Essential Research: 50-50

The two parties are once again locked together in the latest reading of the Essential Research rolling average, which find further evidence for a rapid deterioration in Malcolm Turnbull’s public standing, and a steady recovery in Bill Shorten’s.

Our only new federal poll for the week is the regular Essential Research rolling fortnightly average, which is once again at 50-50 on two-party preferred, despite Labor taking a two-point hit on the primary vote to 35%. The Coalition is steady on 42%, while the Greens are up a point to 11%. Monthly leadership ratings find Malcolm Turnbull down six on approval to 39% and up four on disapproval to 39%; Bill Shorten up three to 30% and down three to 44%; and Turnbull’s lead as preferred prime minister narrowing from 48-19 to 44-22. Also:

• Thirty-nine per cent said they would support a double dissolution if the Senate failed to pass the Australian Building and Construction Commission bill, up five since last month, with 24% opposed, up two. Thirty-five per cent expressed support for the bill itself, following a question that emphasised the extent of the ABCC’s proposed powers, with 16% opposed and 23% opting for neither. The issue was rated important by 34%, and not important by 41%.

• The tax system was rated fair by 36% and not fair by 55%. Of particular interest was a breakdown by income, suggesting a strong negative correlation between income and belief in the system’s unfairness. Typically, a question outlining various potential tax reforms found strong support for anything targeting the wealthy, and weak support for increasing or broadening the GST. Opinion was evenly divided on removing negative gearing and replacing stamp duty with land tax.

The poll was conducted online Wednesday to Sunday from a sample of 1010, with the voting intention result also including the results from the previous week’s survey.

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.

757 comments on “Essential Research: 50-50”

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  1. It’s never been a more exciting time to prop up the Barnett government. All this excitement is making me dizzy.

    [The federal government has committed more money to the controversial Perth Freight Link, this time $260 million for a tunnel.

    Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced the extra funding in Perth on Tuesday, saying the project will improve connectivity around the city.

    “It is a critically important piece of infrastructure, part of that linkage of connectivity that enables us to take advantage of these, the most exciting times of the most rapid economic growth, the most rapid scale of growth, in human history,” Mr Turnbull said.

    The federal government has already promised more than $900 million towards the $1.9 billion project, which has been controversial because it will require the compulsory acquisition of houses and cut through the Beeliar wetlands, a home to the endangered Carnaby’s black cockatoo.]

  2. Whilst Turnbull and co focus on crap, taxpayers have been defrauded on an industrial scale

    [The headquarters of major vocational education outfit Australian Careers Network have been raided by the Australian Federal Police as part of a fraud investigation.]

    Read more:
    Follow us: @theage on Twitter | theageAustralia on Facebook

  3. Swing required

    In response to your comment on previous thread re the ABC. It is fairly obvious that the ABC has been nobbled

  4. PHOENIX (from last thread). Farr is so confused it’s not funny. He suggests that Turnbull could, if he wants, go off to see the GG for a 2 July election without having interim supply. Indeed, he obviously doesn’t even understand the issue. And he’s been in Canberra for several decades. Utterly hopeless.

  5. As with Newspoll, Turnbull and Shorten’s Essential netsats are starting to become perilously close to each other.

    It really is a stunning plunge on Turnbull’s part. Going by the Bludgertrack graphs, its becoming both steeper and longer than any of Abbott’s dives in approval while PM – though the latter admittedly started from a much lower base.

    Those PPM results arn’t looking so flash anymore, either.

  6. As I’ve said, the coming election will be one of stark choice. The Coalition has revealed itself (blatantly) as the party of vested interest. The IPA list and the Coalitions unerring adherence to it, is proof in the pudding. The evidence couldn’t be more damning. Malcolm Turnbull’s own words with regard to government funding and profitability and his new catch phrase, value capture, only add fuel to the reality of profit at any cost, greed, tax avoidance and corporatization that is usurping our nation.
    People can either vote for the party that serves to subsidize the few via the deconstruction of Medicare, the end of Gonski, runaway university fees, the dismantling of Federation, a lower safety net, higher carbon emissions, lower pay and conditions, no manufacturing base at all and a shit NBN … or they can vote Labor. It’s a simple and unambiguous choice.

