Miscellany: Newspoll state leaders ratings, trust in goverment and more

A second tranche of Newspoll results finds Daniel Andrews taking a coronavirus-related popularity hit but still doing well in absolute terms, with Gladys Berejiklian also down from earlier peaks.

It is apparently the case that Essential Research will, at long last, be including voting intention when it publishes its next survey next week. I also gather that it’s back to a fortnightly publication schedule after going to weekly for the first few months of the coronavirus crisis.


• My Newspoll post on Sunday night noted that the sample was an unusually high 1850, compared with the more normal 1500 to 1600. It turns out that this was done to juice up the New South Wales and Victorian sub-samples to 601 and 605 respectively, allowing The Australian to run a follow-up yesterday on the respective state governments’ handling of coronavirus. This predictably found a decline in Daniel Andrews’ numbers, though they remain high in absolute terms, with his approval down ten since a June 24-28 poll to 57%, and disapproval up the same amount to 37%. However, Gladys Berejiklian was also down four on approval to 64% and up four on disapproval to 30%, suggesting part of Andrews’ fall was purely gravitational. Andrews is still rated as having handled the virus well by 61% and poorly by 36%, compared with 72% and 25% from June 24-28 and 85% and 11% from April 21-26. However, the decline has been concentrated in the “very well” response, which has progressed from 51% to 32% to 27%. Berejiklian is at 68% for well (down eleven) and 26% for poorly (up ten). Scott Morrison is now doing better than both, at 72% well (down seven) and 24% poorly (up six) in New South Wales and 77% well (down four) and 20% poorly (up three) in Victoria. Results at national level found 76% saying they were more concerned about moving too quickly to relax lockdowns and restrictions, up four from May 13-16, compared with 20% saying they were more concerned about moving too slowly, down four. The poll was conducted Wednesday to Saturday.

• An academic survey conducted by the Democracy 2025 project, encompassing the United States, United Kingdom and Italy as well as Australia, records a dramatic increase in trust in the federal government (54%, compared with 29% in last year’s post-election Australian Election Study survey) and the public service (up from 38% to 54%), with smaller improvements recorded for the media (television up seven to 39%, newspapers up eight to 37% and radio up three to 41%). The survey was conducted from a sample of 1059 in May and June – small-sample state breakdowns provide another increment of evidence that Western Australia’s government is doing best of all out of the crisis.

• The Victorian Liberals have been spruiking internal robo-polling, apparently commissioned by Senator James Patterson, showing 65% to 70% disapproval of state government agreements with China as part of the latter’s “Belt and Road” initiative, based on a sample of 7000 respondents across seven marginal Labor-held seats.

• South Australian Attorney-General Vickie Chapman has confirmed the government will proceed with an attempt to introduce optional preferential voting in the state. Labor and the Greens are opposed, which will leave the fate of the proposal in the hands of upper house cross-benchers elected under the Nick Xenophon banner. A blog post by Antony Green tackles the issue with characteristic thoroughness. I gather they have thought better of clamping down on the dissemination of how-to-vote cards at polling booths, contrary to earlier reports.

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.

2,045 comments on “Miscellany: Newspoll state leaders ratings, trust in goverment and more”

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  1. lizzie @ #48 Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020 – 8:46 am

    It’s always someone else’s fault with Scott Morrison. Now apparently the reason the the COVID app hasn’t traced a single contact is because not enough people in the “communities where the Melbourne outbreak emerged” have downloaded the app. Sure, blame the people.

    And especially blame “Melbourne”. Because Gladys is as pure as the driven…


  2. President Donald Trump sought to paint a rosier picture of the coronavirus for the nation Tuesday but conceded the pandemic is likely to get worse for a time as he revived his daily briefings with an eye to halting a campaign-season erosion of support as new cases spike across the country.

    The early evening show at the White House came as the next stage of the federal government’s response to the pandemic was being crafted on Capitol Hill. Lawmakers and White House officials were opening negotiations on a trillion-dollar-or-more “phase four” rescue package.

    “It will probably unfortunately get worse before it gets better,” Trump said from the White House, but he also touted a reduction in deaths and progress on vaccines and treatments for COVID-19, which Trump referred to repeatedly as a the “China virus.” He also continued his belated encouragement of Americans to wear masks when social distancing is not possible, “Whether you like the mask or not, they have an impact.”

    “I’m getting used to the mask,” he said, pulling one out from his pocket, after months of suggesting that mask-wearing was a political statement against him.

  3. Here in Melbourne we have had outbreaks of covid at big distribution centres. This includes those delivering freight interstate.

    The borders between NSW and Victoria only closed barely 10 days ago. The virus has been circulating in NSW way before then.As evidenced now by the outbreaks all over the place.

    I dont know if it all stems from one source, but irrespective, wearing masks now would help a great deal, in stopping the spread.

