Essential Research: 53-47 to Labor

Only incremental change this week from Essential Research, which also produces relatively encouraging news for both leaders on their standing against leadership alternatives from their own parties.

The latest reading of the fortnightly rolling average from Essential Research has Labor’s lead steady at 53-47, with the Coalition down a point on the primary vote to 39%, Labor steady on 38% and the Greens up one to a three-year high of 12%. Also:

• The highlight of the supplementary questions relates to favoured leaders of the major parties, a question last run at Tony Abbott’s low-point in February. He’s improved since then from 11% to 18%, and in doing so moved past Julie Bishop, who is down from 21% and 17% – a result that was reflected in a recent Morgan poll, and had some of us wondering if there was a name recognition issue with Bronwyn Bishop. Malcolm Turnbull maintains his lead at a steady 24%, but Abbott leads 41-21 among Coalition voters. The Labor results are a lot better for Bill Shorten than Morgan’s, putting him narrowly in front with 16% compared with 13% for Tanya Plibersek and 12% for Anthony Albanese. However, the uncommitted ratings for the Labor question are particularly high – 18% “someone else” and 36% “don’t know”, compared with 13% and 22% for the Liberals.

• A “biggest threats to the world” question has terrorism, global economic stability and climate change leading a field of seven on 61%, 51% and 38%. With the question changed to “biggest threats to the Australia”, the respective numbers are 47%, 55% and 38%.

• A question on the importance of the asylum seeker issue has 37% rating it “quite important but not as important as other stories”, 29% as “one of the most important issues” and 7% as “the most important issue”, without too much variation by voting intention or in comparison with the last such result from June 2013. Ten per cent think it not very important, and 9% not at all important. The Liberals are rated the best party to handle it by 37% with Labor on 12% and the Greens on 8%, which again is much the same as the June 2013 result.

• Labor’s policy for a 50% renewable energy target by 2030 has 65% approval and 16% disapproval, although 51% expect it will lead to higher costs, compared with 18% for lower costs.

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.

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

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  1. [ What is going on here? Somebody on PB who can work out things like that, what is going on here?]

    We don’t have enough money to pay for the health care we expect.

    [Is Diog around and if so are there any SA’s stupid enough to fall for this stunt after falling for the submarine stunt last election?]

  2. I can’t believe Tony Smith is putting his hat in the ring for the Speakership..

    His ‘launch’ of the Coalition’s so called ‘Broadband’ policy in 2010 was the most embarrassing and amateur presentation I’ve ever heard..

    He would be a disaster as Speaker, and the fact he’s even a candidate displays, once again, how lacking in self-awareness Liberals generally are..

  3. The sad truth is that the LNP just lacks talent and depth.

    There’s Turnbull, J. Bishop, Morrison (horrible, but effective). Maybe Robb – though only on a good day.

    The rest are straight out dolts. B-teamers at best.

    Seriously, who else is there?

  4. [863

    The ABC is now providing fair and balanced coverage of this Government and I think it is a good thing.

    It is much improvement in the rabid leftie “burnt hands” and other bullshit stories of the early 2014′s]

    There’s not much the media can do to save this mob. The whole country knows this is the most incredibly stupid and ineffectual Government and that it’s led by an utter fool – an erratic, lying, incompetent swindler.

    Opinions have hardened against Abbott. The more often he opens his mouth the more opinion firms against him.

  5. Susutainable future,

    Tim Fischer was interviewed by Jon Faine this morning. In between his idiosyncratic diverges on a variety of issues, Faine asked him about the current state of politics. He was quite complimentary about Susan Leys the Lib who replaced him.

    However, when Faine moved on to Indi which is the seat directly across the border from his old one of Farrer, Fischer was rather indifferent about Mirrabella (the people have spoken, they don’t want a major party, fights for her electorate etc) but quite positive about McGowan.

    Not sure how influential Tim is in Nat affairs these days.

    But damning with light praise came to mind and we’d rather McGowan was there because we’ll get it back after she retires were my thoughts from his comments.

  6. To be fair, Speakers are usually pedestrian, run of the mill time servers who would never cut it in a ministerial post, yet need some form of recognition so they aren’t mere nobody backbenchers.

    This suits Tony Smith to a tee.

  7. kevjohnno@854


    Posted Wednesday, August 5, 2015 at 6:29 pm | Permalink


    The long range early warning systems at DG are intended to detect ballistic missiles far above the atmosphere, not flights within the atmosphere. D G is too far away to have had any sighting of MH370.

    And you are seriously suggesting that they don’t have any method of detecting incoming low flying aircraft?

