Essential Research: 53-47 to Labor

No change this week on voting intention from Essential Research, but further questions suggest the Abbott government’s anti-terrorism measures may be striking a chord.

No change this week on the Essential Research fortnightly rolling average, which has the Coalition, Labor, the Greens and Palmer United steady on 40%, 41%, 9% and 2%, with Labor’s two-party preferred lead at 53-47. Further questions relate to terrorism, and they offer rare good news for Tony Abbott, whose handling of the threat has 46% approval and 33% disapproval. It would also be to his advantage that fully 75% of respondents believe the threat has increased over the last few years, with only 2% opting for decreased, and that considerably more respondents think the government should be spending more on anti-terrorism measures (39%) than less (12%), with 56% favouring more restrictions versus only 28% who believe current laws strike the right balance. Less good for the government is the finding that 34% approve of the Human Rights Commission’s performance versus only 22% disapproval, although 44% allowed that they didn’t know. Another interesting finding is that 48% would support a national ban on greyhound racing, with only 26% opposed. The poll also finds that 57% take a favourable view of multiculturalism versus 29% for negative, and that 67% think racism is a problem in Australia.

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.

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

Comments Page 1 of 18
1 2 18
  1. Libertarian Unionist @1067 (previous thread):

    Of course the rationale for private schools is all about class and privilege. I don’t think anyone would – or should! – turn a hair at that statement…kinda like “water is wet”.

    The difference is that until recently, the Labor Party has been the party for public education – but now they’ve joined the Liberals in actively denigrating and cutting public education.

    Because these days, Australia doesn’t have a true two-party system. We have the Party of the 0.1% (Coalition) and the Party of the 1% (ALP). Labor’s more inclusive than the Coalition, but that says little – and both have long abandoned the great bulk of the Australian people.

  2. Private schools also make public schools less viable by draining away some of the pupils. These public schools are then closed down. For instance, there is not one public secondary school left in Stonnington. If you cannot afford the private schools that do exist in the area (I can think of 5 off the top of my head), you are committed to transporting your child to another municipality to be educated (either that or enrol them in the corresponding school).

  3. Matt@3

    Elitism is not a problem of itself other than when they become closed.

    I have a sneaking admiration of the English in their ability to keep The Establishment just open enough to ensure it does not harden at the arteries but closed enough to ensure a class system is alive and well.

    Last year The Times was quite open about the fact that still, in the UK, the top parts of British society – law, army, business, politics and the arts were dominated by those who went to some very select and expensive private schools, a limited number of universities with Oxbridge leading the way and still thought being descendant from being a Norman was a significant fact.

    The “My family has been here since Norman times” actually means something to the likes of the ruling classes in the UK.

  4. And before people say that I’m unfairly bashing Labor, I’d like to point out that – per Crikey – this Labor frontbench has the highest rate of private-school alumni in the history of the party, and Bill Shorten is the first Labor leader in 40 years to come from a private school.

    They didn’t go to public schools. They almost certainly don’t send their kids to public schools. And we’re expected to believe that they support public schools?

    They can put their money (or, rather, their kids) where their mouth is. I don’t believe that any politician is for public education until I hear that their kids (if they have kids) are in public schools.

  5. PB@4

    Exactly the same applies in Perth’s Western Suburbs.

    In the last 20 years or so something like 4-5 government secondary schools were closed and the land sold for housing in this area. Now, of course, there are not enough schools of this type.

    To be fair, some of the ones which were close came about because their enrolments fell as the families grew up and moved further out of the city. However, with the in-fill policy of the current government, suddenly primary schools in this area are bursting with no local high school now available. One of the few survivors, Churchlands is now enormous and has the curse of demountables to cope.

  6. [Of course the rationale for private schools is all about class and privilege. I don’t think anyone would – or should! – turn a hair at that statement…kinda like “water is wet”.]

    Yeah, I agree.

    My point was that it isn’t “unscientific” to ascribe them with this value. And they are not “bad value for money,” if the ultimate value of education is measured more broadly than exam scores. In fact, it’s quite a rational thing to do to send your child to a private school, if you can afford it, to make the contacts that could set them up for a life of success.

