ReachTEL: 52-48 to Labor

Little change on voting intention in a ReachTEL poll that also covers Section 44, the burqa, drug testing of welfare recipients, and likelihood of participation in the same-sex marriage survey.

Sky News reports its latest monthly ReachTEL poll has Labor with a 52-48 lead on respondent-allocated preferences, up from 51-49 a month ago. The primary votes provided do not exclude the undecided, the number of which isn’t specified, but the numbers we have to work with for now are Coalition 32% (down one), Labor 34% (steady), Greens 9% (up one) and One Nation 10% (down one). There will have been a further forced response question for the undecided, but the numbers for this have been a bit elusive lately – I will hopefully be able to get hold of them tomorrow, which will then allow me to report definitive primary votes excluding the undecided, and also a two-party preferred result based on previous election preferences, which will be stronger for Labor than the headline result. The poll also records Malcolm Turnbull with a slender 52-48 lead over Bill Shorten as preferred prime minister.

Among the other questions posed were likelihood of participation in the same-sex marriage plebiscite-survey, which recorded results of 79% likely, 10% somewhat likely, 4% somewhat unlikely and 7% very unlikely, with the oldest cohort apparently the least likely to participate. Contrary to YouGov, the poll did not find strong support for those embroiled in the Section 44 saga standing down, with 39% saying they should and 50% saying they should not. A question on whether the burqa should be banned found 44% strong support, 13% support, 12% opposition and 19% strong opposition. For drug testing of welfare recipients, the results were 53% strong support, 15% support, 9% opposition and 11% strong opposition.

The poll was conducted yesterday, presumably from a sample of around 2300 (UPDATE: Make that 2832).

UPDATE: As related by GhostWhoVotes, the primary votes after exclusion of the undecided are Coalition 34.5% (down 2.7%), Labor 36.7% (up 1.6%), Greens 10.3% (up 1.5%) and One Nation 10.4% (down 1.3%). That would actually transfer into a blowout Labor lead of 54.5-45.5, based on 2016 preference flows. However, taken together with the YouGov results noted in the previous post, it does seem respondent-allocated preferences are proving considerably more favourable to the Coalition. This may suggest that a 50-50 split of One Nation preferences, as per the 2016 election, is unduly flattering to Labor, as most of the support One Nation has gained since the election has come from former Coalition voters.

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.

699 comments on “ReachTEL: 52-48 to Labor”

  1. Labor…nearly 4/10
    Green….about 1/10
    Liberal……just 3/10

    The Rest…over 2/10

    The Right are breaking into rubble…I’d like to know how long it is since the Lib PV dropped below 30%. This marker surely cannot be far off.

  2. I’m very disappointed to see that the government is pushing ahead with its plans to introduce compulsory drug testing.

    After a motor vehicle accident about 10 years ago I ended up addicted to prescription painkillers. Fortunately, I had a GP who had the good sense to treat this as a medical problem and my employer was very supportive of me during recovery.

    The physical symptoms of overcoming drug addiction weren’t as bad as I was expecting and the psychological symptoms were awful and much worse than I was expecting. Without the support of my doctor, psychologist, employer, family and friends it would have been almost impossible to overcome the addiction.

    There is no doubt in my mind that the L/NP’s welfare drug testing policy will fail at its publicly stated objectives.

  3. WB,
    This may suggest that a 50-50 split of One Nation preferences, as per the 2016 election, is unduly flattering to Labor, as most of the support One Nation has gained since the election has come from former Coalition voters.

    Yes, but how come a 4% drop in the combined PHON L-NP primaries and a 3.1% increase in GRN ALP only created 1% shift in the headline TPP? Respondent allocated all over the shop?

  4. William Bowe
    This suggests the Liberal PV must be very close to 30%..surely their worst polling result in many a long year…

    Liberal 31.7%, Nationals 2.8%.

    Thanks William.

    Dire numbers for the Tories. Do you know what the lowest-ever polling for the Libs has been?

  5. grimace

    “There is no doubt in my mind that the L/NP’s welfare drug testing policy will fail at its publicly stated objectives.”

    Yes, but surely they will not fail at the real objective, which is to boot people off welfare/deter them from applying for it, because, you know, the Coalition thinks they’re all “dole bludgers”.

  6. I have suddenly realised our founding fathers could not have anticipated Australian mores in the 21st C relevant to the eligibility of nominees and this does call for urgent constitutional reform. Who would have thought being an MP would involve working so much with children. S44 should require as a condition of eligibility a clearance to work with children.

