Essential Research: 54-46 to Labor; ReachTEL: 53-47

New and new-ish federal voting intention numbers from Essential Research, ReachTEL and YouGov, plus a bonanza of same-sex marriage polling that is consistent only in pointing to a big win for “yes”.

Three new results on federal voting intention:

The Guardian reports Labor’s lead in this week’s Essential Research fortnightly rolling average is 54-46, up from 53-47 last time. Primary vote numbers to follow later today. (UPDATE: The full results reveal the Coalition is down a point to 36%, Labor up one to 38%, the Greens steady on 10% and One Nation steady on 7%)

• A ReachTEL poll for Sky News, conducted on Thursday from an unusually big sample of 4888, has Labor’s two-party lead at 53-47, out from 52-48 at the previous poll on August 23. The primary votes are all but unchanged, with the Coalition steady on 34.5%, Labor down 0.3% to 36.4%, the Greens down 0.1% to 10.2% and One Nation up 0.6% to 11.0%. On 2016 election flows, the result would have come in at 54-46. The poll has Malcolm Turnbull leading Bill Shorten 51.7-48.3 on preferred prime minister; Turnbull’s performance rated as very good or good by 26%, average by 34% and poor or very poor by 39%; Bill Shorten’s respective numbers coming in at 31%, 31% and 37%.

• The YouGov poll for FiftyAcres maintains its idiosyncratic form in having the Coalition with a 51-49 lead on respondent-allocated preferences, compared with 50-50 a fortnight ago. After producing somewhat more conventional primary vote numbers last time, it’s back to having both major parties deep in the doldrums, with Labor down two points to 33% and the Coalition steady on 34%. The Greens and One Nation are also steady on 11% and 9%, with minor players soaking up the difference. Labor is credited with a fairly conventional 73% of Greens preferences, with the Coalition getting 68% from One Nation and 60% from the rest. A two-party result based on 2016 election flows would have come in at around 53-47. The poll was conducted Thursday to Sunday from a sample of 1054.

Same-sex marriage survey latest:

• The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ yesterday released the first of what will be weekly estimates on the response rate for the same-sex marriage survey. It estimates that 9.2 million survey forms have been received, amounting to a turnout of 57.5% of eligible voters. The result will be announced on November 15.

• The ABS figure is at odds with two polls that have emerged in the last few days, which can only partly be explained by postal lag effects. A ReachTEL poll for Sky News, conducted from a sample of “nearly five thousand people”, found 79.5% identifying as having voted. This included 64.3% who said they had voted yes compared with only 15.5% for no, with another 6.0% saying they still intended to vote yes and 5.7% for no. The other poll is a survey for the Marriage Equality campaign finding 77% of those eligible had voted, including 69% of the 18-to-24 cohort and more than 80% of those aged over 65. However, the Essential poll comes in a good deal lower, with 47% saying they had already voted, up from 36% a week ago, and another 33% saying they will definitely do so.

• Essential Research now has support for same-sex marriage at 61%, up from 58% last week and 55% the week before, with opposition tracking from 34% to 33% to 32%. Of those who voted, 64% said they voted yes compared with 30% for no.

• Without providing further detail, Sky News relates that a ReachTEL poll “separate” to the one it commissioned itself had a 72-28 forced response split in favour of yes, reducing to 61-39 among those who said they had already voted.

“ The Sky News ReachTEL poll has 47.2% very concerned or somewhat concerned about “what might be taught in schools if same sex marriage is legalised”, compared with 42.8% for somewhat or not at all concerned.

• The YouGov poll found 64% of respondents saying they had discussed the survey with family, 54% with friends, 21% with work colleagues and 14% with others, with only 17% saying they had not discussed it with anyone.

Other recent attitudinal findings:

• The ReachTEL poll found a 53-47 split in favour of Labor on who was best to manage the energy crisis and rising power prices. It also found 41% would support more coal seam gas mining if it meant reduced gas prices, with 36% opposed.

• Absent qualifications about lower prices, a Research Now survey of 1421 respondents for the Australia Institute found 49% would support a moratorium on fracking in their own state, with 24% opposed. Seventy-four per cent said they would support higher renewable energy targets in their own states.

• The YouGov poll finds 42% saying Tony Abbott should “play a quieter role and not be so critical of Malcolm Turnbull”, compared with 31% for “he should continue to speak up in the media, even if it involves being critical of Malcolm Turnbull”. Results were fairly similar across different voting intentions, with the exception of One Nation, whose supporters were notably harder on Turnbull. It was also found that 40% thought it wrong of Tony Abbott to relate the headbutt incident to the same-sex marriage campaign, compared with 34% who thought it was right, with clear distinctions emerging in this case betweeen Labor/Greens and Coalition/One Nation supporters.

• Also from the YouGov poll, 59% were in favour of a royal commission into the banking industry, with 19% opposed.

• Essential Research has results from its occasional questions on trust in institutions and media organisations, but all we have from The Guardian is that the the federal police performed best on the former, with religious organisations, trade unions and political parties bringing up the rear, with the ABC as always taking the mantle of most trusted news organisation.

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.

