BludgerTrack: 53.9-46.1 to Labor

After not just one but three polls all pointing in the same direction, the BludgerTrack poll aggregate tacks sharply back to the Coalition, while continuing to credit Labor with a crushing lead.

After a slightly surprising week of polling, in which Newspoll, Essential and Morgan all placed Labor in the range of 53% to 54% after bias adjustment, the BludgerTrack aggregate finds a bounce back to the Coalition from the abysmal depths plumbed after Australia Day. The Coalition is up by 2% on the two-party and primary vote, at the expense of the Greens as well as Labor, and by 10 on the seat projection, with three gains in Victoria, two each in New South Wales and Western Australia, and one each in Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania.

Newspoll is the only one of the three to have supplied new leadership ratings, and since no new figures emerged last week, they weigh heavily upon the model’s current readings. This might be deemed unfortunate, as some of the Newspoll numbers look a little idiosyncratic. In particular, the minus 14% net approval for Bill Shorten is his worst in any published poll since he became leader, and nine points worse than any result this year. It may be that when the dust settles, this result will show up as a correction to the anomalous recent trend in his favour, returning him to his long-term equilibrium just below zero.

Among the many interesting features of the Newspoll result was the personal rating for Tony Abbott, which all but matched the results Newspoll produced a fortnight ago from a sample that gave the Coalition such devastating numbers on voting intention. Indeed, the latest Newspoll runs a very close second to the one a fortnight ago as the worst personal result Abbott has suffered in a poll as prime minister. The trend chart shown on the sidebar to the right accordingly shows no respite in Abbott’s collapse since Australia Day, in strong contrast to voting intention.

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.

2,311 comments on “BludgerTrack: 53.9-46.1 to Labor”

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  1. Last Galaxy poll on 5 February

    If Malcolm Turnbull was leader of the Liberal Party which one of the following would you vote for?

    Two party preferred with Malcolm Turnbull as Liberal party leader

    Coalition 42% (same as this new IPSOS poll)
    Labor Party 38%
    The Greens 10%
    Palmer United Party 3%
    Other 7%

    Coalition 49%
    Labor Party 51%

  2. Nope – Abbott’s ratings are still bad, but slightly improved:

    [While Mr Abbott remains a deeply unpopular prime minister – having set a dubious record for being elected with a negative rating – even this index has improved, with his minus 38 per cent rating last month closing by 8 points to now be at a less severe minus 30. That is, 32 per cent of respondents approved of his performance whereas 62 per cent did not.

    The recovery is reflected in Mr Shorten’s rating going the other way with a drop of 10 per cent taking his net approval to zero, that is 43 per cent approval, minus 43 per cent disapproval.

    Head-to-head, on the specific question of preferred prime minister, Mr Shorten still leads but his margin has been slashed from 16 points to just 5, at 44-39. It had been 50-34 last month.]

    My guess is this is an actual correction from the frankly unbelievable punishment the LNP has been getting from the electorate (with 57s and other unrealistic numbers) as the pressure of the spill motion came to a head.

    Some Tories are now accepting theyve got Abbott – and moving on from the sick feeling that creates – other Tories are coming back onboard as they expect Abbott to go.

    Other swinging voters may be looking at the ALP in the wake of their massive Abbott-hating binge since the budget and wondering if theyre ready for the government they look increasingly likely to get, if nothing changes.

    Id say all the above – and it highlights the need for some strategic ALP policy releases. Nothing major, but Abbott-hatred isnt going to be enough folks.

    I reckon the NBN is a great one to get back out in the public mind. The Tories have an absolute dog of a policy there and everyone knows it too. Remind punters where the ALP stands on the key issue in 21c infrastructure.

    Aside from that, steady as she goes, be more mature, less wingnutty thanAbbott. None of thats hard stall.

    No stress – things will swing back soon enough if Abbott isnt given the boot. It wont be 57s anymore, but up around 53 for sure.

  3. [
    Rex Douglas
    Posted Sunday, March 1, 2015 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

    These latest polls that have considerably moved the Govts way must surely be disturbing to the ALP.

    Bill Shortens ineffectiveness at this turbulent time for the Liberals should really have the alarm bells ringing.

    Ignoring this would be cowardly. A change in approach is surely now required.
    Just when it looks like Abbott was gone the polling gods deliver this; don’t know what Shortens doing but it is sure is working. Abbott PM to election.

  4. [There was often a shift to Labor when Gillard was approaching the brink. I’m not sure why it happens but it seems to happen more often than by pure chance.

    My guess is that it’s a regression to the mean phenomenon where a a few really crappy outlier polls get leadership speculation but statistically it’s unlikely that they are repeated.]

    Gillard survived 9 – 12 months longer than she should have (based on polling) lets hope Tony does too.

  5. So is the Shorten very small target strategy coming unstuck,I know his and the Labor party’s non stand on the meta data,his for the 2nd time in my voting life making me vote Green.
    1st one was the Bullock fiasco he should never got near the senate voted green in that,Labor has got to get rid of the remainder of the Rudd traitors and WA has got to get rid of stifling over represented Left.
    The way shorten is going Labor will bleed seats to the greens till the dope realize that as things are being a coward gets you no traction.
    Shorten must GO put the women back in charge at least they may oppose this bill that will carried to it logical conclusion create our very own Stasi,you either oppose or you piss off

  6. I don’t think Labor needs to go to specific policies but talking about principles would help. Commitment to Medicare. Fairness to the aged, the disabled and thd unemployed. Commitment to jobs. Fairness in the workplace. Commitment to education (as distinct from yhe Ivy League fantasies of a few Vice Chancellors). If Security or Terrorism is mentioned, commit to protecting Australians and go back to fairness. If boats are mentioned, the solution is regional processing and meeting our obligations, then back to jobs, affordable health care and education.

  7. The question really has to be turned around. To any of these critics of this style of journalism, ask yourselves this: If you were responsible for reporting on events and Canberra, what would you do?

    I would spend less time on rumour analysis and more time on policy analysis. Their chief job is the provide context and analysis of public policy. Party turmoil deserves some coverage but the amount of coverage is grossly disproportionate to the quality of the information.

  8. Remember it is still 18 months to the next election, unless your name is John Hewson there is no need for Labor to lay out policies now.
    At this stage in the cycle the government should be governing and the opposition critiquing them. It is not the ALP’s fault the Libs simply cannot govern.

    They should be talking about values and principles (e.g. fairness), but they have plenty of time for that and given everything that is going on, who would listen to them.

    Also they do have plenty of policies:
    Carbon pricing.

  9. Voters have been promised a spill on Tuesday …they’ve also been assured by just about every political commentator that Turnbull will become PM and bring some sanity back to this crazy Govt..

    See the Polls turn viciously against Abbott & Co when they realize Old Media has had a premature ejaculation ..and the spill motion isn’t even put..

  10. TBA @2245:

    Just like they did in 2007, yes?

    Face the reality: There are some policies so nasty, some Governments so obviously small-minded thugs, that they just can’t win an election.

    If the media hadn’t covered for Tony at every turn, he’d not have won in 2013.

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