    Another way this is manifest is through catchment regions for good public schools.

    Don’t get me wrong, I agree that we don’t want a schooling system that operates as a filter for the “in” club, and more funding for public education must be part of the solution to this dilemma.

  7. It is not surprising that the Chief Justice would have fewer sitting days than other judges.

    CJs are more likely to be asked to functions plus they adminisiter the court.

  8. Matt – make of it what you will. Others have referred to knitting before today but whether this is with needles or my worry lines, I am not sure!

  9. How depressing that the national security stuff would still have this sort of political impact, if this poll is to be believed. Abbott’s banging on about it of late has, been so transparently not about the nation’s security but that of his own job, that I had thought the average Australian would see straight through it.

  10. I can exclusively reveal to Bludgers that Liberal party research indicates that their TPP% in Newspoll is directly linked to how many flags Tony Abbott has behind him in press conferences. Liberal staffers believe the equation is 57% minus # of flags, and are sourcing as many flags as possible to ensure that Tony never addresses the media in the future without an ever increasing number of flags behind him.

  11. alias,

    I don’t think the security stuff has anything to do with the Libs recorded rise in the more recent polls. They’ve been banging on with that for months to no effect.

    I reckon a small part of the bounce is, the usual divergence in samples aside, when they were polled people thought Abbott would be gone in the very near future.

  12. [@latikambourke: Former. RT @CroweDM: Who would have thought? Liberal staffer gets into @QandA to ask a question. @latikambourke here: http://t.co/hg7rvQllMt ]

    What! A Liberal staffer posing as an inquisitive audience member on QandA! That’s never happened before, surely!

  13. [alias
    Posted Tuesday, March 3, 2015 at 5:10 pm | PERMALINK
    How depressing that the national security stuff would still have this sort of political impact, if this poll is to be believed. Abbott’s banging on about it of late has, been so transparently not about the nation’s security but that of his own job, that I had thought the average Australian would see straight through it.
    ]

    Some of them are pretty dumb. But the encouraging thing is that it doesn’t seem to matter how much Abbott beats the war drum, it isn’t enough to get the tories back in front. The 51-49 from Ipsos clearly flatters the government and if an election was held now Labor would most likely win it fairly easily.

    FWIW my theory is that once you peel off the layer who will always be influenced by this kind of jingoism there seems to be a hard core of voters who have just had enough of Abbott and have already made up their minds to get rid of him. So if his own party won’t do it they will, as soon as they get the chance.

    Could be wrong but that’s what it looks like to me.

  14. Burgey

    [I reckon a small part of the bounce is, the usual divergence in samples aside, when they were polled people thought Abbott would be gone in the very near future.]

    I’m inclined to agree. Might be a case of “buy on the rumour, sell on the news”. Time will tell.

  15. PeeBee not only is there not one non-selective government high school in Stonnington, there is none in the Federal electorate of Melbourne Ports. Albert Park now goes to year 11 but it is music scholarship and Elwood High and Glen Eira Secondary are both on the southern boundary of the electorate.
    Of course the scions of the bunyip aristocracy have a great selection of high fee high schools

  16. [“@latikambourke: Former. RT @CroweDM: Who would have thought? Liberal staffer gets into @QandA to ask a question. @latikambourke here: http://t.co/hg7rvQllMt“]

    Well that certainly is news!

    A Lib supporter gets to ask a Question on Q&A… stop the presses! Usually it’s Greens, Socialists and Labor True Believers so this event certainly requires an entire article in a Fairfax newspaper.

  17. 46/33 approval of a govt’s anti-terrorism policy is pretty poor. It is however likely that Abbott’s fortunes will revive as leadership speculation diminishes, doesn’t alter govt’s fundamental problems.

  18. For all aussie hatred of the British class system – only 3% of children are educated in private schools in the UK

    In Australia a third of ll children are educated in private schools, more in some states and less in other states

  19. In Australia a third of ll children are educated in private schools, more in some states and less in other states

    should read

    In Australia a third of all children are educated in private schools, more in some states and less in other states

  20. LU
    [And they are not “bad value for money,” if the ultimate value of education is measured more broadly than exam scores. In fact, it’s quite a rational thing to do to send your child to a private school, if you can afford it, to make the contacts that could set them up for a life of success. ]

    a) “Value of education is measured more broadly than exam scores”
    c) “to make the contacts that could set them up for a life of success.”