1,728 comments on “Essential Research: 54-46 to Labor; ReachTEL: 53-47”

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  1. In Bizarre Moment, Trump Throws Paper Towels At Puerto Rico Hurricane Victims

    Trump passed out food to hurricane victims in Texas and Florida, but Puerto Ricans got the President throwing rolls of paper towels into the crowd.

    Trump is doing everything imaginable to show that he doesn’t care and doesn’t want to be there. While the President tried to make a grand gesture out pretending to give a damn about hurricane victims in red states, he isn’t trying to hide his contempt in Puerto Rico.

    Donald Trump seems to hate the people of Puerto Rico, and one gets the sense that the vast majority of residents feel the same way about Trump.

  2. ‘Poor excuse for a human being’: Internet recoils after Trump whines Puerto Rico hurricane wrecked budget

    During a discussion with Puerto Rican officials, President Donald Trump blamed the U.S. territory for the damage caused by Hurricane Maria. He explained that the crisis has thrown “the budget out of whack.” He qualified it saying, “I hate to tell you,” however.

  3. Sen. John Thune blames shooting victims for failing to ‘take precautions’ and ‘get small’ to avoid gunfire

    Sen. John Thune (R-SD) on Tuesday responded to calls for increased gun control after the massacre in Las Vegas by telling reporters that shooting victims had a responsibility to protect themselves from gunfire.

    But Thune shied away from the topic of gun control, arguing, “[I]t’s an open society and it’s hard to prevent anything.”

    Instead, the Republican senator offered advice to potential victims.

    “I think people are going to have to take steps in their own lives to take precautions,” he opined. “To protect themselves. And in situations like that, you know, try to stay safe. As somebody said — get small.”

  4. Good Morning

    A reminder of the hope that still exists in the majority of the voting population in the US
    MichelleObama: Happy 25th anniversary @barackobama. A quarter of a century later, you’re still my best friend & the most extraordinary man I know. I love you (love you two heart emoji)

  5. Johnny Cash’s daughter: Country musicians must stand up to NRA because ‘they fund domestic terrorism’

    In a scathing New York Times op-ed, Rosanne Cash, daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash and his first wife Vivian Liberto, denounced the NRA — and called on her fellow country musicians to join her.

    “For the past few decades, the National Rifle Association has increasingly nurtured an alliance with country music artists and their fans,” Cash wrote. “You can see it in ‘N.R.A. Country,’ which promotes the artists who support the philosophical, if not economic, thrall of the N.R.A., with the pernicious tag line ‘Celebrate the Lifestyle.’”

    “That wholesome public relations veneer,” she continued, “masks something deeply sinister and profoundly destructive. There is no other way to say this: The N.R.A. funds domestic terrorism.”

  6. “Sure section 44 is out of date but maybe first we should look at why a voter in Tasmania has 4.25 times more power than a NSW voter,” he says. “As smaller states have a greater impact on the parliament you might see regional issues coming into conflict with the national good.”

    Isn’t this already happening? Abetz?

  7. Police presser now from Las Vegas updating


    Sydney and Melbourne have been warned to prepare for scorcher days reaching 50 degree Celsius by the end of the century — even if global warming is contained to the Paris Agreement target of a 2C increase.

    A new study led by Australian National University (ANU) climate scientist Dr Sophie Lewis has projected daily temperatures 3.8C above existing records for the two cities and even hotter extremes.

  8. WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Supreme Court justices clashed on Tuesday over whether courts should curb the long-standing U.S. political practice of drawing electoral maps to entrench one party in power, with conservative Anthony Kennedy likely to cast the deciding vote.

    The nine justices heard an hour of arguments in the major voting rights case out of Wisconsin involving the practice known as partisan gerrymandering. Their ruling, due by June, could have an impact on U.S. elections for decades by setting standards for when electoral districts are laid out with such extreme partisan aims that they deprive voters of their constitutional rights.

  9. MattDoran91: PM @TurnbullMalcolm up next on AM with @SabraLane – tune in… #auspol

  10. Morning all. Thanks BK. The cartoons on US gun violence are deadly accurate.

    Kim’s smartest ever move was to subtly rename the North Korean Rifle Association and order it to begin undermining the USA.

    Phoenix red
    Logically, the NRAs “solution” to mass shootings should be to get widespread personal use of kevlar bidy armour legalised. Problem solved!

  11. It says if the Brandis reasoning is upheld, prospective political candidates may see it as being in their interest to not ask questions or seek proper advice about their citizenship status.

    The government MPs caught up in the citizenship imbroglio, and the South Australian senator Nick Xenophon, have submitted to the court that they were ignorant of their citizenship issues, despite their parents’ heritage, and therefore should not be found ineligible for parliament as they did not acquire or retain the status voluntarily.

    But two Greens senators, who resigned their positions once they became aware that they were dual citizens, Scott Ludlam and Larissa Waters, have told the court they were correct to resign when they became aware of their status.

    The high court is scheduled to hear the cases of several MPs, including Joyce, between 10 and 12 October.

  12. Chris Uhlmann‏Verified account

    PM will push premiers at counter terror GOAG (COAG?) to hand over pics of every licensed driver for a national facial recognition database. #auspol

  13. lizzie – “I wonder when countries which accept the secular ceremony as the primary one brought in the laws.”

