ReachTEL: 53-47 to Coalition

ReachTEL adds strength to the impression of an expanding Coalition lead, while a small-sample Morgan poll has Bill Shorten finishing fourth as preferred Labor leader.

The Seven Network had a poll this evening from ReachTEL, which records a Coalition lead of 53-47 – a substantial shift on the 50-50 result it recorded on September 15, the evening after the leadership change. That’s all there is from that poll at this stage, but there were some headline-grabbing results today from a Morgan poll, conducted by telephone from a fairly small sample of 574. Bill Shorten could manage only fourth place on the question of preferred Labor leader, with Tanya Plibersek leading on 27% (up a point since July), Anthony Albanese second on 23% (up four), Wayne Swan third on 10% (steady) and Shorten down three to 9%. By contrast, Malcolm Turnbull’s first result for preferred Liberal leader as prime minister has him gaining from 44% to 64%, with Julie Bishop on 12% (down three), Tony Abbott on 8% (down five) and Scott Morrison on 4% (down one). The current leaders’ ratings were 66% approval and 16% disapproval for Turnbull, 25% approval (up one) and 62% disapproval (up two) for Shorten, and Turbull leading 76-14 as preferred prime minister.

UPDATE: GhostWhoVotes relates that ReachTEL has Turnbull leading Shorten 68.9-31.1 on preferred prime minister, with 40.2% saying Labor should replace Shorten as leader versus 26.0% opposed.

UPDATE 2: Full results from ReachTEL here. The sample was 3574 – big even by ReachTEL’s standards – with primary votes of 46.7% for the Coalition (up 3.4%), 33.0% for Labor (down 2.9%) and 11.3% for the Greens (down 0.6%).

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.

1,530 comments on “ReachTEL: 53-47 to Coalition”

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  1. Happiness – So you’re saying that the only way Turnbull can stamp his authority on the party is to get a hundred seats at the next election, which will never happen. In other words, you have absolutely no faith in his ability to control his party. Wait till the Australian population works that out for themselves.
    The electorate is still waiting to see if Turnbull can whip his party into shape. When they realise the party is whipping Turnbull into shape, things will get nasty.

  2. From the last thread:

    Agree Tricot. It’s like they think the past 2 years didn’t happen (RWNJs do have form … they do think the GFC was a mirage, after all).

    They have seen the electorate ‘turn on a dime’ a number of times in the past 5 years so the conservatives’ self-congratulations is a bit premature methinks.

    Also, on Shorten, I have noticed his recent speeches have been far more “Prime Ministerial” than Turnbull’s (when they both speak in tandem e.g. Hockey’s farewell). Shorten sees big picture of these things and is very aware of what is appropriate. Turnbull talks as if he is in a boardroom tryng to sell ponsie schemes.

    In #qt Turnbull continually plays the man, not the ball — and his attempts to denigrate are wince-worthy.

  3. Dee

    Yep – labor need to standfast.

    This too will pass as will turnbull’s current ratings – he cannot go on doing nothing but waffle.

    Christmas silly season is in sight as are the end of normal poll cycles.

    Come New Year turnbull is going to have to perform.

  4. ML I don’t think Turnbull needs 100+ seats to stamp his authority. Good leadership, good policies and a solid win would do it. Labor can’t get rid of union influence. It’s part of their DNA.

  5. Funnily enough, all this leadershit stuff about Shorten appears to be being pushed by the media (noticed two instances of journos saying same just today – with no evidence).

    The media have found the past 5 or 6 years pretty orgasmic and start pushing for the same turmoil almost immediately.

    Laughable really.

  6. What a lovely debate/discussion between Wyatt Roy and Ed Husic on 7 1/2

    …politics is changing in Oz…and for the better ++++

  7. They replaced shortie with tanya and, before you know it they would be bashing the hell out of her and talking about labor instability. Labor could not be that dump. I like Shortie. He’s got guts and stamina. I don’t think Tanya and Albo are as keen on the job.

  8. From Dee’s comment @ 1206 in the last thread

    [My thinking is that if Turnballs continues to enjoy a dream run with media backing the ALP would be butt stupid to remove Shorten.]

    The only hope that Labor have to win the next election, given that the clear and present danger to the nation of Abbott has been neutralised, is for the significant vulnerabilities of the Government are exposed before the next election. That means that Labor cannot afford a moment of internal disruption that will be leapt on by the media and played up for all it’s worth to them and, in the process, distract attention from the Government’s mistakes and internal contradictions.

    Whether Shorten is the best available leader for Labor or not is no longer relevant. Replacing him with anyone else who is available will cost so much more to the party’s standing with the voting public than it will gain there is no question.

    Labor and Shorten need to keep focussing on the Government, in the hope that the media might have no other choice than to do the hard yards of critiquing policy, rather than rely on leadership stuff. With luck, the media may even turn to the Liberal party in their laziness for easy headlines. Especially while Abbott is still around.

  9. Good evening all,

    It looks like the honeymoon polls are consolidating at 52/53 – 48/47 atm.

    I think we need at least three months of polling to see what is happening before any real determination of the prospects of either party.

    All four banks have increased interest rates this week, unemployment still weak, house prices on the verge of cooling and El Niño on the way. Plenty happenng and Turnbull yet to make any hard calls.

    I am neither optimistic nor pessimestic but I think posters calling the end of the world or dancing on the grave of labor and Shorten should take a deep breath and go with the flow over the next few months.

    What I do think is that in modern Australian politics less history will be repeated and more and more new history will be written.

    Keep the faith.

    Cheers and a good night to all.

  10. Davidwh …. the ALP formed out of unions. Stands to reason they are influenced by them.

    The Libs are formed from RW commercial interests … so they are overly influenced by the likes of the IPA and HR Nicholls … both of which want a return to a feudal style government.

    There is always influence. At least unions are large groups of people … where as commercial interests are a precious (in more ways than one) few who have no interest in the well-being of the many.

  11. [ML I don’t think Turnbull needs 100+ seats to stamp his authority. Good leadership, good policies and a solid win would do it. Labor can’t get rid of union influence. It’s part of their DNA.]

    Forgive me for laughing but has Turnballs changed AS policy or something?

    I seem to recall some of your lot vowing not to vote for a party that supported boat turn backs.

  12. [“What a ridiclous statement. Please explain. If something is passed by parliament, it becomes law. “]


    And what happens if they vote Gay Marriage down which is exactly what is going to happen now even with a free vote?

    You’ll accept the lose and move on?

    Plebiscite Now Please

  13. Shorten isn’t going anywhere, but these numbers are not good news. Labor needs to run a strong and unified campaign against the various bad policies of the government. Certainly not game over yet

  14. Glen – surely, if Labor can maintain 48 per cent with their leader in single figures that is, surely a good sign. Any movement will come when Malcolm’s approval starts to slide.

  15. Labor can start by stop pissing and moaning about the Royal Commission into Union Corruption which has already laid charges against 30 or so Union Heavies. It looks desperate.

    Also Labor is irrelevant in 21st Century Australia. They are like a more useless version of the Liberal Party

  16. jenauthor @ 6; k17 at 11

    Agree with both your comments. Labor’s only chance of victory at the next election is to keep the same team as now. Any signs of panic and they are gone.

    And yes, Hapless @ 9, it is better to have less mindless acrimony. But the better point out of that interview with Roy and Music is not the politeness, but that we finally have a Prime Minister who recognises that we are in the 21st century and time machines that return us to the (imagined) past have not yet been invented and are unlikely in the near future.

  17. shellbell@1032

    Having a car is a useful courting tool. An opal card, less so.

    Got it in one.

    Week one after I turned 17 I had my drivers licence.

    Week two I had a little red sports car.

    Week three I had a girlfriend (what is she doing now? You never forget your first love!)

    The items above are definitely not unrelated.

  18. My issue with the SSM plebiscite is based on cost. The same result would be achieved but It would be slower and far more expensive

  19. Happiness

    Yes times are a changing. Not 100% keen on either of them but they give hope it is a change for the better. Praise the lord the fossils STILL fighting the ideological wars from the Cold War are on the way out. Lot’s still to go on both sides but the trend is on.

  20. Whilst Shorten’s numbers are bad, my own observations re Shorten since Turnbull became PM is that he is more relaxed. Shorten also is relieved that Abbott is no longer PM. He doesnt seem at all concerned that he is now up against Turnbull. Odd really

  21. BTW,

    I forget to comment on the commitment by Turnbull in his interview with The Guardian that there will be no change to Direct Action until a promised review in 2017.

    With El Niño arriving, Paris coming up where does Turnbull go policy wise ?

    The Nationals and the liberal right will be watching with interest I would think.

    A lot happening in the next few months. Hope Turnbull can juggle and walk a tight rope at the same time.


  22. A lot of Turnbulls popularity is based upon him being the anti-abbott, but also the anti-LNP politician. If he doesn’t reshape the LNP in his “moderate” image (which I think is phoney) he will have a lot of trouble at the next election.
    Presently, Malcolm just has to sell himself. At the election he will have to sell his party. Good luck with that, Malcolm.

  23. Doyley, thanks for that. If Malcolm turns up to the next election with direct action as his policy, he will be in a LOT of trouble with voters. That is a totemic issue they would expect him to have got the LNP to change.

  24. [All four banks have increased interest rates this week, unemployment still weak, house prices on the verge of cooling and El Niño on the way.]

    Large corporation in the process of shedding a lot of workers.

    Going to be plenty of mortgagee sales on the Capricornia Coast.

  25. victoria

    [He doesnt seem at all concerned that he is now up against Turnbull. Odd really]
    As hard as the task may be it will be a huge relief not to have to keep trying to anticipate what a Madman will do.

  26. All this shows you how truly dangerous the LNP are, that they were prepared to face certain destruction under Abbott to foist their righter than right ideology onto the population before at the last minute pulling the pin & putting the hated Turnbot into the seat. Desperation writ large.

    Whoever is being polled have rocks in their heads.

  27. mike – Those polled are relieved to see a semi-human being in the job and that is enough for them, right now. They don’t want to think about policies. But they will before the next election. Malcolm should have sorted out all the big issues (direct action, NBN, etc) already with his party. If he thinks he he can turn up to the next election and say: give me a bit more time to work on my party, he is f…ed.

  28. [I forget to comment on the commitment by Turnbull in his interview with The Guardian that there will be no change to Direct Action until a promised review in 2017.]

    What’s to review when we already know it isn’t going to be effective at reducing our GHGEs?

    Honestly, this is just a sop to the anti science fundies in the party, except it’s the country that bears the cost!

  29. confessions – Malcolm’s also terribly wedged. If the LNP come out for an ETS everybody will say: why the hell don’t we still have one. Such are the predicaments Malcolm has inherited.
    It is quite possible that Malcolm has already (through inaction lost the next election) and we don’t know it – or I am blowing smoke. It will be interesting to see.

  30. William snuck in a new thread while I was composing my lengthy rant, so I’ll post it again. Feel free to skip:

    “The ‘Liberal’ party is an ugly party of the hard right which now has a personable and superficially attractive leader. However, the 2016 election is not a presidential race. The ugly right is under a temporary setback but are biding their time. Turnbull is still beholden to them, as is evident from his maintenance of their absurd plebiscite and their risible Direct Inaction scheme, which he knows is crap.

    Admitedly Turnbull is less likely to embarass us on the international stage. His Government may be passably competent. But it’s lipstick on the same old pig, the party of the 2014 budget, the party of the IPA, the party of climate denialists, the party that attacks the vulnerable, the party that wants to trash the Australian settlement, the party that cultivates fear and doubt for political advantage, the party that thinks you earn too much, the party of the 2GB talback crowd and the party of racists who worry about asylum seekers clogging our freeways.

    It wouldn’t matter if Labor was led by Donald Duck (although he led the Libs until recently) or a block of wood (like the Nationals), in a preferential system where you are forced to choose one or other side, the ‘Liberals’ are unacceptable.”

  31. ZOILORD – If I was Malcolm I would think seriously about running a GST election to deflect from all the other issues (e.g. direct action, NBN) where he has no answer.

  32. confessions @40,


    Like a number of other issues Turnbull is putting policy decisions off into the never never.

    You only have to look at his response to the Financial Review this week.

    Look through all the noise and MSM grovelling and you see most of it is off to reviews. Reviews of reviews to delay any decision making. A lot more of this to come as well. Plenty of words not much else.

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