    Nobody thought of that at DG?

    They just sit there hoping nobody sends in an (updated) Japanese pearl harbor style fleet of aircraft to bomb them out of existence?

    Come now.

    The US is paranoid about security, and you are talking about Diego Garcia. They don’t leave that sort of thing to chance. It has been wargamed to death.

    Don your assuming the plane was flying towards DG. If the plane was over 2000km away and not flying towards DG (as indicated from the published Satcom data) then even if there is a system at DG that could detect it the software would probably ignore it.

    The other problem the Satcom data poses for the DG shoot down brigade is that even if you choose to ignore all the analysis to work out the range arcs from the satellite, the fact that the data shows the aircraft flew for more than 7 and a half hours and if it was flown to DG after taking an indirect path it just managed to arrive at the DG outer defences in time to get shot down as it ran out of fuel. Big coincidence. And if they didn’t shoot it down but it ran dry and crashed why would they need to run a cover up.

    I really don’t understand why people feel the need to make up such improbable scenarios. I’m also astounded that other people take them seriously.

    Your reading comprehension is seriously deficient.

    The discussion with kakura was just about whether DG has surveillance capable of detecting aircraft a long way out from DG.

    To think that they don’t is naive in the extreme.

    Whether they then shot down the aircraft is a whole different discussion. Take it up with BB, not me.

  8. sortius ‏@sortius 4m4 minutes ago

    In the same vein as ‘wait for the dole’, we should withhold expenses & pay from MP/Senators who don’t turn up to parl/committees #auspol

    1000% agree.

  9. Tony Smith may or may not turn out to be a good Speaker, but he’s been an eminently reasonable Chair of the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters. Its proceedings lately have been marked by considerable courtesy shown to witnesses, which was pretty much absent when Mrs B. Bishop served on the Committee as Shadow Special Minister of State, and managed to subject pretty well everyone who appeared to her well-known industrial grade rudeness.

    He might not be the greatest Speaker who ever sat in the chair (though it’s hard to think of any who really stood out from the pack), but if chosen he will be far, far better than his predecessor.

  10. Roger, if and when you get the thing to work – I suspect it will just “kick in” at some point – it will apply to every comment you’ve posted here under your login, so it won’t need to be tested.

  11. Oh for the days when politicians used to answer questions from journalists! Greg Hunt would face some rippers tomorrow!

    He said the Fedeal Court rejection of the Adarni coal approval was a minor technical error that would soon be fixed. Yet now the CBA has backed out of being financial advisor to the project?

    So Minister Hunt, if the error is so minor, and so quickly fixed, why are CBA walking away?

  12. Socrates,

    I heard the Banks have also walked away from pay day Lenders today.

    That adds to brothels, gambling businesses and abortion clinics.

    Adanai is in fine company.

  13. Regarding MH370 and radar detection, conventional long range air nav radars can pick up planes up to 200 miles (300 km) away. This is far short of the 2000km between DG and the MH370 search area. Nothing the size of the Jindalee OTH system is on Diego Garcia. So if the Jindalee system was off, there is no way DG would be able to pick up MH370 some 2000 km away.

  14. Bemused

    Agreed. Hunt has become shameless. Even if he hides from journos today, he will have some hard questions in parliament next sitting, assuming we have an impartial Speaker.


    Yes those sound about on a par, except the others are probably better businesses in terms of cash flow than Adarnis coal mine 🙂

  15. Incidentally all this highlights the absurdity of Abbott’s tampering wit the clean energy fund. If the new coal mine investments are now not bankable, and we cannot build any new solar or wind power, how will we get any investment in energy supply? Treadmills?

  16. Further on Adarni, this quote is funny:
    [The bank declined to elaborate on the circumstances of its withdrawal but sources said the environmental controversy surrounding Carmichael and the project’s financial risk in the face of tumbling coal prices had been concerns.
    An Adani spokesman said it was “inaccurate” to suggest CBA had walked away, insisting Adani had terminated the mandate.]

    Note CBA did not say it was just environmental issues. So Adarni does not want CBAs money?? ROTFL 🙂

  17. sf

    Cathy hasn’t achieved much, mainly because she can’t, and has made some rooky mistakes (like promising to fix the trains by Christmas, when one phone call to the relevant authority would have told her that the tracks will be fixed by late 2016 because that’s the earliest the tracks can be fixed…)

    The Nats are going to run. However, they have only two contenders at present, and they seem to have realised that neither is an attractive option, so they’re desperately buying time whilst casting about for a more attractive option (Goodes was suggested at one stage…..)

    Unfortunately, numbers suggest that Mirabella will win, because the Nats will bleed votes from McGowan and send them back to the Libs via preferences. However, I’ve been wrong before and will be a very happy person if I’m wrong again, but maths is maths.

  18. Just come back from a branch meeting. A couple of members had been to National Conference and said they were ‘awestruck’ by it. Both still walking on clouds. They were impressed by the open and genuine debate, the robustness of the platform, the organisation and, well, the vibe.

    One I thought might leave because of the turnback decision – he’d made several comments in the past which suggested he saw himself as closer to the Greens. But no – although he disagrees with the position still, he understood it, and sees it as a genuine attempt to deal with the issue (rather than a sop to West Sydney, racists, or whatever..). He says he’s prouder than ever to be a party member.

  19. Thanks for the reply zoomster – you’d think the nats might pick up everybody else’s preferences and thus pip mirabella? she isn’t well liked locally from what I’ve heard, and if abbott’s set to lose voters might decide they’d be better with a non-lib and an indie. it’ll be interesting how much largess abbott promises to the area between now and the election & whether he or someone vic voters can actually stomach will present these. it is their only chance to win a new seat in vic, and they’ll lose a few. then again, abbott’s best case scenario is likelyy to be a hung parliament with conservative indies giving him government, so every seat counts. I can’t see mcgowan supporting him without drawing very substantial concessions.

  20. sf

    Mirabella isn’t liked, that’s true, and people were relieved to see the back of her.

    However, the Nats regard the seat as theirs and are tunnel visioned. They thought they’d win in 2000 and didn’t, and nothing has happened to suggest they’ll fare any better this time around (especially given their struggle to find a candidate). The delusion that they will win, however, will make their supporters less careful about preferences (and the Nats have to direct to Mirabella).

    We’ve also started seeing how it’s going to go. Briggs was in the electorate making a few promises last week. When McGowan protested that he had not made announcements with her, Briggs said that McGowan had had nothing to do with the commitments, but Mirabella had been lobbying for them. So anything that does come our way will be firmly chalked up as a Liberal win.

    McGowan so far has shown herself to be starry eyed when it comes to the Libs. She recently said she was against an early election with wtte of ‘WE need more time to finish what we’ve started’. I realise she was probably referring to the Parliament rather than the government but anyone who thinks that this government should be allowed to finish what it started isn’t terribly awake.

    It goes with a long string of actions which suggests that she doesn’t really understand what the government’s doing.

    She’s had a couple of chances to stand up against cuts to local programs recently and she’s squibbed it – for example, a cut to local arts programs was met with ‘if you’ve got a problem with this, contact the Senate estimates committee’.

    Nice lady, just way out of her depth. As she’s often said, she wasn’t really interested in politics before she decided to stand.

  21. labor’s refugee policy is an improvement on the LNPs, but still has at its heart the notion that the solution is to be bigger aresholes than the people they are fleeing or be worse than the impoverished conditions they are living in in intermediatory nations that are non-signatories of the refugee convention and therefore will not help resettle people.

    what is missing from labor’s refugee policies:

    1. to aim to set up and resource humane processing centres and local temporary resettlement programs (& not detention centres) in other nations (i.e. tell people ‘if you get to this site, and your status as a refugee is confirmed, we’ll help look after you and help you get resettled’). people should be processed within 3 months and supported to live in communities not prison camps. Australia’s refugee intake will increase under labor and that’s good. I think some others should be given the option of some form of TPVs also where they have sponsors in Australia – these should be conditional on the UN declaring an area safe for them to return, and convert to citizenship if it is still unsafe to return after 10 years. after 5 years, those on TPVs should be able to apply for citizenship based on demonstration of being a valuable member of the community.
    2. the end of indefinite detention, and immediate release and support with resettlement into the community of those in manus and naru who are deemed to be low risk. These people should be given the counselling they need to become good citizens (it is hard to believe some are not going to have resentment about Australians now) BUT, with:
    3. a clear message to refugees that those coming by boat will be taken to regional reprocessing centres, and that anyone arriving by boat will not be resettled in Australia.

    manus and naru could have been Ok had it not been for them becoming concentration camps as a deterrent to others. turning back boats should only be considered if there is something for them to be turned back to.

    labor also needs to point out that the boats have not stopped, that the liberals have been condemned by the UN, and that a more strategic and humane approach is needed.

  22. From Facebook comes this joke:
    A misogynist, a racist and a homophobe walk into a bar.
    The bartender says” What are you having, Tony?”

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