    Given that networking is not education, I don’t see that you’ve provided an of argument that private schools are providing some more broadly defined kind of education. Given that, neither have you provided an argument countering the proposition that private schools are inefficient w.r.t. to education.

    We could just as well claim that the heat and noise produced by my car is useful in some manner and so my car is 100% efficient. Well sure, just not at providing transportation.

    So sure, private schools are 100% efficient at providing all the stuff they provide. They are less efficient than public schools when it comes strictly to education.

  21. Remember this?
    http://www.thecourier.com.au/story/892304/abbott-v-gillard-at-rooty-hill-probe-into-stacking/

    [Political pollster Galaxy says it will investigate why the son of a former Liberal MP was part of the audience at yesterday’s Rooty Hill RSL Club debate.

    Joel Scalzi, the son of former South Australian Liberal MP Joe Scalzi, was one of the undecided voters selected by the polling company to quiz Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott in a town hall-style meeting.]

    Scalzi’s fawning conversation with Abbott was played on ABC Radio National Brekky by Fran and her mates – before his identity became public.

    I wrote and asked why and got a public relations answer.

  22. The swing back is not because Abbott is being factored as gone already. It takes some mental acrobatics to confirm that bias.

    I think it’s simpler than that. Liberal Leadershit starts, polls go extra bad for the Coalition. Liberal Leadershit is stopped, polls go back to just bad again.

  23. [I think it’s simpler than that. Liberal Leadershit starts, polls go extra bad for the Coalition. Liberal Leadershit is stopped, polls go back to just bad again.]

    It’s stopped?

  24. SB
    [The swing back is not because Abbott is being factored as gone already. It takes some mental acrobatics to confirm that bias.

    I think it’s simpler than that. Liberal Leadershit starts, polls go extra bad for the Coalition. Liberal Leadershit is stopped, polls go back to just bad again.]
    That’s the simplest explanation, sure, but where’s the fun? 😛

  25. TrueBlueTossie

    [Usually it’s Greens, Socialists and Labor True Believers so this event certainly requires an entire article in a Fairfax newspaper.]

    How many can you identify as past or present Labor or Greens staffers?

  26. You might be right Sam. It’s just different to separate cause and effect. The polls improved because the leadership drama diminished, or vice versa – or a bit of both (virtuous loop)?

  27. I’m sorry but Leftwing Latika Bourke writing an entire article in the leftwing Canberra Times about 1 Lib staffer asking 1 question on a show that is so left biased it would make a Greenie blush, is this some kind of joke?

    The big news story is that a Lib actually got to ask a question.

    That’s probably how they caught him out… what?! He’s questioning a Labor luvvie minister?! Do a background check quick!

  28. Be careful there, TBA, if you include the word “left” any more times in your posts, they might end up past the left hand side of the page where we won’t be able to read them.

  29. TBA,

    You really have NFI.

    Latika is a well known Lib supporter and is equally known for her special snout relationship with Julie Bishop.

  30. TrueBlueTossie

    [That’s probably how they caught him out… what?! He’s questioning a Labor luvvie minister?! Do a background check quick!]

    Her. Not him.

    Did you, like, you know, read the actual article?

  31. QandA is usually full of such obvious questions that anyone who read the papers/social media can predict them.

    Sometimes they are the questions that we wished the MSM had asked.

  32. [“Latika is a well known Lib supporter and is equally known for her special snout relationship with Julie Bishop.”]

    I would love evidence of this one, truly I would.

    If Latika’s Twitter feed is any indication she’d be a Greens voter

  33. Previous thread:

    [ zoomster@1062
    Sussan Ley, on SKY now, was asked if she thought there should be less bulk billing, and agreed. ]

    Well, that a statement that will have the Libs screwed then. If the thrust of the new ministers health policy is going to be to reduce the rate of bulk billing it really tells people all they need to know if health policy is important to how they vote.

    Libs are out to dismantle Medicare. FAIL.

Comments Page 1 of 18
1 2 18

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *