A track winding back

A look at leadership approval poll trends, and my new facility for tracking them.

BludgerTrack is back, sort of – you can find a permanent link on the sidebar along with a miniature version of its main attraction, namely polling trends for leader approval and preferred prime minister. These go back to the onset of Scott Morrison’s prime ministership in August last year, and thus encompass distinct Bill Shorten and Anthony Albanese epochs.

As you can see, Morrison has mostly gravitated around neutral on his net rating (i.e. approval minus disapproval), barring a post-election surge that has now run its course. Shorten’s position appeared to improve during the election campaign, which was also picked up in Labor’s internal polling, though clearly not far enough. Albanese has mostly been around neutral, but as a newcomer he has a high uncommitted rating, which doesn’t come through when you reduce it to a net measure. This is how he manages to do worse than Shorten on preferred prime minister (although a narrowing trend kicked in here a few months ago) despite doing better on net approval.

I haven’t included the most recent Newspoll result at this stage, as this is clearly a distinct new series for which I will require a few more results before I can standardise it against the other polls. On the basis of this limited evidence, the new-look Newspoll’s leader rating scores can be expected to behave somewhat differently from the old. As Kevin Bonham notes, the new poll has markedly worse net ratings for both leaders, as uncommitted rates are lower and disapproval higher.

Needless to say, what’s missing in all this is voting intention, for which I am going to need a good deal more data before I reckon it worth my while. If you’re really keen though, Mark the Ballot has gone to the trouble of running a trendline through all six of the Newspoll results post-election. If nothing else, my BludgerTrack page features a “poll data” tab on which voting intention polls will be catalogued, which for the time being is wall-to-wall Newspoll. And while I have your attention, please note as per the post above that I’ve got the begging bowl out – donations gratefully received through the link at the top of the page.

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.

1,119 comments on “A track winding back”

  1. Good Morning

    Labor’s election strategy. Blame the Greens be LNP lite and promote coal.

    Life is unfair Labor. Face the reality.

    Read what DM said and let it sink in.

    The fault and blame is Abbot and allies.
    Abbott no one else

    The LNP are laughing all the way to the ballot box over Labor’s denial.

  2. @RBReich tweets

    Let’s be very clear: Anyone who denies climate change at this point is either willfully ignorant or complicit in protecting fossil fuel profits over the safety and security of our children and grandchildren. #COP25


  3. guytaur says:
    Tuesday, December 3, 2019 at 5:22 am

    Good Morning

    Labor’s election strategy. Blame the Greens be LNP lite and promote coal.

    Life is unfair Labor. Face the reality.



    I have no doubt you will deliver another day of anti Labor tweets and anti Labor press releases from the secret organization called the Greens.

  4. FredNK

    I have no doubt you are on a mission to accomplish Rupert Murdoch’s goal of destroying the Greens.

    All because you refuse to accept that Labor had successful Climate Policy

  5. Yet how to properly confront such deceit when so much of the media exists to facilitate rather than scrutinise or challenge the Conservative party? There is little if any demarcation between the Tory election apparatus and many British newspapers. They are one unified, integrated, ruthless machine – and should be treated as such. As front pages laud Johnson’s manipulation of a horrific incident, the pleas of Merritt’s father, David, go unanswered: “Don’t use my son’s death, and his and his colleague’s photos – to promote your vile propaganda. Jack stood against everything you stand for – hatred, division, ignorance.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/dec/02/tory-lies-democracy-labour-danger

  6. TUESDAY, 3 DECEMBER 2019

    The toll on New South Wales as of 1 December 2019 flowing from the Morrison Government’s refusal to take meaningful action on climate change

    If one looks at media records the year 2019 commenced with the odd isolated bushfire fire and continued in the same manner through to July when fire outbreaks began to increase.

    By early September major fire activity was occurring in the Clarence Valley and, by October it was obvious that northern NSW was going to go up in flames.

    When November came along many other regions were also battling huge unprecedented bushfires.

    The state toll as of 1 December 2019 was:

    https://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com/2019/12/the-toll-on-new-south-wales-as-of-1.html

  7. frednk,
    guytaur’s Green-serving historical revisionism is best ignored. He sings to the Green choir. As Cud Chewer said last night, Labor needs to concentrate on the low-information, time-poor voters and the intelligent ones who are sophisticated enough in their thinking to realise that Labor are not the Coalition when it comes to action taken to address Climate Change.

    Labor has to bring the nation with them and let them know that their future is in safe hands, and that will come from not simply pandering to the extremists on the Far Left who ‘demand’ Labor take action that the rest of the nation isn’t happy about taking.

    If that invokes sneers about ‘Centrism’, so be it.

  8. To use a moronic phrase about DNA that is beloved by the LNP; corruption is in the DNA of the LNP.

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/the-minister-the-ex-liberal-candidate-and-the-2-2-million-contract-20191202-p53g0c.html

    “Dr Glasson said he did not personally receive any money from the contract…” Of course he didn’t it would have been funnelled through offshore accounts.
    Or more likely as big fat fees, “”All I do is sit on the committee to decide where they are short of services,” he said.”

  9. C@tmomma @ #1114 Tuesday, December 3rd, 2019 – 7:16 am

    frednk,
    guytaur’s Green-serving historical revisionism is best ignored. He sings to the Green choir. As Cud Chewer said last night, Labor needs to concentrate on the low-information, time-poor voters and the intelligent ones who are sophisticated enough in their thinking to realise that Labor are not the Coalition when it comes to action taken to address Climate Change.

    Labor has to bring the nation with them and let them know that their future is in safe hands, and that will come from not simply pandering to the extremists on the Far Left who ‘demand’ Labor take action that the rest of the nation isn’t happy about taking.

    If that invokes sneers about ‘Centrism’, so be it.

    Leader-in-waiting Joel Fitzgibbon wants to align Labor with the Govts policy on climate change and energy.

  10. If the Tories win and the UK suffers brutal brexit, many lose their jobs and suffer increased poverty, they can at least be happy that they didn’t vote for the anti-semitic Labour Party.

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