Resolve Strategic: Coalition 34, Labor 35, Greens 11

What had previously been the Coalition’s best poll series opens its account for the year looking just as bad for the government as the others.

The new year polling drought has been brought to an end by Resolve Strategic, courtesy of the Age/Herald, which produces a particularly grim result for the government in view of its record as the Coalition’s strongest poll series. The Coalition primary vote is down fully five points since the last poll in mid-November to 34%, with Labor up three to 35%, the Greens steady on 11% and One Nation steady on 3%. The pollster’s already high ratings for independents and “others” are up still further, by two points to 11% and one point to 6%. As ever, no two-party preferred result is provided, but applying 2019 preference flows produces a Labor lead of around 53-47.

The breakdowns provided for the three largest states suggest the damage has been spread pretty evenly on two-party preferred, but the Queensland figures are notable in that the major parties are down 12% between them while both the Greens and One Nation are up five. The results are worse for the Coalition among women than men, their primary vote dropping respectively by six points and three.

Scott Morrison’s personal ratings are nonetheless little changed, with approval and disapproval both up a point to 41% and 50%. However, Anthony Albanese records a solid improvement, with approval up three to 34% and disapproval down four to 41%. Morrison’s lead as preferred prime minister has narrowed from 40-29 to 38-31.

The poll was conducted Tuesday to Saturday from a sample of 1607. The Age/Herald’s Resolve Political Monitor display is yet to be updated at the time of writing, but more of the details are provided in the accompanying report. I have updated my BludgerTrack poll aggregate, but I always advise a bit of caution when the first poll is added after a break, as the result tends to weigh heavily on the end point of the trend measure.

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.

1,680 comments on “Resolve Strategic: Coalition 34, Labor 35, Greens 11”

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  1. Facepalm, Socrates:

    “ In particular there was a recent decision to spend $3.5 billion to buy new Abrams tansk, to replace our old Abrams tanks. This makes no sense. Our current tanks are only 15 years old, halfway through their life. The governments own 2020 force structure plan does not envisage their replacement till 2035.”

    I did a longish post regarding the Abrams, complete with a bunch of links to source material – given your accusation that i talk out of my arse and don’t cite sources. I’m not going to to be bothered to regurgitate that effort – you are quite welcome to look it up yourself using a search engine, or just go back a few threads and see what i posted last time.

    Can I offer this points as a quick rebuttal / comment.

    1. Australia’s army force structure envisages 90 main battle tanks in a discrete role – infantry support. In additional to all the other armoured elements that have lower protection ratings of armour (but enhanced mobility capability as a consequence). This has been the case since before the Vietnam war.

    2. The soundness of this basic doctrine has been borne out by the combine experiences of allied forces in both Afghanistan and Iraq – both conflicts in which our troops were left unnecessarily exposed becuase of bad decisions made regarding both our heavy armour and APC/IFV capabilities.

    3. As a ‘fix’ to get the Howard government out of bind (failing to replace the 90 Leopard I tanks in a timely fashion, starting in the mid-late 90s when decisions had to be made), Brendan Nelson brought 59 second hand Abrams M1A1 tanks, which were delivered from 2007 onwards.

    4. While you are quite correct that these tanks are not due to cease operation (in a phased withdraw between 2030-2035) a decision has to be made NOW for their eventual replacement.

    5. Allied to the the review of both the Afghanistan and Iraq war a decision was made at least 5 years ago that the army needed the additional armour that the M1A2 Abrams provided. This was a consequence of the increasing sophistication of IED asymmetrical warfare waged by insurgents and Islamic militants (including most recently ISIS). The Australian army has already received 15 or 16 M1A2s as part of the process to increase the MBT up to 90 tanks.

    6. While there on average approximately 10 years of life left in the original fleet of 59 Abrams tanks AND there is actually a pathway to upgrade M1A1s to M1A2s, that itself is expensive and would take time (ie. the upgrade would take at least 5 years, by which time many chassis would be in their last 5 years of viable operation). THAT is the reason why Dutton has simply decided bring forward the whole recycling of our tank fleet. It makes some sense.