  4. Thanks BK and Barney for our news roundup.
    Thanks for the correction , Scott-I had misread the job applications article and it is four a month.
    With so few jobs available, at a time when we are all supposed to be in this together, they can’t help but kick people when they are down.

  5. Fess

    Well now that Trump has given masks his tick of approval, Scotty will probably oblige and wear one. You know it makes sense.

  6. nath @ #40 Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020 – 8:40 am

    Just some harmless errors. Nothing deliberate:

    Three South Australian Liberal MPs, including two Cabinet ministers, will be forced to repay more than $70,000 of taxpayers’ money claimed in accommodation allowances.

    SA Premier Steven Marshall said the payments were claimed in error and denied there had been any deliberate wrongdoing.


    I think this excuse is starting to get a bit shop-soiled. It’s obvious that they were trying to get away with a scam on the taxpayer because being a greedy Liberal is in their political dna.

  7. Maude Lynne

    Yes from recollection, the hotels rep was at the press conference with CHO and GBerejiklian.
    That tells you everything in a nutshell.

  8. Victoria


    Well now that Trump has given masks his tick of approval, Scotty will probably oblige and wear one. You know it makes sense.

    He will definitely wear one when he visits the US for the G7 (as Trump’s invite) because he will be paranoid about catching covid19.
    Back here in Oz?
    Hmmm….not so much.

  9. Oh joy, we were regular eaters at the Windsor Castle prior to covid, but none of the family has been there since March : https://www.maitlandmercury.com.au/story/6843731/east-maitland-link-to-covid-infected-man-visited-popular-family-pub/?cs=12&utm_source=website&utm_medium=home&utm_campaign=latestnews

    And “If you were at the Windsor Castle Hotel in East Maitland on the evening of 13 July”
    should read
    “If you were at the Windsor Castle Hotel in East Maitland SINCE the evening of 13 July”

  10. sprocket_ @ #32 Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020 – 8:32 am


    Perhaps Trump is setting the grounds for a presidential pardon of Maxwell? Even so, this is a sideshow in the bigger event and probably wouldn’t shift numbers much.

    Ah, so as with Roger Stone, Donald ‘the Sexual Predator’ Trump, is telegraphing to Maxwell that if she refuses to talk he will pardon her.

    Frankly, I don’t think he’s going to be around long enough to do it and she’s smart enough to figure that out.

  11. Whilst here in Melbourne, the majority of transmission has been in workplaces such as aged care, hospitals, meat works, schools, distribution centres etc, in NSW it seems to be the pubs and clubs.

  12. Another comment on Morrison’s “people of Melbourne and the App” .

    Prior to the launch of this app, we were told by the PM that identity or location couldn’t be obtained by Government or agencies. So how would Morrison know this?

  13. Bucephalus says:
    Wednesday, July 22, 2020 at 9:00 am
    Why doesn’t Dan Andrews wear a mask all the time when speaking to the media?

    Why doesn’t Gladys Berejiklian ?

  14. KayJay – old Hekawi saying “never under estimate peoples stupidity”, but are they like very bad drivers who survive a crash they caused that kills everyone else?

  15. Okay everybody, I’m here to give you a Cud Chewer update. He’s still going strong but has been working on his HSR proposal and an Elimination strategy for COVID-19 with some mates. He still keeps an eye on PB and was very interested in the R discussion the other day. I don’t think he’d mind if I relayed his contribution to me:

    Regarding the recent PB discussion about R numbers. The figure of 1.4 for NSW is a model output based on assumptions of behaviour, not a calculation based on real data. This number is to be regarded with suspicion. Indeed, Norman Swan on a recent Coronacast also pointed out just how much uncertainty is in this kind of modelling simply because we really don’t have good intelligence on how people are actually behaving. I believe the 1.0 figure for Melbourne was also modelling output. There is also the issue of how the act of testing and tracing also changes the effective R, but that too is a dark art. The official who gave out these numbers was simply trying to give Sydney people a warning, but its a good example of the bloody awful public messaging going on.

    They desperately want to get Sydney under control. They realise they have overstepped the mark in terms of easing of restrictions. They realise that even the business lobby will turn against their suppression fantasies if Sydney does lock down.
    What do I think? I think its 60/40. 60 says the virus will go out of control until Sydney goes back into formal lock down. 40 says we get lucky.

    Next is an outbreak in a large office, a train or a pokies room. A pub and a church were too fucking obvious weren’t they? And still the “adults in the room” haven’t acknowledged the consequences of aerosol spread.

