Essential Research: 54-46 to Labor

No change on voting intention from Essential Research, as respondents reject the government’s stance on company tax cuts.

No change this week on Essential Research’s two-party preferred result, which shows Labor maintaining a two-party lead of 54-46, although as usual we’ll have to wait until later today for primary votes. The pollster’s monthly leadership ratings find Malcolm Turnbull with 39% approval (up one) and 42% disapproval (down three), while Bill Shorten is on 33% approval (also up one) and 46% disapproval (also down three), and Turnbull’s lead as preferred prime minister is 42-47, down from 42-25 last time. As related by The Guardian, the poll finds 72% supporting company tax cuts being made conditional on pay rises; more disagreeing than agreeing that company tax cuts would lead to higher wages without prompting; most disagreeing that penalty rate cuts would encourage companies to hire more workers. A series of questions on the proposed Adani coal mine found 48% saying it should be assessed on its economic and environmental merits, 22% saying coal mining in the Galilee basin should be banned, and 13% saying all mines should go ahead subject to environmental approvals.

UPDATE: Full report here.

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.

2,719 comments on “Essential Research: 54-46 to Labor”

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  1. Not claiming to be a savant here, but I remember just a few days ago that Craig McGregor wrote a piece, telling us that Turnbull was on the come-back trail, Shorten was on the ropes, Labor in disarray etc. The coast was clear for an easy cruise into port for the LNP, with a win at the next election virtually assured.

    My comment was that this assumed Turnbull would be able to reverse his habit of a lifetime and not stuff-up within days.

    I was pretty sure it would happen, but not this quickly.

    But sheesh… a mistress is not a partner? So it’s OK to feather her nest with a high-paying non-job? The rules don’t deal with ministers bonking the help, so it’s all above board?

    No-one could have predicted stupidity on that kind of level.

  2. Turnbull has arrived at the moment! Demand Joyce go to the backbench, remind the Nationals as to the privileged position they have in the Coalition, show your enemies within your party that you own the leadership and you have a minute chance of a future.
    Make a bad judgement, the polls being what they are, your career is finished.

  3. Not sure about True Crimes News Weekly … Could be the same mob that broke the story about a two headed chicken raised lovingly by childless camels, but I could be wrong.

  4. I hope my suspicions Barnaby won’t go quickly, quietly or without spite are correct.

    The coalition setup makes deflection from the L-NP easier (although I doubt the punters will buy it), but it also makes it harder for them to manage.

  5. Question – The way these scandals go, the press are like a pack of wolves inching towards their prey until finally one of them realises he is badly wounded and jumps forward and bites him on the arse. That Fairfax story is the bite on the arse. Barnyard now only has hours left in the job.
    What will really hurt this government is the perception that, for years, it covered up for Barnyard. That stench won’t go away fast.

  6. I’d be interested to see specifically how the Nationals vote has fared with this poll. Are Barnaby’s True Believers starting to have second thoughts? Once the rusted-on Nats vote starts to drop away, then you know you are toast as leader.

    Actually, in a roundabout way I feel sorry for Barnaby Joyce. Obviously he was the kid at school who Mother Nature hadn’t favoured with good looks or a great body, so all the Beautiful People at Iggys probably adeptly ignored him. So, where do the smart Ugly People go then? Into politics, or business. Only ever good enough to be an Accountant in the boonies of Queensland, he saw the fast track to the high life, literally, to be on the ‘Wombat Trail’. Lots of eating, lots of rooting, lots of leaving a woman behind at every port of call. But generally smart enough to be the dog that came home again after straying.

    However, there’s always one Jezebel who’s more cunning than the rest, as cunning as you. So when you ask the question about contraception they say, ‘Yes’, but the answer is actually, ‘No’.

    And, before you know it, that equally ambitious woman, who has ‘made it’, after coming all the way from a tiny town in a faraway place, to Canberra, just like you, has you by the short and curlies. And, try as you and the whole of government might, you can’t sweep her away and under the carpet, because everyone can see the bump.

