Newspoll: 51-49 to Labor

A fortnight on from the Malcolm Turnbull’s unfortunate Newspoll milestone, Newspoll itself suggests the embarrassment has done him little harm.

The latest Newspoll has Labor’s lead down from 53-47 to 51-49, which is the Coalition’s best result since the start of what is now Malcolm Turnbull’s run of 31 successive Newspoll defeats. This doesn’t reflect much activity on the primary vote, on which the Coalition and Labor are both steady at 38% and 37%, with the Greens down one to 9% and One Nation steady on 7%.

There is also encouragement for Malcolm Turnbull on leadership ratings, with his approval up four to 36% and disapproval down four to 53%, although Bill Shorten also improves by two on approval to 34% and three on disapproval to 53%. Turnbull maintains only a very modest lead as preferred prime minister, of 38-35, out from 38-36 last time. The poll also finds strong support for a reduction in immigration levels, with 56% rating the present level too high, 28% about right, and only 10% too low.

A point that should be noted about the Coalition’s apparent improvement in Newspoll is that at least part of it would seem to be down to an adjustment in their preference allocations, from a model based purely on results from the 2016 election to one which gives the Coalition a stronger flow of One Nation preferences, presumably based on the experience of the Queensland and Western Australian state elections. The chart below compares the published two-party results from Newspoll with how the raw primary numbers convert using a) a 50-50 split in One Nation preferences, as they were in 2016; and b) a 60-40 split in the Coalition’s favour, which seems more likely based on state election experience.

It will be noted that Newspoll (the grey line) closely tracked the 50-50 model (the blue line) until December last year, when it snapped to the 60-40 model (the orange line). Also noteworthy is the overshoot of the grey line for the very latest result, which reflects the fact that the Coalition may have been a little lucky with rounding this week. As Kevin Bonham notes, a calculation from the published, rounded primary vote totals using the 50-50 preferences model yields a 52.4-47.6 lead for Labor – a result that would have generated considerably less buzz than this, the “best Coalition result in 18 months”.

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.

547 comments on “Newspoll: 51-49 to Labor”

  1. “We seem to be at the half moon stage and going by the comments in the last hour or so…”

    #WeatheronPB: well, there is a beautiful half Moon low in Western sky, shining through thin high cloud.

    Summer ended on April 16 in Sydney, the temperatures have dropped back towards but still above the seasonal average. However, in this normally wet time of year, it hasn’t rained in 27 days.

  2. If the ALP caucus is anything like the cohort of ALP sympathisers who spend time here b*tching each other about ancient history and current leadership, that only highlights what a good job Mr Shorten has done in keeping his parliamentarians reasonably united and coherent.

  3. Puffy:

    I see that your problem is you’re trying to engage the mother of all misogynists in bemused.

    You are wasting your time there.

  4. Further to previous comment on SA Leg Council election. While about 9% of papers exhausted by the end, the actual shortfall in count/votes when the count finished was about 41,000 or about 4%. The reason being that a lot of the exhausted papers were fractions of votes having already helped elect one of the other candidates.

  5. Paul Barry on Media Watch had a field day with media pundits denouncing the Greens/Labor/Nats backbenchers etc proposed banking RC over the last couple of years along with a few recent mea culpas.

  6. The SA LC result is surely a disaster, probably terminal, for Senator Bernardi’s Conservatives. It was ever likely to be thus. Not only does it highlight the weakness of his support, even in his home state, but it also makes it look much less likely that his party, among all the other conservative/right wing parties, will be the one which becomes the centre of gravity for preferences. Ms Hanson, for all her eccentricities, has some strange form of charisma, at least in the eyes of menopausal men in Queensland, whereas Senator Bernardi has none: he comes across as a charmless cold fish.

  7. Our Great LNP are on course to win the next election and Turnbull is the person for the top job and the budget will win the next election and will be in for five terms and ALP will be wipe out…….

  8. Ides:

    I was just thinking the premise of Jones’ questions to her is that now she is free from the Senate she’s had opportunity to reflect on how crazy her party’s policy positions are!

  9. From The Shovel

    “Pauline Hanson withdraws support for the monarchy after learning Kate Middleton is in Labor”

  10. IPA are in some ways anarchists. Do they believe in personal responsibility to the point of leaving people to suffer or die because they didn’t “try” hard enough? Inequality = freedom?

    The haves get preference by having.

    Feudal thinking?

    The static I’ve been hearing talking up Turnbull on this blog is probably a member.

  11. “The SA LC result is surely a disaster, probably terminal, for Senator Bernardi’s Conservatives. “

    Senator Bernardi’s views sit quite comfortably with the “Liberal” party, I never understood why he bothered leaving unless it’s thwarted ambition. He has no charisma, so there’s no product differentiation. Pauline Hanson, on the other hand, says what many “Liberal” voters think and she also seems to appeal to a bogan element within natural Coalition voters and a few natural Labor voters.

  12. “Do they believe in personal responsibility to the point of leaving people to suffer or die because they didn’t “try” hard enough? Inequality = freedom?” many do but won’t say so publically.

  13. It really was a good Q and A. It does show that the big company tax cuts are dead if Fiona Nash won’t support them. And Andrew Leigh made some quite inspiring comments e.g about the need to focus on ‘we’ rather than ‘I’. (He also made some partisan comments, which although correct, did detract a bit from his inspiring comments).

  14. I felt that the Labor guy really needed to work on his public speaking cadence.

    He does this thing. Where he pauses. Like every. Couple of words.

