Newspoll: 51-49 to Labor

A favourable reaction to the budget yields no benefit to the Coalition on voting intention, according to the latest Newspoll.

The Australian reports Labor has retained its 51-49 lead in the post-budget poll, from primary votes of Coalition 41% (unchanged), Labor 36% (down two), Greens 12% (up two) and One Nation 2% (down one). Scott Morrison is down a point on approval to 58% and up one on disapproval to 38%, while Anthony Albanese is respectively down one to 39% and up three to 46%, which equals his worst ever net rating from Newspoll. Morrison’s lead as preferred prime minister is little changed at 55-30, compared with 56-30 last time.

Regarding the budget, the poll found 44% of respondents expecting it would be good for the economy compared with 15% for bad. On the question of the its personal impact, the better off and worse off responses both scored 19%, with a strikingly high 62% unable to say. There was presumably also a question on whether the opposition would have done a better job, as per Newspoll’s long-established practice — I’ll add that and any further detail as it becomes available.

UPDATE: The poll was conducted Thursday to Sunday from a sample of 1506. No result yet for the “would the opposition have done better” question, probably because The Australian is saving it for tomorrow. Out of 34 post-budget Newspolls going back to 1988, this is the eighth best result for impact on personal finances and the sixth best for impact on the economy.

The chart below plots the one series against the other, with the present result shown in red. This is near the trendline, suggesting no particular tendency for the budget’s economic impact to be seen as more positive (as tended to be the case in the Howard goverment’s early budgets) than the personal impact (which rated higher in the last three budgets), relative to the favourable reception for the budget overall.

The best received budgets mostly came during the golden age of government revenue from 2004 to 2008: the best of all, on both personal and economic impact, was the one that preceded the Howard government’s defeat in 2007.

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.

587 comments on “Newspoll: 51-49 to Labor”

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  1. [‘Cases of syphilis are exploding across Melbourne’s outer suburbs with health officials worried a 220 per cent spike in infections of the sexually transmitted infection among women means an “epidemic is in place”.

    New data compiled by the Department of Health showed the city’s outer western and southeastern suburbs were the worst hit with rising infections across Brimbank, Melton and Casey.

    Epidemiologist associate professor Eric Chow said there had been a 45 per cent increase in notified syphilis cases. They had increased from 950 cases in 2015 to 1375 cases in 2018, he said.

    “The epidemic, which was once focused on gay men in inner Melbourne, has now become much more generalised and has spread to the outer suburbs,” he said.

  2. Mavis

    I wonder how many carpets Scotty from Carpeting (I pinched that) has ordered.
    And from whom? A closed tender from a liberal donor?
    Or maybe they carry it on the plane?

  3. Mavis says Monday, May 17, 2021 at 11:03 pm

    He flew on his private tax payer funded RAAF jet to Williamtown. A photo of Mr Morrison walking off the plane was posted to his Instagram, showing the PM – wearing a suit, blue tie and face mask – walking along a red carpet, as up to 10 men and women in RAAF uniforms stood to attention.

    I fixed it for them

  4. guytaur says Monday, May 17, 2021 at 7:08 pm


    That’s what vaccines are for.

    BB’s post is about those infected.
    There are a lot of people already living with HIV/AIDS and Cancer who would appreciate getting off chemicals and being in remission.

    Of course a media report doesn’t mean much as MediaWatch has had to repeatedly point out.

    Edit: I just realised you could be referring to Zerlo. Sorry.

    Maybe the media needs to cite a technology readiness level* with each announcement of some new wonder drug, technology, etc.


  5. The imagery of Scotty arriving from his plane on a red carpet was no accident. The whole scene was carefully pre-planned by his PR crew. They wanted to make him look like a leader of stature.

  6. How irresponsible and uncaring is this. Corporate bastards.

    ‘Open borders, even if some die’: Virgin boss
    ‘We can’t keep Covid out forever,’ Virgin CEO warns, saying international borders must reopen so Australia isn’t left behind.


  7. Rossmcg:

    Monday, May 17, 2021 at 11:24 pm

    I don’t know but he’s certainly showing a penchant for the trappings of office. Imagine if Gillard, Rudd, Turnbull had done similarly; the Murdochcrazy would have it on the front page of all their rags.

  8. Westminster Voting Intention:

    CON: 43% (+1)
    LAB: 32% (-2)
    LDM: 8% (=)
    GRN: 5% (+1)
    SNP: 4% (-1)

    Via @SavantaComRes, 14-16 May.
    Changes w/ 7-9 May.

