Newspoll: 51-49 to Coalition

The first Newspoll in three weeks records a coronavirus-related surge in personal support for Scott Morrison, familiar from international experience.

Courtesy of The Australian, the first Newspoll in what has been a dramatic three weeks finds the Coalition restoring its two-party lead, now at 51-49 after being the other way around last time. On the primary vote, the Coalition is up two to 42%, Labor down two to 34%, the Greens up one to 13% and One Nation up one to 5%.

These changes are modest compared to the leaders’ ratings, which, as Kevin Bonham notes in comments, produce the strongest improvements in Newspoll history for a prime minister on both personal ratings and preferred prime minister. Morrison’s approval rating is up 20 to 61%, with disapproval down 18 to 35%, and his preferred prime minister lead has blown out from 42-38 to 53-29. However, Anthony Albanese’s ratings have also improved, up five on approval to 45% and down four on disapproval to 36%. Eight-six per cent of respondents expressed approval for the JobKeeper scheme with 10% disapproving, with 64% rated the $130 billion expenditure the right amount, compared with 14% for not enough and 16% for too much.

The poll also repeated a suite of questions on coronavirus and the government’s response that featured in the last Newspoll three weeks ago. The headline findings are that 84% profess themselves worried (up eight) and 14% confident (down six) about the impact of the virus on the Australian economy; 41% are confident (down six) and 57% worried (up six) about the preparedness of the public health system; 67% are confident (up four) and 32% worried (down three) about information available on how to protect one’s self; 47% are confident (down fourteen) and 33% worried (down fourteen) about the performance of federal and state governments in managing the economic impact; 59% are confident (up eight) and 28% worried (down five) about governments’ preparation of the public health system to cope; and 75% are confident (up ten) and 20% worried (down eight) about governments’ performance in informing Australians how to protect themselves.

Sixty-seven per cent professed themselves worried about catching the virus, 38% about higher government debt, 36% about job loss, 35% about falling superannuation balance, 15% about house prices falling and 7% about none of the above. The poll was conducted Wednesday to Friday, a subtle shift from its usual field work period of Wednesday to Saturday, from a sample of 1508.

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.

812 comments on “Newspoll: 51-49 to Coalition”

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  1. Ruby Princess decisions by those responsible for our health leaves me wondering what they do to deserve these privileged positions with salary and status.

    Reminds me of a horse virus that came into Australia via Sydney a few years back. Stallions from Japan worth a fortune were ill because a breach of quarantine had happened prior to embarcation. No one could make a decision to put these thoroughbreds down resulting in a complete shut down of our racing industry for over 6 months when the virus got out and spread like wildfire. Cost M$100s. Mass unemployment. Racing cancelled for months.
    You would think if people accept the authority and responsibility to make these decision that they would have the courage to do the right thing and quickly when difficult decisions arise.

  2. Mr Ed
    “You would think if people accept the authority and responsibility to make these decision that they would have the courage to do the right thing and quickly when difficult decisions arise.”

    The people who get into those jobs get there specifically because they have a black belt in arse covering, have no interest in doing the right thing unless it enhances their career prospects and are incapable of making a fast or difficult decision about anything because if they do they know they will fuck it up. Making a decision is the last resort.

  3. Mr Ed, that is the concern. With an eviscerated Australian Public Service, and politicised leadership thereof, who is in a position to provide frank and fearless advice to the Government of the day?

    If I cast my mind back to Howard with the excising of the Commonwealth Employment Service. Easy to do as times were good. Hard to reinstate when times get tough.

  4. C@t

    The Saturday AM program had an interview with two guys.
    Talking about the end game.
    One of them a guy called John Daley from the Grattan Institute that talked about the possibility of eradication and the need for mass testing. He generally made a lot of sense.
    The other a guy called Peter, an infectious diseases expert from the ANU, who didn’t sound so convincing and was on 7:30 tonight frothing at the mouth saying our current situation is too restrictive.

    segment starts at 8:10


    The older you are, the more likely you are to both vote Republican and die from the coronavirus. Voters aged 80+ are 80 times more likely to die from the coronavirus than those under 40 (16% fatality rate vs. ~0.2%).
    This effect is strong enough that people who voted for Trump in the 2016 election are around 30% more likely to die from the coronavirus than Democrats. In some swing states from the 2016 election, such as Pennsylvania, if the coronavirus were to run wild, this effect alone could have wiped out up to 30% of the gap between Republicans and Democrats in the 2016 election.

  6. One stat I find interesting is the speed at which Australia is adding people to the “recovered” list.
    Of 5,797 total cases, 2,432 are now recovered. That’s 42%. That’s encouraging.

  7. “Authorities in New York City may soon start temporarily burying bodies in parks as the city grapples with overrun morgues because of the coroanvirus crisis, city councilman Mark Levine said.”


  8. Just 51% for the Coalition, after adjusting the calculation of the 2PP from primary votes twice (once before and once after the 2019 federal election) in favour of the Coalition?…. Pretty worrying, isn’t it?

    Oh, but ScuMo is going up…. why? Too much TV exposure plus a bit of a spending spree?…. May be, just wait for the Big Squeeze post-coronavirus, then we will see how “likeable” ScuMo is and where the Coalition 2PP is going to go….

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