    Shorten tends to do the same thing. If the IPA can train their lackeys to string more than 3 words together at a time, surely Labor can do the same with its reps.

  15. Wayne @ #513 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 7:37 pm

    Our Great LNP are on course to win the next election and Turnbull is the person for the top job and the budget will will then the next election and will be in for five terms and ALP will be wipe out…….

    You really should have used the dots much sooner.

    O…….

    Much more coherent! 🙂

  16. a r

    yes. bill. shorten certainly. does that. he certainly does. and it aint. concrete. poetry

    bill is
    out
    of his depth
    with language

  17. a r @ #530 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 11:02 pm

    I felt that the Labor guy really needed to work on his public speaking cadence.

    He does this thing. Where he pauses. Like every. Couple of words.

    Shorten tends to do the same thing. If the IPA can train their lackeys to string more than 3 words together at a time, surely Labor can do the same with its reps.

    The difference is that people like Andrew Leigh are making considered and thoughtful comments whereas the others are pre-programmed to speak in talking points.

  18. I’m not a huge fan of Bill’s communication style, reminds me of Howard, but of course Howard was neither as eloquent or sincere, but still being better than Howard isn’t much of an achievement.

    But mostly I thought Bill did very well on the project tonight. I was quite surprised.

    Pricey’s attempted gotcha showed what a stupid shallow old fool he is and Shorten hit it for 6.

  19. bemused @ #528 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 8:08 pm

    a r @ #530 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 11:02 pm

    I felt that the Labor guy really needed to work on his public speaking cadence.

    He does this thing. Where he pauses. Like every. Couple of words.

    Shorten tends to do the same thing. If the IPA can train their lackeys to string more than 3 words together at a time, surely Labor can do the same with its reps.

    The difference is that people like Andrew Leigh are making considered and thoughtful comments whereas the others are pre-programmed to speak in talking points.

    Beat me to it.

    I suppose it says much that people don’t recognise it anymore! 🙁

  20. “…If the IPA can train their lackeys to string more than 3 words together at a time, surely Labor can do the same with its reps.”

    Or better still, teach them the circular breathing technique mastered by Scott Morrison so they can keep on talking.

  21. Barney in Go Dau @ #535 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 11:12 pm

    bemused @ #528 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 8:08 pm

    a r @ #530 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 11:02 pm

    I felt that the Labor guy really needed to work on his public speaking cadence.

    He does this thing. Where he pauses. Like every. Couple of words.

    Shorten tends to do the same thing. If the IPA can train their lackeys to string more than 3 words together at a time, surely Labor can do the same with its reps.

    The difference is that people like Andrew Leigh are making considered and thoughtful comments whereas the others are pre-programmed to speak in talking points.

    Beat me to it.

    I suppose it says much that people don’t recognise it anymore! 🙁

    Hmmmm we seem to have parallel thoughts recently. 😉

  22. So people now find fault with the way Shorten speaks.

    Better stick with the silver-tongue barrister then. Never mind he has shown himself to be unprincipled and devoid of ideas for changing Australia for the better … he speaks so well.

  23. “Now I could have pointed out ad nauseam that I did no such thing ”

    On the contrary I’ve always found it annoying but thought he did very very well tonight. His campaigning always answer was genuine, funny (not in his frightful scripted joke way) and it was 100% correct and consistent.

  24. On Shortens speaking style. The big difference betwixt he and Truffles is that Shortens style is to NOT speak down to people, where Truffles cant help himself but to do that. Shorten does have some issues with the set piece and when giving a speech or suchlike takes a few minutes to settle in and hit his stride.

    But he’s way comfortable in the town hall format or debate and a much much much better campaigner that Truffles.

  25. Imacca

    Agree with that. Shorten doesn’t read a speech well.

    Turnbulls reputation as a good speaker was well deserved in my view (turns out it may have been his only talent) but since his elevation to the big chair he has developed a tendency to scream like a banshee. Most un-prime ministerial.

  26. Shorten is miles ahead of Turnbull these days on the speaking front..Turnbull stutters and obfuscates and mansplains, and stumble over the simplest statements. He lives in fear of offending his right wing, or the crazies, or the public..to a point where nothing comes out.

  27. Rossmcg. @ #536 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 8:46 pm

    Imacca

    Agree with that. Shorten doesn’t read a speech well.

    Turnbulls reputation as a good speaker was well deserved in my view (turns out it may have been his only talent) but since his elevation to the big chair he has developed a tendency to scream like a banshee. Most un-prime ministerial.

    scream like a banshee

    Probably the only way to get heard in the Party room!!! 🙂

  28. bemused @ #528 Monday, April 23rd, 2018 – 11:08 pm

    The difference is that people like Andrew Leigh are making considered and thoughtful comments whereas the others are pre-programmed to speak in talking points.

    Could be, but not always. In fairness Andrew Leigh took a few topics that were at best only tangentially related to the banking RC or corporate tax cuts and used them to deliver answers that brought up both things, usually in close proximity to one another.

    My impression was that both he and the IPA stooge were doing talking points much of the time. The difference, delivery-wise, was that the IPA stooge was more fluid at running through his spiel. Probably because he’s paid to deliver it and do as little else as possible. But it doesn’t matter; the point is some people will vote for style even if the core content is obnoxious. The safest route is to work on having both style and substance.

  29. Reading to the end of Williams article leads to only one conclusion; the trend is Newspoll changing preference allocation. What do we get next time 100% one nation preferences to the liberals and the Liberals ahead?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *