BludgerTrack: 53.7-46.3 to Labor

BludgerTrack returns from hibernation, albeit with only one new poll result to play with.

The return of Essential Research provided the BludgerTrack mill with its first grist for the new year, but the model is at its least robust when it only has one data point to play with after a long gap. This means BludgerTrack strongly follows the lead of a poll that was less bad for the Coalition than their usual form, resulting in a substantial reduction in Labor’s still commanding lead on two-party preferred. Labor is also down six on the seat projection – one in each mainland state and two in Queensland. The Essential poll also included a new set of numbers for the leadership ratings, and these produced a weak result for Bill Shorten that has blunted his recent improving trend. Full results through the link below.

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.

3,129 comments on “BludgerTrack: 53.7-46.3 to Labor”

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  1. M L and Goll,

    I agree. I would be happy for franking credits to be abolished. But ALP policy is that Franking credits remain as a 30% discount to people who pay enough tax. Rich people.

    It is worse than regressive.

  2. The Greens policy platform: https://greens.org.au/platform/redistribution:

    If everyone paid their fair share of tax, we’d all get a fair go at living a decent life.

    Our economic plan is based on a few simple premises:

    That a strong economy is a sustainable economy, built on a healthy environment;

    That it’s the shape of our economy, not simply its size that determines our nation’s wealth; and

    That our economy should work for us, not the other way around.

    For decades both Liberal and Labor governments have taken millions of dollars in corporate donations and in return, they’ve given away billions of dollars to corporations and left big loopholes in our tax system, to the point where 1 in 3 of the biggest corporations pays no tax at all.

    That’s not good economic management. That’s economic injustice. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

    Being a good economic manager should mean that your plan works for people and communities, not solely for enormous private profit. It means you share the enormous wealth in our society by prioritising investment in public services for everyone – in world class accessible social services, education, healthcare and affordable homes.

    Our plan to make our economy work for all of us, and put billions of dollars back into public services

  3. Goll
    says:
    Tuesday, January 22, 2019 at 11:18 pm
    It’s a LNP thing.

    Actually, the convolution of Franking credits is a Paul Keating thing.

  4. So Pegasus is it Labor that’s responsible for all inequality now is it?

    Considering your Greens have utterly failed to deliver on a Newstart increase besides lamely carping on about it, surely they shoulder some of the blame.

    And of course, calling Labor is the lesser of two evils is only slightly more clever than the tired “Labor and Liberal are just the same” parroted by tired Greens everywhere.

    Call whoever you want evil, but for me, supporting a party that makes grandiose promises to society’s most marginalised and does nothing to fulfil them – indeed does not even bother to attempt to do so – isn’t exactly what I’d call good.

    The Greens, as a party by and for an upper middle class inner-city elite, serve only to assuage this demographic’s social conscience, while ensuring through their inaction that it’s priveleges are entrenched.

  5. Morrison’s Capt Cook re-enactment that isn’t a re-enactment was met with widespread derision and embarrassment at work today. And I couldn’t help but note Frydenberg on the news tonight was attempting to look more ‘prime ministerial’, clearly in an effort to differentiate himself from the Prime Muppet currently in the job.

    Libs are positioning for the leadership post 2020 election. With any luck neither Dutton nor Abbott will be there.

  6. It is worse than regressive.

    It is politics you have to decide what you think is important and can be done, you can’t do everything and even if you could you can’t do everything at once.

    There is some little buzzfeed journo, Josh something, who considers himself a guru on the NBN. He is forever going on and on and on about how the ALP haven’t promised to just magically make everything fibre to the premises on the first day. Elections matter. Votes matter. Australia voted for a shit slow internet and that is what we deserve. Sure Labor should look to improve it and get rid of all the copper as soon as possible. But you’d have to be a pretty stupid buzzfeed punk to expect you can just ignore six years of Govt and expect everything to be made better as if we didn’t have Abbbott, Turnbull and Morrison as PM.

  7. “So, Labor’s masthead @ https://www.alp.org.au – A Fair Go for Australia: standing up for middle and working Australia – is not a slogan?”

    Oh, you need a slogan of some sort to hang a campaign on. What the Libs have never twigged too is that you actually need more than that to be an actual Govt. ALP under Shorten has obviously learned that lesson well. 🙂

  8. Parramatta Moderate @ #3045 Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019 – 8:12 pm

    Just a thought on Labor’s proposed changes to negative gearing, CGT and dividend imputation. We don’t know what the legislation will look like after it gets through the senate! It’s very likely that independents will hold the BOP, and who knows how the Greens will play it. We can be sure that vested interests will be pleading their case, and Labor may need to make some concessions to get their changes through. I thought that the initial dividend imputation change Labor proposed had already been softened, so full and part pension holders could continue to get their current imputation credit benefits (which is fair enough I think-doesn’t impact the revenue benefits much and takes away a line of attack against the change)

    What’s that word the L/NP are fond of using after they’ve won an election and want to enact legislation, starts with an ‘M’…

    That’s right, MANDATE.

