Essential Research: 53-47 to Labor

Essential Research produces yet more disastrous personal ratings for Tony Abbott, and turns the knife with a finding that suggests salvation for the Coalition is only as far away as Julie Bishop.

The latest result from Essential Research has both major parties a point down on the primary vote, in both cases from 40% to 39%. This makes room for increases of one point for the Greens and two points to others, both now at 10%, while Palmer United is now at 2%, which I believe to be a new low. Also featured are Essential Research’s regular monthly personal ratings, which offer yet another belting for Tony Abbott, who is down seven points on approval to 32% and up five on disapproval to 55%. Bill Shorten is down two on approval to 35% and up one on disapproval to 39%, and has opened up a 36-31 lead on preferred prime minister after trailing 36-34 last time.

There’s also results on how various politicians have performed over the past year, which are predictable in direction but very interesting in degree. Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey and, more excusably, Christine Milne have equally poor net ratings of minus 22%, minus 24% and minus 23% respectively (Milne having an undecided rating quite a bit higher than the other two). The big eye-openers are Clive Palmer at minus 50% and Julie Bishop at plus 28%. Rather less interestingly, Bill Shorten is at minus 5%.

The poll also finds the issues respondents most want addressed over the coming year are improving the health system and reducing unemployment, with less concern for public transport investment, environmental protection, investment in roads and, in last place, free trade agreements. Respondents also deem it to have been a bad year for pretty much everything, most especially “Australian politics in general” at minus 53% (which is still an improvement on minus 62% last year&#148), the only exceptions being large companies and corporations (plus 14%) and “you and your family overall” (plus 3%).

A semi-regular question on same-sex marriage records weaker support than the particularly strong showing in June, at 55% (down five) with 32% opposed (up four).

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.

682 comments on “Essential Research: 53-47 to Labor”

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  1. I said this would happen to the rest of the public service when I twigged to the statement Abbott made to the ADF, that no one in the public service would get a greater rise then them, due to them putting their lives in harms way.

    I knew it. The ADF pay and conditions cut was simply to put the thumbscrews on the whole of the public service.

  2. Steve777:

    [Tornado near Newcastle this afternoon?]

    The BOM did put out a severe storm warning this afternoon, warning of “very dangerous” thunderstorms in the Hunter region. Perhaps that’s their euphemism for tornadogenic.

  3. Puff, the Magic Dragon:

    The Government has also directed the Departments that no deal is to include any back-dated pay rises – so they’re all getting 0% from their last rise until whenever a deal is finally concluded.

    Defence (civvies) and ATO both had their last pay rise in mid 2013.

  4. Puff 653 – and they know that ADF personnel can’t complain about it, unlike if they started with other govt employees.

    Victoria 555 – loved this comment at SMH article about Pyne

    In the next instalment of Christopher Pyne’s magical delusion tour, he writes to the Minister for Education, imploring him not to cut funding to South Australian universities. – Toshiro Mifune

  5. [That’s a handy little break to Labor (21) at this late stage. Let’s hope there aren’t very many overseas postals to come.]

    Actually considering how everything else regarding the Fisher by-election and the vote flows of pre-polls/postals have flown in the face of conventional wisdom and rational prediction, I don’t know what to expect from overseas postals and will just wait and see! 😛

  6. Abbott used the ADF as props in his “I Am An International Statesman & Warrior” gambit to improve his polls, and now he’s using them again – claiming their nobility, bravery etc. – to argue that he couldn’t possibly give other public servants more than he’s giving the honoured ADF.

    He’s been using them to self-aggrandize himself and his cronies over boats as well.

    If the ADF doesn’t wake up to just how cynically Abbott has used and now discarded them, I’m going to start worrying about how dumb they are, and the consequences that might have for the quality of our national defence.

    You keep hearing the political journos waxing lyrical about how loyal Abbott is.

    But who has he been loyal to when the shit really hits the fan?

    Reithy, who he dudded over the Liberal Party Presidency?

    Arthur Sinodinos, who Abbott praised to high heaven, but sacked anyway?

    Joe Hockey, Abbott’s favourite punching bag over the years?

    Julie Bishop, who now apparently needs a chaperone?

    Hunt, who’s not going to Lima, even though he’s Environment Minister?

    Bernie Banton, who he accused of being impure of heart, three days before he died?

    SBY, who he assured he would not offend, and then offended him?

    The officers he had sacked after they crossed into Indonesian territorial waters… under orders?

    Educators, who he told were in no funding trouble, because he and Labor had a “unity ticket” on Gonski?

    Pensioners, who voted for him en masse, but who are now seeing the value of their pensions dwindle away?

    The ABC, who he said would suffer no cuts?

    Sick people, who he told not to worry about co-payments?

    The Australian people at large, when he told them that not only would he not lie to them, but reinforced this with homilies about honesty, and then told them they’d misunderstood him?

    This man is a psychopath. He doesn’t give a damn WHO he hurts, betrays, deceives, drops in the gutter and ultimately abandons.

