Newspoll: 52-48 to Labor

Newspoll resumes with the Coalition’s best result in ten months.

As related by The Australian, the first Newspoll of the year has Labor’s two-party lead at 52-48, which is down from 53-47 at the previous poll in mid-November, and the narrowest it’s been since April last year. On the primary vote, the Coalition is up two to 38%, Labor is steady on 37% and the Greens are steady on 10%. One Nation is on 5%, which is down two on a result that was already their weakest showing since Newspoll started publishing results for them last February. Personal ratings bring good news for Malcolm Turnbull, who is up five on approval to 37%, and has widened his lead as preferred prime minister from 41-34 to 45-31. Bill Shorten is up two on approval to 34%, but it seems we will have to wait for the disapproval ratings (UPDATE: Good news for both on the latter score, with Turnbull down seven to 50%, and Shorten down four to 52%).

UPDATE: Newspoll also has preferred Labor leader numbers which have little separating Bill Shorten, Tanya Plibersek and Anthony Albanese, who are on 22%, 25% and 24% respectively.

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.

2,815 comments on “Newspoll: 52-48 to Labor”

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  1. GG

    Gotta love how Smith and Albrechtson blame the ABC for their defaming of Rudd.

    They never miss a chance to bag the ABC and then admit they took the ABC report at “face value”.

    In other words we don’t trust the ABC unless they report something in line with our thinking. Then we believe every word.

    If I was Rudd I would not accept that as an apology.

    Make them read out a formal statement or seeya in court.

  2. Ha I love it. The lawyers have obviously informed Smith and Albrechtson about how much indoor pools cost.

    Kev should go for a water slide as well.

  3. The Republican-led Congress is set to vote Thursday on a two-year budget deal that would include massive increases in military and domestic spending programs, reflecting an ideological shift for a party whose leaders long preached fiscal conservatism but have now embraced big spending.

    Interesting how when Democrats are in office they aren’t allowed to do any spending because ‘BUDGET DEFICIT!!’. Yet when Republicans get back in the sky’s the limit and deficits be damned.

  4. Rudd tried to do a smart-arse Peter Beattie stunt and it didn’t work. In the process he shafted Garrett.

    As far as I could see all the identified risks were being controlled / managed. E.g. insisting householders had multiple quotes and putting it on them and normal consumer protection to minimise rorting.

    The crazed Abbott led opposition was just hurling around baseless accusations and Rudd, and others, panicked rather than stand their ground. It only made matters worse and lent credence to some of the wild claims.

    yep this. Said exactly this the night he threw Garrett under the bus. It was a disgraceful effort.

    But the same filthy slime in the media who are now backing away like the gutless slugs they are were the ones laundering Abbott’s lies and deflecting the focus off the dodgy installers breaking OH&S rules where it belongs for pure political partisanship.

    Rudd taking the lot of them to the cleaners and buying an island with a nice heated indoor pool with spa and slide from the proceeds is better than they deserve.

  5. On Wednesday, Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) told reporters that a parade aimed at specifically demonstrating American military might was “kind of cheesy and a sign of weakness.” Sen. John Neely Kennedy (R-La.), added that, “America is the most powerful country in all of human history, everybody knows it, and we don’t need to show it off.”

    Other critics reckon a grand display is more about gratifying the ego of the commander in chief. “Image is Trump’s moral code,” wrote political commentator Jonathan Chait. “… He conscripts the military as a prop to bathe himself in an aura of presidential grandeur.”

    Marco Rubio totally had the genesis of Trump’s ego issues sussed during the campaign.

  6. Ruth GrahamVerified account@publicroad
    22h22 hours ago
    Building a rocket ship and then using it to send a sports car into space is a good example of why we need both STEM and the humanities.

  7. Pollies make laws which judge what is acceptable in the population’s private lives. Why shouldn’t the population make judgements on the pollies’ private lives ?

  8. Yikes I wonder if they’re all Fox News viewers!

    Evan McMullinVerified account@Evan_McMullin
    12h12 hours ago
    According to this Quinnipiac poll of Republican voters, 77% believe the Russia investigation is a witch hunt and 58% believe the FBI is biased against the president. This is the alternative reality that his loyal leaders and media have created for voters.

  9. Confessions

    Apparently the SOP for test flights such as this is to use a block of concrete or something else similarly “no great loss” should it all go Bang! . Which if the case means I say Bravo ! to their alternative.

  10. Why shouldn’t the population make judgements on the pollies’ private lives ?

    The grandiose way in which politicians speak about privacy when their own poor behaviour is involved would make you expect that they have a track record of legislating strong privacy rights for citizens. Sadly and obscenely they are very selective about whose privacy they care about.