  9. Actually, the convolution of Franking credits is a Paul Keating thing.

    Yeah and he still supports it.

    In an economy where investment was very constrained or non-existent and you needed to drive investment, it makes some sense. In the current environment where capital is circling the globe in multibillion dollar globs desperate for something to invest in, not so much.

  10. PvO

    https://www.perthnow.com.au/opinion/peter-van-onselen-greens-robbed-on-policy-ng-b88740270z

    THE demonisation of the Australian Greens by the major political parties has become too much to bear when you consider how often its policies are being adopted by Labor and the coalition.

    If you listened to the rhetoric from both sides you’d assume anything the Greens argues for must be so wacky as to render Australia’s most successful minor party the ultimate fringe dweller. But let’s go through how many of its ideas have been adopted in the past 12 months alone.

    It started with Labor’s negative gearing policy, announced ahead of the last election, but now entrenched as policy it will implement if elected. Greens pollies had been talking about such reform for years, often labelled crazy when they did. No attribution by Labor, of course.

    When Scott Morrison delivered his Budget last year he announced a banking levy.

    To be clear, I think it’s poor policy to target one sector, no better than the ill-fated mining tax Wayne Swan sought to implement. But the idea was Greens policy long before the supposed party of business stole and implemented it, with Labor’s blessing. No attribution, of course.

    Next it was the banking royal commission. Don’t make the mistake of thinking it was Bill Shorten’s idea. He stole it from the Greens, which called for one long before Labor joined the chorus. And Malcolm Turnbull finally relented late last year, announcing there would be a banking and financial services royal commission.

    No attribution, of course.

    Shorten started this year calling for a Federal corruption watchdog, another Greens policy adopted by one of the major parties.

    No attribution, of course.

  11. PvO

    Wow you’d have to be pretty desperate to be citing PvO, intelligent people have blocked him and resent his moronic stuff showing up in front of our eyeballs.

    no better than the ill-fated mining tax Wayne Swan sought to implement

    This is particularly f*cking stupid. If he wasn’t a complete waste of time, someone should remind him of the PRRT and that between the PRRT and the MRRT everything would have been covered. Instead the LNP and morons like PvO prefer to give away national resources for the lowest possible price when any sensible person would want the highest possible price.

  12. “It is politics you have to decide what you think is important and can be done, you can’t do everything and even if you could you can’t do everything at once.”

    True, but if the Greens took that quite reasonable attitude, what would they have to campaign on??

  13. WWP,

    To be clear, I support the ALP, I think their policy mix is good on the whole, but their policy on franking credits is worse than regressive.

    In terms of retail politics, the convolution of franking credits will mean they have no problem selling it.

  14. True, but if the Greens took that quite reasonable attitude, what would they have to campaign on??

    Well they’d stick to destroying action on climate change with the LNP, you know what they are good at. Perhaps they’d have joint au pair initiatives where the laws of the land are waived if you are a mate of the LNP or the greens.

  15. Goll: “Abolishing franking credits is a decision based on the premise that those receiving the benefits of franking credits dont vote Labor anyway”

    The largest beneficiaries of franking credits are workers with super in industry super funds (it emerges that retail super funds have been stealing their members’ franking credits!). The scheme enables industry funds to reduce their tax payments to the considerable benefit of their members. This may not be the best approach to that aim, but it is at least a legitimate aim (as opposed to Costello’s idea of paying people to stop working). This (of course) stays in full under the ALP proposal.

    What needs to be removed is Costello’s asininity, which amounts to the introduction of a second currency (technically a fairly serious crime, in fact). The principle that the tax office does not make net payments to natural persons is fundamental to economic management (supposedly Costello’s area of expertise) and needs to be restored; the alternative is a deviant economics driven by by tax arrangements rather than output or income.

  16. In terms of retail politics, the convolution of franking credits will mean they have no problem selling it.

    I tend to agree with you. But Bill is going very softly very quietly, not doing a Hewson, not even trying to do a Hewson but right. I think almost all of their tax policy is pretty soft and overly cautious. So I think we are agreeing. Just think the US is seriously considering a top marginal rate of 70%, the world is changing, trickle down is being abandoned by all thinking people, I think strong brave leadership would be rewarded. The labor brains trust obviously thinks zero leadership ‘managerial’ style slightly better than scomo is the way to go.