    7. that is not to say that the decisions made are without valid criticism. But the issue is far more complex than you seem to imply. However in my view the following criticism can be made:

    (i) rather than prematurely retire all 59 chassis, some should be retained for use in our amphibious warfare capability. I’m going to ignore Boerwar’s nonsensical criticism (complaining about a whole new platform – which it obviously isnt, a different main weapon, which is incorrect etc etc) but simply make this point: at 62 tonnes, a M1A2 can be landed by our landing craft for use in the first echelon of the first wave of any contested amphibious landing – which is a critical capability. At 70 tonnes, I’m not sure that the M1A2SepV3 MBT can be. I’d retain at least 20 of the best existing chassis for amphibious warfare, and if needs be upgrade them with all the new electronic kit that the M1A2 has.

    (ii) This is the second time in 30 years that a federal liberal government has brought American tanks without a proper evaluation process. This is not a good process. Personally i think the Leopard II is a better option.

  2. imacca says:
    Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 8:06 pm
    “The Webb Telescope is going into a pretty nifty orbit around the L2 point.
    But, I wonder if there’s a political equivalent of a Lagrange orbit?”

    UAP / Libs??
    I was thinking more of indies/ cross-benchers in a hung Parliament, poised at the midpoint between the opposing gravitational influences of two massive political objects.

  3. Normally, you’d think it was way too close to an election for a leadership change, but Morrison has just been so hopeless lately, with unforced error after unforced error, that I don’t think anything is out of the question. IMO, the only reason he hasn’t been rolled already is the tarnished reputation of the polls post-2019.

    There’s also the fact that his two main rivals – Dutton, especially – face a genuine risk of losing their seats in May. This could be the last chance either has at becoming PM.

    Interesting times ahead. Personally, I’ll barracking for a Scomo victory in any leadership spills that might happen in the coming months, as he’s probably the best electoral asset the Labor party have right now. Though it would be wonderful to see Dutton or Frydenberg follow in Stanley Bruce and John Howard’s footsteps by becoming the third sitting PM to lose their seat.

  4. Bert says Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 7:31 pm

    Just watched that and I think a little bit of wee came out……

    I was wondering if the reason you need to be 18 to get a fork lift ticket is so you’re old enough to watch the video during your training?

  5. One thing you know for sure is that the Libs are not romantic or sympathetic if they perceive the Leader will not win. The next Newspoll is critical to Morrison’s survival. He’ll either call the Election straight away or succumb to the knife wielding assassins he used to call friends and colleagues.

  6. Asha:

    Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 8:27 pm

    [‘This could be the last chance either has at becoming PM.’]

    Only in the interregnum.

  7. I’m half-watching the Womens’ Test (Channel 7). Every ad break we are regaled with the Government’s “plan” to achieve net zero by 2050. Everything’s going great we’re told, lots of solar panels, Snowy Hydro 2.0 (the biggest battery in the world?). Anything but renewables.

  8. “He’ll either call the Election straight away…”. Hmm. That’s an encouraging thought. The sooner the better. It also acknowledges that things are only going to get worse from here on. But “knife wielding assassins” implies that either a Queenslander or a Victorian will replace him. Which State is more likely to NET favour the LNP? If Victoria is seen as already lost perhaps Dutton will be our next PM. And wouldn’t both of them be inclined to call the election as late as possible?

    Also, are pollsters players, or is it a bit of quantum thinking? (Any measurement disturbs the system being measured.)

  9. LR,

    I’m predicting that the Libs will be in save the furniture mode very soon.

    Sacrifice Dutton as the new friendlier visage of the LNP or

    Joshie of the future.

  10. Greensborough Growler @ #1605 Thursday, January 20th, 2022 – 8:25 pm

    Greensborough Growlersays:
    Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 7:41 pm
    Not much I can disagree with in this piece by Amanda Vanstone.

