Essential Research: 52-48 to Labor

Labor’s lead halves in the latest Essential poll, although it also finds opinion evenly divided on dividend imputation.

As reported by The Guardian, the latest fortnightly poll from Essential Research shifts in favour of the Coalition, who now trail Labor 52-48 compared with 54-46 in the last poll. While this fits the narrative of Labor taking a hit from dividend imputation better than Newspoll, Essential’s question on the subject produces a better result for Labor than Newspoll’s, with 32% supportive and 30% opposed (compared with 33% and 50% from Newspoll). Primary votes and full report to follow later.

UPDATE: Full report here. As with two-party, the Coalition is up two on the primary vote, to 38%, and Labor down two, to 36%, with the Greens steady on 9% and One Nation steady on 8%.

I believe the mystery of Newspoll’s and Essential’s different numbers on dividend imputation is solved: Essential’s question was preceded by another on how many people were beneficiaries of the existing policy (16% received a tax deduction, 10% a cash payment), which explained how the existing policy works and how much it costs. This is unfortunate in my view, because it put respondents on a different footing from the general population. Some of the “statements about imputation credits” that respondents were invited to agree or disagree with also seem a bit leading (“paying people money to compensate for tax they haven’t paid does not make sense”), although in this case it doesn’t affect the responses to the more important question of support or opposition to the policy, as it came later in the survey.

The poll also canvasses opinion on what other tax policies respondents might support or oppose, and as usual it finds that the public heavily favours a more redistributive approach (class war and the politics of envy, if you will). Nonetheless, 40% favour cutting the company tax rate to 25%, with 30% opposed. Twenty-six per cent trust Labor more to manage a fair tax system, 28% the Coalition, and 31% no difference. Only 7% reckon Australia’s gun laws too strict, 25% think them too weak, and 62% say they are about right. A series of questions on Facebook finds 79% agreeing it should be more regulated, with 12% disagreeing, but 45% finding Facebook “generally a force for good”, with 37% disagreeing.

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.

1,623 comments on “Essential Research: 52-48 to Labor”

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  1. don,
    No doubt of the intent, but they could not find much dirt, could they?

    But! But! He speaks fluent Mandarin and used to be in the Labor Party! Simply UnAustralian!
    To the Coalition and The Australian anyway. 🙂

  2. The more the Liberals push this ridiculous company tax cut, the worse the poling seems to get for them. Please, Malcolm, if you are still there, keep your promise to take it to the election. Oh, and isn’t scaring retirees going so well too!

  3. Given your OH has just arrived home, and, to boot, has no taxable income, how come OH can afford to go out? I would have thought you would be restricted to your caravan, parked somewhere on the banks of the Murray so within walking distance of where?

    And you wonder why some in our cricket team have a problem!!!

    Given you are going to vote Tory, perhaps you could do the majority a favor and request Mr HIH to call an election – now.

  4. rossmcg

    Tickets to the Australian Open, sitting in the best seats in the house. Free gift vouchers. Golf days.

    .The gifts come from consultants, architecture companies and law firms that stand to win contracts worth millions of dollars from the Andrews government.

    How is that allowed ? Should be ZERO gifts allowed. That is just corruption. Grrrrrr.

  5. adrian @ #1577 Thursday, March 29th, 2018 – 3:43 pm

    It’s not illegal to seek asylum.

    Of course it isn’t. However there’s also no entitlement to seek asylum from any particular country. If you imminently need asylum, you seek it from the closest place that can give it to you. And ideally, you seek it by following the laws and procedures that place has established with respect to processing asylum claims; unless there are people chasing after you with guns.

    For most asylum seekers (pretty much any that are not citizens/legal permanent residents of Malaysia, PNG, the Philippines, and NZ), the closest available place of refuge is not Australia and no armed brutes are following them in hot pursuit up the docks. Hopeful economic migrants are not asylum seekers.

    Though I never said seeking asylum was illegal in the first place. Only that Australia has its own laws governing how people may enter the country, is not responsible for the miseries that people attempting illegal entry inflict upon themselves, and certainly is not justified in torturing some people to keep others from inflicting misery upon themselves by attempting illegal entry.