    I know this will rule out many because they won’t have the capacity to fill out the forms but . . . think of the children.

  7. The return of ON is consuming the Tory PV. It’s little wonder that when Brandis spoke so passionately against Hanson last week his fellow Tory Senators sat motionless, uncomfortable and unmoved.

    ON support is the inverse of LNP contraction.

    They deserve this….thoroughly deserve this.

  8. Marginal LNP-held seats…2PP margin at 2016 election…

    Banks 1.44
    Bonner 3.39
    Boothby 3.5
    Brisbane 5.92
    Capricornia 0.63
    Casey 6.06
    Chisholm 1.24
    Corangamite 3.13
    Dawson 3.34
    Deakin 5.68
    Dickson 1.6
    Dunkley 1.43
    Flynn 1.04
    Forde 0.63
    Gilmore 0.73
    Hasluck 2.05
    La Trobe 1.46
    Leichhardt 3.95
    McMillan 6.03
    Page 2.3
    Pearce 3.63
    Petrie 1.65
    Reid 4.69
    Robertson 1.14
    Stirling 6.12
    Sturt 5.89
    Swan 3.59

    There are 27 seats on the list.

  9. Were the LNP to lose all 27 seats they would be reduced to 49 seats out of 150. This would be comparable to Labor’s results in 1975 (36/127) and 1977 (38/124). It would easily be the worst results for the Tories since 1929 (24/75); 1943 (19/74); and 1946 (16/74).

  10. Mr Newbie

    ‘Yes, but surely they will not fail at the real objective, which is to boot people off welfare/deter them from applying for it, because, you know, the Coalition thinks they’re all “dole bludgers”.’

    Yes. That scheme will also cost a fortune to administer. But fundamentally, the L/NP don’t believe in social welfare. For example, they tried to effectively end unemployment benefits for the under 25s with their 6 month ‘waiting period’. Had that got up, it would have been extended, both the age group and waiting time. What they want is people to be working full time for wages as low as an employer can get away with. The IPA website includes articles advocating the abolition of the minimum wage. They don’t want a return to the 1950s, they want to bring back the 1890s, the Master and Servant Act, workhouses.

  11. There are a few more LNP-held seats in 7-8% 2PP margin range that will also be vulnerable if a big swing catches on:

    Bowman 7.07
    Canning 6.79
    Flinders 7.77
    Grey 8.63
    Hinkler 8.42

    In WA as the election approached voters were clearly going through the process of evaluating the Parties, reflecting on their experiences and considering the future. Overwhelmingly, they chose change.

    As the next federal election approaches, voters will go formulate their intentions in the same way.

    They will also know the the expectation will be that another LNP government will likely just be more of the same – more incoherence, more intra-party feuding, more ineptitude and bungling…and more uncertainty.

    I reckon the mood will shift strongly in favour of change. The seats mentioned below, the seats in this post, and even a few wild-cards that have been Labor-held in the past (Durack and Forrest in WA, for example), will all be winnable for Labor.

    I also think there is very little the LNP can do about this. If they dump Turnbull, the results for them will be even worse.

  12. Personally, I think it would do the LNP the world of good to lose 40-50 seats. They will have real cause to reflect on their ideological stupidities and their reactionary reflexes.

  13. “Personally, I think it would do the LNP the world of good to lose 40-50 seats. They will have real cause to reflect on their ideological stupidities and their reactionary reflexes.”

    Depending on who loses their seats, I’m not convinced they will do this. The RWNJ sect will think it’s ’cause they went too far ‘left’ with Malcolm. The ‘moderates’ will think it’s ’cause of the pervasive RWNJ influence. And so the in-fighting will continue.

  14. Mr Newbie

    Depending on who loses their seats, I’m not convinced they will do this. The RWNJ sect will think it’s ’cause they went too far ‘left’ with Malcolm. The ‘moderates’ will think it’s ’cause of the pervasive RWNJ influence. And so the in-fighting will continue.

    Then they will remain in Opposition where they belong. The LNP are just irrelevant to the needs of the country – more irrelevant than ever. They will need to discover this for themselves, no doubt.

  15. The seat of Warringah was won with an 11.55% 2CP margin….pity it’s a bit too much. There would be few things more gratifying than seeing Abbott defeated at an election.

  16. While I think 44(i) as it has been applied is rubbish, if the HC does find that Joyce was disqualified, I hope they do not order a by-election but instead order a recount as if Joyce’s name were not on the ballot papers. This would give maximum effect to his disqualification. He would not be able to rectify his impairment and seek to win a by-election….

    …too much to hope for, I’m sure…

  17. Trump taking the fight up to McConnell and Ryan on twitter. Clearly not understanding that he needs them more than they need him.

    Donald J. Trump‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump 1h1 hour ago
    I requested that Mitch M & Paul R tie the Debt Ceiling legislation into the popular V.A. Bill (which just passed) for easy approval. They…

    Donald J. Trump‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump 1h1 hour ago
    …didn’t do it so now we have a big deal with Dems holding them up (as usual) on Debt Ceiling approval. Could have been so easy-now a mess!

  18. Donald J. Trump‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump 1m1 minute ago
    The only problem I have with Mitch McConnell is that, after hearing Repeal & Replace for 7 years, he failed!That should NEVER have happened!

    Clearly he’s forgotten his own campaign rhetoric that promised something better, cheaper etc and all “immediately”.

  19. confessions
    Trump taking the fight up to McConnell and Ryan on twitter. Clearly not understanding that he needs them more than they need him.

    He has gone on the warpath against the Republican hierarchy. Maybe he actually wants to be impeached.

  20. confessions
    Donald J. Trump‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump 1m1 minute ago
    The only problem I have with Mitch McConnell is that, after hearing Repeal & Replace for 7 years, he failed!That should NEVER have happened!

    Yup..he’s blaming them for his own failings. They will not forget that.

  21. Why are the mainstream media, even the ‘venerable’ Sydney Morning Herald, presenting articles about the twists and turns in “The Bachelor” or “Game of Thrones” as news?

  22. briefly:

    Trump seems to be trying to straddle that horse which sees him say one thing to his base and another to Republicans in Congress. Given the airtime his rallies get I’m not sure that’s going to work long term.

  23. briefly

    “Were the LNP to lose all 27 seats they would be reduced to 49 seats out of 150.”

    If they got down to 60 and the current polarisation in the ‘broad church’ was to continue it’s not dificult to see them chosing not to ‘huddle’ together.

    As well as those that simply lose their seat the number within the remaining 60 that they would be better without would not be trivial.

    The failure to not have a clean out after JWH got flicked is really biting now.

    Their assumption that ‘Work Choices’ was their only problem was lazy to say the least.

  24. briefly @ #228 Thursday, August 24th, 2017 – 9:32 pm

    The seat of Warringah was won with an 11.55% 2CP margin….pity it’s a bit too much. There would be few things more gratifying than seeing Abbott defeated at an election.

    Keep in mind at the WA election Bunbury and Geraldton had swings above 20% and a fair number that approached 20% like Jandakot, Southern River, West Swan, Swan Hills and Wanneroo. If the swing is really on the Abbott’s seat while unlikely, is not out of the question.

    I’d love to see Brian Trumble loose his seat. The dummy spit would be epic and would set the standard for all time for an undignified concession speech.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/elections/wa-election-2017/results/list/

  25. John Hewson sounds like he enjoying the current situation.

    Malcolm Turnbull’s lack of control on full display

    A principal weakness of the Turnbull government is its mismanagement of issues. As issues break, it doesn’t seem to have any political, policy or communications strategies to handle them effectively. It is mostly reactive, rather than proactive, ultimately forced to run a high-risk position according to someone else’s agenda.

    Its initial responses are often ill-considered, and its actions from the hip. More often than not it soon loses control of the issue, remaining stuck pretty much at the mercy of its own incompetence as events further unfold.

    http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/turnbulls-lack-of-control-on-full-display-20170824-gy2y2u.html

  26. CT…These are the safest Tory seats…

    22 x Libs
    8 x LNP
    9 x Nationals

    Barker 15.19 LP
    Berowra 16.45 LP
    Bradfield 21.04 LP
    Cook 15.39 LP
    Curtin 20.7 LP
    Durack 11.06 LP
    Farrer 20.53 LP
    Forrest 12.56 LP
    Goldstein 12.68 LP
    Higgins 10.69 LP
    Hughes 9.33 LP
    Hume 10.18 LP
    Kooyong 13.34 LP
    Mackellar 15.74 LP
    Menzies 10.56 LP
    Mitchell 17.82 LP
    Moore 11.02 LP
    North Sydney 13.61 LP
    O’Connor 15.04 LP
    Tangney 11.07 LP
    Warringah 11.09 LP
    Wentworth 17.75 LP