    Then those who are just as ambitious as you, and as opportunistic, because this is the main game of human cock fighting non pareil in Canberra, will see THEIR chance to take you out at your most vulnerable. The smell of blood in their nostrils.

    Oh well, I guess it was all worth it in the end, Barnaby, eh? You got your boy, and you got to go much further in your life, with a swag of notches on your belt, than any of the Beautiful People who studiously ignored you at the school functions and the parties, in the constellation around St Ignatius, Riverview. I guess that’s some sort of achievement.

  7. More juice

    “True Crime News Weekly can now reveal the testosterone and alcohol-fuelled politician is alleged to have embarked on a sexual affair commencing in 2014 with high-profile Canberra-based lobbyist, Jannette Cotterell. Ms Cotterell is the founder of lobby group Executive Council and also has deep links to the Liberal Party’s favourite PR and spin manipulation machine, Crosby Textor. Mr Joyce was the Agriculture Minister at the time, having successfully transferred down from the Senate to the House of Representatives in 2013.

  8. Well if half the True Crimes Weekly stuff is true (thanks norwester), and it all seems very plausible, then this story should have broken years ago and the media have been running a protection racket.

  9. William I saw you defense of Galaxy. When it happened, I though to myself, we will learn a lot when the first result comes out after the You Gov takeover.

    The first result, similar to the You Gov nonsense; and it is not being reflected in the other polls. In my view it is all very suss.

  10. Even if Barnaby does go, these allegations need to be thoroughly investigated, no matter how much it upsets some here on PB who think such matters are private.

  11. Can’t see the Nationals vote changing much C@t… rusted ons are rusted on, and let’s face it we’re talking about morons who chose Joyce over Windsor (go figure)… they even gave the idiot an increased ballot when he was a Kiwi ffs. The damage here will be to Turnbull and the Libs. Ironic? Maybe. Intended? Definitely.

  12. Oz True Crime is an Australian Breitbart wannabe. They should be regarded with appropriate skepticism.

    The most shocking part of this is all the hard right types turning on Barnaby which makes me wonder what happened to motivate be it (because Bolt and Devine etc usually show zero interest in things like journalistic integrity)

  13. Gecko,
    Those same rusted-ons DID vote for Tony Windsor for a very long time. I reckon, when the wife tells them to not vote for Barnaby any more, they will drop him like a hot beetroot. 🙂

