YouGov-Fifty Acres: 50-50

YouGov’s latest records primary support for the major parties lower than others, and finds strong support for both same-sex marriage and a plebiscite.

The latest fortnightly YouGov poll for Fifty Acres maintains the series’ established pattern of low primary votes for the major parties and strong minor party preference flows to the Coalition. There is a stable 50-50 two-party result derived from primary votes that would land it in the 52-48 to 53-47 range on 2016 preferences: 34% for the Coalition, down two; 32% for Labor, down one; 11% for the Greens, up one; and 9% for One Nation, up one.

Other findings from the poll are a 34-27 lead for Malcolm Turnbull on preferred prime minister, with an unusually high 38% preferring a “not sure” option; 60% support for same-sex marriage, with 28% opposed; 51% preferring a plebiscite on the matter, compared with 29% for a decision by parliament; 36% believing Turnbull’s position would be threatened by Coalition MPs crossing the floor on the matter, compared with 29% who thought otherwise; and 33% thinking referendums should be held more often, with 26% saying too many such proposals are being made of issues that should be left to parliament.

The poll was conducted Thursday to Monday from a sample of 1005.

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.

1,910 comments on “YouGov-Fifty Acres: 50-50”

  1. Great work Bill.

    Is Henderson (LIB) in the house because she doesn’t support marriage equality? If she does the she should have said “Let Abbott make up the numbers; I’m not going to be seen to defend the indefensible.”

  2. Puff, the Magic Dragon. @ #1377 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:05 pm

    Never mind cosmic rights or legal/social constructs!

    I reckon it is in our collective interests to be nice to each other. Being nice to each other means not standing in the way of people marrying each other regardless of gender, in my opinion.

    How about we just aim for a happier place, at the very least.

  3. Barney in Go Dau @ #1391 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:17 pm

    We already have, anything that can be defined as a de facto relationship.

    That’s a pretty good argument. Except that (as has been pointed out ad infinitum by SSM proponents) de-facto relationships are specifically not accorded the same status as some other types of relationship. Civil unions would be a better example to use – your argument would be hard to refute if the rules governing civil unions were identical in all states. But they are not – some states don’t recognize them, and even those states that do have differences in their recognition of them.

  4. jenauthor @ #1399 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:25 pm

    That was up there with Julia’s misogyny speech!

    It was. I suspect it will get a very good airing on social media. Bill has made it absolutely clear whose side he is on and whose side is definitely against. No pussy footing and pandering to bigotry. Just a clear call out that Trumble and Abbott can have the uglies.

  5. Chester

    “I’m confused why people shouldn’t have a say.”

    Sad when an elected representative doesn’t understand how our Parliament is meant to work.

  6. Elaugaufein @ #1394 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:18 pm

    P1
    This can’t be resolved by a referendum. Unless you want to put some kind of definition of marriage into the Constitution (and frankly I can’t see much positive value in that).

    It is the constitution that gives the government the right to legislate on marriage. Changing the constitution is certainly one way to resolve the issue, and would prevent such idiocies as Howard changing the definition of marriage to suit himself.

  7. (trigger finger apology)

    Puff, the Magic Dragon. @ #1377 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:05 pm

    Never mind cosmic rights or legal/social constructs!

    I reckon it is in our collective interests to be nice to each other. Being nice to each other means not standing in the way of people marrying each other regardless of gender, in my opinion.

    How about we just aim for a happier place, at the very least.

    I’m all for the cosmic rights. They’re the only ones, the ones that say that what we do to another we do to ourselves, because the separation of self from other is a perception not the reality.

  8. [Player One
    Barney in Go Dau @ #1391 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:17 pm

    We already have, anything that can be defined as a de facto relationship.

    That’s a pretty good argument. Except that (as has been pointed out ad infinitum by SSM proponents) de-facto relationships are specifically not accorded the same status as some other types of relationship. Civil unions would be a better example to use – your argument would be hard to refute if the rules governing civil unions were identical in all states. But they are not – some states don’t recognize them, and even those states that do have differences in their recognition of them.]