  17. The largest beneficiaries of franking credits are workers with super in industry super funds

    This transfer could be done more effectively in other ways, and I have some sympathy for this kind of measure.

  18. WWP @ 11:33pm – You’re right up there with moronic statements.

    Doesn’t take much for you to go ballistic.

    Cognitive dissonance does that to a person.

  19. It is telling that one needs to resort to an almost year old opinion piece by none other than Peter van Onselen to build a case for the fairy tale of the Greens forcing major political parties to do things they would otherwise never countenance.

    That it relies on the foolish notion that political parties – other than the saintly Greens of course – operate entirely independent of their membership and voter base, is enough to dismiss this fiction.

    Worse though is that it proves the fact that the Greens will never shy from taking full credit for the hard work of others: the NGOs, community organisations and individuals whose years of campaigning is met with the Greens jumping in at the last moment to take all the glory, despite that party never taking any meaningful action on anything.

  20. Im in Busselton, WA, about 250km south of Perth. Its been pouring with rain since about 4 and was so heavy during Bill Shorten’s town hall that I couldn’t hear what was being said. Tomorrow is forecast to be a miserable day too.

  21. WWP,

    You got me there. I’m not sure which is the best way to go. Crash through or incremental? The way carbon pricing worked out has me thinking perhaps incremental is the way to go.

    Also, unless the ALP owns the senate I’m not sure the Franking stuff will get up. It definitely wouldn’t get up if they wanted to abolish it. Perhaps the Libs will wave it through if it doesn’t affect the rich?

  22. Grimace,

    Good to see you posting. I plan to put in my guess for ALP seats as whatever WB projects after the first Newspoll of the year.

    It’s my way of plating it safe. I think the polls are well under the disaster this election will be for the Libs 🙂

  23. Pegasus @ #3064 Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019 – 11:28 pm

    PvO

    https://www.perthnow.com.au/opinion/peter-van-onselen-greens-robbed-on-policy-ng-b88740270z

    THE demonisation of the Australian Greens by the major political parties has become too much to bear when you consider how often its policies are being adopted by Labor and the coalition.

    If you listened to the rhetoric from both sides you’d assume anything the Greens argues for must be so wacky as to render Australia’s most successful minor party the ultimate fringe dweller. But let’s go through how many of its ideas have been adopted in the past 12 months alone.

    It started with Labor’s negative gearing policy, announced ahead of the last election, but now entrenched as policy it will implement if elected. Greens pollies had been talking about such reform for years, often labelled crazy when they did. No attribution by Labor, of course.

    When Scott Morrison delivered his Budget last year he announced a banking levy.

    To be clear, I think it’s poor policy to target one sector, no better than the ill-fated mining tax Wayne Swan sought to implement. But the idea was Greens policy long before the supposed party of business stole and implemented it, with Labor’s blessing. No attribution, of course.

    Next it was the banking royal commission. Don’t make the mistake of thinking it was Bill Shorten’s idea. He stole it from the Greens, which called for one long before Labor joined the chorus. And Malcolm Turnbull finally relented late last year, announcing there would be a banking and financial services royal commission.

    No attribution, of course.

    Shorten started this year calling for a Federal corruption watchdog, another Greens policy adopted by one of the major parties.

    No attribution, of course.

    So you agree that the Greens support for super profits tax for miners and other industries.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/may/02/super-profits-tax-for-miners-and-buffett-rule-on-greens-tax-agenda

  24. Poll Bludger Federal Election Seat Count Sweep
    Welcome to the Poll Bludger Federal Election Seat Count Sweep. Life has calmed down for me and its time for a much delayed update to the Sweep.

    If you would like to join email your prediction for the number of seats that Labor will win to sjapplin@hotmail.com. Your email will be deleted after your prediction is recorded with my apologies in advance to anyone inadvertently caught by the spam filter. I’ll try to keep track of any predictions posted in the thread if you’d prefer not to email me, without a guarantee it’ll be included.

    The rules of the competition are:
    • Your seat count prediction must be an integer
    • All forms of cheating and capitalising on insider knowledge are encouraged
    • Your first prediction is final

    The prize is gloating rights.

