ReachTEL: 54-46 to Labor

A GetUp! commissioned poll records the government sinking, One Nation nudging into double figures, and widespread hostility to the government’s shakedown of welfare recipients.

The Fairfax papers report that a ReachTEL poll commissioned by GetUp! has Labor leading 54-46 (I wouldn’t normally give a non-media poll its own post, but you take what you can get at this time of year). When responses for a separate follow-up question prompting the 7.8% undecided are integrated into the result, the primary votes are Liberal 33.8% and Nationals 3.2% (a combined 37.1%, compared with 42.0% at the election), Labor 35.0% (up 0.3% on the election), Greens 9.8% (down 0.4%) and One Nation 10.6%.

The poll also finds 46.2% supporting and 31.8% opposing the government “stopping the automated debt collection system”, though I wonder if the wordiness of the preceding explanation* and the negatively framed question might have caused confusion, resulting in opposition being understated. Certainly that might help to explain the finding that more respondents (49.8%) said the system had made them less likely to vote for the Coalition than said they wanted it stopped. Of the remainder, 14.4% said it had made them more likely to vote for the Coalition, while 35.8% said it would make no difference.

A GetUp!-styled money shot question found 82.2% responding that “cracking down on corporate tax dodging” should be a “higher priority for the Turnbull government”, compared with 17.8% who favoured recovering debts from Centrelink overpayments, with even Liberal voters dividing two to one in favour of the former option. A further question had 78.6% responding that the burden of proof in establishing wrongful overpayment should fall on Centrelink, compared with 21.4% for the recipient – though here too the question is a bit wordy for my tastes**.

The automated phone poll was conducted on Thursday from a sample of 2126.

* “The Turnbull Government recently started using an automated system issuing tens of thousands of letters to Australians about alleged debts from Centrelink overpayments. The Government admits that at least 20% of these letters are incorrect, but the burden is on Centrelink clients to correct the information or pay the debt. Do you support or oppose the Government stopping the automated debt collection system?”

** “The Turnbull Government has acknowledged significant errors in the Centrelink automated debt collection system. Where there are potential errors, do you think the burden should be on Centrelink to verify their claims against information they already have on file or on the individual to defend themselves, which may include accessing pay slips and employment records from up to five years ago?”

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.

2,415 comments on “ReachTEL: 54-46 to Labor”

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  1. Meanwhile at the headquarters of Exxon-Mobil there’s been an urgent order for a further 10 pallets of champagne. And half a dozen ambulances.

  2. OMG I slept through the inauguration! Watching a replay now of Trump’s speech. It simply pales into comparison with Obama’s 8 years ago. Not only has Trump set himself up with a whole raft of unrealistic promises he can’t keep, but he sounds like a whiny child not a statesman or leader.

  3. It was obvious to anyone paying attention that the incoming administration would be blatantly corrupt. But would it at least be efficient in its corruption?

    Many Trump voters certainly thought they were choosing a smart businessman who would get things done. And even those who knew better may have hoped that the president-elect, his ego finally sated, would settle down to running the country — or at least delegate the boring business of governing America to people actually capable of doing the job.

    But it’s not happening. Mr. Trump hasn’t pivoted, matured, whatever term you prefer. He’s still the insecure, short-attention-span egomaniac he always was. Worse, he is surrounding himself with people who share many of his flaws — perhaps because they’re the sort of people with whom he is comfortable.

    So the typical Trump nominee, in everything from economics to diplomacy to national security, is ethically challenged, ignorant about the area of policy he or she is supposed to manage and deeply incurious. Some, like Michael Flynn, Mr. Trump’s choice as national security adviser, are even as addicted as their boss to internet conspiracy theories. This isn’t a team that will compensate for the commander in chief’s weaknesses; on the contrary, it’s a team that will amplify them.

    Am thinking this will be like the Bush-Cheney years on steroids. Yes, “the American carnage” now really begins.

  4. C@Tmomma
    Friday, January 20, 2017 at 9:28 pm
    “When that guy goes to jail after murdering 4, including a baby, he’s going to get 7 shades of hell beaten out of him by the other inmates, as the guards suddenly find something else to do. Just sayin.”

    There are two misconceptions inherent in this post, that I see quite often after high profile crime take place.

    The first is that most likely this offender will be separated into management unit before then going into “protection from protection”. This is usually reserved for prisoners like ex-cops, terrorist offenders, and those who have burnt every bridge in the system. I doubt he will come into contact with many other prisoners, especially prior to sentencing.

    The second is that prison officers turn a blind eye to violence in prison. This misconception does a poor service to the men and women who work in prisons largely without thanks from the community. And serves to perpetuate the stereotype that they are some cowboy outfit devoid of a sense of professionalism.

    This crime has caused severe shock in the community, and it is understandable that we wish to see swift punishment of the offender. But prisons are places to facilitate punishment of a lack of freedom, not to administer it through unchecked violence.

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