    However, P1 must avert her eyes or will be hit with an alternative opinion.

    Gosh, members of the parties of inaction are not in favor of independents that might make them actually do something to earn their salaries and parliamentary pensions?

    Why, you could knock me down with a feather!

  11. sprocket_

    This was the Cambridge Economics exam in 1959… I feel we have lost the plot since

    Oooh, I love this.

    I would happily write essays on all but 4 and 6.

    Of course, not knowing anything of the rigours of economic theory means that I probably would have failed, but what fun questions to answer.

    Also, I am an “exam” person, not an “assignment” person.

    While writing the some 60 Australian Research Council Grants I wrote – all at least 100 pages – some I got, more I did not, I used to think “Can’t they just put us in a room for 3 hours and ask us to writer grant applications – I would have shone in an environment like that!

  12. sprocket_says:
    Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 9:22 pm
    This was the Cambridge Economics exam in 1959… I feel we have lost the plot since

    One of the topics is ‘Parliamentary Democracy is not designed for export’

    Nobody told that to John Howard and Tony Blair when they went to war as “Coalition of Willing” with George Bush. The irony is Tony Blair is a Britisher and John Howard believes in Parliamentary democracy of British.

  13. WeWantPaul says:
    Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 6:55 pm
    “I’m watching Summer Drum… since when has Samantha Maiden become a federal government fan girl?!? She’s defending Morrison’s messaging on COVID and schools.”

    She used to pretent a bit (was she even a Guardian ‘lefty’ for a bit?) but then she got a gig with Costello TV or News Corp and since looked like she was auditioning to replace Andrew Bolt or someone of that ill.
    That’s a shame. I’ve read Maiden’s book, Party Animals, which was a brilliant and thorough examination of what went wrong with Labor’s 2019 election campaign. She was pretty fair and spared no one from criticism if she thought they deserved it. But I certainly wouldn’t have picked her as a Tory. In fact Maiden was political editor of New Daily at the time.
    I wonder why she would turn?

  14. I think talk of a leadership challenge to Scomo, let alone an actual change of leader, before the election is a bit far-fetched. A challenge will only happen if the Libs feel they’re on a definite path to losing and that changing leaders is their only chance.
    It will also depend on whether potential challengers, Frydenberg and Dutton, feel they’ve got a chance to actually win the subsequent federal election. There’s no point in leading the government for three months all the way to defeat. That would bury any leadership ambitions for the foreseeable future.
    Therefore, I feel the odds are that Scomo will lead the government to the election and it will be defeated.
    Let’s hope the odds on the second point at least hold up.

  15. BNO Newsroom
    Czech singer Hana Horka, who deliberately infected herself with coronavirus so she wouldn’t have to get vaccinated, has died of COVID-19 – BBC

    Stupid gets Stupid.

  16. I don’t think that changing Liberal leaders now is going to change their chances one way or the other. Besides, all the election material with Morrison in it, except for the yet to be chosen candidates, has been done by now.

  17. Re poroti at 5.55 pm and Bananabenders’ historically steep swings

    Primary vote swings for the 2007 election aggregated by state or territory are at:

    Note that Labor’s primary vote in Qld was not quite 2% less than in Victoria, which is unlikely in 2022.

    Labor seat gains in 2007 are at:

    Labor won 5 Qld seats with swings of more than 10%. Qld swings big, but not in a windscreen-wiper motion. In some seats (e.g. Capricornia: Rockhampton and to its north) Labor are now challenged to overcome a deficit created by reverse swings in 3 out of the past 4 elections, which have left the LNP vote after preferences (62.4%) almost where Labor’s vote was in 2007 (62.7%), a 25% difference.

  18. Snappy Tom from hours ago

    Firefox and others re getting gazillionaires to pay tax…

    I may have seen it on Pollbludger, here’s a link to a story about the GST and progressive tax policy I found most interesting…

    The author argues for an increase in the rate & coverage of GST (which he insist be renamed VAT). Caveat: low income people need to be properly compensated!

