Essential Research: 55-45 to Labor

Further post-spill polling from Essential finds clarity on voting intention but mixed messages on other measures, while Newspoll bids farewell to the Turnbull era with one last set of state breakdowns.

The latest fortnightly Essential Research follows Newspoll in recording an allergic reaction to the dumping of Malcolm Turnbull, with Labor’s 52-48 lead blowing out to 55-45. The report in The Guardian reveals the Coalition is down four on the primary vote to 35%, but that’s all we have for now. There is also no direct indication of whether the poll adjusted its usual Thursday to Sunday field work period to account for the leadership change on Friday, as Newspoll did by chopping out the Thursday, but the supplementary questions suggest as much. UPDATE: Full results here. They indeed held back starting the field work until Friday evening. The primary votes are Coalition 35% (down four), Labor 39% (up two), Greens 10% (steady), One Nation 7% (up one).

Some of these findings add to a confused picture when considered in conjunction with other polls. Scott Morrison holds a 39-29 lead over Bill Shorten in prime minister, which reverses the Newspoll result but is in line with the findings of ReachTEL’s seat polls for the Fairfax papers. Fifty-two per cent supported an early election, which is a very different finding from the ReachTEL polls. Then again, 56% agreed Scott Morrison should be given time “to show he can do a better job of governing Australia”, so who knows what people want.

Conversely, a question on preferred Liberal leader produces similar results to Newspoll: Malcolm Turnbull falls from 28% to 15% as support shifts to Julie Bishop (up seven to 23%) and Scott Morrison (up eight to 10%), while Tony Abbott and Peter Dutton remain much as they were, on 9% and 4% respectively. The poll also includes the somewhat surprising finding (to me at least) that 35% approve of the leadership change, with 40% disapproving. A striking 57% agreed with the proposition that “the Liberal party is divided and no longer fit to govern Australia”.

Also featured are semi-regular questions on the parties’ attributes, which I might have something to say about when I see the full results, and questions on six policy propositions, which find support for lower immigration, opposition to withdrawing from the Paris agreement, mixed views on funding more coal-fired power plants and opposition to company tax cuts.

Also today, The Australian has rolled together results from the last three Newspolls under Malcolm Turnbull to produce a final set of quarterly state breakdowns for his prime ministership, interrupting their usual schedule of publishing these at the end of each quarter. The results are very like those of BludgerTrack in finding solid swings against the government in Queensland (4.1%) and Western Australia (4.7%), only small swings in New South Wales (0.9%) and Victoria (2.2%), and a swing to the Coalition in South Australia (3.3%), where the Liberals seem to be benefiting from the new state government’s honeymoon and the decline of Nick Xenophon. UPDATE: Full results here; HT to GhostWhoVotes.

Finally, it is anticipated that a by-election in Wentworth will be held on October 6, after Malcolm Turnbull today told colleagues he would resign from parliament on Friday. While Christine Foster, Sydney councillor and sister of Tony Abbott, has attracted the most media attention, Andrew Clennell of The Australian reports the more likely Liberal candidate is Dave Sharma, former ambassador to Israel. Others mentioned as candidates are Andrew Bragg, a director at the Business Council of Australia and former leader of the Yes same-sex marriage survey campaign, who will vie with Sharma for backing from factional moderates; Peter King, tha barrister who held the seat from 2001 until Turnbull defeated him for preselection in 2004; Katherine O’Regan, a Woollahra councillor.

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.

1,467 comments on “Essential Research: 55-45 to Labor”

  1. The WA State election was notable for many things, not the least of which was the crash in the Liberal PV. This helped precipitate the loss of more than 20 seats in the Legislative Assembly.

    If the Liberal PV crashes in the same way in the Federal election, they will lose as many as 5 seats – Pearce, Hasluck, Swan, Stirling and Canning. There has to be a high chance of this. Shorten made it clear that he regards these as winnable. On the State results, they are all possible.

  2. C@tmomma says:
    Wednesday, August 29, 2018 at 10:00 pm

    DaretoTread, other than being a know-it-all….

    Very fine aim there C@t…fine indeed.

    For my own part I’ve given up engaging with skinheads and Trumpo-Putinists.

    They know nuffink.

  3. Hello briefly:

    One share’s your politics; believe me. But you’d no doubt remember the old days, before others took sway- when I was banned for posting an inappropriate post re. Puffy, for which was completely inappropriate, William Bowe measuring my faux paux. That said. I’m back, doing eveything I can to do
    to defeat the Pentecosctal Morrison.

  4. Howdy DaretoTread:

    I’ll stay for a while; but it’s not in my nature to be insestuos, towing the line, so to speak. Besides which, when I get pissed – which is often – I post on Fairfax, which rejects me, more often than not – not that I’m provactive(?).

  5. Sarah Palin is not invited to John McCain’s funeral: report

    Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has reportedly not been invited to attend the memorial for her one-time running mate, the late John McCain.

    MSNBC booking director Jesse Rodriguez tweeted Wednesday that NBC White House correspondent Kelly O’Donnell learned that Palin was not invited to McCain’s memorial.

    https://www.rawstory.com/2018/08/sarah-palin-not-invited-john-mccains-funeral-report/

  6. Morning all,

    Long time lurker first time poster. Have been following this fascinating blog on and off for many years even when it was part of the Crikey stable (and Crikey had a number of other interesting blogs for whatever reason have closed or moved on)

    For the most part I’ve enjoyed the robust discussion on many topics and I admire William’s stewardship although at times he must just shake his head.

    The morning news round up by BK is something I look forward to.

    We are in very interesting times politically.

    Yes I do wear an Akubra hat but one more suited to city life … sourced from Melbourne’s legendary hat shop at Flinders St station.

