Essential Research: 54-46 to Labor

Labor maintains its wide lead in an Essential Research poll that also gauges opinion on party polarisation, same-sex marriage and foreign leaders.

Primary vote numbers will have to wait until the full report is published later today, but The Guardian reports that the latest fortnight rolling average from Essential Research has Labor maintaining the 54-46 two-party lead it opened after a one-point gain last week.

Among the other findings:

• Seventy-one per cent agreed both sides of politics should meet in some place called “the middle” more often; 45% said they would consider voting for a party that sat in it; and another 45% (or perhaps the same one) agreed that Australian parties were “too ideological”, compared with 37% who perceived no substantial difference between them (I assume these two were separate options to the same question, although this is unclear).

• Yet another question on same-sex marriage finds 61% supportive and 26% opposed, and 50% supporting a binding plebiscite compared with 23% for a vote by parliament and 9% for a non-binding plebiscite followed by a parliamentary conscience vote.

• Questions on foreign leaders found 51% had a favourable view of Justin Trudeau, which would be an impressive result for a Canadian Prime Minister on name recognition, never mind approval. Angela Merkel on 43% and Emmanuel Macron on 41% both rated higher than Theresa May on 33%. Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin both rated 16%, and 6% had somehow formed a favourable view of Kim Jong-un. All of these numbers will become more meaningful when we see the full report, which will hopefully also include results for unfavourable.

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.

1,344 comments on “Essential Research: 54-46 to Labor”

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  1. Democratic Iraq War Vet Rep. Shames Fox News For Their Bogus Praise Of Trump Family Service

    Iraq war vet Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) has the perfect reply after a Fox News contributor claimed that no Democratic elected official has ever done more for America than the Trump family.

    Donald Trump dodged Vietnam. None of the members of his family have lifted a single finger to serve their country. The Trumps view America serving them. The only purpose that the Trump family is interested in is making money.

  2. Outgoing Federal Ethics Chief Warns Trump Has Turned The US Into A Laughingstock

    In an interview with The New York Times, Walter Shaub said:

    “It’s hard for the United States to pursue international anticorruption and ethics initiatives when we’re not even keeping our own side of the street clean. It affects our credibility,” Mr. Shaub said in a two-hour interview this past weekend — a weekend Mr. Trump let the world know he was spending at a family-owned golf club that was being paid to host the U.S. Women’s Open tournament. “I think we are pretty close to a laughingstock at this point.”

    Trump has turned the United States into a joke, but some of the biggest tragedies that are taking place under this administration involve the conversion of the presidency into a third rate banana republic personal ATM for the President and his family.

  3. Nearly Twice As Many Americans Support Impeaching Trump As Wanted To Impeach Nixon

    A new Monmouth University Poll found that 41% of Americans want to impeach Donald Trump six months into his term. In contrast, only 24% of Americans supported impeaching Richard Nixon six months into his second term.

    These numbers are terrible for Trump, and there is a real sense that they are capable of getting worse.

    Donald Trump hasn’t come to close to hitting bottom yet.

  4. ‘Commence a criminal investigation’: Fox analyst wrecks his network’s propaganda on Don Jr.’s Russia meeting

    Fox News senior judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano suggested on Monday that Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort had put themselves in legal jeopardy by seeking opposition research from Russians during the 2016 election.

    “If I could have advised the president or Donald Trump Jr., I would have said, ‘Go to [Trump attorney] Don McGahn,’” Napolitano opined. “He would have said, ‘You want to talk to a an ex-KGB-GRU agent and a person represented as a Russian government lawyer — even though we now know she wasn’t — tell the FBI, don’t bring those guys in here.’”

  5. This is an excellent article from the New Yorker on Trump supporters in Colorado (a nominally Democrat state).
    How Trump Is Transforming Rural America | The New Yorker via NextDraft

    A comment on support for him, in the face of latest events
    “The calculus seemed to have shifted: Trump’s negative qualities, which once had been described as a means to an end, now had value of their own. The point wasn’t necessarily to get things done; it was to retaliate against the media and other enemies”.
    “But the lack of legislative accomplishment seems only to make supporters take more satisfaction in Trump’s behavior. And thus far the President’s tone, rather than his policies, has had the greatest impact on Grand Junction”.

    After reading this, I think the story (and I mean story), that Trump Jnr was caught in a Democrat trap will be believed.

  6. Thanks William, the 71% response for parties meeting in the ‘middle’ is interesting.

    What I think it means is that voters want the government (regardless of the party), to work constructively with what they have and not blame the other side. An example is Frydenberg blaming the states for restrictions on gas development.
    This happens to be popular with the voters, and even if all restrictions were lifted today, any affect on the market would be years away, people know this, so do not believe the government on energy.