  11. Confessions

    Decadent perhaps but I also think such amazing footage could inspire young people to aspire to STEM in the same way the amazing footage from the Apollo missions did. Watching it certainly took me back to the WOW I felt back in the day watching the old black and white tv footage of space missions.

  12. poroti
    I don’t think that argument holds water. If it did, you could argue that politicians make laws about medicine so we are entitled to see their personal medical records.

  13. Dio

    I’m thinking of specialising in sham surgeries. They seem to be just as effective as the real thing with a lot less risks.

    Coronary bypass is almost as useless as angioplasty. There are only small subgroups when a heart bypass increases your longevity.

    Checking in late due to being in Taiwan.

    You should think about specialising in diseases of the rich:

    I never miss a chance to quote Lehrer 🙂

    For anyone who wants to hear the man himself, try this link:


    Is there any evidence this would do anything other than compel greater secrecy? And what of couples who come to be working together while already in a relationship? And what of MPs who get involved with someone else’s staffer? Are Parliament House APS staff included in this proposed ban? What of a minister who becomes involved with a staff member in a department in his/her portfolio? Where do lobbyists fit in this? Do they even factor?

    Our work has a code of conduct that discourages intimate relationships between colleagues, and managers and staff, but doesn’t ban them. There are at least 3 couples I know of at work (1 married couple) who are open about their relationships. Nobody blinks an eye, and one of the couples came about through similar circumstances as Barnaby only minus the children. And the guy being a public figure.

    I find this concept of regulating who people can have relations with rather sick making, esp seeing as we’ve just seen SSM become legal, and that was a huge legal statement about relationship validity in the eyes of the law. If the relationship is consensual and involves two people of adult age and sound mind, then unless it’s getting in the way of either party performing their work responsibilities, or crosses the boundaries of legality, I really don’t care and can’t see how it’s an issue.

  15. Dio

    Nicholas and wombat
    You can imagine how it would take dropping treatments to happen, for eg, stents for stable angina.
    First of all, it’s just one study with a short followup time and not large numbers so a study with more power might have different findings.
    I’m sure there are flaws in the study as none are perfect (I havent read it myself, just the abstract). And as a Bayesian, I strongly believe that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.
    Cardiologists would go out of work in droves, as would the stent makers (some of those stents go for $25K)
    Patients would go nuts, sue you etc etc if you refused stenting when most of your colleagues still did it.

    My field is very different – I do not need ethics approval for my research – but this week I am at a fantastic conference where old results, research methods and assumptions are seeming to be overturned. However, we are still not at all sure that we have the correct answers to some of the age old questions. Luckily we cannot harm someone by deciding to test a theory on our observational data.

    I absolutely agree that you would need many more studies before you would even think of changing current procedures.

    Actually, I am not at all anonymous on this blog, and I do try not to defame anyone, so this is the meeting:, just in case anyone wants some reading material to put them to sleep.

  16. Nicholas:

    Here is an article in Vox that reports an estimate that fewer than half of medical procedures are supported by adequate evidence.

    It’s not just medical procedures that lack evidence. Flossing, for example, has no high quality (randomised controlled trials) evidence to show that it prevents tooth decay.

    I am an allied health professional, and there are vast areas of my profession that have little to no quality research evidence to support that intervention is effective.

    It’s hard to convince someone that what they’ve spent years learning to do/practising may not have any beneficial effect for the patient beyond placebo, regression to the mean, or maturation/spontaneous recovery effects.

    Also, if there is one good quality study to show the benefit of a particular practice/intervention, health professionals will latch onto it as “evidence” that what they’re doing works. But science is about independent replication showing the same results; ideally there needs to be a meta-analysis of all high-quality studies. However, such studies typically deal with ‘ideal’ practitioners (skilled, experienced and have specific training in the intervention or technique being studied), ‘ideal’ patients (no or few co-morbid conditions, motivated to comply with the intervention being studied), and ‘ideal’ therapy (e.g. long-term or intensive intervention, vs. once a week or only a few sessions in day to day practice) (efficacy). In the ‘real world’, these studies often don’t represent the typical patient or typical practitioner/level of service that can be offered (efficiency).

    Furthermore, many if not most medical studies focus on what are termed ‘surrogate’ measures of health rather than real-world outcomes. e.g. studies on statins look at their effect on lowering blood cholesterol (surrogate measure), as it is assumed that this lowers the risk of dying of a heart attack (real-world outcome)… but they don’t actually look at whether taking statins lowers the risk of dying of a heart attack! Using this example, I suspect it’s partly because such a study would likely take many years, if not decades, and be quite costly. But it’s ultimately the reason statins are prescribed to patients.