  7. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    John Hewson laments that climate change policy has proved just too big an issue for our politicians and our political system to handle. It is reasonable to doubt the new Scott Morrison government will do any better – indeed, we may slide even further backwards.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/one-policy-behind-fall-of-a-run-of-australian-leaders-20180829-p500g7.html
    “I am not sceptical about climate science”, says climate change denier Angus Taylor.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/i-am-not-sceptical-about-climate-science-energy-minister-angus-taylor-hits-back-in-new-price-pledge-20180829-p500je.html
    Meanwhile Fergus Hunter tells us that the Morrison government is under pressure from Pacific leaders to sign a pledge of support for the Paris climate accord, and declare climate change the “single greatest threat to the livelihoods, security and wellbeing” of the region.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/pacific-nations-push-morrison-government-to-pledge-support-for-paris-climate-accord-20180829-p500jz.html
    Energy Minister Angus Taylor has equated power companies to the banks, saying they have forfeited their social licence and should brace for heavy-handed intervention. Well he might have got this one right! Phil Coorey examines the statement.
    https://outline.com/2vsTA2
    The political fight in Canberra seems to have missed what markets are saying about energy prices. They have already peaked and are heading down without an NEG.
    https://outline.com/pgpEzY
    While the Morrison government has identified lowering power prices as a key early priority, a new analysis says wholesale prices will almost halve over the next four years because of the technology many Coalition conservatives oppose – renewables.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/aug/30/renewables-forecast-to-halve-wholesale-energy-prices-over-four-years
    And on top of this State Labor governments have vowed to push on with their own ambitious renewable energy schemes after the ‘death’ of the National Energy Guarantee.
    https://outline.com/yfp5st
    Greg Jericho says that if Morrison is heading out to the bush and not mentioning climate change he is failing to actually listen – not just to those who know from their own experience that the climate is changing but from those advising on how governments should respond.
    https://www.theguardian.com/business/grogonomics/2018/aug/30/if-youre-talking-about-drought-but-not-climate-change-youre-not-doing-your-job-pm
    the NFF chief Fiona Simson agrees.
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/aug/29/climate-change-making-drought-worse-says-farmers-federation-chief
    The United States and Australia have a lot in common, not least of all our appalling record on the environment, particularly of late, writes Cat McLeod.
    https://newmatilda.com/2018/08/29/brothers-harms-scott-morrison-donald-trump-cut-anti-climate-cloth/
    Dave Donovan writes about how it’s business as usual and the idiots have won.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/business-as-usual-how-the-idiots-won,11842
    David Crowe explains how the bullying and intimidation claims by Julia Banks are rocking a divided Morrison government.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/bullying-and-intimidation-claims-by-julia-banks-rocks-a-divided-morrison-government-20180829-p500jy.html
    Chris Wallace reckons the Liberals have a ‘man problem’, and they need to fix it. She says that you can’t beat thugs through appeasement. You’ve got to get rid of them. Cleaning up the Liberals right-wing is the challenge for a future leader – a real leader.
    https://theconversation.com/a-woman-problem-no-the-liberals-have-a-man-problem-and-they-need-to-fix-it-102339
    The “agreement” on free trade between Australia and Indonesia that Prime Minister Scott Morrison hopes to sign this week is just one page long, and was still being negotiated late into the night on the eve of his visit to Jakarta. One bloody page!
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/free-trade-agreement-between-australia-indonesia-only-one-page-long-20180830-p500le.html
    John Warhurst writes that the consequence of having Scott Morrison as Prime Minister will be that the place of religion in Australian politics will continue to be fraught.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/politics/federal/a-man-of-faith-is-again-leading-the-country-but-what-will-that-mean-20180827-p4zzy3.html
    Cole Latimer wonders whether the AGL leadership change may renew Canberra tensions.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/agl-leadership-change-may-renew-canberra-tensions-20180829-p500fw.html
    Academic Andy Marks describes Julia Banks as being the first collateral victim of Canberra madness.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/julia-banks-the-first-collateral-victim-of-canberra-madness-20180829-p500ho.html
    Katharine Murphy writes that Australian politics needs women like Julia Banks – but it is hostile territory.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/aug/29/australian-politics-needs-women-like-julia-banks-but-it-is-hostile-territory
    Josh Frydenberg has demanded Westpac justify its out-of-cycle interest rate increase, the first of the big banks to hike rates as funding costs surge.
    https://outline.com/D6dCne
    ASIC is understood to have trawled through months of phone calls at several insurers, as part of a deep dive into potential shoddy sales practices, and ahead of the sector fronting the royal commission.
    https://outline.com/5SgTa9
    Jack Latimer is most concerned and disturbed over Abbott’s appointment as special envoy on Indigenous affairs.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/aug/29/abbott-as-indigenous-affairs-envoy-be-disturbed-be-very-disturbed