    His whole schtick is to cover his mistakes and malignant mistruths with the blood and bodies of others. He’s piling up more political cadavers than Macbeth. The lower the nation as a whole, the more he thinks he is seen to be rising above it.

    There’s nothing positive about him. All he does is wreck. He’s holding the nation to ransom even now, as he used to do when he was LOTO. “My way, or the highway.”

    They say he committed and a conviction politician. I don’t think so. Not to policy anyway. If he’s committed to anything it’s himself and his scrawny hide.

    Why anyone would ever trust him again, is beyond me. If the ADF trust him, and continue to support him, they’re fools.

    But con men like Abbott rely on suckers believing that they will never be betrayed, or that they have worked out his scam. That’s when he at his most dangerous, when the mugs think they’ve sussed him.

    I really don’t know how he does it. He’s not likeable, or handsome, or even particularly bright or articulate. It’s a mystery to me.

  7. 662
    Bushfire Bill

    Abbott is proving to be a case study in mendacity. He’s basically made himself unelectable, imho. No-one will believe any election undertakings he might make, supposing he is ever likely to be called on for that job.

    The polls will get worse, not better. The Liberals will return to Canberra after the summer break with one message from their constituents – get rid of the liar in the lodge.

  8. [briefly
    Posted Thursday, December 11, 2014 at 12:03 am | PERMALINK

    I agree, Darn. Considering there can only be a few votes to come in, 21 is not bad at all.]

    IIRC the postals on average have been breaking just above 55/45 to the Libs. At that rate they would need about 180 of them to overtake Labor.

  9. Whether or not there’s widespread distrust in the ADF for Abbott, I don’t think you’ll hear about it other than as scuttlebutt and rumour. It’s drilled in pretty heavily that they serve the elected Government – and that’s no bad thing.

  10. Bushfire Bill@662

    I really don’t know how he does it. He’s not likeable, or handsome, or even particularly bright or articulate. It’s a mystery to me.

    He’s a bully. Nobody wants to take him on. The sycophants cowards feel tall walking behind A classic schoolyard scenario being played out in the highest office

  11. Briefly @ 670

    KB’s site quotes Bilbo as saying he thinks there are only about 100 votes outstanding. Cut off is Friday… so they’ll count all then.

  12. The Labor “outrage” against the Abbott regime is so cute.

    Is Abbott much more than the political love child of Rudd and Gillard?

    Anyway, the Tory media has two years to defeat the bumbling, right wing, incompetent Bullock ALP.

  13. Excellent to read that State and Federal MPs, from both majors, are pushing for more women in Parliament, seeing quotas as an integral part of achieving this —

    But how’s this for a zinger…

    [The Melbourne Declaration was launched by former federal Liberal politician Sophie Mirabella and former leading Labor adviser Nicholas Reece, who are both now public policy fellows at Melbourne University.

    The declaration says the existing approach to selection and promotion of women in Australian politics was “flawed” and has “failed to achieve the full participation of women in our democracy”.]

    That’d be the Sophie Mirabella who, on countless occasions, railed against quotas, not only claiming they were ineffective but using their existence to sneer at Labor women MPs, saying they were there just to fill up the numbers.

    Compare and contrast – the other Liberal MPs quoted are still in Parliament. Mirabella waited until she was outside the system to ‘come out’.

  14. [That’d be the Sophie Mirabella who, on countless occasions, railed against quotas, not only claiming they were ineffective but using their existence to sneer at Labor women MPs, saying they were there just to fill up the numbers.]

    I also liked abbott and Co.s comments when the 1 woman cabinet was announced that it was McGowan’s fault that there wasn’t a second woman in cabinet.

    when you think about it, this government has been wrong footing itself from the moment it was elected. when abbott won the lib leadership I had friends who were delighted because they thought he was unelectable and would destroy the LNP ‘brand’ for years to come. I was worried that he could become PM against Rudd. It looks as though my friends were right on their second point. I predict abbott will drop even further in the polls post christmas. A common topic at end of year functions I go to – even conservative gatherings – is just how bad this mob are. Howard was often disliked, but was seen as competent. Abbott and co are seen as a joke. the right wing loons who now run the party will not allow them to go to a bishop-turnbull ticket, but I cannot see how else they can ‘re-boot’. The longer term worry is that the libs keep moving further to the right and even if they are in opposition for a decade, they will eventually win government by default and work to rip down anything vaguely progressive. The real worry is that one day they’ll get a charismatic and competent leader, who is good at implementing a far right agenda (I’m thankful that abbott is so bad at it). I also fear that the right is using the micro parties to win control of upper houses better than the left – and there’s no chance of fixing this whilst the same micro parties control BoP. I cannot see the libs moving to fix this unless progressives start using micro-parties to gain upper house seats.

  15. Since the Abbott government was elected the number of employed people has increased by 1.2%

    The number of unemployed people has increased by 10.4%.

    The Abbott government’s economic policies are a failure.

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