It’s been a very quiet week for federal polling, leaving the regular weekly Essential Research result as the only game in town. The fortnightly rolling average on voting intention ticks a point in the Coalition’s favour, with Labor’s lead narrowing from 53-47 to 52-48. However, the only change on the primary vote is a one point drop for Labor to 39%, with the Coalition, Greens and Palmer United steady on 40%, 9% and 2%.
Further questions relate to the Intergenerational Report, of which 45% of respondents professed no awareness. When prodded about one of its findings, 41% offered that more older people in the workforce would be good for Australia (notably higher among older cohorts of respondents) versus 31% for bad; and in relation to one of its non-findings, 46% agreed climate change should be a priority versus 33% for not a priority. Strikingly, quite large majorities said they expected children, young adults, families, the middle-aged and retirees to become worse off over the next 40 years.
Opinion on the government’s reinstatement of funding for the car industry was evenly divided, with 38% approving and 39% disapproving, which slightly surprises me in that industry protection usually gets the thumbs up in opinion polls, rightly or wrongly. Joe Hockey’s short-lived notion that people should be allowed to access their superannuation to buy a home went down better with respondents than with some of his colleagues, with 41% supportive and 46% opposed. The poll also suggests Tony Abbott was not on exceedingly dangerous ground with his response to United Nations criticism of Australia in relation to asylum seekers, which was found to be of concern to 44% of respondents and not of concern to 48%.