    Name__________Labor
    Toorak Toff __________71
    Davidwh__________74
    Steve777__________80
    Jenauthor__________81
    Tricot__________81
    Bennelong Lurker__________82
    SandgroperWA__________82
    Torchbearer__________82
    Player One__________83
    BH__________84
    Edward Boyce__________84
    Max__________84
    C@tmomma__________84
    Lizzie__________84
    Gareth__________84
    JPH__________85
    Sonar__________85
    Steve davis__________85
    Hugoaugogo__________85
    Imacca__________86
    J341893__________86
    Outside Left__________86
    Taz__________86
    Confessions__________87
    A Different Michael__________87
    Kambah Mick__________87
    The Silver Bodgie__________87
    Lord Haw Haw of Arabia__________87
    A R__________88
    JimmyD__________88
    Sproket__________88
    A R__________88
    Douglas and Milko__________89
    BK__________89
    Sohar__________89
    Left E__________89
    John Reidy__________89
    Mari__________89
    Quasar__________89
    D_money__________89
    Sgh1969__________89
    Bert__________89
    Harry “Snapper” Organs__________90
    Onebobsworth__________90
    Swamprat__________91
    Poroti__________91
    Bilko__________92
    Pica__________92
    Terminator__________92
    Whisper__________92
    Socrates__________93
    Ausdavo__________93
    Mavis Smith__________94
    Yaba__________94
    Jack Aranda__________94
    Briefly__________94
    Matt31__________94
    ItzaDream__________94
    Upnorth__________94
    Nswtcsd__________95
    Booleanbach__________95
    Don__________95
    Adrian__________96
    Libertarian Unionist__________97
    Dan Gulberry__________98
    Burgey__________98
    Asha Leu__________99
    Guytar__________100
    ajm__________100
    Puffytmd__________100
    Golly__________101
    Fozzie Logic__________102
    Grimace__________105
    Antonbruckner11__________106
    Andrew_Earlwood__________127

  25. “Doesn’t take much for you to go ballistic”

    It is just passion my friend passion. It is what drives good politics. You must love it, and love good policy. Passion is what we’ve most lacked since Keating. We need much much more not less. Yeah it might be cool being dispassionate, above politics but it gives you Trump, Abbott etc.

    PvO claims the nazis were socialists, is smacked around the park, doubles down and then throws a tanty saying people were being nasty to him (they weren’t they were telling him he was wrong, and he was). PvO is consistent in being a very strong ‘central’ LNP supporter, with the addition of occasional ‘pox on both houses’ pieces (like the one you quoted from) to trick people into considering him balanced and reasonable. He is neither.

    So cognitive dissonance is a big concept, care to tell me exactly what cognitive dissonance you’ve detected in me. I’d be fascinated. Was teasing out a couple of areas with some friends over the weekend, perhaps more a dissonance between my intellectual position and my emotional reaction to a particular element of blissful matrimony, but still always good to have a look inside and see what you can improve in your head and your heart, and always a delight if you can improve and align your head and your heart. Passion my friend. Passion.

  26. Oh dear, it seems ScoMo’s brainfart about the location of the Australian Embassy is about to have some real world consequences for us:

    Bali bombings: Indonesia reviews Abu Bakar Bashir’s release after Morrison’s request
    PM urges president Joko Widodo to show respect for Australia over the planned early prison release of alleged mastermind

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jan/22/bali-bombings-indonesia-reviews-abu-bakar-bashirs-release-after-morrisons-request?fbclid=IwAR3LoS2sO2Mk97-W2ISU0l6xXsVI2eo6E8UNwmJNB9cBPKlrLxZx1lrj80Y

  27. Question @ #3049 Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019 – 10:21 pm

    ALP policy is that Franking credits remain as a 30% discount to people who pay enough tax. Rich people.

    Given that the 32.5% tax bracket kicks in at $37,000, it’s not just rich people who will benefit.

    Though I agree, best to abolish them altogether. Virtually no other developed Western nation has this sort of scheme. Even the United States knows better.

  28. Of course, whenever PvO pens an article panning the Greens, it will be posted here with glee.

    Not by me, I blocked him on twitter, and don’t read his articles. I think I’m way ahead from this choice, other than the odd surprise where is asserts nazis were socialists, there is nothing of value or insight in his stuff.

  29. WWP

    It is just passion my friend passion. It is what drives good politics. You must love it, and love good policy.

    Good, we have discovered we have something in common, though I didn’t doubt it.

    Though I express my passion in a loving, gentle and kind way.

  30. The company pays tax on it’s profits. If they do not pay tax they cannot distribute franking credits. Hence all franking credits represent tax that has been collected and is in consolidated revenue.

