see any of these cowards doing that. Perhaps if the Libs change leaders, and whichever dud they go with calls an early election, but even then we’d be looking at very late next year, imo.

  9. [But Rupe is more interested in protecting his business operations (and looking like a winner) than being a climate denialist.]

    He can’t afford to back too many losers otherwise neither side of politics will listen to him. He’s only powerful while he can effectively influence public opinion.

  10. As K17 says, I don’t think Rupert is personally that invested in climate change denialism. Sure he’s put out some dopey tweets, but his company’s position is a political one based on where he thinks the most money is.

    I doubt he really cares if real action is taken or not (and News Corp for a long time claimed to be aspiring and achieving carbon neutrality or somesuch). Yes Fox News thrives off of pandering to a denialist audience. Yes the Australian et al run outrageously unbalanced articles on climate change – because that’s what assists in boosting the denialist LNP and running down the Greens and the ALP, who are mostly not on the side of making Rupert more money.

    But if the political winds change decisively, he needs to back winners and be seen to have influence in order to extract as much (bluffed or not) quid pro quo as possible.

    And if that means boosting Bishop or Turnbull or even Shorten, he’ll do that, as frustrating as it must be to have to go back on all his grand words about how wonderful Abbott and his government were. That was yesterday, he’ll just shrug it off and focus on where he can extract rents in future.

  11. Very hard to see an early election. The Libs won’t call one because they know they’d lose, and the Senate will obstruct when it wants to because the cross benchers know any DD threats are just idle chatter.

    They’ll just keep going hoping for something to turn up. That certainly doesn’t mean they won’t knife Abbott though if the desperation gets too great. When all your options are bad you might as well try something even if it does reek of desperation.

  12. Kevin

    if you read some of the books about Murdoch it is said he turns on people on a whim. As some of his sacked editors.
    And as you say he likes to back winners
    I would hope that next time around Labor will tell Rupert to shove his backing. His business model is busted and his newspapers are in decline.
    Rudd would have lost in 2013 even without the comic book front pages in the Courier Mail and Daily telegraph and the Herald Sun didn’t help the Tories much in Victoria last week.
    It would take courage to stand up to him but maybe the time has come.
    what will be interesting in the next little while will be to see how the Tories try to repair the relationship.

  13. I agree with that Jackol. I just hope Shorten and the ALP are smart enough to tell the old fraud to go fork himself. Dare him to do his worst. After the disgraceful way he went after the last government to put this pack of imbeciles in charge I doubt anywhere near as many people will be keen to let Rupert do their thinking for them as there were in 2013.

  14. 1562

    There is the (unfortunately remote) possibility that the Opposition and Crossbench will decide that they need to be forced to an election by refusing to vote on the supply bill in the Senate until an election is agreed to.

    There is also the possibility that Abbott will get wind of a challenge and run off to the GG for a DD.

  15. Galaxy Poll in NewsLtd tabloids

    ALP 55
    LNP 45

    and it appears Abbott’s PPL about to be “boned”

    [WEALTHY mums will be banned from big payouts under Tony Abbott’s paid parental leave scheme and the savings will be ploughed into making childcare more affordable for all Australians.

    The Prime Minister will announce today he has bowed to pressure to change his paid parental leave scheme in the hope it will secure Senate support allowing the government to deliver PPL in 2015.

    His big concession comes as support for the Abbott Government plunged again according to an exclusive Galaxy poll with Labor leading 55:45 on a two party preferred basis — a ten point lead. For the first time, Labor has overtaken the Coalition on the primary vote with ALP support hitting 41 per cent.]

  16. ratsak and jackol – Labor would be smarter to humour the old bastard while they covertly go about planning to trust bust News Corp.

  17. Predictions for the Matt Price moment for 2014 on Insiders tomorrow ???

    Shorten took out 2012 with “I agree with her view even though I do not know what her view is”, whilst Abbott won 2013 with his “suppository of all wisdom”

    For 2014, it should be Jacqui Lambie. Her whipper snipper comments and that any prospective partner must be mute, rich and well hung should see her victorious.

  18. Tom,

    There’s also a chance Abbott will grow a brain and govern for the whole of the country, become popular, and outlast Ming.

    but back in the real world…

  19. Jimmy,

    Murdoch is a cancer, you won’t gain anything by humouring him. And with his influence diminishing by the day you will get a lot of support from a wide percentage of the population that will want to see someone standing up to the old bastard for once. Go to war with him now.

  20. Random thoughts ….

    The LNP trolls seem to have gone to ground – Mod Lib where are you?

