Essential Research: 51-49 to Labor

Essential finds Malcolm Turnbull increasing his lead as preferred Liberal leader, Anthony Albanese drawing level with Bill Shorten for Labor, and little change in voting intention.

The latest fortnightly result from Essential Research has Labor maintaining its 51-49 lead, with the Coalition up one on the primary vote to 41%, Labor steady on 36%, the Greens steady on 10% and One Nation steady on 6%. Also featured are questions on best Liberal and Labor leader: the former finds Malcolm Turnbull on 28%, up four since April, with Julie Bishop down one to 16% and Tony Abbott down one to 10%; the latter has Bill Shorten and Anthony Albanese tied on 19%, which is one point down since August 2017 in Shorten’s case and six points up in Albanese’s, while Tanya Plibersek is down one to 12%.

The poll also has Essential’s occasional question on attributes of the main parties, which are chiefly interesting in having the Liberals up eight points since November 2017 for having “a good team of leaders”, to 45%, and down eight on the obverse question of being “divided”, to 56%. The biggest movements for Labor are a seven point decrease for being “extreme”, to 34%; a five point decrease for being too close to corporate interests, to 37%; and a five point increase for being divided, to 56%.

The poll was conducted Thursday to Sunday from a sample of 1022; full results can be found 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.

2,484 comments on “Essential Research: 51-49 to Labor”

  1. Jenny Frecklington-Jones‏ @Triplejay58 · 7m7 minutes ago

    I spent 40 years in public sector, over 20 of them managing government and community grants funding worth many millions. I’ve also never come across anything remotely resembling #REEFGATE. #auspol

  2. I have no idea whether this is true.

    One theory about the origins of the scandal, circulated on Facebook on Saturday, has accused western Sydney Labor members of mounting a campaign to unseat the MP, claiming the agitators are fabricating negative stories as “payback” for previous internal disputes.

    The claims, just one example of the intense speculation taking place inside the party, said there was an effort against Ms Husar as revenge for her supposed involvement in the downfall of former state Labor MP Karyn Paluzzano, who resigned in 2010 over misuse of public funds.

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/intense-speculation-inside-labor-as-embattled-mp-emma-husar-s-career-hangs-in-the-balance-20180804-p4zvjw.html

  3. Re: Drought assistance for Farmers.

    The majority of these are constituents for the Nationals, a Climate Change denialist political party.
    Clearing of native vegetation in NSW has increased by 800% in the last 3 years.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/aug/04/clearing-of-native-vegetation-in-nsw-jumps-800-in-three-years

    Native vegetation is an important component of the water cycle. Any farmer who doesn’t take into account the variability of climate in their agri business model and clears native vegetation to maximise profits in the good times is a moron. They don’t deserve one red cent of taxpayer assistance.

    There are some farmers who do accept the science of climate change and have taken steps to mitigate the effects ( such as reforestation on their land). Unfortunately, these are a minority and how many of these still vote National?
    So cry me a river.

  4. Zoidlord @ #2299 Sunday, August 5th, 2018 – 3:18 pm

    Tony Burke
    ‏Verified account @Tony_Burke
    41s42 seconds ago

    Hi @ErykBagshaw there’s an article online at @smh where the sub-editors have taken my comment about knowing of turnover “some time ago” & claimed my comment was about the investigation. This is false. I knew about the investigation when it was published as I said, & not before.
    ” rel=”nofollow”>

    And doesn’t Eryk Bagshaw look like the right little Private Schoolboy?

  5. Hugoaugogo says:
    Sunday, August 5, 2018 at 2:38 pm
    Re the Husar allegations,
    So can someone explain to me how any of this amounts to bullying? I have to deal with bullying complaints a bit as part of my work, and if someone came to me with this, I’d be telling them that they don’t have any sort of plausible case. But maybe I’m missing something.

    So the organisation you work for has no issue with a boss calling their employees cunts.
    Stuff that, i am glad i don’t work where you do.

  6. Son of
    Jack Whelan the investigator is the son of John Whelan – president of the Labour Council and nephew of Paul Whelan, Wran’s police minister and a fellow Troglodyte of Peter Anderson
    The fix is in – don’t bother waiting for the results

  7. Cheryl Kernot‏ @cheryl_kernot · 6h6 hours ago

    Prove you spoke to Dept of Finance @workmanalice I don’t buy it. They take responsibility for workplace bullying #insiders

  8. I hate that with politics many, and particularly the media just dismiss a view as soon as they decide you are partisan, you may or may not be right, and you may or may not be impacted by bias either conscious or unconscious, but it is a pretty intellectually lightweight response / defence; and ironically a defence that plays the person not the issue.

