Essential Research and Roy Morgan: more coronavirus polling

Two new polls suggest early skepticism about the threat posed by coronavirus is fast disappearing.

As reported by The Guardian, Essential Research has unusually conducted a new poll just a week after the last. This effectively replicates last week’s suite of questions on coronavirus to tie in with an online forum later today involving The Guardian’s Katharine Murphy and Essential Research’s Peter Lewis.

The results show a sharp rise in concern since last week, with 53% now saying they are very concerned, after the three previous fortnightly polls had it progressing from 25% to 27% to 39%. Only 18% now say they consider there has been an overreaction to the thread, down from 33% last week, while 43% now think the threat has been underestimated, up from 28%. These results imply little change to last week’s finding that 39% thought the response about right, though we will presumably have to await publication of the full report later today for a complete set of numbers. The poll also finds overwhelming support for the restrictive measures that have been taken. The rise in concern appears to have been matched by a decline in skepticism about media reportage, which 42% now say they trust, up from 35% last week.

Also out today is a Roy Morgan SMS poll on coronavirus, showing 43% support for the view that the federal government is handling the crisis well with 49% disagreeing — a rather weak result by international standards (it is noted that a similar poll in the United Kingdom a bit under a fortnight ago had it at 49% and 37%). This poll finds an even higher pitch of public concern than Essential, in that only 15% believed the threat to be exaggerated, with fully 81% disagreeing. Relatedly, 80% said they were willing to sacrifice some of their “human rights” to help prevent the spread of the virus (evidently having a somewhat different conception of that term from my own), with only 14% disagreeing. The poll was conducted on Saturday and Sunday from a sample of 988.

UPDATE: Full report from Essential Research here. The recorded increase in concern about the virus is not matched by a change in perceptions of the government’s handling of it, which 45% rate as good, unchanged on last week, and 31% rate as poor, up two. There is also a question on concern about climate change, which refutes the hopes of some conservative commentators in suggesting it has not been affected by the coronavirus crisis: 31% say they are more concerned than they were a year ago, 53% no more or less so, and 16% less concerned. However, the number of respondents saying Australia is not doing enough to address climate change is down from 60% in November to 55%, with doing enough up one to 23% and doing too much up one to 9%. The poll was conducted Thursday to Sunday from a sample of 1086.

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.

2,376 comments on “Essential Research and Roy Morgan: more coronavirus polling”

  1. I think that George Pell’s argument that he wouldn’t have had the opportunity to commit the offences described by the complainant within the times when he was in the sacristy at the cathedral, and that a reasonable jury therefore could not convict him, is very weak. The offences related by the complainant could easily have been completed within a matter of minutes. And as for the claim that the church was a “hive of activity”, with lots of people in the building who could potentially have walked into the sacristy at any time, which supposedly would have made it extremely unlikely that someone would attempt to commit a child sex offence in the sacristy – that, too, seems like a stupid claim. A not uncommon attribute of child sex offenders is that they can be quite brazen in their offending, with a willingness to commit offences despite the risk of detection. The scenario described by the complainant is plausible, not a “sheer unlikelihood” that would have to lead a reasonable jury to acquit.

  2. WA locks down, how to you get goods in and out. Park the trailer for a couple of days and let a truck pick up from the other side?

    If your going to do it properly you can’t have drivers come and go.

  3. One problem with the N95 mask supply in Australia is that the bushfires exhausted the emergency reserves and they didn’t replenish them fast enough.

  4. “If your going to do it properly you can’t have drivers come and go.”

    Well, were not going to do it properly.

    Gotta deal with the real world.

  5. E. G. Theodore:

    [‘Wearing an N95 mask “if you think you’re infectious” would be completely stupid. more or less pointless* and in the current situation wholly irresponsible’]

    Whilst I defer to your expert knowledge, given my great-nephew – inadvertently – coughed directly in the direction of my face tonight, I’ll see how I’m feeling in a couple of days and report back.

  6. There is a better option. Testing on a scale that the virus is all but eradicated within Australia – until such time as treatments or a vaccine mean we can safely relax our borders.

    I can’t see this happening to the point of “all but eradication”.

    You’re talking millions of test which, when finished, will have to start again. It’s the Paul Hogan strategy: endlessly painting the Harbour Bridge.

    We’d be spending all our time in testing queues. A living hell. Impossible.

  7. This does seem to be plausible:

    The hardest hit neighborhood in the hardest hit city in the hardest hit country is called Corona, Queens.

  8. Nicholas says:
    Thursday, April 2, 2020 at 10:42 pm

    Never having been in Catholic Church nor near a sacristy I guess I’m not in a position to evaluate what you say. However, I do know that people who intend to take sexual advantage of children are quite brazen. They assert themselves, relying on the innocence and powerlessness of their intended targets. I can recollect this from my own childhood, when I, who was then 7 and my younger brother, who was 5, were basically abducted by a man in his 20s. He who took us to a secluded place and forced us to expose ourselves to him. We had no idea at all about what this meant, but ‘new’ it had to be kept a secret. We were very vulnerable….frighteningly so. He had obviously spied upon his chance and took it.

  9. Maude Lynne:

    Titling a supposed piece of journalism “Did Scummo …” is hardly an encouragement to take it seriously.

    I think there should be an immediate and fully powered inquiry into the Cruise Ship fiasco and have said this since the day it came out. Stupidity such as above does not help that aim, even if if were to be proven wholly correct in its facts.

  10. I think there should be an immediate and fully powered inquiry into the Cruise Ship fiasco and have said this since the day it came out. Stupidity such as above does not help that aim, even if if were to be proven wholly correct in its facts.

    But… but… Dutts wants to let bygones be bygones. The Blame Game is SO negative, he reckons. No point in conducting witch hunts. Even Hadley agreed with him.

  11. Mavis says:
    Thursday, April 2, 2020 at 10:58 pm
    Compelling evidence from the victims of Pell et al tonight. Shocking! Just shocking!

    The whole priestly sham is gut-turning. It’s just such a huge racket at every level. So much exploitation, so organised, so calculated. So many vulnerable people manipulated and used for gratification of all kinds – sexual, financial, political, social, psychological. They are an abomination.

  12. It may be a combination of Liberal mates and/or their families and, say, American Hillsong members kicking on for some leisure time Downunder.

    Speaking of Hillsong, the “Unknowns” figure is quite high.

    Whatever is happening, we’re not being told about it.

  13. Fascinating:
    There may be a lower COVID death rate in countries with compulsory BCG immunisation (including till recently S Korea and Japan). AFAIK BCG was never compulsory in Australia and we relied on compulsory chest X-ray for TB control.
    (I’m one of the few Australians who is alright. I had a BCG shot in 1976. It was intensely painful and i had a discharging injection site for 18 months)

    https://fortune.com/2020/04/02/coronavirus-vaccine-tb-deaths/

  14. E. G. Theodore says:
    Thursday, April 2, 2020 at 10:47 pm

    This does seem to be plausible:

    The hardest hit neighborhood in the hardest hit city in the hardest hit country is called Corona, Queens.
    ————————-
    That is near where the US Open Tennis is played.

  15. “You’re talking millions of test which, when finished, will have to start again. It’s the Paul Hogan strategy: endlessly painting the Harbour Bridge.”

    In case you hadn’t noticed Bushfire, the Bridge hasn’t rusted away.

    As for your other remark. You don’t need to go somewhere and line up to get tested. They mail it to you.

  16. RI:

    I can see Pell getting up on appeal, which would be a travestry, having adversely affected so many. I’m sure that anal/oral rape by a dirty old man in control would be the utter pits. How one recovers from such is a mystery to me. Marists and St. John of God priests, brought from Ireland, appear to be the principal offfenders. I will, however, accept the decision of the HC.

  17. Mavis….I haven’t been following the Pell story. I have chosen to look away, I guess. I have a lot of confidence in the legal system, though I’m also well aware that justice and the law do not always coincide. He is an example of clerical corruption at its most powerful/most eminent. I hope the HC upholds his conviction….for the sake of his victims.