    It’s not about what rights or status they have now,

    it’s about the relationships that we accept and recognise as a society.

  9. As one of the few Nats that are pro SSM I almost feel sorry for Chester being punished by having to lower himself like this.

    Then I remember he’s a Nat. He helped give us Abbott. He helps bring us Trumble. He’s happy to play along with the trashing of our representative democratic norms. He’s happy to stand back and allow all this shit.

    Fuck Darren Chester and donkey he rode into town on.

  10. My mother in law (who is a decisive “no”) won’t participate in the survey unless she gets a self-addressed envelope. She still steams stamps off letters she receives. I’ve caught her in action.

  11. a r @ #1396 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:22 pm

    Player One @ #1385 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:14 pm

    Sure is. We just have to agree which types of relationships are acceptable to our society. Presumably – since we are a representative democracy – we do that by voting for representatives to sit in Parliament, draft legislation, and then vote on it in Parliement.

    Fixed it for you.

    I have said many times that would be an acceptable outcome.

    P.S. we already agree that same-sex relationships are acceptable, because there’s already no legal prohibition on such relationships. There was, at one point, but people realized how oppressively wrong that was and got rid of those laws. Without needing to conduct a national plebiscite first.

    Are you talking about removing the criminal sanctions on the sex acts themselves? That’s not quite the same thing, although I have noticed that the two are very often confused in this debate.

  12. Barney in Go Dau @ #1411 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:37 pm

    It’s not about what rights or status they have now,

    it’s about the relationships that we accept and recognise as a society.

    I honestly don’t understand your point. I thought your argument was that we should recognize relationships based on what we already regard as “acceptable”. I agree, but pointed out that what is acceptable is quite variable – if everyone agreed what was “acceptable” we would not be having this discussion at all.

  13. [Player One
    Barney in Go Dau @ #1411 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:37 pm

    It’s not about what rights or status they have now,

    it’s about the relationships that we accept and recognise as a society.

    I honestly don’t understand your point. I thought your argument was that we should recognize relationships based on what we already regard as “acceptable”. I agree, but pointed out that what is acceptable is quite variable – if everyone agreed what was “acceptable” we would not be having this discussion at all.]

    Easy, any relationship recognised as a de facto relationship should be able to be recognised as a marriage.

  14. I will be informal. This unrepresentative non-binding, voluntary poll sets a dangerous precedent. Main purpose is to legitamise the say and influence of churches in any changes to society. Next cab off the rank is euthanasia where Victoria and WA are making moves, churches will use the marriage equality poll to push for similar for euthanasia once it looks like succeeding.

  15. For Player 1 especially, from Paul Karp @ The Guardian

    The marriage equality postal survey is vulnerable to voter fraud because Australians will not be given individual identifiers by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, experts have warned.

    The move to anonymise the process is designed to address concerns that if ballots included personal identifiers the ABS would be able to match Australians’ opinions on same-sex marriage with other personal information, in effect spoiling the concept of the secret vote.

    But now the former ABS chief, Bill McLennan, and two privacy experts have warned if voters are not sent an individual identifier, the ABS will struggle to determine who has voted.

    McLennan said the ABS “has no powers to ensure that the right people are answering” surveys.

  16. It seems rather inconsistent that Shorten, having consistently blocked a comprehensive plebiscite conducted by the AEC (and one which he previously supported), looks like he will tacitly support the stupid postal ballot/survey by campaigning for a Yes vote.

    The truth seems to be that Shorten himself was always quite comfortable with the idea of a plebiscite, but was pushed away from it by his party membership/Caucus.

    Having a close family member who is very keen to marry their same sex partner as quickly as possible, I wish Labor had just voted for the wretched plebiscite when it first came up rather than play political games with it. It’s funny hearing people from the political left demanding that parliamentarians to have a “free vote” on SSM when, of course, Labor has determined that definitely it won’t have a free vote post the next election.