    If the shareholder is liable for tax at a rate higher than company tax, then they will effectively pay additional tax for the difference on the tax rates for the income from the dividend. If they are on a lesser rate they get a credit to offset against other income and if taxable income is low enough they can currently get a ‘cashback’.

    So a profit has been made, tax has been paid and then the profit is distributed amongst the owners. Why should they pay tax again?

    But if they don’t pay tax, then why should the government refund the tax they collected from the company?

    A purist approach would be to rule that folk can reduce their taxable income by the proportion of the dividend that is tax paid (noting that dividends can be partially franked i.e. 50% or 70%). But no credits. However that would mean that those on higher tax rates got more benefit than those on lower rates. So allowing the application of credits is fairer.

    Until people arrange their affairs to take advantage of the rule.

    Changing the rules to stop refunds is a politically expensive stop gap measure. Well off folk who are abusing the credits will just restructure. Someone who has a sole retirement income from $500k of bank shares will lose $10k of income and probably end up being eligible for a pension top up. So savings will be much less than what they think.

    The core issue is allowing structures that let folk split and hold income in trusts.

  31. Though I express my passion in a loving, gentle and kind way.

    It can be very effective, the loving gentle and kind way, like the native American, in the moment. But within days the MAGA hat boys had redefined reality and got out on top. Sometimes, in politics, you need more than niceness and light.

    I don’t think the mega rich, the Putins and Murdochs are going to be seduced into a newer fairer world, they aren’t going to pay workers fairly, they aren’t going to lie back and pay taxes.

  32. So a profit has been made, tax has been paid and then the profit is distributed amongst the owners. Why should they pay tax again?

    Because they are two separate legal entities. When you have two separate legal entities they are supposed to be taxed on their individual profit / income. My plumber doesn’t get a refund of the tax I’ve paid in the money I pay him, because it would be absurd. The individual getting a credit for the tax paid by the company is just as absurd. In fact it would probably be easier to defend my plumber getting a credit than an investor.

  33. Expat back at 9:21PM: “Steve777 really 81 seats? Are you anticipating an effective Lib campaign/narrowing? If election were held today surely ALP would be pushing 90 if not more i reckon…”

    I am expecting a Kevin07-sized victory. I explained my reasons yesterday:

    -The coming scare-smear-disinformation campaign.
    -Most of the media and nearly all the money are in the Government’s corner.
    – Giveaway Budget, dodgy as all getout but will not be questioned in mainstream media
    -Unlike Kevin07 or Hawke83, Shorten is unpopular (not with me).
    -Labor does better in polls than elections.
    -The best Labor has done since 1946 is Hawke 83 (2PP 53.2%, for 75/125 seats, equivalent to 90/150).
    – In 1983 and 2007, massive poll margins of 2PP 55+ were whittled away to comfortable wins of about 53.

  34. Was the 127 seat prediction made when Dutton was a chance at leader?

    It’s certainly heroic. But possibly not enough to get me campaigning in Goldstein.

  35. Surely not.

    The White House has been busted for photoshopping pictures of Trump to make him look skinnier and his fingers bigger.

    Gizmodo caught the White House photoshop handed, “In recent months, Trump’s official Facebook and Instagram accounts have published photos of the president that have been manipulated to make him look thinner. If it only happened once you might be able to chalk it up as an accident. But Gizmodo has discovered at least three different retouched photos on President Trump’s social media pages that have been published since October of 2018.”

    Then there are the growing fingers of Trump:

    https://www.politicususa.com/2019/01/21/the-white-house-busted-photoshopping-trump-pics-to-make-his-fingers-bigger.html

    First there was Scott with his pristine white sneakers, now there’s Trump with his fat fingers!

  36. Me too. Except one should never underestimate Democrat capacity for own goals.

    Rick WilsonVerified account@TheRickWilson
    3m3 minutes ago
    I’m curious what Trump fans think is going happen when the shutdown ends without a wall..

  37. ratsak says:
    Tuesday, January 22, 2019 at 4:29 pm
    The Cook stuff is harmless idiocy Fulvio.

    Pissing off your own members in a marginal seat for a nobody like Mundine is suicidal idiocy. It won’t just be the few Libs on the ground in Gilmore that will be pissed off. Every member of Scott Robinson’s partyroom has just had yet another indisputable proof that he’s going to fuck up the campaign. They won’t tear him down (probably), but deep down they’re wanting to.

    So many blunders, so little time. The Lib membership will be ready for surrender rather than for a fight. There’s very reason for them to struggle. Even if they were to win the election, they would be saddled with Morrison for the indefinite… The whingers whinge about Shorten. But who in their right mind would choose Morrison!

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