  9. Any UK-wide poll that mentions the SNP vote to the nearest % is useless. They don’t run in 90% of seats, and get enough to win most of the others, so a change from 5% to 4% is rounding error gone crazy.

  10. The Scott Morrison red carpet moment, the prophetic indication of things to come. ( at the next election)
    Morrison showing signs of blurring the role between pop star and PM!

  11. guytaursays:
    Tuesday, May 18, 2021 at 12:42 am

    You mean the USA should punish those who send disinformation.

    It is their responsibility to end fake Covid information.

  12. Shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers has indicated Australia’s welfare bill would not rise significantly under a Labor government, with the opposition instead proposing to use national cabinet to work with state and territory leaders to tackle disadvantage.

    In a speech to be delivered at the Australian Council of Social Service post-budget conference on Tuesday, Dr Chalmers will criticise the federal budget for failing to do enough to help struggling households despite a $74.6 billion spending splurge.

  13. Pukka
    From the article
    Teddy Sweeney, 18, has been looking at moving out of home while she is at university, but is too daunted to buy in the current market. “I can’t even bring myself to go to an auction or a sale, I don’t even think anyone my age can even think about having that kind of money,” she said.


  14. How irresponsible and uncaring is this. Corporate bastards.

    ‘Open borders, even if some die’: Virgin boss
    ‘We can’t keep Covid out forever,’ Virgin CEO warns, saying international borders must reopen so Australia isn’t left behind.

    I guess that’s one way to differentiate your product from Qantas… PASS!

    “Some of you are going to die / Martyrs of course to the freedom that I shall provide” — Genesis, “The Knife”

  15. This is Porter protecting himself (with Morrison’s help) ahead of 4Corners report, I believe.

    Brittany Higgins
    · 22h
    Parliament House staff have been cautioned to stay silent when approached by media or face the consequences.

    DPS staff who now speak publicly “could be found in breach of the code of conduct as well as the Criminal Code Act, which carries a prison term of up to two years”.…

  16. “Mavissays:
    Monday, May 17, 2021 at 8:12 pm
    It’s also been referred to as “The Napoleon Complex”, where the sufferer suffers an inferiority complex. To compensate, a person crowns himself,
    wears royal purple garments, and engages in inveterate lying – eg, “I was robbed in 1815”.”

    In modern times , it can be referred to as “The Trump Complex”,where the sufferer suffers an inferiority complex. To compensate, a person crowns himself,
    wears royal purple garments, and engages in inveterate lying – eg, “I was robbed in 2020”. 🙂

  17. When Boris sounds like the voice of reason, you know there is something seriously wrong with Scotty from Bunnings:

    The two leaders had a phone hook-up last Friday ahead of next month’s G7 meeting, which the UK is hosting and Australia (along with South Korea, India and South Africa) is invited to attend.

    Climate change was among the issues the two leaders discussed, but the exact nature of that discussion was less clear.

    According to the Prime Minister’s Office, Scott Morrison talked about addressing climate change and spruiked his “technology, not taxes” approach:

    “They discussed efforts to address climate change and pathways towards net zero, including reducing emissions through technology.”

    But it would seem the technology plan didn’t strike Boris Johnson as that remarkable.
    The equivalent statement from Downing Street suggested the discussion about climate had quite a different focus.

    “The Prime Minister emphasised the importance of all countries setting ambitious targets to cut carbon emissions, and encouraged Australia to commit to reaching net zero by 2050 which will deliver clean jobs and economic growth.”

  18. Rafael Epstein
    “Tax Torture” screams @heraldsun

    It’s an extra $500 land tax on a $2 million property you don’t live in

    And an extra $2000 tax when you buy your $2.2 million home.

    The newspaper for who?

  19. Jeez BK, don’t you realise that you are our National Treasure? You have no right to nod off! Mate, in place of our daily paper delivery of yesteryear, your post obviates the need to don slippers and dressing gown and walk outside in the rain and cold to collect our daily bread from the paper boy/girl. What’s more, your labours give us a compilation from various sources. I dub thee Sir BK.

  20. How irresponsible and uncaring is this. Corporate bastards.

    ‘Open borders, even if some die’: Virgin boss
    ‘We can’t keep Covid out forever,’ Virgin CEO warns, saying international borders must reopen so Australia isn’t left behind.
    The same people who have this sort of attitude were the ones screaming the loudest about deaths due to the installation of Pink Batts.

