Malcolm Turnbull form guide

On Malcolm Turnbull’s big day, a review of past polling for Turnbull specifically and the Liberal leadership in general.

To set the ball rolling on a new prime ministership, a walk through some highlights of Malcolm Turnbull’s polling record:

• On five occasions, pollsters asked how respondents would vote if Malcolm Turnbull were prime minister, by way of contrast with the headline results. On each occasion, the two-party vote for the Coalition under Turnbull was substantially higher – by 4% in an Essential Research poll in June 2011; by 7% and 8% in ReachTEL and AMR Research polls shortly after Kevin Rudd resumed the prime ministership in July 2013; and by 6% and 9% in Galaxy and ReachTEL polls immediately after the first Liberal Party spill vote in February (compared with 4% and 6% if Julie Bishop had been leader).

• The chart below shows trends in preferred Liberal leader polling during the period of Tony Abbott’s party leadership, encompassing 35 results from Morgan, Essential Research, ReachTEL, Ipsos and Nielsen. There has been some variability in the options available in these polls, but all featured Malcolm Turnbull, Tony Abbott, Julie Bishop and Joe Hockey, with the exception of the two most recent Morgan results, which dropped Joe Hockey. Scott Morrison only became a regular in the middle of last year.

• The next chart records Malcolm Turnbull’s approval and disapproval trends in Newspoll while he was Opposition Leader. Unfortunately, the trend smooths out the dislocation that occurred following “Utegate” in June 2009, which you can get a clear sense of if you view the individual poll results marked by the circles. More recently, there have been three occasions when pollsters have gauged personal ratings for Turnbull. In January 2014, UMR Research respectively had his approval at 42% and disapproval at 30%. Essential Research recorded 44% approval and 31% disapproval in June 2014, which improved to 47% and 24% last month.

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.

1,164 comments on “Malcolm Turnbull form guide”

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  1. A new day & finally we no longer have to be an international embarassment. Welcome back to the centre Australia, we are not a Conservative country, we are modern & progressive.

  2. Good Morning

    I think it is vital Labor use the Turnbull speech against him. The reason for the change we are bad economic managers.

    What a gift to deal a long term blow to the Liberal party and in the short term a one term LNP government.

    A vital mistake by our new Lord Prime Minister.

  3. “@nicchristensen: Listening to Alan Jones and 2GB. The anger of the Coalition base is white hot… This is going to be Turnbull’s biggest challenge.”

  4. On all the commentating about instability in politics.

    Good policy brings stability. So does a responsible media pack reporting on politics by not trashing facts so good policy is seen for good policy

  5. “@latikambourke: Not even a statement from Abbott. Julia Gillard faced the cameras on the night after a hideous period of very personal destabilisation.”

  6. I was working in Northern NSW at the time of the first challenge and I told my coworkers that Abbott would survive, but get rolled at the end of the year. Am leaving today to work up there again, so will be interesting to gauge the mood now.

    I will be travelling to regional NSW, Tas, SA and maybe Qld for work over the next few weeks so it will be interesting to see how Malcolm is “trending” in voter-land (I would feel sick using an Abbottism like “The Real Australia”!). I will report back.

  7. Abbott’s shills will blame everyone but the individual himself in seeking a reason for Abbott’s defeat.
    There will be more poison in Lib party HQ than in a nest full of vipers.

    Plenty more entertainment for we Bludgers to enjoy.

  8. “@ChristineMilne: Don’t deliver Turnbull another Abbott man. He doesn’t need another extreme right anti #climate anti #marriageequality number. #canningvotes”

    Rodney Croome from Marriage Equality was on AM this morning putting pressure on Turnbull.

  9. [The anger of the Coalition base is white hot… This is going to be Turnbull’s biggest challenge.]

    Compulsory voting – not like they’re going to vote for Labor.

  10. I have never been more relieved for Australia than I am today. It is certainly not a perfect situation but the extraordinary damage done to Australia under Abbott will take years, if ever, to repair.

    At least there is now a chance for Australia to move forward with two parties under leaders that are centrist rather than extremist.

  11. all marginals that are winnable for Labor – except probably not Mayo!

    Maybe Xenophon could intervene and lead a “March of the 10,000” to conquer Briggs, then return to Adelaide and call out “Thalassa, Thalassa”.

    **obscure references to Ancient Greece, brought on by extreme emotional state from yesterday!

  12. One can just feel the hatred & bile starting to seep out of the country although certain pustules will no doubt take longer to drain from the Liberal party. Lets hope the fear & angst of the past two years becomes just a small footnote in an otherwise proud history of this nation.

    One thing is certain, we can never again take our democracy lightly as we have seen that even this free nation can be held hostage to extreme conservatism if given the chance.

  13. “@SamDickfos: Plibersek: We’ve beaten Malcolm Turnbull once, we’ll beat him again. #libspill”

    “@SamDickfos: Plibersek on Turnbull: He’s ambitious for himself, not ambitious for this country. He’s absolutely for himself. #libspill”

    “@SamDickfos: Plibersek denies Bill Shorten has a bigger challenge to win the next election with Turnbull as PM. #libspill”

  14. Not been lurking much lately, been wrapped up in the U.K. Labour leadership ballot (candidate I voted for didn’t win).

    The toppling of Abbott came as a big surprise, going back now to read last week’s threads to see how it all panned out.

  15. “@TheTodayShow: “What happened last night was un-Australia!” Ray Hadley #libspill #auspol #Today9”

    “@SamDickfos: Ray Hadley: Malcolm Turnbull is Australia’s first Labor-lite PM. #libspill”

  16. Good morning all

    It strikes me that Turnbull told his first lie as PM in the second or third sentence he uttered.

    “I’m very humbled.”

    Malcolm we’re all happy you’re there, but please try to keep it real! 🙂

  17. Good morning Dawn Patrollers! Well who would have thunk? And I just see on ABC24 that Abbott even squibbed the press after his defeat.

    Mark Kenny starts off by telling us that the Coalition is riven by division. Ain’t it wonderful!
    Peter Hartcher looks ahead at how Turnbull and Shorten will manage things. He said Abbot never cut it as a unifying Prime Minister.
    The SMH editorial says Turnbull got it right by saying we want “advocacy not slogans”. Hey, that’s not a bad slogan!
    Tom Allard puts it that a disastrous first budget is what set off Abbott’s death spiral.
    Peter Martin says that Turnbull’s doctrine will be telling the truth about the economy. More to the point, he’ll be nothing like Abbott!
    Lenore Taylor sees Turnbull’s big task is to balance the party and the public.
    Lenore goes on to say that there are three things we need to know about Turnbull.
    Turnbull’s challenge is to not scare off his own party.
    Michelle Grattan – Turnbull arrives with both charisma and baggage. In the article she described Abbott as an accidental leader who never made the transition from opposition to government.
    Bob Ellis – the last hours of Abbott.

  18. Section 2 . . .

    Peter Reith writes on why Abbott was under continual pressure.
    James Massola has a stab at what the new ministry might look like.
    The AFR editorial says that yesterday’s coup was the result of a crying need for effective leadership.
    Rob Burgess tells us that the Liberal Party has failed its own fundamental test of good government.
    Paul Bongiorno – Why Abbott must go quietly into the night.
    Malcolm Turnbull’s secret weapon – Lucy.
    The rise and fall of political brawler Tony Abbott. How he stopped the votes.
    Gareth Hutches wonders what will happen to Joe Hockey.
    “View from the Street” written just before the ballot. He promises an autopsy tomorrow.
    Turnbull’s test – there can be no grand economic plan without climate action.

  19. Section 4 . . . Cartoon Corner.

    Cathy Wilcox gets it!

    And Ron Tandberg has a rather empty vision for the future.

    MUST SEE! David Pope farewells the illustrious Abbott.

    Bill Leak with Turnbull’s famous first words.

    There’s so much to see in this effort from David Rowe.

    Rod Clement at the Festival of Ruddock.

  20. Anyone want to start up a checklist of things Abbott will say during his concession speech?
    The obvious:
    – Boats
    – Carbon tax
    – Mining tax
    – Death cult

  21. You have to admire Mark Kenny, staunch to the end.

    Last night on Lateline he told Australia that Abbott had too much integrity and loyalty to seek revenge, or to white-ant Turnbull.

    He thought some of Abbott’s mates might do so, but not Abbott himself.

    Astounding analysis.

    You can just picture the man who punched walls, joked about Julia Gillard’s father’s death, reduced funding to the ABC over a couple of mildly critical sentences uttered on Q&A, went after Gillian Triggs, trash-talked Bernie Banton, gutted the Climate Change Authority, lied to just about everyone and then abandoned them when they were of no use to him anymore, and who has led a life full of intrigue, victimization of others and vicious retribution… suddenly turning on the charm and becoming a model parliamentarian – nay, a model human being – after all these years.

    The fact that he hasn’t even issued a statement so far shows how petulant the little bastard is.

    Of COURSE there’ll be white-anting.

  22. The DT selling of the streets this morning, as opposed to the early edition, headline
    The Smiling Assassin
    I wonder if the (ex) PMO’s office had a word to Benson.

  23. Surveying the Murdoch press this morning, the demented plutocrat has been well and truly wedged. A joy to see, and if Turnbull is smart – and he is – he won’t be kowtowing to Holt St

    The wedge is this; having a black/white Jihad against ALP and Shorten in particular, the white knight Abbott and his crony feeding of Murdcoh fantasies, such as War Sells News and pandering to xenophobia, hatred of welfare recipients and Muslims – is evaporated (potentially).

    Even if Turnbull is just moderate on the war/welfare/Muslims, it pulls the rug out. If Turnbull does nothing else, squeezing Murdoch’s shrivelled ones would be doing the nation a great service, and cementing his legacy.

    After Turnbull settles in, some game changers may occur. My tip is a closure of Nauru and Manus, with the inhabitants thereof resettled in Australia.

    And I think Turnbull is likely to peel off some of the Greens 15% – all those doctor’s wives.

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