    Still, medicine in spite of its flaws is at least partly grounded in science, compared to ‘alternative’ medicine.

    I think there needs to be more emphasis on critical thinking and the scientific method in secondary school, so that the public are more informed and sceptical of claims made by any health provider/understand that medicine is not an exact science… among other things.

  17. Mr Newbie
    Medicine is a probabilistic art. You have to be comfortable with uncertainty when obviously patients want certainty.

  18. Oh FFS

    Stop being so childishly naive and assuming the world is as it was when the preist told you of the evil Russian commies back when you were 7.

    The is as there has been since nearly all of us were alive a cold war. Sure it died down in the 90s and early naughties but was always there.

    On one side you have
    The Demons: Russia, China, Venezuela, Iran,Cuba, NK

    Then there is us the goodies: USA, UK, Germany, France rest of NATO, Israel, Saudi. the colonies.

    Now you can basically assume that anything said in any of the GOODIES in mainstream media or senior pollies is twisted to make the Demons look bad and the goodies look saintly.

    And Vice versa.

    This should be obvious to those of you with a brain. But it seems not.

    Look kiddies. Putin is PPPPPPPPoooooopppppuuuuullllaaarrrr. He would get elected easily if there were suddenly an electoral process run by Jesus Christ with Murdoch running the newspapers.
    Stamping the foot saying he will win easily is perhaps because the other candidates are pretty bloody useless. Remember children that BEFORE Putin the country was a bloody mess. Like third world basket case. Any Russian with a brain bigger than a mouse would prefer Putin to that which went before.

    Sure he is autocratic, paternalistic and not enthused about opposition. That does not stop him being popular. Had the USA wet dream come true ie that by reducing the price of oil so much the Russian economy would collapse and Putin go the way of Gorby, then yep he may have lost support. But the ploy didn’t work!

    So stop wailing like kiddies that have had your lollipops taken. Putin will win, because he is the best thing going for Russia A THIS POINT OF TIME.

    Be aware of this oh you pack of ostriches. Russia and Russians BELIEVE that the USA is going to lob a nuke on them. There is evidence and genuine fear. What sort of moron would change governments mid stream when that possibility is even a remote one.

    So here is the deal. WhenNATO moves its trops away form the Russian border and the USA and UK stop calling russia and Russians aggressors and threatening them and their allies, when there areno sanctions and Russians can move around the world as easily as a German or Pom, then there will be movements for more freedom and more contrsted elections. These I would support fully.

    However there is that little thing known as hierarchy of needs
    Food no one – that was an issue for Russia 15 years ago after it was “liberated” by the west
    Shelter no 2
    Security no 3

    Then there are the nice ones
    4 Health
    5. Jobs
    6 Consumer goods

    Only after these things are in place will people start to hanker for “freeedooom” and self actualisation.

    Why do you not spend a bit of time railing about lack of democracy in our allies where we may have some positive influence, rather than wailing at nations that regard us as their implacable and existential enemies.

    Lets hear it for attacking Saudi, Gulf nations, Israel, Myanmar, Egypt, all our dearest friends. But that will never happen.

    People like most of you are the cheer leaders for nuclear war.

    Blind bloody fools

  19. Let’s be honest here. It’s looking to me like there has been a lot of covering for Barnaby amongst members of his own party and the governments he has been a part of simply because he’s such an effective politician. ‘The best retail politician of his generation’, Tony Abbott said, and he would know.

    In fact I have long thought that Joyce has gotten this government’s stones out of the fire on more than one occasion. He has an uncanny ability to turn an argument on it’s head and head off a backlash at the pass. So, no wonder extraordinary efforts have been made to sort things out for him.

    Still, comes a time when you can’t sweep anything more under the carpet and people start noticing, and then, poof! it all comes out in the open.

  20. Barney,
    It’s getting to the point now where you have to say it, and loudly, otherwise the politician in question just tries to tough it out.

    There’s a very good article in the Washington Post today called, ‘Look at the picture ‘ by Ruth Marcus. It’s about Rob Porter, who has just resigned from Trump’s staff. It explains how people like him, Trump and others are now preferring to deny they have done anything wrong and cover for each other, instead of doing the honourable thing. Disgusting but true.

  21. Mr Newbie,

    This is a great description of how science works, and why as a community we should not just “latch on” to the results of any one research study as being the last word.