    I think what we are witnessing, as per Andrew Elder, is the sheer horror of the LNP front bench that their slogans and rhetoric about the ALP in government period does mot translate to sound, well thought thru government.

    They willed themselves to believe that they truly were the adults, and back in charge they would fix things, that the ALP budget deficits were easily fixable with sensible LNP adults in charge, that the rest of world was moving with them on client change scepticism, that a dose of common sense IPA policies was all that was required to restore the glorious Howard years.

    That it hasnt worked out as planned is utterly devastating for the true believers on the LNP front bench. The realisation that their entire policy rationale is a hollow log must be quite horrifying for many on the backbench contemplating a big loss at the next election.

  21. Why doesn’t Abbott simply revert to the PPL scheme of labor?
    I’m assuming it is still in place until Abbott’s welfare for rich mums is supposed to come into force?

  22. Samantha replied to my tweet, keep an eye out for a more detailed Galaxy Poll article

    [Leroy ‏@Leroy_Lynch
    Galaxy Fed Poll TPP ALP 55 (+4) L/NP 45 (-4) Primaries L/NP 38 (-4) ALP 41 (+5) last G poll early Oct few details tho
    10:31 PM – 6 Dec 2014

    Samantha Maiden ‏@samanthamaiden
    @Leroy_Lynch in paper there’s a stand alone story in Sunday Tele re polling
    10:32 PM – 6 Dec 2014]

  23. 1578

    The existing scheme has not been scrapped. I suspect that Abbott`s European-style previous income based scheme is being replaced with the means-tested flat payment currently in place, only extended out to 6 months and with super paid.

  24. [Galaxy Poll in NewsLtd tabloids

    ALP 55
    LNP 45]

    Oooh boy. Along with the Fisher by-election vote thus far, caps off a truly shit year for the first term Abbott govt.

  25. Henry – you know the answer to that question. Abbott set about tearing down every single thing that Gillard put in place as his singular mission. Everything had to go, whether it was good, bad or indifferent.

    I really think there was a large proportion of personal animosity from Abbott to Gillard post-2010-election in motivating the LNP and this has shaped a large portion of their policy agenda.

    ie it’s not just LNP incompetence and looking after big business mates and IPA right-wing culture warriors … it’s worse than that – big chunks of their implemented policy were based solely on a personal grudge held by the Abbott himself (or maybe a collective grudge, but I suspect Abbott had a lot of personal say in many of the smaller decisions).

  26. I think the LNP trolls are awaiting further orders from the command bunker, but there appears to be a struggle among the generals over the carrier pigeon. Julie has the tail, Malcolm and Scott have a foot each and Tony has the beak. Joe has a bucket of wings, of course.

  27. Jackol @ 1583 – I think there is something in what you’re saying. Just look at Abbott’s vindictiveness in seeking to make Rudd and Gillard sit next to each other at Gough’s funeral. Disgraceful behaviour.

  28. The Shock the LNP is suffering is the sane type of shock the left suffered when the USSR fell.

    The US style economics proven so wrong with the GFC is a failure. Its why Obama was able to move away from it. Its why Labor in Australia was so successful.

    By doing almost the exact opposite of Labor while Swan was Treasurer its no wonder they are failing economically and politically.

    I do not see an early election from this lot that have been willing to support science denial and ideology instead of looking at facts. So they will do a reshuffle and kid themselves that will solve their problems.

    It will only do so if they shift back to reality. That means being willing to do things like Labor did in signing up to the Forest Deal. That was not easy for any of the participants but all parties knew it was the deal Tasmanian Forestry had to have.

    Until that happens the polls as a symptom of the cancer (with thanks to Andrew Elder) will continue as they are or fall more.
    A chaos in the Liberal party could get that bad that an early election is called to limit the damage to the Liberal brand.

    I do not think that is likely,but then I did not predict such an astonishingly bad first year. I thought it would be at the 18 month mark we would see cracks appearing.

  29. If Labor give Rupert anything but a big FU when they are next in office, then they deserve to die a horrible political death and be treated with utter contempt for eternity for being such fools and cowards.

    Best thing they could do to cripple the malignant old turd’s insatiable greed is finish the full FTTP network, and keep it out of private hands. That critical piece of physical and political infrastructure should remain forever an unadulterated public good.

  30. […and the savings will be ploughed into making childcare more affordable for all Australians.]

    Why do I get the feeling they’re going to be mean, tricky and dishonest about this one too?

  31. Re: Essential 55/45

    Labor needs 42.5 % primary to win a healthy government.

    The gentleman who owns this blog doesn’t waste his time with other people’s misconstrued and manipulated TPP analysis.

    Why the rest of you bother is well an truly beyond me.

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