BludgerTrack: 52.0-48.0 to Labor

The Track is back, as Essential Research moves a point in favour of the Coalition.

The only new poll this week was the usual fortnightly rolling average result from Essential Research, which moved a point in favour of the Coalition on two-party preferrred, leaving Labor’s lead at 51-49. On the primary vote, the Coalition was up one to 40%, Labor steady on 36%, the Greens down one to 8%, Pauline Hanson’s One Nation steady at 6% and the Nick Xenophon Team steady at 3%. However, the big news so far as this post is concerned is the post-election return of BludgerTrack, which opens its account with 17 data points to work from – three from Newspoll, and 14 from Essential Research.


Each pollster is bias-adjusted based on the difference between the election result and a trend measure of their voting intention numbers at that time, with the results halved to account for the likelihood that they will tweak their methodology rather than persist in their existing errors. On this basis, the adjustments for Newspoll are +0.0% for the Coalition, 0.2% for Labor and +0.0% for the Greens, while those for Essential Research are respectively -0.7%, +0.5% and -0.1%. For the time being, results are being weighted according to a formula that gives each pollster equal weight over the full course of the present term, so that the more prolific a pollster is, the less weight its polls will be given. On this basis, the weighting for a single Essential poll is currently 0.071, while a Newspoll gets one-third.

This means the dominant data point so far as the current reading is concerned is last week’s Newspoll, which was published as 52-48 to Labor, but came out at 52.7-47.3 after 2016 election preferences were applied to the bias-adjusted primary vote. This is why the current BludgerTrack reading is a little more favourable to Labor than you might expect, given the run of recent polling. Preferences are allocated according to the results of the July election, there presently being no other option, but I will eventually move to a method that splits the difference between previous election preferences and a trend measure of respondent-allocated preferences, if and when Ispos and ReachTEL provide enough such data to make it worthwhile. Such an approach would have been almost perfectly accurate at the recent election, although the previous election method has generally performed better in the past. The leadership results go back to the start of Malcolm Turnbull’s prime ministership in mid-September last year – note that no change is recorded in the “last week” column at this point, owing to the lack of new results this week.

Further poll stuff:

• After numerous polls finding the public favouring a referendum to solve the same-sex marriage question, a follow-up result from last week’s Newspoll found 48% favouring a “politicians decide&148; options versus 39% for a plebiscite in February. This week’s Essential Research gave respondents an option between “the government should agree to a vote in parliament” and “the Labor Party, Greens and Xenophon Team should agree to a plebiscite”, with respective results of 53% and 24%.

• Both pollsters also asked how they would vote in a referendum, with Newspoll finding 62% to 32% in favour of yes, and Essential coming in at 58% to 28%. Essential also found 49% believed such a vote should be binding on parliament, with 26% preferring the alternative option of leaving parliamentarians with a free vote.

• Essential posed a series of questions on the National Broadband Network, which found 42% favouring “the Labor plan” and 27% “the Liberal government’s plan”; only 22% saying the NBN would “adequately meet Australia’s future Internet requirements”, with 47% saying it wouldn’t; and 88% agreeing the internet was “becoming an essential service”, with only 7% disagreeing.

• Fifty per cent rated the level of immigration to Australia over the past 10 years as too high, 12% as too low and 28% as about right, while 44% opposed the recently announced increase in the annual refugee intake, with 39% supportive. Relatedly, Essential recently released widely publicised results on Muslim immigration and Pauline Hanson from its survey of July 27 to August 1. This found 49% supporting a ban on Muslim immigration versus 40% opposed, and strong majorities supporting the propositions that Hanson was “speaking for a lot of ordinary Australians” (62% to 30%) and “talks about issues other politicians too scared to tackle” (65% to 28%).

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.

1,021 comments on “BludgerTrack: 52.0-48.0 to Labor”

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  1. Poroti
    Amazing footage, the pilots split second correction incredible and to come in and do the second copy book landing WOW I have flown into Prague but it wa s still on that day:smile:

  2. Bemused,
    If she was younger she would be a worthy successor to Hillary.

    Too true.
    It’s why the Republicans tried so hard to keep her out of the Senate and the Public eye.

  3. Victoria

    Former Liberal Leader John Hewson says banking culture is skewed in favour of the shareholder not the client.

    Or rather

    Banking culture is skewed in favour of the Executives bonus’ not the client

    City bonuses soar to record £19bn
    …………….A director at a typical investment bank gets £500,000 but a bonus of £2million ‘but it could go higher than that’, he said.

    “ANZ head Mike Smith’s annual pay has risen slightly to $10.7 million, keeping him among the country’s highest paid bosses.”
    Commonwealth Bank of Australia boss Ian Narev took home $12.3 million over the last financial year, an increase of more than 50 per cent over total remuneration of $7.97m the year before.
    Mrs Kelly was paid $2.25 million in cash in the year ended September 30 and received shares worth $9.51 million as performance share options from prior years vested during the period, according to Westpac’s annual report.

  4. The ACT Territory election is next Saturday, and I was expecting to see some polling. None has been published as far as I can tell, has anyone seen any?

    ACT polls are unreliable at the best of times if 2012 is anything to go by, so we may not be missing much.