    In France “Laïcité” (secularism) dates from the ‘French Revolution’ (1790’s).

  14. The supply chain seem a lot worse than Musk indicated –

    Worries about whether Tesla Inc would meet its promises on production of its Model 3 mass-market sedan in the months ahead sent the electric car maker’s shares more than 2 percent lower on Tuesday as those in rivals climbed.

    The company, which warned when it launched the sedan in July that it was entering “manufacturing hell”, has so far delivered just 220 Model 3 cars and produced 260 during the quarter.

    It had targeted 1,500 sedans in the quarter and to take production to 5,000 a week by the end of the year.

  15. I assumed the French marital laws began with the French Revolution as they determined to be a secular society. I’d forgotten that the Napolean influence would be so widespread.


    The Greens are proposing a new national energy storage target of 20 gigawatts by 2030 to help drive the switch to renewables at both the household level and across the energy grid.

    The new policy will be announced on Wednesday ahead of meetings between the Greens climate and energy spokesman, Adam Bandt, and key industry players, such as the Australian Energy Storage Council, Tesla, the US firm AES Energy Storage, and Suntrix.

    The Greens also favour shifting to a five-minute settlement rule for the wholesale energy market – which is a change championed by a number of experts to prevent gaming of prices on the wholesale market.

  17. Power companies that cut electricity to people on life support, in breach of supply rules, have been handed fines of $20,000 for each incident.

    The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) on Tuesday slapped Energex and TasNetworks with fines after they breached the National Energy Retail Rules, and potentially put lives at risk.

    TasNetworks was fined $60,000 and Energex $40,000, after they both failed to give a minimum of four days notice to people registered as having life support equipment in their homes.

    This is not the first time incidents such as these have occurred. Ausgrid alone has received more than $100,000 in fines for six breaches of its life support protection obligations over the last 12 months.

  18. I would like the Australia Institute or someone similar to do a do a follow up poll on gas.
    Option a, restrict fracking and limit gas exports, or
    b. unrestricted exports and gas development.

    Option B is what the government wants.

  19. Nice post on facebook suggesting that someone wanting to buy a gun in America should have to go through the kind of process a woman wanting an abortion (in the US) does – mandatory waiting periods, watching videos on gun violence, a doctor’s note certifying he understands what he’s doing, etc etc.

  20. There’s no mystery why smaller states get proportionally more vote: Federation is voluntary and no one is going to enter into an agreement to have their entire policy dictated to them by NSW + VIC or vote for that to be the case retrospectively because that would be incredibly stupid

  21. lizzie

    My mother in law used to have one of those anagram generators (you put the letters you have into it and it gives you the best word).

    It also had a hangman game which I used to play.

    I noticed that it used increasingly bizarre words and used to joke that it was cheating because I was beating it.

    Then one day, I fed one of the words it used back into its dictionary search, and it came back with ‘word not listed in dictionary’!

  22. I am waiting for the stupid response from the No campaign over that defamation action against them.

    Noteworthy that the new vilification legislation was not used but rather defamation law.

  23. Morning grumble. I’ve been playing Scrabble against a computer that cheats and won’t allow me to challenge its spelling.

    Reminds me of playing Scrabble with Mrs Katich one day on the Overland train. Either the game or the marriage was not going to make it to Melbourne.

  24. Will, re Essential reporting a smaller “I have returned my survey” percentage – they wouldn’t be silly enough to use their usual 2-week running average on a question like that – would they?

  25. zoomster

    It can challenge me, but I have no way of returning the compliment. Happy to say I’ve been beating it 9/10, but even so…

  26. Shelton and associates must be fuming that the Las Vegas terrorist act is drawing MSM attention away from SSM, just when they need to convince those who have not yet returned their survey forms.

  27. “New polling shows the “Yes” vote may be collapsing!”

    Wow! This comes from that paragon of quality journalism, the Daily Telegraph! I’m sure it’s entirely impartial and agenda-free. I must read the entire article! Thanks for the link, GG!

  28. GG: I think I’ll wait for something that’s slightly more pollshaped before panicking. A 6% collapse, which is enormously out of proportion from the previous dropping pattern, from a campaign that can selectively publish polls in its favour dropped to Miranda Devine, for a story about how the No campaigns primary ad is working, isn’t really hitting my plausibility lists.

  29. political_alert: Opposition Leader Bill Shorten is in Melbourne and will join @JoanneRyanLalor at a wool manufacturer in Laverton North, 10am #auspol

    Given yesterday this could mean 11:00 am. Could be Queensland time

  30. Elaugaufein @ #45 Wednesday, October 4th, 2017 – 9:33 am

    GG: I think I’ll wait for something that’s slightly more pollshaped before panicking. A 6% collapse, which is enormously out of proportion from the previous dropping pattern, from a campaign that can selectively publish polls in its favour dropped to Miranda Devine, for a story about how the No campaigns primary ad is working, isn’t really hitting my plausibility lists.

    So, you’d rather believe earlier polls showing 77% returns when the reality is 57% according to the ABS.

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