    You can consider bona fide asylum seekers fleeing imminent doom as a separate class from ‘people attempting illegal entry’. They are of course excepted; however I’d bet that most of the people able to pay for a ride on a people-smuggler boat do not fall into the former category to start with. They should be encouraged to submit a formal request for asylum instead of hopping on a boat, and if it’s valid they should be admitted promptly.

  6. lizzie

    Triple 😆 for the opening line. I suppose for the GG it would be a shocking revelation. The equivalent to saying yes to Joe McCarthy’s query “Are you now or have you ever been a member of the communist party?”

    “The Australian can reveal Senator Storer is a former Labor Party member,…”

  7. Shellbell,
    You mentioned last night that Geoff Lawson had racially abused a West Indian player in 1984. Do you have any more details on that? Or a link perhaps?

  8. Frednk, ‘If you have a taxable income your wife is voting in ignorance.’

    No not ignorant. OH knows it will hurt financially. Someone has to get hurt to save $6b a year.

  9. PeeBee
    You really think electing Liberals will stop the tide to cut dividend imputation cash back for investors who don’t pay tax

  10. PeeBee says:
    Thursday, March 29, 2018 at 5:31 pm
    ‘Anyone willing to trade $1000.00 for the rest of the Lib’s policies sounds petty and selfish to me, but I’m a rude grumpy Vogon.’

    I suppose it is immediate and personal. Any other policy on both sides seem more remote.

    Everyone votes for selfish reasons. Some people are selfish as they would prefer a better hospital system. Others vote selfishly for more military expenditure as they see this as important. Etc.

    A better hospital system is not selfish, in the way that $1000 to you from the ATO is. A better hospital system benefits everyone, rich, poor and in between.

  11. Dio Smith et al can play club cricket during the year and have been encouraged to do so by CA to reconnect with other players

  12. C@tmomma says:
    Thursday, March 29, 2018 at 5:44 pm
    No doubt of the intent, but they could not find much dirt, could they?

    But! But! He speaks fluent Mandarin and used to be in the Labor Party! Simply UnAustralian!
    To the Coalition and The Australian anyway.


    However the ability to speak fluent Mandarin has been somewhat lowered in value for me since the unlamented (for me) departure of the Right Honourable Kevin Rudd MP, former PM (twice).

    That said, Storer looks like he is unusually bright and has integrity.

    Poor bugger, what is he doing in politics?

    On balance, I think that Labor should find him a safe seat for the HR or a high position on their senate list for the next election. We need people like him. Chuck out a time server/seat polisher and put Storer in.

    He only just scraped in as a senator. In the next election as an independent he may not be so lucky.

    I was very, very impressed with the text of his reasons for not accepting the blandishments of the LNP and voting in the changes (rorts) to the tax system.

  13. C@tmomma @ #1573 Thursday, March 29th, 2018 – 12:37 pm

    poroti @ #1569 Thursday, March 29th, 2018 – 4:31 pm

    This will change his vote for sure. Idiot Truffles.

    Kimberley Kitching
    Bungling PMTurnbull & sad-clowns @Coalition_Media spit dummy after failing to win independent Senator Tim Storer’s support for $65B unfunded big company tax cuts then give “dirt file” on Senator to Press Gallery
    predictable & inept #auspol

    4:18 AM – Mar 29, 2018
    109 people are talking about this

    Yeah, grubby politics and not a good look because so obvious in it’s intent.

    How to win friends and influence people!!!

    This is as dumb as the ball tampering.

    Getting Storer offside potentially kills any legislation that does not have Green or Labor support. 🙂

  14. briefly @ #1456 Thursday, March 29th, 2018 – 1:19 pm

    Ohhhh, dtt, I have never called you a moron, a racist, a bully, a grouper or described you in perjoratively gendered terms.

    My objections to your bludging are not personal. They go to the content of your arguments.

    I have called you a Putinographer and a Putinophone. You are these things. They’re not insults. They are good descriptions.

    Your arguments are utterly without merit….but this is not my fault. It’s yours.

    Calling someone names (Putinographer / Putinophone) is childish and does nothing to further the debate or pursue your own argument, you may as well call someone a poobum or a stinky bear they are equally as childish and deliver the same results. You are either ignored, thought to be acting childish and like an idiot or responded to in an equally idiotic fashion.

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