  5. [I was thinking who might be an Australian analogue to Donald Trump just now and Kyle Sandilands pops up on the ABC.]

    Had exactly the same thought the other day.

  6. Surprise, surprise. Not:

    Diane Evers
    1 hr ·
    Ok everyone, this is it. I am the Greens candidate in the South West region of the Legislative Council in the March 2017 state election.
    If you are able to assist, please message me with your email address/mobile so that I can contact you with opportunities to help.
    Between now and Christmas, I hope to engage a team of supporters to get my name, face and Greens policy out to the South West region extending from Bremer Bay to Mandurah. If you know others around the region, please ask if they can message me.
    Your support may be letting me know of events, displaying a poster, handing out fliers, phoning potential voters or handing out how to vote fliers on election day. There will be events and training sessions to attend as well.
    The Facebook page Greens for South West will be launched shortly.

  7. To Zoomster and various others claiming to be “teachers” in this country…
    The only thing you need to know about the state of State based education is that, in a public primary school, “Play Doh” is a compulsorary aquisition for 7 year old pupils, and yet 3 multipied by 4 equals approximately 13.
    My son’s “teacher” believes this is acceptable.
    I don’t.

  8. (Also why is this supposed to be surprising or unsurprising?)

    It is not surprising because she was the Greens candidate at the last state election and at the last federal election.

    I have no idea whether she is a former tennis player. I only know her in her in her capacity as an environmentalist working for South Coast NRM and now Green Skills.

  9. Kayjay:

    Have no fear that the abusive trolling commenters will return after they’ve had their dinner, and you can bet they’ll be even more abusive and sniping than usual after few drinks. In the meantime let’s just enjoy the peaceful atmosphere while it lasts.

  10. confessions
    #924 Sunday, October 9, 2016 at 8:44 pm
    As you say direct to my ears. I am off to glean some clever repartee from “Poldark”. Good luck to me! 🙂

  11. If I had a choice, I’d rather vote for Diane Evers than Margaret Court in a WA election!

    And, speaking of tennis, kinda sorta, Nick Kyrgios won the Japan Open this week!
    I’m just happy for him that he hasn’t gone off the rails completely and is back to doing what he does best. #Winning

  12. Um, I don’t drink at home, only socially, but do I still qualify as a troll or not!?!
    If not, I do think I qualify as the ‘Smiling Assassin’. : )

  13. Airlines,
    Is there a Newspoll tonight?

    I think we had this conversation a couple of weeks ago and all concerned thought Newspoll came out on a Tuesday. However, looking back I think it came out at midnight on Sunday.

  14. Parliament resumes this week so I reckon we’ll see a Newspoll. Whether it’s tonight or tomorrow night is the question.

  15. What I’d like to know is when are Ipsos going to come back into the field? It’s not as if they aren’t a multinational polling company. Maybe they could give Fairfax a discount rate? We need more polls! : )

  16. ‘Former Liberal Leader John Hewson says banking culture is skewed in favour of the shareholder not the client’

    Does Hewson specialise in stating the bleedin’ obvious?

  17. B McB, I can not make heads or tails of your post. I live in QLD and my kids state based education has been terrific and their teachers have been wonderful, some exceptionally so. Only one was exceptionally meh. Approximation is but one numeracy skill and an important one. Multiplication is another. One does not replace the other. I also cannot figure out how bringing up play-dough is relevant. Did you just add that in to make a point? I am yet to figure out what point you are trying to make.

  18. What I’d like to know is when are Ipsos going to come back into the field?

    That’s what we’d all like to know!!

  19. William said several weeks ago, maybe 3 or 4 weeks ago he thought Ipsos would be back in a month or so – so hopefully we are close.

    Also with the Parliament back this week that would ‘make sense’ as well.

  20. Woman killed and 102,000 homes without power as destructive winds hit Victoria

    I’m assuming Lizzie lost power which is why she hasn’t commented for a while now – I hope she is okay at her place.

    It certainly seems to me that we are seeing more unpredictable, extreme weather events as the impact of AGW takes hold.

  21. Hi Fess

    Yep alls well here – hope the same with you.

    I pop by here regularly but mostly the conversation has moved on by the time I catch up.

    great to see trump tripping himself up though – how he ever got this far is beyond me.

  22. Psyclaw
    Sunday, October 9, 2016 at 8:34 pm
    Bob McBob


    Ain’t Bullshit mate.
    PLAYDOH, 7 year old kids in the country you and I grew up in simply are not given rote instruction of multiplication tables.
    They are given zero instruction in foundation mathematics.
    My son has a “reading age” of 29 and the teacher puts him in charge of showing the more moderately imbecilic children how to spell.
    We are all going to hell in a hand basket if the children of our future think an odd number and an even one can multiply out to a positive.

  23. bob mcbob @ #946 Sunday, October 9, 2016 at 9:40 pm

    Sunday, October 9, 2016 at 8:34 pm
    We are all going to hell in a hand basket if the children of our future think an odd number and an even one can multiply out to a positive.

    Well, hate to rain on your parade, but they can.
    You are thinking of a positive and a negative perhaps?

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