Our only new poll of national voting intention for the week is a stable reading of Essential Research’s fortnightly rolling average, which has Labor’s lead steady at 52-48 from primary votes of Coalition 38% (steady), Labor 37% (steady), Greens 10% (steady), One Nation 6% (steady) and Nick Xenophon Team 2% (down one). Other questions find 49% continuing to approve of Malcolm Turnbull’s replacement of Tony Abbott as Liberal leader, down from 58% at the time that it happened in September last year, with disapproval up from 24% to 29%; 6% thinking Australia’s gun laws too strong, 44% not strong enough and 45% about right; 44% in favour of phasing out live exports, with 29% opposed; and 55% supporting taxpayer-funded paid parental leave being curtailed for those with access to employer-sponsored schemes, with 32% opposed. Questions on the attributes of the two presidential candidates evince extraordinary hostility to Donald Trump, even to the extent of being deemed intelligent by 30% and not intelligent by 56% – the only net negative result on this question I’ve ever seen for a political leader. Hillary Clinton rates low for honesty and trustworthiness, but otherwise scores extremely well.
We also have one of Roy Morgan’s occasional phone poll results on leadership ratings, which has Malcolm Turnbull down twelve on approval since May to 31, and up eight on disapproval to 53%; Bill Shorten respectively down three to 31% and steady on 49%; and Turnbull’s lead as preferred prime minister down from 57-24 to 47-32. Most strikingly, Turnbull has lost his lead as preferred Coalition leader to Julie Bishop, with the two respectively down from 41% to 25% and up from 24% to 34%, while Tony Abbott’s rating has doubled to 14%. Bill Shorten is steady as preferred Labor leader on 14%, with his deficit widening relative to Tanya Plibersek (up three points to 25%) and Anthony Albanese (up four to 24%). The poll was conducted last Monday to Wednesday from a sample of 552.