  7. Hi Vic… Ok thanks. Now 2 years since I lost my wife. Living on an island in SE Asia. Visit PB when I can… the comms here aren’t much good. See you’re still fighting the good fight. 🙂

  8. Gecko

    So sorry on the passing of your wife. 🙁

    My OH lost his father 18 months ago. We miss him terribly, but my mother in law especially so. Life is irreversibly re arranged.

    Hope you can keep in regular touch, even if communication tech not too good in that part of the world.

  9. The reason why Generation Y can’t find jobs

    YOUNG people have been suspicious for years that they are being screwed over but now there’s proof that they genuinely are.

    New research on youth unemployment has found that government policies trying to help older workers and skilled migrants have hurt young people.

    It’s a very different picture to what the government would have you believe, with previous policies from the Abbott Government painting young people as lazy and trying to cut back their unemployment benefits.

    But it may be the government’s policies that are actually keeping people out of work.

  10. Eh, that new $5 doesn’t really strike me as being much better or worse than the old one. As long as it counts as five dollars worth of legal tender, I can’t say I really give a damn about the design.

  11. ASHA – I don’t think that it’s just Turnbull’s brainfarts that are killing his popularity. Surely it’s also the fact that people are remembering what an unpleasant, out of touch, supercilious git he is. He’s probably the most toffy PM we’ve had since Stanley Bruce (even worse than Menzies). My greatest concern has always been that Turnbull would get too little exposure rather than too much. Soon, the death spiral.

  12. The new $5 is like the old $1, and going the same way.

    How long before the $5 is a coin and units such as 5,10 and 20s – 50s too – all disappear?

    What can you buy for a dollar these days.

    What the note looks like is irrelevant.

    On the other hand, $100 bills are very thin in the ground.

  13. So why did the ALP primary go down in the last week according to ER [ignoring MoE]?

    Looking at the survey results I reckon they ALL favour the ALP/Greens policies, particularly the tax reforms issues which are strong support for the ALP/Greens lines and strong rejection for those of the COALition.
    The ABCC line preferred by the COALition is not cutting through with only one third support which decreases dramatically if the rusted on Lib supporters are taken out of the equation and ‘don’t know’ is still very significant and if anything increasing.
    Bill is doing slightly better, not static or getting worse, both on his netsats and PPM whilst Malcolm is deteriorating significantly with his support.
    Current issues in the media seem to give no real outstanding reason[s] for a decline in ALP support it’s pretty much standard fare where the trend [?] is for the COALition to be seen to be performing badly.

    So why the decline in ALP support [even tho’ slightly balanced by the numerical increase for the Greens]?


  14. I think we can safely assume that things are on or around 50-50 now, as they have been for well over a month, and I suspect that things will stay that way for a while yet (at least until the Budget aftermath). One assumes that normal people (ie ones that don’t read blogs like this, or indeed take that much interest in politics in general) are not really paying attention yet. The next big game changer will be the Budget, and then, presumably/ possibly, the starting gun for the formal election campaign.

    I still think the election is the government’s to lose, but if “the trend is your friend”, then Turnbull and co are Norma No-Mates at present. Everything has gone pretty well for Shorten and Labor over the course of 2016, and if that continues, then they have a great chance to knocking off Australia’s first one-term government since 1931. But I can’t help thinking that the government only needs a week or two of things going their way (especially if that’s at the pointy end of the campaign) to fall over the line.

  15. I knew a solicitor whose criminal clients used to complain that, when they took metal strips out of bank notes, the clients had trouble finding the cash they buried in their backyards.

  16. HUGO – But what’s going to go their way? Their policies suck (insofar as they have them). They’re falling apart internally. I’m with TPOF. I think that what voters shake off their inertia and assess what this government has been doing (or, more precisely, not doing), this government will take another leg down in the polls. That will probably happen when an election is finally called.

  17. Photos
    1m1 minute ago
    Rowan ‏@FightingTories
    Bill Shorten said today : The Turnbull Gov are a “puddle of disappointment”

    I’d say : The Turnbull Gov are drowning in their lies

  18. K17 @ 25

    Yes, you are probably correct, and I certainly hope so. But being a Labor-voting Souths fan all these years has taught me to be cautious in my optimism!

  19. [It’s difficult to escape the conclusion the ABC has either been ‘nobbled’ or are so cowed by funding cut threats that they fear for their jobs if they don’t favour the Government.]

    True, little more than an increasingly thinly disguised propaganda arm of the LNP.

