The second poll of the year from the now-fortnightly Essential Research series has Labor’s lead widening from 53-47 to 54-46 — the primary votes will be with us later today.
Among the poll’s other findings are that 73% believe the cost of living has increased over the past year, and 75% believe energy prices have done so. Fifty-one per cent believe the cost of living has increased more quickly than their income, 28% that it has stayed even, and only 14% that their income has increased more. Eighty-three per cent thought the government should do more to make health insurance affordable, and 60% believed health insurance wasn’t worth the premiums.
Thirty-two per cent of respondents thought the political and economic system needed to be fundamentally changed, 48% favoured refinement, and only 8% registered satisfaction with the status quo. Questions on which party was best to handle various issues evoked the usual responses, with the Liberals doing better on managing the economy and terrorism, and Labor doing better on climate change and industrial relations (and, less predictably, housing affordability).
The poll was conducted Thursday to Monday from a sample of 1028.