  14. Good morning Dawn Patrollers. It’s not surprising that there’s a lot of stuff on Barnaby.

    In an excellent contribution John Birmingham concludes that the hypocrisy of Joyce is stunning.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/the-hypocrisy-of-barnaby-joyce-is-stunning-20180212-p4z03k.html
    Jacqui Maley lets us know some more about Barnaby’s behaviour. I’m sure it’s only the beginning of unsavoury revelations.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/malcolm-turnbulls-senior-advisor-warned-of-alleged-awards-night-misbehavior-from-barnaby-joyce-20180212-h0vz4w.html
    Paul Bongiorno writes that Turnbull is looking for a place to hide from Barnaby.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2018/02/12/malcolm-turnbull-looking-place-hide-barnaby-joyce/
    Quentin Dempster looks at the application of the journalistic code of ethics when it comes to the reporting on politicians’ private lives.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2018/02/09/media-ethical-dilemma/
    Without using the actual words James Massola infers that Turnbull has thrown Barnaby under a bus.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/malcolm-turnbull-distances-himself-from-barnaby-joyce-over-messy-affair-20180212-p4z02p.html
    Judith Sloan writes that Barnaby Joyce is a complete dud when it comes to policy matters and we’d be better off without him. Google.
    /opinion/columnists/judith-sloan/wed-be-better-off-on-policy-without-barnaby-joyce/news-story/118b54a426f8046d16c1cddcc18041a3
    The Guardian gives us “Barnaby Joyce and Greg Maguire: a relationship that comes with history”.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/feb/13/barnaby-joyce-and-greg-maguire-a-relationship-that-comes-with-history
    Harvard University’s Katherine Manstead goes to the worst abuse of privilege in the Joyce case.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/the-worst-abuse-of-privilege-in-the-joyce-case-20180212-p4z020.html
    Meanwhile freelance writer Diana Elliott defends Barnaby.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/what-barnaby-joyce-did-is-none-of-our-business-20180212-p4z023.html
    John ¬Anderson has called on Barnaby Joyce to take “direct responsibility’’ for resolving the political damage over his affair. Google.
    /national-affairs/barnaby-joyce-told-to-fix-your-mess-by-john-anderson/news-story/0e08fb74f0059054765e53f79cf720a3
    Katharine Murphy also indicates that Barnaby has been thrown under a bus.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/feb/12/liberals-retreat-from-barnaby-barney-as-deputy-pms-future-hinges-on-technicality
    And now Nicole Hasham reports on the huge problems the government has with the MDB plan.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/leaked-letter-exposes-crisis-fears-over-13b-plan-to-save-critical-australian-river-20180212-p4z01b.html
    Peter Martin also weighs in on this story.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/if-it-s-a-crisis-for-the-environmental-water-holder-it-s-a-crisis-for-us-20180212-p4z014.html
    Tony Wright looks at the meaning of the term “crossing the line”.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/when-sex-and-politics-collide-in-canberra-right-and-wrong-can-be-a-blur-20180212-p4z02w.html
    Jenna Price has a more serious look at the standards.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/political-advisers-a-case-of-whom-you-know-not-what-you-know-20180211-h0vxgu.html
    Outspoken Queensland Nationals senator Barry O’Sullivan has declared Barnaby Joyce a “once-in-a-generation type of politician” who remains a big asset to the Nationals despite the sharp grassroots reaction to his affair with his former staffer.
    https://theconversation.com/queensland-nationals-barry-osullivans-advice-on-the-joyce-affair-dont-shoot-your-best-horse-91684
    Latika Bourke on Sam Dastyari’s return to Twitter.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/ousted-labor-senator-sam-dastyari-weighs-in-to-barnaby-joyce-scandal-20180212-p4z03s.html
    Australia’s extinction crisis is unfolding in plain sight.
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/feb/13/a-national-disgrace-australias-extinction-crisis-is-unfolding-in-plain-sight
    Australia has too many shops, but how to cull them without too much financial pain is a major headache for company boards and reluctant landlords. Google.
    /business/retail/why-myer-isnt-the-only-retailer-in-a-world-of-pain-20180209-h0vu7h
    Rad this and throw up! And where did Archbishop Hart get all that money from?
    http://www.smh.com.au/victoria/the-archbishop-the-mansion-and-the-beach-house-20180212-p4z02e.html
    More than half a billion worth of affordable and social housing will be built in NSW by the non-for-profit sector over the next three years, with the inner west and Canterbury-Bankstown the greatest beneficiaries. But according to some it’s a drop in the ocean.
    https://www.domain.com.au/news/nsw-to-receive-more-than-half-a-billion-worth-of-affordable-housing-by-2020-20180212-h0v4q9/
    Greg Jericho says that Ii we want to make sure women have enough to retire on, we have to focus on how much they’re paid while they’re working.
    https://www.theguardian.com/business/grogonomics/2018/feb/13/the-gender-gap-in-retirement-savings-isnt-just-about-super
    The Canberra Times editorial goes to the broken APS pay policy is set to likely worsen.
    http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/ct-editorial/public-services-broken-pay-policy-will-likely-worsen-20180211-h0vwgc.html
    I don’t envy the life of child protection workers.
    http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/inquest-in-death-of-baby-told-of-litany-of-mistakes-20180212-p4z032.html
    Stephen Koukoulas tells us that the RBA were shattered, almost personally, with the low CPI result for Q4 and the jump in unemployment in December. Of vital importance, it has come to the view that the good employment data are not representative of labour force health – unemployment and underemployment are they key.
    https://thekouk.com/item/577-the-rba-is-for-turning-it-might-take-a-while-but-we-ll-get-there.html
    Bill Morrow gives an update on the NBN.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/nbn-chief-admits-it-is-unlikely-to-hit-revenue-per-user-target-20180211-p4yzzg.html
    David Wroe reports that a public inquiry has found that wide-ranging police investigation is needed to probe the extent that money was misused within RSL NSW and the subsequent cover-up, permitted by a decade of “sheer ineptitude and cronyism”.
    http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/rsl-inquiry-blasts-cronyism-urges-police-investigation-20180212-p4z017.html
    AGL will spend about $900 million to buy wind farms as part of a plan to replace the power lost when it closes the controversial Liddell coal-fired power plant.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/agl-to-spend-nearly-1bn-on-wind-farms-20180212-p4z02m.html
    Phil Coorey tells us that the Turnbull government will have to demonstrate its company tax cuts would boost both profits and wages if it is to have any hope of securing three critical One Nation votes in the Senate. Google.
    /news/company-tax-cuts-cant-boost-wages-and-profits-pauline-hanson-digs-in-20180211-h0vx0a
    Christians were on both sides of the debate leading to last year’s historic shift to marriage equality. To date, no major denomination has publicly shifted to allow same-sex marriage. Why?
    https://theconversation.com/same-sex-marriage-is-legal-so-why-have-churches-been-so-slow-to-embrace-it-91564
    Major financial institutions have been admonished by the banking royal commissioner, Kenneth Hayne, after it emerged some had been unable to properly complete a list of their misconduct within the requested timeframe. And Wacka Williams is not happy.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/big-banks-rapped-for-missing-dirty-laundry-list-deadline-20180211-p4yzzo.html
    Kenneth Hayne’s pop-up commission no crowd-pleaser. Google.
    /news/banking-royal-commission-kenneth-haynes-popup-commission-no-crowdpleaser-20180212-h0vyo1
    The SMH gets behind the Closing the Gap goals.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/smh-editorial/closing-the-gap-the-mighty-task-goes-on-20180211-h0vwhh.html
    Duterte is all class!
    https://www.theage.com.au/world/asia/duterte-tells-soldiers-to-shoot-female-rebels-in-their-genitals-20180213-p4z03t.html