    However it’s ok if you actions indirectly kill people – think Abbotts cutting of red tape that caused a bump in the number of truck driver deaths. Any defence of smoking, asbestos, fast food, sugar, etc.

    The difference is that the left truly cares about the health and safety of the worker, the right only looks at the cost of not doing so.

  21. Re Bucephalus @12:00

    Westminster Voting Intention…

    Those numbers suggest a Centre-Left : Right split of 49-43, with 8% voting for someone else.

  22. News Breakfast
    @NormanSwan believes Australia should look at Singapore who has gone into a lockdown over the weekend after reopening its borders.

    “If we open up any sooner than 80% or 90% [of the population vaccinated] we’re going to be like Taiwan, Singapore and have national lockdowns.”

  23. Exclusive
    Australia votes
    Voters warn PM not to rush to early election
    Only one in five voters think Scott Morrison should go to an early poll while 59 per cent prefer an election next year, sending a warning to the government as Liberals debate whether to race to the ballot box.
    32 minutes ago


    Media giving Scotty a helping hand

  24. News Breakfast
    @Jordonsteele calls out Virgin CEO Jayne Hrdlicka’s comments that some may die if international borders reopen but it will be smaller than the flu.

    “Just accepting people may die, as a disabled person who is part of that community, that is extraordinarily offensive language.”

  25. “Parliament House staff have been cautioned to stay silent when approached by media or face the consequences.”

    Feels like the hand of Lisa Wilkinson is about.

    Good idea – talking to media will benefit the suspect over anyone else.

