The latest fortnightly result from Roy Morgan finds Labor improving from an unusually weak result last time, their primary vote up two points to 38% with the Coalition down two to 38.5%. The Greens and Palmer United are both down half a point, to 12% and a new low of 1% respectively. However, the respondent-allocated two-party result is steady at 53-47, the preference flow evidently being less favourable to Labor compared with a fortnight ago, and the shift on 2013 preference flows is also rather modest, from 53-47 to 54-46. As usual, the poll was conducted over two weekends by face-to-face and SMS, the sample on this occasion being 3314. I believe this and the regular Essential poll are the only federal polling we’ll be seeing this week.
UPDATE (Essential Research): The only change in Essential Research’s voting intention numbers this week are a one point gain for the Greens to 11% and a one point drop for Palmer United to 1%, leaving Labor on 39%, the Coalition on 41% and Labor’s two-party lead at 52-48. Further questions have been framed with the looming budget in mind, the most striking finding being that 56% believe the Coalition’s policies favour the rich over the average Australian (20%), with Labor scoring a fairly balanced response over the available options. Relatedly, it is anticipated that the budget will be good for the well off (49% good, 9% bad) and business (32% good, 17% bad), but very bad for everybody else and for the economy overall (19% good, 33% bad). Eighty-two per cent of respondents signed on to the proposition that some companies and some wealthy people didn’t pay their fair share of tax. Out of seven listed economic issues, the cost of living rated highest as an issue of concern (87%) with the national debt and budget deficit tied for last place (63%). Opinion on the latest Iraq commitment is fairly evenly balanced, with 40% approval and 44% disapproval.