Eden-Monaro: more private polling

Two more privately conducted polls lean the other way from the party polling circulated last week, showing Labor leading in an apparently tight race.

The Australian reports on two private polls of Eden-Monaro with contrary results to last week’s mystery internal polling related on Sky News, which showed the Liberals with a comfortable lead. A poll conducted by the Australia Institute reportedly has Labor leading 53-47, with reported primary votes of Labor 36.5%, Liberal 29.9%, Nationals 6.1%, Greens 8.1% and Shooters 6.5% – it’s unclear if the 12.9% balance includes an undecided component. The sample size was 643, with no field work dates provided. Labor was also credited with a 52-48 lead in a uComms robopoll the Australian Forest Products Association, but the only primary votes provided are for the smaller parties (Nationals 6.7%, Greens 6.3%, Shooters 3.6%). The poll was conducted Tuesday from a sample of 816.

UPDATE: The poll was conducted bu uComms, like the one discussed below – the undecided rate was 8.1%. The 53-47 result was based on 2019 preferneces; a separate respondent-allocated result had it at 54-46. Full results here.

The report in The Australian leans hard on the notion that Shooters Fishers and Farmers’ decision to put Labor ahead of the Coalition on its how-to-vote card is set to hand the seat to Labor, but last year’s federal election results suggests this overstates their impact. The party run eight lower house candidates across three states, whose branches jumped different ways on preferences. In the one seat the party contested in New South Wales, Calare, preferences went to Labor ahead of the Coalition, maintaining a habit the state branch first acquired at the March state election. However, less than half of the party’s voters took the advice, with preferences splitting 55.0-45.0 in favour of the Nationals.

In Western Australia, where Shooters directed voters to put Coalition candidates ahead of Labor, the split in favour of the Liberals was actually even weaker in the suburban seats of Burt (54.4-45.6) and Cowan (52.3-47.7), and only moderately stronger in Forrest (62.3-37.7), Pearce (59.6-40.4) and Hasluck (63.3-36.7). Two of the strongest flows to the Coalition were in the Victorian seats the party contested (67.6-32.4 in Mallee, 62.8-37.2 in Gippsland), where voters were advised to make up their own minds — probably reflecting the fact that these were rural seats traditionlly dominated by the Nationals. On even the most generous reading, Shooters preferences might make one point of difference to the 53-47 headline from the Australia Institute, and not even that much from the uComms poll, which recorded only weak primary vote support for the party.

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.

24 comments on “Eden-Monaro: more private polling”

  1. Would be a very good result for Labor if they were able to pull off 53-47. It would have to suggest that tensions over bushfire recovery have not been forgotten in a seat where that had such a large impact – COVID isn’t everything.

  2. I spent most of last week in EM including the Snowy Mountains. I was shocked how dry the Monaro region south of Queanbeyan is, the dust was similar to what you would expect in the middle of summer. Things get better closer to the coast apparently but the dryness inland wont help the climate change denier Fiona Kotvojs’ chances. According to relatives and friends in the Queanbeyan area even though she stood in 2019 Fiona Kotvojs is not as well known as Kristy McBain due to the laters profile during the bush fires.

  3. Boerwar,

    The Monaro Plains south of Queanbeyan are in the rain shadow of the Great Diving Range. Rainfall totals on the plains are usually significantly lower than other surrounding areas closer to the coast and up near Canberra. It wouldn’t surprise me if a lot, if not all of the Monaro plains themselves are still actually in drought.

    That could also play a part in the seat going against the government

  4. Tom:

    With the Libs increasing the Dole I suspect an early election…

    Extremely doubtful, the next half-Senate election cannot be held before 1 July 2021.

  5. T

    You have a point. Just checked some figures.

    YTD rainfall for Queanbeyan is right about average.

    YTD rainfall for Cooma is about half the average.

    That said I doubt whether Kotvojs’ climate science denialism will shift many votes on the Monaro! (We have previously done HTV in Cooma & Michelago.)

  6. https://joshbutler.substack.com/p/covid-latest-eden-monaro-by-election

    COVID Latest: Eden-Monaro By-Election Hit By Coronavirus Fake Email Hoax
    Friday: uni fees to double; landlord vs tenant assault over COVID repayment plan
    Josh Butler

    Morning! It’s Friday, June 19. Here is today’s ‘5+5: coronavirus edition’ — 5 things to know about COVID-19 today, + 5 non-corona things as well.

    ………………………..

    Eden-Monaro hoax emails link election to COVID

    A by-election for the federal seat of Eden-Monaro will be held on July 4, after the retirement of former local member Mike Kelly. The campaign has been marred by a series of outrageous and wildly false emails targeting the Labor candidate, Kristy McBain. The ABC has previously reported on chain emails being sent around Australia which falsely link McBain “with the George Pell court case and the COVID-19 pandemic” and “also claim the people of Eden-Monaro are being punished by God with bushfires” (link).

    Now, further emails — purporting to come from Catholic-linked organisations — have again (falsely) claimed McBain was diagnosed with coronavirus, that her staff on the campaign trail are not respecting social distancing and potentially spreading COVID, and that progressive campaign organisation GetUp! is also somehow involved.

    I’ve spoken to McBain’s campaign and GetUp!, and both say every one of the claims made about them are utter bullshit.

  7. Only a complete idiot would send these emails if they thought they would damage Mcbain’s campaign. They need to track down the sender, I have my suspicions, these emails are only helping Mcbain so it would not surprise me if the senders are from the left side of politics and think they are really smart.

  8. If another media report is correct in claiming that 2/3 of the Victorian ALP’s membership are the result of power hungry “branch stacking” by factional individuals, that would mean today’s reported 16,000 ALP members in Victoria in real terms is more like a bit over 5,000 real members. The latter figure is hardly a healthy number for one of the two major political parties in Australia. One has to wonder if the Liberal and National parties are any healthier than the ALP.

  9. Boerwar – thanks for checking the rainfall stats for Cooma etc. The paddocks aren’t bare earth like during the millennium draught but the grass is very dry. I think the conditions probably appeared worse to me as the lower Hunter is as green as and I am even still being eaten by mossies at the winter solstice!

    Not surprised but still disappointed to hear of the HTV in Cooma & Michelago.

    The Ucomms poll does show climate change concern (25% – possibly lower due to the 8% from bushfire recovery???) second to the economy (31%) which interestingly appears to bolstered by the 18-34 age group. I guess they want jobs and I can’t help feeling if employment was an option in the question then the economy would have ranked lower.

  10. McBain is joke! Look at the actual track record at BVSC…. She has cut $500,000 from community services as her first decision! Yet never commented on the issue….. Her whole campaign leans too heavily on ‘where was Scott’. Bottom of the barrell. Let’s not forget how the election came about. Mike Kelly lies, too sick to serve the community but capable to work for multi million dollar security company.

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