  26. Good morning Dawn Patrollers

    NSW Liberal MPs will wait until the outcome of this weekend’s Upper Hunter byelection before counselling Gareth Ward to consider his political future as he faces sexual violence allegations.
    Jennifer Duke tells us that Jim Chalmers has indicated Australia’s welfare bill would not rise significantly under a Labor government, with the opposition instead proposing to use national cabinet to work with state and territory leaders to tackle disadvantage.
    China could be the first country to get old before it gets rich and the implications are profound, posits Peter Hartcher.
    Australia’s policy U-turn on China came after the intelligence community identified alarming Chinese designs on corrupting our political system. But were they the right responses, explores Max Suich in a long essay.
    According to Rachel Clun, Australians struggling with their mental health will be able to call a new national hotline that will book them in for treatment in a bid to unify Australia’s fractured mental health system across eight states and territories. She says Scott Morrison and Daniel Andrews have been consulting closely on reform ahead of the Commonwealth’s commitment to have a national mental health agreement by November.
    Australian universities are dying, and no one is coming to save them, complains Jenna Price.
    Economist Stephen Hamilton tells us why he loves Josh Frydenberg’s budget in all its big-spending glory.
    John Quiggin declares that we need an entirely new approach to fiscal policy.
    Paul Bongiorno reckons playing cat and mouse on tax serves the nation poorly.
    Michael Pascoe writes, “No, Virginia, the trillion-dollar debt isn’t free”.
    Peter van Onselen says, “In the wake of the pandemic – which globally is still charging on – we no longer even pretend that getting the budget under control is a priority. Far from it in fact. Despite revenue already exceeding pre-pandemic levels in the budget, spending has and will continue to balloon such that even the pretence of paying back debt won’t start anytime this decade.”
    Phil Coorey reports that Morrison has said plans by the Victorian government to increase property taxes by $2.5 billion to help pay down debt will harm confidence in the already badly shaken state and should serve as a warning against voting for federal Labor.
    The AFR’s editorial wonders, “Is the internal contest of ideas inside a more tribalised Liberal Party no longer about Wet versus Dry economics, and really about culture war social issues?”
    Australia is unlikely to ever go back to pre-GFC interest rates. We can’t afford to, says Greg Jericho.
    The budget is a sugar hit from a prime minister who thinks that microeconomic reforms to pay for it are vanity projects, writes Craig Emerson who points out that Australians have more debt per person than with Whitlam or Rudd – and not for a lot.
    Mike Foley describes how Australia’s new agricultural climate policy is set to deliver a world-first scheme within the next year where farmers can earn and trade credits for environmental gains as well as for carbon offsets, according to an architect of the scheme.
    Our politicians are right: we can’t control the virus, but we can control how Australia prepares for a world in which we learn to live with it says the SMH editorial which urges for governments to start planning for it now.
    The second year of the pandemic is even more deadly. Australians in India are being abandoned, laments John Dwyer.
    Queensland researchers, working alongside a US team of scientists, have developed an antiviral treatment that cut the COVID-19 viral load in infected mice by 99.9 per cent.
    Worryingly, Josh Butler reports that COVID has “supercharged” Australian anti-vaxxer and conspiracy theory communities online, digital experts warn, with fears a 300 per cent explosion in membership of such Facebook groups could derail the vaccine rollout. Bloody Facebook!
    While Australia has excelled at keeping the virus at bay, it seems to be falling behind the rest of the world in its understanding of what the vaccines can do., writes Matthew Knott who says Australia needs to sop downplaying the vaccines.
    Former NSW magistrate Greg Hepburn discusses the question, “Why should Jarryd Hayne’s crime against a woman get a lesser sentence than Cody Ward’s drug offences?”
    Matthew Elmas writes that motorists could end up paying more money for petrol under a new government plan to pay oil companies up to $2.3 billion to bolster Australia’s fuel security.
    China hasn’t been able to hurt the Australian producers of the two big commodities that really matter. If this is a trade war, Australia is winning its first phase quite handsomely, says Stephen Bartholomeusz.
    Stephen Duckett tells us that, hidden in the 2021-22 Budget papers was an announcement that the government had squibbed an opportunity to reduce private health insurance premiums by ending a protection racket involving private device manufacturers and importers, and private hospitals.
    John Kehoe reports that the government will shake up its reverse mortgage product so more retirees can fund their post-work lifestyles while remaining in their home.
    The nation’s medicines regulator is looking at a plan to give Australians more freedom to access contraceptive pills via their pharmacists without a doctor’s prescription. The Therapeutic Goods Administration is asking for public feedback by next week on two applications to reclassify the active ingredients in a range of commonly prescribed contraceptives, writes Emma Koehn.
    Peter Dutton has insulated his ministerial office from interference by Defence, accepting only the bare minimum of departmental staff as he prepares to shake up his $44bn portfolio. The Australian has learned the Defence Minister has allowed just two departmental liaison officers and a uniformed aide-de-camp to work on his staff, in stark contrast to his predecessor Linda Reynolds whose office was stacked with Defence bureaucrats.
    A “colossal waste” and a “theme park” are some of the words used to describe the Australian War Memorial’s controversial redevelopment project in a stack of new submissions recently made public, reports Sarah Basford-Canales.
    Doug Dingwall tells us how federal agencies are spending tens of millions of dollars and employing hundreds of labour hire workers as staffing caps imposed by the government stop them from hiring more public servants, new figures show. Fixation with headcounts is such a damaging thing.
    Lawyers for Christian Porter have accused the ABC of dragging its feet to avoid a trial date in the former attorney general’s high-stakes defamation case against the national broadcaster, reports Michael McGowan.
    Last Thursday, the New Liberals filed an application with the Australian Electoral Commission, seeking de-registration of the Liberal Party of Australia, writes Victor Kline who says The Liberal Party is far from liberal.,15093
    The Biden administration will soon begin sending COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in the United States to other needy countries, starting with 20 million doses next month.
    Taiwan, Singapore and South Korea all flattened the curve with contact-tracing and quarantine. Now, their sluggish vaccination programs are being questioned, explain Eryk Bagshaw and Chris Barrett. A lesson there perhaps?
    Harriett Alaxander writes that the National Resources Commission has warned that the management of Sydney’s water supply is flawed and may compromise economic growth.
    The Royal Commission’s first report elegantly articulated the problems that needed to be fixed. The Royal Commission’s final report was full of inconsistencies but had something for everybody. The ‘winners and losers’ have now been revealed in the government response and 2021 budget – and surprisingly, they are not who the government would like you to think they are, explain Anita Westera and Kathy Eagar.
    Residents have complained that fees will rise by up to 40 per cent in some areas of three merged Sydney councils, while other suburbs will save hundreds of dollars a year.
    The New York Times’ Patrick Kinsey explains why the Israeli-Palestinian conflict exploded again.
    Joe Biden’s silence in the face of Israeli violence is a disgrace, says Moustafa Bayoumi.
    Amy Maguire asks, “Why is accountability for alleged war crimes so hard to achieve in the Israel-Palestinian conflict?”
    Documents released under Freedom of Information reveal Australia approved 103 military export permits to UAE and Saudi during the Yemen war – and denied just three permit applications. Michelle Fahy investigates Australia’s escalating export trade in weapons with the Saudi dictatorship, in defiance of its international commitments.
    The power to send Australian troops to fight in foreign wars rests in effect with the Prime Minister alone, yet a huge majority of Australians think parliamentary approval should be required. Alison Broinowski reports.
    Here we go! The US supreme court agreed on Monday to consider a major challenge to reproductive rights, saying it will take up Mississippi’s bid to enforce a ban on almost all abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy.