    Kirby’s intervention today will most likely ensure that the left will go into the postal ballot divided between those who will campaign for a Yes vote and those who will campaign for a boycott. As we saw with the Republic referendum, a No vote might put the issue off the agenda for a long time to come. And then my family member will be waiting indefinitely for a change in the law (or else have to go to NZ for their Sem Sucks Merridge).

    Interestingly, Kirby was on the No side in the Republic referendum…

  17. Hmmmm…Bill calling for a big campaign here. And the ALP has it all over the other lot in terms of running on the ground backed by big data.

  18. Two striking comments from the clergy regarding their rape of children were that they did not realise sex with children was illegal and that they did not realise the harm it was doing to children.
    Such incredible disassociation from the norms of society is on display in their arguments against marriage equality, they have no idea of the harm they are inflicting on gay children and families by those comments.
    We should not have to wait for the churches to mature in understanding society and behaviour before equality is given to those denied it.

  19. @ meher baba – Shorten was pushed away from the Plebiscite by his consultation with the effected stakeholders, as represented by AME.

    He recognises that it is not within his power to stop the postal survey, and so he is doing what he thinks is the next best thing.

    If he were able to stop the postal survey but chose not to, THAT would be inconsistent?

  20. Player One @ #1415 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:44 pm

    Are you talking about removing the criminal sanctions on the sex acts themselves?

    Insofar as those criminal sanctions target the sorts of things that people in a same-sex relationship might generally want to do, and insofar as those laws were disproportionately enforced against same-sex couples (how many straight men have been executed, jailed, or even arrested and prosecuted for sodomizing their wives?), yes. I consider that a de facto disposition against same-sex relationships.

    Though it makes no difference if it isn’t. That would just mean that same-sex relationships have always been acceptable instead of just acceptable for the past few decades.

  21. Man, how good must it be to be the Coalition knowing you can fluff, F’up, stuff around, go MIA, be disorganised and dysfunctional but still be in the running for re-election.

    Their rusted-on voters and powerful backers are the flesh eating sea lice of our political landscape.

  22. Boris @ #1430 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 4:17 pm

    Two striking comments from the clergy regarding their rape of children were that they did not realise sex with children was illegal and that they did not realise the harm it was doing to children.
    Such incredible disassociation from the norms of society is on display in their arguments against marriage equality, they have no idea of the harm they are inflicting on gay children and families by those comments.
    We should not have to wait for the churches to mature in understanding society and behaviour before equality is given to those denied it.

    Thanks, this is spot-on.

  23. “Why isn’t is a corruption of democracy when major corporations run big advertising campaigns against elected governments? I would have thought it was a perfect example.”
    Because it’s freedom of speech. So far, we don’t live in a totalitarian state where opinions only get in to the papers if they are in keeping with government policy. Should the unions be banned from putting ads in the paper if they disagree with Liberal policy?

  24. [Player One
    Barney in Go Dau @ #1421 Thursday, August 10th, 2017 – 3:55 pm

    Easy, any relationship recognised as a de facto relationship should be able to be recognised as a marriage.

    You’re just going around in circles now.]

    You really need things spelt out.

    marriage means the union of two people to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life.

  25. Thanks Voice Endeavour

    ==========

    Re High Court challenge: broadly speaking, why is it supposed this challenge will succeed even though Gough Whitlam was able to do something quite similar through the ABS in the 1970s re the national anthem (I don’t for one moment suggest the anthem and SSM are on the same level of seriousness but in legal conceptual terms it is much the same thing: a Government using the ABS to take a reading of public opinion in relation to a matter of public policy.)

  26. So Timmy Wilson shouted that Bill Shorten had no idea what vilification was like…I would have thought that being subjected to a personal Royal Commission by the Rabid Rabbott would have given him more insight than “Freedom Boy”.

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