  9. Injust listened to “Rear Window” on Newsradio. Very important issue of Digital Wage theft and court cases unions won in the early Twentieth Century. Even with reference to how a prisoner chain gang works.

    If you want to know the agenda behind the “Gig” economy it oulines it really well

  10. WeWantPaul @ #2313 Sunday, August 5th, 2018 – 4:02 pm

    I hate that with politics many, and particularly the media just dismiss a view as soon as they decide you are partisan, you may or may not be right, and you may or may not be impacted by bias either conscious or unconscious, but it is a pretty intellectually lightweight response / defence; and ironically a defence that plays the person not the issue.

    I agree.

    It happens on PB all the time. It’s an easy way to deny there are legitimate, alternative and acceptable points of view.

  11. “Barney in Go Dau says:
    Sunday, August 5, 2018 at 3:59 pm
    Greensborough Growler @ #2311 Sunday, August 5th, 2018 – 12:55 pm

    Turnbull, where for art thou?

    ” rel=”nofollow”>

    Pointless exercise!!! ”

    No…it would be a definitive negative control for calibration of their spine checker. 🙂

  12. Let me get this straight. There is an internal investigation happening on a Member of Parliament. This fact, and the allegations, are leaked to a journalist and other journos say she should have NOT published this fact? Yet once published they are all happy to run with the details. I reckon most of them would have done the same.

  13. Nicholas @ #2121 Sunday, August 5th, 2018 – 7:55 am

    We should not be subsidising the lifestyle choices of farmers regardless of how many generations they’ve been on the land.

    I agree with your point that farmers are treated differently from other business owners who face difficulties. Part of the reason is that farmers are concentrated in several House of Reps seats whereas most business owners are geographically scattered and lack the electoral bargaining power to gain subsidies and soft loans.

    However, it isn’t just a “lifestyle choice” to work the land. There are legitimate considerations about social ties, community cohesion, and longstanding family traditions. These are very important to human beings and they should not be taken lightly. People who are fourth or fifth generation farmers are not on the land for a lark. Their choice to work the land is not akin to choosing a new car or pair of shoes. There are strong and healthy cultural, social, and psychological reasons behind their choice; they want to contribute, they want to belong, they want to honour their ancestors.

    I think there is a strong ecological case for phasing out farming in many parts of Australia. However, it would need to be done sensitively and creatively.

    One option would be to use a Job Guarantee to create a wide variety of secure, good quality minimum wage jobs in the affected areas for people who wanted to live in those communities.

    Another intervention would be for the federal government to invest in improving services and infrastructure to attract more people to those areas to make them more viable in terms of diversity of skills. There might be some regional and rural towns where this would make sense; in other places, not so much.

    Another intervention would be for the federal government to provide five year transition income replacement packages to farmers who choose to leave the land. The farmers get their most recent annual farm income paid to them for the next five years while they transition to some other line of work. They would also get free education and training of their choice (this should be available to all citizens, not just people whose livelihoods have been displaced by technology or climate or major policy changes).

    However, it isn’t just a “lifestyle choice” to work the land. There are legitimate considerations about social ties, community cohesion, and longstanding family traditions. These are very important to human beings and they should not be taken lightly.

    I was paraphrasing something (IIRC) Abbott said about the funding of remote Aboriginal communities. I look forward to the L/NP government treating remote Aboriginal communities with the same sensitivity.

    People choose to do the things they do for many reasons. We should not be subsidising those choices.

    These are very important to human beings and they should not be taken lightly. People who are fourth or fifth generation farmers are not on the land for a lark. Their choice to work the land is not akin to choosing a new car or pair of shoes. There are strong and healthy cultural, social, and psychological reasons behind their choice; they want to contribute, they want to belong, they want to honour their ancestors.

    I do not recall the same sensitivity being applied by the L/NP to automotive workers in Victoria or South Australia, or to maritime workers associated with coastal shipping.

    You bet you I’m kicking farmers when they’re down. They can have the same sensitiviy and tact that their representatives have treated blue collar people for generations. To pharaphrase Shellbell, kicking the farmers when they are down remains appropriate for as long as it takes until the stomping can begin.

    Send in the administrators, hand the the farmers a Centrelink form and tell them not to let the gate hit their backsides on their way out.