    Cartoon Corner.

    Oh dear! David Rowe has Barnaby skating on thin ice.

    And David Pope thinks the ministerial code of conduct has left the planet.

    Pat Campbell launches another postal survey.

    Cathy Wilcox takes a swipe at Barnaby’s behaviour.

    John Shakespeare has a dip at the outrageous wealth of the Catholic church.

    Mark David. Now we know what a retail politician is.

    It HAD to happen! Here’s a classic Hitler movie mashup on Beetrootgate.
    https://s3.amazonaws.com/captiongenerator.com/Hitler+Reacts+-+No+Subtitles.mp4
    Paul Zanetti and a fallen Barnaby.

    Two from Matt Golding.


    Glen Le Lievre and made beds.

    Mark Knight and an unscathed Jim Molan.

    According to Sean Leahy Clive Palmer’s nephew has been found in Bulgaria,

    And Leahy gives us Barnaby’s Valentine.

    Pat Clement kicks off the Banking Royal Commission.
    https://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/aa83b8e5c5c4d926f420e55661b77ee8


  15. William Bowe (Block)
    Tuesday, February 13th, 2018 – 6:49 am
    Comment #19

    Fred, every poll published this year has shown a swing to Labor of between 2% and 4%. You need to dampen that overactive imagination of yours a little.

    Clearly I have miss interpreted the heading:

    YouGov Galaxy: 52-48 to federal Coalition in Queensland

  16. True Crime News Weekly suggests it is likely that if the various serious scandals surrounding Mr Joyce were known by the public, the LNP Government would have lost its slender one-seat majority in the House of Representatives, most likely due to the fall of the seat of Bennelong.

    https://truecrimenewsweekly.com/2018/02/13/the-bonking-beetroot-deputy-pm-and-homewrecker-barnaby-joyce-allegedly-traded-sex-for-favours-with-powerful-canberra-lobbyist/

  17. I feel like I’m part of a mob circling Barnyard, but I can’t get close enough to give him a good kicking. Out of my way, out of my way …

  18. “Protection Racket”pedantry follows…

    The CPG would only have been running a protection racket if they (or some of them at least) had been threatening to expose Joyce over his adventures, but held back publishing in exchange for favours.