    However in an election campaign parties do need to stand for something rather than the ‘sensible centre’ (which sounds like a particularly bland box of chocolates). When they get into government however, they should government pragmatically, not blame the other side, and be consistent with their election promises (or at least, in the face of a senate against them, not be inconsistent).

    Part of Turnbull’s problem is that he probably knows this, but has no judgement.

  7. Trump Decline Accelerates During Incoherent Appearance At “Made In America” Week

    President Trump rambled and invented his own false economic statistics as he meandered on about several unrelated topics and appeared to barely come back to the topic during a “Made In America” week event at the White House.

    Trump babbled on about signing bills. He rattled on about selling beef in China, which has nothing to do with US manufacturing. Trump claimed that he wanted to bring back shopping malls and retail, which again had nothing to do with manufacturing.

    Trump’s biggest lie was the claim that he has created 45,000 new coal jobs.

    Trump also pointed to a new coal mine that opened in Pennsylvania. The mine did open. It had been in the works before Trump became president. The mine only extracts a certain kind of coal that is used in steel production. The Pennsylvania mine employs 70 workers.

    Trump is not well, and the White House is keeping him away from reporters in what appears to be an effort to hide his decline.

  8. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    The new series of Game of Thrones blew up Foxtel’s on-demand stream. Actually I found the episode to be underwhelming,
    Michael Pascoe writes about the PR offensive Medibank Private is going on in light of poor performance and outrageous profits.
    Bill Shorten says Labor is prepared to pass legislation giving effect to the Finkel review this year, and has called for the Turnbull government to sit down with the opposition to craft a bipartisan solution.
    Millions of Australians will see their internet speeds fall when they are moved on to the National Broadband Network, despite still being charged the same for access. The cost structure of the superfast internet project — required in order to pay back the federal government $49 billion in construction costs — has meant ¬telcos are being charged very high prices for downloads. What an absolute disgrace! Google.
    What has America descended into?
    Four out of five businesses advertising Australian jobs on Chinese, Korean and Spanish language websites are offering illegal pay rates as low as $4.20 per hour, a new audit has found. Come on Michaelia, put some of that venom of yours to good use!
    Renewables could cut pensioners’ energy bills if the government had the ticker. Instead, Craig Kelly scapegoats them for the Liberals’ seniors policy failures, writes Tom Allen.
    Skyrocketing heating costs have nothing to do with renewables and everything to do with the Coalition’s ineffectual energy policies, says John Passant. Yes, people will die this winter but it’s not sue to renewables!,10507
    Trump’s “Made in America Week” is already backfiring bigly.

  9. Section 2 . . .

    What are the odds of three Senate candidates without a snowflake’s chance in hell of winning the seats they were pursuing at the 2016 election suddenly finding themselves gifted places courtesy of the Constitution? Michelle Grattan presses the Greens to put forward its number three candidate for the vacant senate seat.
    The Liberal party will split unless the looming New South Wales convention on preselection rules allows ordinary members to vote for candidates, former party president candidate John Ruddick has warned.
    Businesses committed to buying renewable energy, and those with no intention of doing so, all believe their decision will save them money. That conundrum is one of the standout findings in a survey of leading Australian companies and their approach to renewable energy by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA). Somebody’s got their sums all wrong.
    NSW NRL culture in the spotlight yet again.
    War with Iran is back on the table thanks to Trump.
    Australia has 200,000 more homes sitting empty than it had a decade ago, new figures show, despite the country grappling with a housing supply shortage that is pushing the cost of a first home beyond many of its residents. Here’s a golden opportunity to take the heat off the housing crisis and/or boost revenue.
    The Turnbull government is poised to go ahead with the creation of a national security super-department that would bring together ASIO, the Australian Federal Police, Australian Border Force and other agencies. All that meat and no potato . . . . YET!
    Human rights advocate and barrister Julian Burnside AO discusses Border Force’s increased interest in Australian citizens, as PM Malcolm Turnbull announces greater powers for the Australian Defence Force. He says Border Force is a threat to us all.,10509

  10. Section 3 . . .

    Paula Matthewson on Turnbull’s Kim Jong-un moment with the military props.
    David Wroe says Turnbull must explain the motives for this huge change to a system that is working OK. It wouldn’t be for the sake of politics would it, he concludes.
    Seven obliterates Amber Harrison.
    Jenna Price on why sex with the boss never ends well.
    Caroline Wilson says this is a wake-up call that the AFL’s Gillon McLachlan cannot afford to ignore.
    Australia’s offshore immigration detention program has cost the federal government at least $5 billion since 2012, new figures have confirmed.