  14. C@t:

    She looked very defensive at the end, and frankly, having had Cassidy lay out all the reasons why the ‘Sharon Stone incident’ was a beat-up, just a little foolish.

  15. Lovey look at it from the point of view of two polar opposite, hypothetical out comes.
    1. Husar is completely innocent and is the target of a false claims a beat up and factional maneuvering to take her seat. Or
    2. She is a bad office manager and repeatedly mistreated her staff, who want to the problem dealt with but still want to continue their careers in politics.

    Regardless of the outcome, both sides will come out worse off, and their careers diminished.

    The fact that there are problems which has resulted in a workplace claim can/should be reported but not any of the details.

  16. Nicko @ #2296 Sunday, August 5th, 2018 – 3:08 pm

    The Husar stuff just shows why most people would not want to be a politician, if a single mum of 3 can be smeared without any proper due process or substantiated claims, then what hope is their for anybody else, screw that no thanks.

    I turned this into a Tweet and it’s going off! Thank you. 🙂

  17. They must send out a different version of Insiders on the podcast.

    For the second week running the impression I got from comments here was very different to when I watched the actual show. 🙂

  18. Ven @ #2207 Sunday, August 5th, 2018 – 11:36 am

    Itzadream@11:24am
    And…… What did you do?

    I declined (to contribute to the Drought Relief Fund at the Woollies checkout) because

    I know nothing about it (and wasn’t in a position to find out there and then), what exactly it is, its status as a charity or otherwise, who administers it, what the fees are, how it is distributed, etc.

    And I will much more sympathetic to the farmer’s plight when they start to the embrace the reality of climate breakdown, and their role in it – as contributors, and victims.

  19. c@t
    I edited son of John, nephew of Paul
    The family connections are significant and may not be helpful to Husar
    Who was the leaker when there were apparently only two copies of the letter?

  20. C@t:

    I think it’s a failure on a few fronts, one of them being sound editorial leadership. As PvO said, where an issue or event is contested by both parties to it, regardless of whether they’re telling the truth or not, caution is critical in terms of whether you rush to report on it.

  21. On Insiders Stutchbury mentioned some fund farmers contribute to which is designed to smooth out their income during lean times. From memory he mentioned a figure of some $6billion sits in this fund.

    Surely if this fund does indeed exist, and has that kind of capital in it, shouldn’t farmers be accessing that first before receiving taxpayer handouts?

  22. Tony Burke
    ‏Verified account @Tony_Burke
    41s42 seconds ago

    Hi @ErykBagshaw there’s an article online at @smh where the sub-editors have taken my comment about knowing of turnover “some time ago” & claimed my comment was about the investigation. This is false. I knew about the investigation when it was published as I said, & not before.

    Quite obviously Bagshaw, Crowe and the others are trying to impress the person responsible for culling unwanted journos when Fairfax is swallowed by Nine Entertainment. It won’t be long before the hunger games begin.

  23. Confessions @ #2336 Sunday, August 5th, 2018 – 4:47 pm

    C@t:

    I think it’s a failure on a few fronts, one of them being sound editorial leadership. As PvO said, where an issue or event is contested by both parties to it, regardless of whether they’re telling the truth or not, caution is critical in terms of whether you rush to report on it.

    Buzzfeed is run on the smell of an oily rag, I imagine, so traditional practices do not apply. Also, they likely view themselves as disruptors (and doesn’t that have to be the word of 2018?), so they think they’re really ‘out there’ by publishing this sort of stuff, absent any consideration of the consequences.

  24. I do not recall the same sensitivity being applied by the L/NP to automotive workers in Victoria or South Australia, or to maritime workers associated with coastal shipping.

    I advocate extending that sensitivity to any workers who are displaced by technological, climatic, or major policy changes.

    I look forward to the L/NP government treating remote Aboriginal communities with the same sensitivity.

    My logic applies with equal force to remote Aboriginal communities. We should not treat people as cogs in a machine. People have social and community ties. People have strong connections to place. A lot of their meaning, purpose, and identity is linked to where they live. It is unreasonable to require human beings to be itinerant circus performers who wander the nation in search of a gig. Most people want and need some stability in their lives. It is the federal government’s task to bring jobs to where the people are, instead of expecting people to uproot themselves on the basis of a very narrow concept of economic efficiency.

    You bet you I’m kicking farmers when they’re down. They can have the same sensitiviy and tact that their representatives have treated blue collar people for generations

    Vengeance is rarely a good basis for decision-making. Governments need to govern for everyone, not just for the people who voted for them.