    Cartoon Corner

    Peter Broelman

    Andrew Dyson

    Matt Golding

    Cathy Wilcox

    David Rowe

    Mark Knight

    John Shakespeare

    John Spooner

    From the US

  27. Transcendental Meditation (TM) should not be too readily dismissed. It is a technique used in the search for Peace of Mind. Who hasn’t thought about that. It is passive meditative process, using the repetition of a specific individual mantra, to reach a deeper / higher level of consciousness beyond the material every day world. It has demonstrable physiological benefits and along similar lines as the correctly managed and controlled treatment with psychedelics, has a significant role is managing PTSD, anxiety, existential crises etc. It does not challenge or confront thoughts, or recognise them as distractions to be dismissed, it is a technique to get beyond thought.

    This will probably have limited appeal, and there’s heaps of stuff about TM available, but David Lynch was the prompter who finally got me involved.

  28. Important News
    The Cerne Abbas Giant in England was created between 700 and 1100 CE.

    “This probable Saxon date places him in a dramatic part of Cerne history,” states the National Trust report, which has not yet been published in a peer-reviewed journal. “Nearby Cerne Abbey was founded in 987 A.D. and some sources think the abbey was set up to convert the locals from the worship of an early Anglo Saxon god known as ‘Heil’ or ‘Helith.’ The early part of our date range does invite the question, was the giant originally a depiction of that god?”
    “It would almost seem to be an act of resistance by local people to create this fantastically rude pagan image on the hillside,” Alison Sheridan, a freelance archaeological consultant based in Edinburgh, told the New Scientist.

    “It’s like a big two fingers to the abbey,” she said.

    Two fingers? Or something else?

  29. The Kirby Institute’s Prof Raina MacIntyre is giving a Webinar today at 1300.

    This presentation will look at the current evidence and future predictions of the pandemic, and whether vaccines offer an exit strategy.

    Registration is necessary. They do ask for the registrant’s relationship with the Institute in the registration process.

  30. ‘The bigots have won’: Charlie Sykes scolds ‘incredibly naive’ never-Trumpers who refuse to quit GOP

    Longtime conservative Charlie Sykes argued this week some Republicans are “incredibly naive” for thinking that they can save the party from former President Donald Trump.

    On Monday, Sykes appeared on MSNBC to talk about his recent op-ed advising “never-Trump” Republicans that it is “time to say goodbye” to their party.

    Sykes said that he respected Republicans like Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) for their well-intentioned efforts to save the “soul” of the GOP.

    “The war is over,” he continued. “The conspiracy theorists, the cranks, the bigots have won. And I just think as a matter of reality, we need to understand that.”

    Sykes noted that Trump’s “big lie” about the 2020 election had become a litmus test for Republicans.

    “That tells you where the Republican Party is,” he observed. “It’s time for a reality check here that those of us who had hoped that somehow the Republican Party find a way to heal itself or crawl back to rationality, that is just not going to happen anytime soon.”

  31. shellbell says:
    Tuesday, May 18, 2021 at 8:37 am
    “Parliament House staff have been cautioned to stay silent when approached by media or face the consequences.”

    sounds like dictatorship to me!

  32. @Jordonsteele calls out Virgin CEO Jayne Hrdlicka’s comments that some may die if international borders reopen but it will be smaller than the flu.

    “Just accepting people may die, as a disabled person who is part of that community, that is extraordinarily offensive language.”

    It’s now “offensive” to say that people may die from COVID? Since when? And why does being disabled qualify Jordan Steele to be offended in particular?

    We accept that people will die in road collisions, but still permit cars. We accept that people will die from flu, yet don’t prohibit them from crowded shopping malls. We allow sunbaking, but know this will cause melanoma. We know that people die during minor routine surgery, but let plastic surgeons ply their trade. People are going to die on any one day for any number of reasons, including SARS-CoV-2 infection.

    There’s a risk to everything.

  33. From BK:

    Trying to compare the two sentences is forlorn as the author almost immediately recognises so this becomes an attempt to say someone supplying for four years apparently whatever anyone wants drug wise was too harshly dealt with with 10 years on the bottom.

    Without knowing the profit he was making, who was his network (inevitably he was being propped by some real nasties), this is unconvincing.

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