  20. I like the new $5 note. The brighter design is an aide to the visually impaired. So, that should help those who find it too gaudy to accept it and move on with their lives.

  21. I think one thing that has taken the gloss off Malcolm is his meandering style of speaking.

    He reminds me of my doddering Father-in-law in his later years. He’d start a sentence, then 3 words later would segue into another way of expressing himself, lose the plot a little, then suddenly remember what he was saying, start again, then segue again.

    Initially people see that as thoughtful but after a few examples you realise that clarity of thought is completely beyond him.

    He is a mirage, pure and simple – and the sooner the bulk of the electorate sees that, the better off we’ll all be.

    Whatever your opinion of Gillard, she was a normal person who talked straight and didn’t let her ego take control. We’ve had 3 super-egos since, all different but all OTT.

    Shorten wold be a return to a ‘normal’ person.

  22. If the “value capture” non-policy ever becomes an actual policy then logically reverse value capture should also apply. Every time that a school, hospital or rail line is closed then anyone that can demonstrate lower property values should be compensated.

    Also anyone that can demonstrate significantly lower income due to NBN failure or climate change fraud come on down!

  23. I like the new $5 note, although it’s very dodgy having not updated the Queens picture. She’s 90 in a week and looks about 70 in the image. If we have to have her, at least make it a non fiction version.

  24. shea mcduff @21:

    I don’t think you can generally read much into these sorts of little shifts on the primary vote. There’s always going to be odd, counter-intuitive fluctiations in polls, even in one as static as Essential tends of to be. Its the long-term trends that matter, not the week-by-week blips of movement.

  25. [I don’t think you can generally read much into these sorts of little shifts on the primary vote.]

    Ding ding ding ding ding.

  26. Paul@33

    If the “value capture” non-policy ever becomes an actual policy then logically reverse value capture should also apply. Every time that a school, hospital or rail line is closed then anyone that can demonstrate lower property values should be compensated.

    Also anyone that can demonstrate significantly lower income due to NBN failure or climate change fraud come on down!

    I am intrigued at the exaggerated claims for “value capture” in relation to high speed rail.

    To be high speed, then there have to be relatively few stops and it is only at these very few locations that there will be a windfall gain in value to be captured.

    Along the rest of the route, there will be zero or even negative value gain due to loss of amenity.

    Once again, Turnbull just doesn’t have a clue.

  27. True, little more than an increasingly thinly disguised propaganda arm of the LNP.
    Statements like this is how you differentiate between your average lefty ALP voter and the loons, so mark that one down in the loon ledger, Adrian. Got it, marked.

  28. The brighter design is an aide to the visually impaired

    I like the new $5 note design too, but the vision impaired are not necessarily “visually impaired” 🙂

  29. [Who determines the value captured?]

    Can you legally capture and cage value, or does it have to be set free to ride the waves of the capitalist ocean …. only to be turned away by BorderForce in full view of reality(?) TV cameras?

  30. One of the wits on Bolts blog on Turnbulls train

    So will it be a VFTTTN (Very Fast Train To The Node)?

    OR a VFTTTPP (Very Fast Train To The Platform Premises)

    OR a VFTUTCL (Very Fast Train Utilising The Copper Line)?

  31. Value capture is such a loaded issue. The Federal Government loves it because it can then push state and local government to raise more in rates/land tax etc and say “well, you’ve got this extra money… Why do you need it from us?”

    Value capture actually happens all the time, but it being something advocated for has made it an issue. It’s particularly relevant on the Gold Coast. Since a lot the land that light rail stage 2 is due to go through is not especially wealthy (at least in the context of the GC) so the presence of the light rail and the development corridor along with it, will likely push up values and that will be captured by the council through increased rates. In NSW/NT (and wherever rate capping/pegging is coming) that’s trickier as the State Govt needs to approve rate rises.

  32. So, MalPM announces a lazy extra $330M to do a tunnel for the Perth Freight link?? what utter bollocks.

    The proposed route for the tunnel passes with 500m of my place and its got me wondering if they have even considered the local bloody geology. The whole thing will have to be carved out of limestone.

    And, it winds up with EVERYTHING having to be funnelled over one bridge to get over the River. Will be a nice project for the builders that will have massive congestion a km or so from the port.

    Alternative is to put in a new container port in Cockburn Sound linked to Roe Hwy and rail. Probably makes too much sense for the Libs to even consider it. FWARK!!! These people just do not get infrastructure.

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