  25. Lovey wrote:

    Let me get this straight. There is an internal investigation happening on a Member of Parliament. This fact, and the allegations, are leaked to a journalist and other journos say she should have NOT published this fact?

    What was published was more than that there was an investigation in progress.

    The allegations, in unnecessarily salacious detail, were published as well.

    Confidentiality covers not only the details, but the very existence of an investigation. This is not a hearing in a public courtroom. It is an internal HR affair. It would be different if Husar was under police investigation, or up before a court, and even then commentary would need to be circumspect. Court proceedings have qualified privilege attached to them, but private HR matters do not. This is why they are kept confidential: to avoid the risk of defamation actions, and breach of Natural Justice which may be sufficient to overturn any actions made as a result of an adverse finding, if the matter eventually gets to court.

    Right now I’d say the investigation is shot to pieces: confidentiality has been breached, complainants have spoken out of turn, there has been woeful document control, the whole thing is being gossiped about in public. It is a total trainwreck for which, whether it is his fault or not, Whelan is reponsible, as the presiding investigator.

    Then there is the prospect of conflict of interest. Being now a matter of selective leaking, and public gossip, if Whelan finds allegations either proved or unproved he could be accused by either side (depending on the circumstances) of acting in his own interests – i.e. trying to straighten out the investigation to exonerate himself from criticism – in order to arrive at his determinations.

    And because those allegations are out in public already there is no prospect that a recommenced investigation would be fair.

    It is noteworthy that Workman did not publish the original letter. If she had done so her readers would have seen assurances from Whelan that the the matters addressed were allegations only, that Husar had a right to confidentiality, Natural Justice and to defend herself, and that she was regarded as innocent until proven otherwise. Such assurances are standard for such letters. Standard text and IR web sites have standard template letters containing all of the above. To advise a respondent of his or her rights and obligations via such letters is absolutely commonplace and compulsory, in order to preserve administrative fairness and avoid later legal complications.

    Due to the severity and seriousness of the allegations Australian common law states that the onus of proof is far higher than in less serious matters, closer to the criminal standard. It has been alleged that Husar misappropriated Commonwealth money, and misused Commonwealth facilities, that she potentially broke the criminal law by sexually harassing her staff, as well as several other serious and arguably criminal matters. You have to be sure about allegations like that before you start making adverse findings, and definitely before you start throwing those allegations around in public willy-nilly, as the media has done. This is another reason for confidentiality to be strictly insisted upon and enforced.

    And it is another reason why senior ALP figures like Bill Shorten would not be informed of the matters. It is not a “cover-up” to enforce confidentiality in such matters. It is common sense, self-preservation and Natural Justice, now all seemingly out the window.

    I find it amusing that the media have redacted the name “Anderson” when they reproduce Husar’s tweets, protecting the presumed complainants, and themselves from possible defamation proceedings, while they have no compunction at all with publishing the names of others involved in the allegations, as well as the frankly bizarre “Fatal Impact” allegation. The clear reading of this is that the media think they have landed a big one and that nothing can harm them. They may have another think coming.

  26. C@t:

    I take your point, but if Buzzfeed is run on the smell of an oily rag then it really is more critical they have good editorial governance. After all they don’t have the resources of a News ltd to fall back on if their journalists get sued for skating too close to the line.

  27. https://www.theage.com.au/politics/victoria/victoria-gives-turnbull-no-guarantee-on-national-energy-blueprint-20180805-p4zvn7.html

    The Andrews government is expected to decide if Victoria will sign up to the National Energy Guarantee at a cabinet meeting on Monday, and Mr Andrews showed no signs of backing down from his ultimatum that Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull must first pull the doubters on his backbench into line.
    :::::
    (Frydenberg) “The question for Labor states this Friday is will they listen to the experts and deliver lower power prices for their communities or cave into the Greens and prolong the investor uncertainty.”

    The Victorian Greens are urging the Andrews government to reject the guarantee.

  28. Need to raise your water table, stabilise your soil or grow an alternate fodder source in arid conditions?

    There is a tree — or grass — for that.

    Fran Bodkin, a Dharawal elder who has degrees in environmental science, geomorphology and climatology, wrote the Encyclopedia Botanica by hand when pregnant and confined to bed rest.

    She said farmland could be stabilised naturally to help it cope with a changing climate, and it was as simple as planting a few trees.

    But they work best as a team and can be destructive if planted as a single species.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-08-03/how-trees-can-be-used-as-drought-busters/10069318

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