    While there is no evidence that Abbott and Joyce have accepted a salary for their special envoy roles, an offer of payment, if there was one, could cause them problems through Section 44.
    https://theconversation.com/could-section-44-exclude-tony-abbott-and-barnaby-joyce-from-parliament-102346
    Huawei chairman John Lord has pointed to the National Broadband Network as an example of what happens when Canberra imposes bans on Chinese companies, saying the $49 billion government-owned network is “not a world leader”. Well you can’t argue this that last point!
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/not-a-world-leader-huawei-boss-slams-national-broadband-network-20180829-p500ju.html
    Calls are mounting for the Berejiklian government to bring forward water restrictions as storage levels plunge amid signs the $1.8 billion Sydney Desalination Plant won’t reach full output for almost a year.
    https://www.smh.com.au/environment/sustainability/pressure-mounts-for-early-sydney-water-use-curbs-on-desalination-delay-20180829-p500ga.html
    The Grattan Institute’s Peter Goss gives incoming Education Minister some tips on how to pull of the funding arrangements to the benefit of all Australian students and without resorting to special side deals.
    https://www.smh.com.au/education/five-steps-to-fair-school-funding-20180829-p500g4.html
    The SMH editorial makes a very good point about the waste of private and public money on inefficacious health products and procedures. Governments have been slow to act.
    https://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/health-and-wellness/wellness-industry-has-us-on-our-knees-20180829-p500gb.html
    Jason Wilson explains how hard-right columnists with no mass audience cause enough turmoil to ruin leaders.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/commentisfree/2018/aug/29/hard-right-columnists-with-no-mass-audience-cause-enough-turmoil-to-ruin-leaders
    With all the focus this week on new Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s domestic challenges, less attention has been paid to the international impact of the leadership change and any new directions for Australian foreign policy. Susan Harris Rimmer says that Morrison’s foreign policy credentials are slim and his interest in foreign policy is low, not rating even a mention in his first speech to the nation as PM.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/departure-of-bishop-leaves-australia-in-a-foreign-affairs-vacuum-20180829-p500fn.html
    WTF! The NSW Minister for Better Regulation Matt Keane has proposed scrapping mandatory licences for a raft of trades including painting, fencing and glazing.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/consumer-affairs/standards-will-slip-if-you-scrap-trade-licences-20180824-p4zzn2.html
    Yet another instance of the poor level of governance in NSW local government.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/gaping-holes-in-cv-of-the-man-running-one-of-sydney-s-most-important-councils-20180829-p500jt.html
    Stephen Koukoulas outlines the political fallout of a new Morrison government.
    https://thekouk.com/item/629-the-political-fallout-of-a-new-morrison-government.html
    And he sees three downside risks to the AUD.
    https://thekouk.com/item/630-three-downside-risks-to-the-aud.html
    Offshore detention centres are far worse than their intended purpose, they’re a death sentence for immigrants, writes Gerry Georgatos.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/australian-crimes-the-tragic-results-of-nauru-and-manus,11835
    Australians currently have no say in their prime ministers and a leader with conviction is needed, but while Dutton has conviction, he was never the solution, writes Jacinta Coehlo.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/dutton-was-never-the-solution,11837
    Unpaid super entitlements continue to be an issue, with nearly $3 billion of superannuation entitlements not being paid by employers each year, but employers will get some relief with the government announcing the introduction of the Superannuation Guarantee Amnesty. It will be interesting to see how many spivs get caught out eventually.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/unpaid-super-how-the-amnesty-could-affect-you-20180829-p500dw.html
    Another sacking by Twitter from the unhinged Trump.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/trump-says-lawyer-will-leave-white-house-after-kavanaugh-vote-20180830-p500lf.html
    Peru has declared a 60-day health emergency in two provinces on its northern border, citing “imminent danger” to health and sanitation, as a regional crisis sparked by thousands of Venezuelans fleeing economic collapse escalated on Tuesday.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/world/south-america/peru-declares-health-emergency-as-venezuelan-exodus-now-a-migrant-crisis-20180829-p500h5.html
    Suppression orders in Victoria are still rampant.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/victoria/i-want-to-name-my-abuser-but-the-victorian-courts-are-preventing-me-20180827-p50048.html
    Now Husqvarna has been exposed over franchising transgressions.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/small-business/gardening-firm-husqvarna-overhauls-contracts-after-misleading-franchisees-20180829-p500gn.html

    Carton Corner

    A very cutting contribution from David Rowe.

    John Shakespeare gets this one right!

    Sean Leahy gets into Westpac.

    And he reckons he’s got Mesma worked out.

    Matt Golding with the welcome Abbott has had.

    More from Golding.





    Peter Broelman – “Hello sailor!”

    Zanetti turns NAPLAN onto the Liberal Party.

    Jon Kudelka joins the list of cartoonists giving Dutton grief over the au pairs.
    https://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/b5a72bda78dcd968527787515e515740
    More good ones in here.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/best-of-fairfax-cartoons-august-30-2018-20180829-h14ovr.html

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