    Fadden 11.05 LNP
    Fairfax 10.89 LNP
    Groom 15.31 LNP
    Maranoa 17.54 LNP
    McPherson 11.64 LNP
    Moncrieff 14.94 LNP
    Ryan 9.09 LNP
    Wright 9.62 LNP

    Calare 11.81 NP
    Cowper 12.58 NP
    Gippsland 18.43 NP
    Lyne 11.63 NP
    Mallee 21.32 NP
    Murray 24.9 NP
    New England 16.42 NP
    Parkes 15.1 NP
    Riverina 16.44 NP

    I’m not sure how they break down factionally. However, the WA Libs with whom I’m familiar are, with possible exception of Bishop, totally useless…Curtin, Durack, Moore, O’Connor, Tangney…just hopeless, as are the next rung (Canning and Forrest)…

  27. Grimace
    Keep in mind at the WA election Bunbury and Geraldton had swings above 20% and a fair number that approached 20% like Jandakot, Southern River, West Swan, Swan Hills and Wanneroo. If the swing is really on the Abbott’s seat while unlikely, is not out of the question.

    I’d love to see Brian Trumble loose his seat. The dummy spit would be epic and would set the standard for all time for an undignified concession speech.

    The Sydney North Shore does not swing like that. You really can’t compare new suburban mortgage belt seats to the Sydney North Shore that’s long established and full of old money.

    As for Wentworth, I don’t think it’s outside the realm of possibility for Turnbull to get a nasty swing against him – maybe even enough to lose his seat.

  28. grimace

    I’d love to see Brian Trumble loose his seat. The dummy spit would be epic and would set the standard for all time for an undignified concession speech.

    It’s not hard to imagine that Turnbull would hide in his basement for days before emerging for a rant.

  29. CTar1
    briefly

    If they got down to 60 and the current polarisation in the ‘broad church’ was to continue it’s not dificult to see them chosing not to ‘huddle’ together.

    As well as those that simply lose their seat the number within the remaining 60 that they would be better without would not be trivial.

    Yes…take out the Nats and there would be about 50…and they could easily break in halves…

  30. grimace
    briefly @ #228 Thursday, August 24th, 2017 – 9:32 pm

    Keep in mind at the WA election Bunbury and Geraldton had swings above 20% and a fair number that approached 20% like Jandakot, Southern River, West Swan, Swan Hills and Wanneroo. If the swing is really on the Abbott’s seat while unlikely, is not out of the question.

    I’d love to see Brian Trumble loose his seat. The dummy spit would be epic and would set the standard for all time for an undignified concession speech.

    The marginals will swing…no doubt…the safest seats…probably not so much I guess… can always hope !

  31. Briefly – just following on from your posts, it has occurred to me numerous times that the 2016 election was a massive own goal for Turnbull. It saddled him with the worst of all worlds – a Labor Party within striking distance of government and therefore breathing down his neck – a situation exacerbated by having a one seat majority that simultaneously keeps him safe in his job and also powerless and beholden to the right.

    As you said, there’s almost nothing the Liberals can do to change this situation. And the sheer number of seats under threat to Labor demonstrates how truly perilous the next election is for the Liberals.

  32. Question @ #205 Thursday, August 24th, 2017 – 9:59 pm

    WB,
    This may suggest that a 50-50 split of One Nation preferences, as per the 2016 election, is unduly flattering to Labor, as most of the support One Nation has gained since the election has come from former Coalition voters.

    Yes, but how come a 4% drop in the combined PHON L-NP primaries and a 3.1% increase in GRN ALP only created 1% shift in the headline TPP? Respondent allocated all over the shop?

    Respondent-allocated preferences are volatile like this because the number of respondents giving preferences in each poll is small.

  33. CTar1 @ #243 Thursday, August 24th, 2017 – 10:08 pm

    grimace

    I’d love to see Brian Trumble loose his seat. The dummy spit would be epic and would set the standard for all time for an undignified concession speech.

    It’s not hard to imagine that Turnbull would hide in his basement for days before emerging for a rant.

    I wouldn’t put that past Brian.

    What happens with the victory speech where the result is beyond any reasonable doubt and the loser refuses to concede?

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