    Speaking of Gladys and NSW. I said a long time ago (or so it seems) on PB that the problem with “suppression” is that the system you are trying to control is extremely unstable (remember my formal background includes control theory and mathematical modelling).
    The lie being sold is that you can ease restrictions, observe the effect, ease restrictions again and so on. Until you have achieved what is technically called a setpoint. A certain number of cases that you find acceptable. The problem here is that the system you are trying to control not only has hidden variables and large delays (in engineering, every time you see a system with large delays between control inputs and controlled outputs, you start worrying), but also there are super spreaders and random luck.
    In simple terms, its an incredibly fucking stupid and dangerous thing to sell to an entire country the idea that we can return to near normal and that we have the capability to suppress outbreaks without major consequences. We can’t.

    You can easily go several months into easing of restrictions, thinking you have everything under control. Whilst in reality all you’ve done is prime the system for explosive growth. You have a lot of people doing normal things, socialising, dropping their guard and all you then need is a spark. Its very clear from the outbreaks we already have around Sydney that we are already way past the level of restriction easing that might have corresponded to a stable form of suppression. Indeed, the closer you are to elimination (Sydney probably only had a small handful of actual carriers a few weeks ago) the more meaningless this form of control actually is. In short, we’ve already over-eased. We’re walking back easing of restrictions and what Gladys is attempting to do via begging is to effectively reintroduce restrictions without having to call them that.

    Ergo, stable suppression requires a crippled economy.

    As you can see, Cud is still in tip top form. 🙂

  16. C@tmomma (Block)
    Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020 – 7:13 am
    Comment #79

    Okay everybody, I’m here to give you a Cud Chewer update.

    Good to know he’s ok.

  17. Terminator @ #77 Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020 – 9:13 am

    KayJay – old Hekawi saying “never under estimate peoples stupidity”, but are they like very bad drivers who seem to survive a crash they caused that kills everyone else?

    ♫♪♫Thanks ♫ for ♪ the ♫ memories ♫

    Where (we’re) the fek ………

    Big day today mowing the carpet and then more lawn vacuuming.

    Toodles. 😎

  18. A comment on The Guardian website re: Senate Select Committee, Administration of Sports Grants:

    Phil Gaetjens has just been forced to admit that the terms of reference he had for his “review” of SportsRort meant that he was not able to consider the actions of anyone except Bridget McKenzie. What a jack-up. Now, hopefully Bridget McKenzie will realise what a patsy she has become, and start telling the truth about what really happened.


  19. Oh FGS. Is it true that you can get any legal advice you want, if you’re prepared to pay?

    Institute of Public Affairs
    · 15h
    BREAKING – Vic Police’s decision not to issue fines to 10,000 people who attended the June 6 Black Lives Matter protest in Melbourne’s CBD may have been unlawful, according to legal advice prepared for the IPA by leading workplace relations QC Stuart Wood.

  20. One thing I would add to cuds observations, is that human behaviour is always factored into the modelling regarding the spread of infectious diseases.

    Modelling input of certain behaviours and compliance can give a fairly accurate picture of how a virus spreads and cant be controlled.

  21. The IPA were crying and screaming for all businesses to be reopened barely a few weeks after first lockdown. Not a care about the virus running rampant.

    Basically saying old people have lived long enough.

    As always they go to the culture wars to garner support for their elitist agenda.

    FO. I say

  22. Seems unlikely, when police have some element of discretion, to say a decision not to prosecute is unlawful.

    By contrast, the NSW police have to object to the large gatherings because not to do and then expose their officers to some element of risk of known harm would be actionable.

  23. C@tmomma
    Thanks for the Cud update.
    Cud good luck with your high speed rail.

    The Liberals have a choice, drive the economy into the ground or start some big projects that make the snowy look small.

  24. Barney in Tanjung Bunga says:
    Wednesday, July 22, 2020 at 9:07 am
    “Bucephalus @ #65 Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020 – 7:00 am

    Why doesn’t Dan Andrews wear a mask all the time when speaking to the media?
    Because he is maintaining clear social distancing during those events.“

    But the rule is that if you are in public- even by yourself in the middle of a football field you have to wear a mask – there isn’t a social distancing exception.

  25. Bucephalus you have to be a small minded Victorian Liberal.
    If we are going to get out of this it has to be big picture big thinking, not small minded crap.
    If I wanted yapping I would buy a Pomeranian.

  26. Why doesn’t Dan Andrews wear a mask all the time when speaking to the media?
    probably for the same reason teachers are not required to wear them.

  27. C@tmomma says:
    Wednesday, July 22, 2020 at 9:17 am
    Scott @ #75 Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020 – 9:10 am

    Bucephalus says:
    Wednesday, July 22, 2020 at 9:00 am
    Why doesn’t Dan Andrews wear a mask all the time when speaking to the media?

    Why doesn’t Gladys Berejiklian ?
    Or Steven Marshall? Or Peter Gutwein? Or Scott Morrison? Or Josh Frydenburg?

    If they are in Victoria they should follow the Victorian rules.

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