    Protecting someone in itself is not a protection racket. Creating a threat and then offering to make that threat you created go away is.

    On the pregnancy, it’s quite likely that it was unplanned, but the prospect of a termination was too much, either because of morals, or the bad political look of a Catholic Deputy PM, given to moralizing about marriage, children and the behavioural standards of others, arranging for a quiet abortion.

  19. BB
    It’s been rumoured that Barnaby has organised an abortion before. It’s possible that the difference in this case was that his relationship with his wife had already deteriorated and/or that his affection for Campion is genuine (which given the other stuff arround this seems likely).

  20. “Essential Research: 54-46 to Labor”….

    Yep, that’s more like it…..

    My dear Mr Turnbull, you won’t be able to improve on that, but you can get a much, much worse result the more you wait to call a Federal election. You don’t want to be remembered as the “Liberal Prime Minister who destroyed the Liberal Party” do you?


  21. William Bowe (Block)
    Tuesday, February 13th, 2018 – 7:07 am
    Comment #30

    The Coalition two-party vote in Queensland at the 2016 election was 54.1%. 54.1% minus 52% equals a 2.1% swing to Labor.

    You win; I lose.

  22. BB – Well said. The press is only turning on Bronco Joyce now because he is politically wounded and they don’t have to worry about being taken off the drip.

  23. Thanks for the pedantry BB. I still find the term a perfectly apt (if not technically correct) description of my sentiments toward the CPG 😀

  24. “It’s possible that the difference in this case was that his relationship with his wife had already deteriorated and/or that his affection for Campion is genuine”…..

    That’s irrelevant in this case. Joyce is confronted with this right now:
    a) A Conservative who has blatantly betrayed Conservative Family values.
    b) The suspicion, to be thoroughly investigated, that some impropriety has been committed regarding appointments and creating previously non-existing and potentially unnecessary taxpayer-paid positions for a lover.

  25. Having avoided any mags that called themselves True Crime, or True Confessions, ever since I discovered that True Stories were written by authors who want to make a living from them, I donned metaphoric protective clothing before I read the link.

    However, so much of that story is verifiable that I accept it.

    Loved the pic of Asbestos Julie and friend. Glass houses, Julie?

    Deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop arriving at Parliament’s Mid Winter Ball with her friend Jannette Cotterell who was allegedly engaged in an illicit affair with Barnaby Joyce at the time

    https://truecrimenewsweekly.com/2018/02/13/the-bonking-beetroot-deputy-pm-and-homewrecker-barnaby-joyce-allegedly-traded-sex-for-favours-with-powerful-canberra-lobbyist/

  26. Looking at the Murdoch online sites, the Smear Stralian has the top 5 stories various angles of BeetrooterGate, whilst the TurdBurgler hones in on the ‘tits and bum’ angle

  27. ‘Allegedy’ engaged in an ‘illicit’ affair… ‘allegedly’ trading ‘sex for favours’ with ‘powerful’ Canberra lobbyist…. bonking Beetroot. FMD

  28. Turnbull now has two choices, go on his overseas junket leaving Joyce as Deputy PM, thereby causing himself and his Government irreparable damage in the eyes of the electorate, or threaten the Nationals that unless they sack Joyce immediately, the coalition agreement is over, causing his Government terminal damage.

    His fear of Joyce, and lack of backbone or integrity, will lead him to chose the former course.

  29. Surely a solution has to be found so that Barnaby doesn’t get the acting pm gig Next Week?

    Either someone else gets it (Jewelry Bishop?) while Barnaby stays Nats leader or he has to go.

  30. I saw something yesterday on Twitter that said the only reason Turnbull hadnt been rolled by Bishop is that Joyce would refuse to sign a coalition agreement with her.

  31. Of course Turnbull could take a third option open to him, just stay home and do nothing.

    On reflection, that would be more in keeping with his character.

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