  11. I think voters might not be so happy if we had a parliament which agreed on everything. That is what parliament is for, sorting out various conflicting interests without battle axes. And what is the point of including a binding plebiscite in the question?
    Some of these questions seem designed to make people look like fools.

  12. Turnbull is making Dutton the most powerful man in the country. In some other regimes, this is the prelude to a military takeover.

  13. Section 4 . . . Cartoon Corner

    Nice work from Matt Golding on the new super-agency.

    Golding really has some fun with Turnbull’s use of military props.

    Cathy Wilcox goes after Mesma.

    Paul Zanetti on Julie Bishop’s nice takedown of Trump.

    Mark Knight gives us “The Game of Tones”.

    And so does David Rowe.

    Roy Taylor on high power prices.

    A cruel view of Manus by Alan Moir.

    David Pope returns from a long break and invokes the new Dr Who to remind us of our recent prime ministerial past.
    Pat Clement with Trump as a role model.

  14. Not sure what to make of a Murdoch joining the Tesla board? The kids getting ready to trash the old lecher’s legacy? Or walking both sides if the street?

    “Tesla Welcomes Linda Johnson Rice and James Murdoch as New Independent Directors to its Board

    The Tesla Team July 17, 2017
    We would like to welcome Linda Johnson Rice, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Johnson Publishing Company (JPC), and James Murdoch, Chief Executive Officer of 21st Century Fox (21CF), to Tesla’s board of directors.
    Before becoming CEO of 21CF in 2015, James held a number of leadership roles at the company over a two-decade career. He previously served as its Co-Chief Operating Officer, Chairman and CEO for Europe and Asia, as well as Chairman of BSkyB, Sky Deutschland, and Sky Italia, the businesses that now comprise Sky plc. He also served as CEO of BSkyB and STAR, India’s entertainment leader. In addition to being a key driver of 21CF’s domestic and international expansion, James has been instrumental in the company’s robust social impact initiatives, including its decade-long leadership on environmental sustainability. James and his wife, Kathryn Murdoch, are founders of a family foundation, Quadrivium, which supports initiatives involving natural resources, science, civic life, childhood health, and equal opportunity.

    We are excited to welcome Linda and James to the Tesla board.”

  15. Question
    I think voters might not be so happy if we had a parliament which agreed on everything. That is what parliament is for, sorting out various conflicting interests without battle axes. And what is the point of including a binding plebiscite in the question?
    Some of these questions seem designed to make people look like fools.

    Asked if the parliament should meet in some mythic middle more often, it’s almost impossible to say no, so I’m surprised it was only a 71% positive response, although that’s a fair approximation of one SD from the mean. To me, it’s a pretty meaningless motherhood question.

    And yes, the SSM question related to a binding plebiscite, which isn’t on the cards, even. The question needed to be a non-binding plebiscite vs a parliamentary vote.


  16. @Poroti
    The caravan moves quickly on (leaving me behind), but thank you for your response to Krugman’s thoughts on the increasingly wide cleft in American society, and yes its is preventable by the peasants having enough brioche, just enough, which the 1% have well forgotten, but there remains the difference between prevention and a way back, especially when the basics are further eroded (health) and societal control increasingly replaced by force.

    The Handmaiden’s Tale is very bleak, and maybe gratuitous as one poster mentioned, except it needs to make its point. It’s the sound track which I think is amazing. I remember thinking the opening sequences were something like a quartet for sirens.

  17. Morning bludgers
    BK, PhoenixRed
    Thanks for today’s reports.

    Turnbull’s stunt yesterday with the soldiers was not a reassuring image. Not at all.

  18. Thanks BK
    As pointed out by Julian Burnside, having Dutton as head of all these policing agencies is cause for considerable concern. Apart from the history of inhumane treatment of refugees and lies, expect the gathering of data on political opponents.

  19. vic,

    It looked to me like one of those scenes out of the old Batman series when Commissioner Gordon does a “presser” with Batman and Robin” flanking him as he made some asinine appeal to the community!

  20. @carolrhartsell · Jul 16

    Lot of folks who have never cared about Dr. Who before are suddenly very concerned. Maybe we should announce that climate change is a woman.

  21. Paul Syvret‏Verified account @PSyvret · 15h15 hours ago
    I’ll sleep well now knowing Dutton will head a new super security department. *bolts doors, checks crucifixes, strings garlic from windows*

  22. Good question.

    Washington Post
    42 mins ·
    “If America produces the best craftsmanship, why, then, does Ivanka Trump’s company manufacture no items in the United States?”

  23. GG,

    Is Dutton Batman or robin ?

    Actually for some strange reason Christopher Pyne comes to mind when I think of those within the government suitable for robin !


  24. Good Morning Bludgers 🙂
    I guess the reason Mr Potato Head hasn’t made an appearance yet is because he is still having the final fittings for his new uniform. I believe it is going to be a potato brown colour, and the new motto for his new department is going to be,
    ‘Potatoes Tuber Alles!’


  25. GG

    So true! It had all the appearance of a comic scene. Looked and felt totally ridiculous. Not even Abbott did anything quite that stupid. And seeing Turnbull ask soldier question regarding the weapon being able to go through objects or some such, was cringeworthy.

  26. Julia Baird‏Verified account @bairdjulia · 38s38 seconds ago

    About to go on @RNBreakfast with @frankelly08 to talk about Domestic Violence and allegations the church has an “abuser friendly culture”.

  27. Vic:

    I still can’t get over what the hell Malcolm thought he was doing with those gas-masked commandos all around him. Matthewson is right: he doesn’t look like an authority figure but a dictator from some tinpot backwater nation.

  28. To me, those military men behind Turnbull look like nothing so much as a hat tip to the new Planet of the Apes movie, but replaced with Killer Bees!

  29. C@t @#30: Excellent!
    Dutton, Duton tüber alles,
    Über alles auf die Wets,
    Wenn es stets zu Schutz und Trutze
    Brüderlich zusammenhält.
    Dutton’s Frauen, Dutton’s Treue,
    Dutton’s Wein und Dutton’s Sang.
    Dutton, Duton tüber alles,
    Über alles auf die Wets!
    Dutton, Duton tüber alles,
    Über alles auf die Wets!

  30. Fess

    I happened to see it being reported on nine news. My teenage daughter reaction to it was “WTF”. I was embarrassed for him. And that is is saying something. Lol!

  31. GOP strategist Steve Schmidt trashes Don Jr: ‘No loyal American’ would have met with Russians for campaign dirt

    Addressing President Trump’s early morning tweet stating anyone “would have taken the meeting,” Schmidt knocked that down in short order.

    “Well, you and I wouldn’t,” Schmidt told Wallace. “And nor would any other loyal American with a sense of rectitude.”

    “This was an attempt at conspiracy, on the part of a hostile foreign power at the most senior level of a political campaign,” he continued. “This has nothing to do with opposition research. This was an intrusion by the Russian government by its intelligence services to the highest levels of the Republican nominee,

  32. If there’s any benefit to not actually standing for anything, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull seemed to find it on Monday. With no values or principles to guide him, the PM easily abandoned his previous effort to be a pale imitation of Labor, and dramatically changed tack this week with a hilarious but disconcerting impersonation of Tony Abbott.

    Best ever analysis of the Trumble project in the media. One paragraph to say it all.

    Stands for nothing, a joke, but not funny. Actually disconcerting.

  33. In all seriousness, I do think that Malcolm Turnbull’s desire to present the military men as faceless means that, unlike during the Vietnam War era, or just about any other time when the nation needed to see the faces of their oppressors, so as to identify them down the legal track, we will no longer be able to do so.

    That’s wrong.

  34. Perhaps those troops behind Turnbull were wearing gas masks because they couldn’t stand the stench of the occasion.

  35. The cost of this road tunnel project – $14 billion! – is more than what would build high speed rail from Sydney to Newcastle. Why are we doing it? Who is running NSW transport?

    Toll road PPPs have degenerated into a scam for big finance and construction firms. I seem to be saying that a lot lately. There are a lot of examples to say it about. Sydney is planning to spend more on toll roads in the next decade than greater Paris (pop 12 million) will spend preparing for the Olympics. Seriously, this is getting ridiculous.

  36. Citizen,
    Perhaps those troops behind Turnbull were wearing gas masks because they couldn’t stand the stench of the occasion.

    So Turnbull’s assurances that his sh*t doesn’t smell wouldn’t have reassured them you think? 😉

  37. PhoenixRed

    Unsurprisingly Trump and his fellow travellers started with no collusion with Russia to anyone would take a meeting with Russian govt reps. Of course, the base will lap it up. Hence why the strategy is to erode the base one revelation at a time.
    Waiting patiently for the next shoe to drop……….

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