  18. Oakeshott Country, was the TB shot the one that came up like a blister? I have vague recollections of something like that from primary school.

  19. The sacristy (vestry) is the priest’s dressing room / office within a church building. It would be quite private. Parishioners would not be wondering in and out uninvited / without an appointment, especially in a major cathedral.

  20. US Jobless Claims Hit New Record

    The number of Americans filling for unemployment benefits jumped to 6.648 million in the week ended March 28th, a new record high and well above expectations of 3.5 million. The accommodation and food services sector was again the hardest hit as the Covid-19 crisis deepens in the world’s most affected country by the pandemic. The 4-week moving average, which removes week-to-week volatility, also jumped to an all-time high of 2.612 million as well as continuing jobless claims that hit a new record of 3.029 million.

    https://tradingeconomics.com/

  21. Aqua
    Could have been but you would likely only have got it if you were at high risk of TB. It may also have been a Mantoux test which was injected in the forearm and would blister if you had some immunity to TB

  22. Aqualung,
    It was a TB test ( to see if had come into contact with a carrier) which came up as a blister.
    The test was a scratch rest on your forearm.
    The nurses checked it on a return visit some days later.

    Edit: OC your info is better than my old recollections

  23. Steve777 I was an altar boy. I agree the sacresty was strictly off limits. Very rare to see anyone other than priests and altar boys in there. Would imagine a cathedral would have been stricter.
    It appears I and my fellow altar boys were lucky.
    The parish priests only interests outside of mass were his B&H, the CYO rugby league team and the sharks.
    An Irish priest got a young lady pregnant and left the priesthood.
    The rest were pretty innocuous afaik. Haven’t heard of anything about any of them in the rc.

  24. My brother was physically assaulted by the notorious Fr. MacAlinden in the sacristy but that was in tiny Aberdeen rather than St Patricks, Melbourne

  25. Unemployment claims in the US now total 10 million in a fortnight. Many workers are not insured, so this will understate the scale of job losses. Phenomenally fast destruction of jobs….

  26. OC and ML, that’s it. I had this vague feeling it was a scratch but wasn’t sure.
    I think it went away fairly quickly.
    Thanks.
    I remember the Sabin (?) oral dose for polio as well. Cherryish. Put me off cherries for a long time.

  27. RI:

    I too would prefer to look away. The legal system usually gets it right. That said, in Pell’s first trial his counsel argued that the complainants were complaining in order to profit themselves. Perhaps there were. That said, why would one subject one’s self to rigorous cross-examination by the likes of Richter? Further complaints are being leveled against Pell. Next week’s decision is by no means the end of Pell’s travails.

  28. Oakeshott Country says Thursday, April 2, 2020 at 11:13 pm

    Fascinating:
    There may be a lower COVID death rate in countries with compulsory BCG immunisation (including till recently S Korea and Japan). AFAIK BCG was never compulsory in Australia and we relied on compulsory chest X-ray for TB control.
    (I’m one of the few Australians who is alright. I had a BCG shot in 1976. It was intensely painful and i had a discharging injection site for 18 months)

    https://fortune.com/2020/04/02/coronavirus-vaccine-tb-deaths/

    The BCG vaccination was compulsory in WA when I was in High School. It was part of the rights of passage to hear terrifying stories from older students (I seem to recall words to the affect that the needle was the size of a water pipe), and then to pass similar stories on the next year. The actual experience itself was pretty mild. Note, we had a test sometime before hand to make sure we hadn’t already been exposed to TB.

    I’ve had a few vaccinations over the years, several when I had to go to the DRC, but the worst of them seems to be tetanus.

  29. Mavis says:
    Thursday, April 2, 2020 at 11:54 pm
    RI:

    I too would prefer to look away. The legal system usually gets it right. That said, in Pell’s first trial his counsel argued that the complainants were complaining in order to profit themselves.

    A truly appalling suggestion to make imo.

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