    All processes in nature, especially with respect to the human body, are complex and stochastic. The latter word means that while we can generalise about what outcomes are statistically likely for a percentage of a population as a whole, we have little information about what will happen to any individual. The best we can do is to try and understand what nudges the whole population to better outcomes, because we basically cannot disentangle the many factors that affect human health, nor understand how they may interact.

    I am a well-meaning amateur when it comes to understanding what the body of medical research is telling us about how best to eat and exercise, but it is clear to me that there are trade-offs to be made, and how these trade-offs should be made for each individual may never be clear. Or perhaps, we will each get our genomes read, and get a personalised diet, exercise and mental health plan.

    Some trade-offs in my particular phenotype:

    I have put weight on as I have aged. I am now (ouch) about 20% overweight. But I am still very fit, and actually get a reasonable amount of exercise. I work for a university with a very active medical research faculty, and every time I find one of those notices on the back o the toilet door asking for volunteers to be medical guinea pigs, I volunteer. For a small amount of my time, I get many cutting edge tests, and I get to ask the medicos for information on the latest research, and how I am doing.

    So, those trade-offs. I am 57, but my bone density is at the more dense end of the population distribution, even compared to a 20 year old woman. As the guy who did the analysis said “it would be very hard for you to break a bone”. I kind of know this, as I regularly conduct destructive testing by falling off my bike, or tripping over my feet. The overweight in this case likely helps with my bone density.

    So, unlike my mother was at my age, I am not plagued by the aches and pains associated with osteoporosis. On the other hand, my increased weight has elevated my blood pressure, meaning I have increased risk of stroke. (But rest assured that I am now fanatically exercising to try to bring it down, as well as taking the tablets.) Also, in a family where many have died of cancer quite young, being over weight increases the risk of me succumbing to that disease.

    So, am I better off with my strong bones, meaning that I am as mobile and fit as I was when I was I was 20. Or would I be better off without the weight? Are these even realistic trade-offs?

    Science is actually a very conservative discipline. You do not abruptly change your practices without extraordinary evidence. Instead, you nudge/ perturbate, and then assess the effectiveness.

  22. Actually, just reading over my last post, I realise that I must be a cyborg. No human would actually talk about themselves like that.

  23. DavidLeyonhjelm: I have a theory that the only people who are in favour of this idea of prohibiting bonking between politicians and their staffers are people who aren’t getting any.

    He actually said this. On television. He thought it was a great joke.

    There you have it.

  24. I believe that in times gone by, Aussies may have been loyal to “their” political party but would listen to alternative points of view and acknowledge the merits of contra statements. Perhaps they may have changed their vote or preferences but you could never be sure because it was a discussion rather than an argument.
    Now it seems there is little acknowledgement of the merits of the other sides agenda. Hence, we have a situation in NE where no matter what BJ has done, his constituents will still vote for him. Some would be quite proud that the old bull got into another paddock and belittle anyone who disagreed. Almost “fake news” attitude.
    Even with what is probably still to come, the msm will slant it in a way that makes excuses for his behavior to allow his followers to justify having supported him.

  25. Barney
    Feeling is returned with bells on.

    I fully expect people like you to be loading the nukes into the boats or else wandering around like headless chooks saying “can’t happen”

  26. The woman that Barnaby’s lovin’

    endured gross bouts of pushin ‘ and shovin’

    and to add to this favour

    he happily gave her

    a little beetroot in the oven

  27. dtt,

    You seem upset that your wonderful Russian democracy has been challenged the last couple of days.

    Reality sucks, try it!

  28. Barney,
    It is lucky that Duterte was elected though…I understand his main opponent, Mar Roxas, was a bit hawkish 🙂

  29. bemused:

    Strange how everyone I know who has had either procedure has benefited immensely.

    You don’t have a control group to compare them with; therefore, you don’t know whether they (as a group) would have done just as well without the procedure. This seems to be the ‘but it worked for me’ argument by proxy.

  30. bemused:

    Having undergone that procedure, I simply do not believe that report.
    The difference was immediate and profound. It was no imaginary

    Oh, I see it has ‘worked’ for you (further to my previous comment assuming you weren’t one of those you knew who it had worked for).

    As others have said, the placebo effect can be powerful. Even if you think you’re immune to it. This is why randomised, placebo-controlled, and ultimately double-blind (i.e. neither the patient nor the practitioner know which treatment has been/is being given; though the latter is a bit difficult for surgery) trials are important – to eliminate as many sources of bias as possible.

    Because of its invasive nature, surgery can be the ultimate placebo.

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