    Part of his argument is that rich people have to purchase goods & services, so can’t evade a VAT, whereas they can hire accountants to dodge income/wealth taxes (Cayman Islands, anyone?)

    He also notes that many northern European countries, which we on the left often admire for their progressive social and economic policies, have VATs in the range of 20-25% – much higher than our GST.

    Thanks for linking this article Snappy Tom.

    I was going to do so when I had time, but you beat me to it.

    A Value Added Tax, on EVERYTHING, is a “regressive” tax, but it allows you to compensate low income earners.

    As the economist writing the post, Stephen Hamilton says, not every tax needs to be progressive – the whole package needs to add up to something progressive.

    Paul Keating I think understood this, and as treasurer he oversaw the greatest redistribution of wealth from taxes to the less well-off, making sure that they had food and education.

    I believe he would have liked a VAT, and I remember in 1984(?) a “tax summit” where a VAT was canvassed, but discarded. At the time the comments I heard was that “If Labor did not start doing things rather than talking bout them, and if they introduced a VAT, then they risked being thrown out at the next election having achieved nothing other giving the Liberal party the tax system they had always wanted”. As it turned out, hastening slowly brought us one of the most progressive Federal governments in Australia’s history, lasting 11 years, and getting a lot of social and economic progress.

    Why do this Liberals want the VAT as the default tax system – see below.

    So, what is the problem with a VAT in Australia:

    1) The collection of the GST is a very heavy burden on small business. The number of bloody BAS statements I have filled out, and the information needed to process them is a significant drain on the time and resources of small business that they do not need.

    2) Addressing the above point, in every other country, the price you pay for something is exclusive of VAT. The VAT is added at the checkout / point-of-sale. This is particularly ingrained in my mind from the time I was working in Germany in 2006, and at the supermarket, I would add up my purchases and produce the exact amount at the cash register (in Euros and Euro cents, but I still thought of them as pfennigs). That highlighted that the VAT was calculated at the point-of-sale, without the need for the business to calculate it (10% is trickier than it seems – you need to divide the final sale price by 11 to get correct amount of the 10% GST due

    3) A VAT is great if you can guarantee that your Federal government will spend the tax collected on the common good – health, education, housing, food. With Labor – yes, they will spend taxes in this way, as Hawke and Keating so ably demonstrated. But, it it only took John Howard to be elected, who to tightened means tests, while waiting for inflation to undermine family tax benefits, and stopping any spending on social welfare to redistribute the wealth upwards to break the social contract of the Hawke / Keating years.

    4) But whatever the tax system, Howard would always have found a way to distribute the wealth upwards. So, I guess, you have to put in place something like a VAT, because everyone pays it, even the wealthy, and realise that when the Liberals are in power they will use it to distribute wealth upwards, but take that 25% of time when Labor’s in power Federally to spend the VAT riches to support the working classes / people doing it tough, and hope that like Medicare, something eventually sticks andAustralia gets progressive social change that remains fixed in voters minds.

  19. I once wrote a Biochemistry essay for an exam which I had learned off by heart because our lecturer had told us what the subjects we could choose from would be. I was surprised to find out not everyone was able to memorise a whole essay and regurgitate it in an examination environment. I ended up being one of the few who got 14/15. A very small number got 15/15. I lost a mark because I left something out in one of the biochemical pathways. It actually turned out to be a devious psychological trick that the lecturer pulled on us because it psyched so many people out that they thought that, because they knew the subjects it meant that their essays needed to be perfect and they just couldn’t reproduce like that on demand. For some their minds just went blank and they couldn’t remember what they had tried to memorise.

    Ah, Uni exams. 🙂

  20. “Anti-Liberal independents” my ass. If any of them get elected and support a Labor minority government they will go the way of the dodo after one term. Not that they will do so.
    Even if there were six Teal independents elected they would support a Coalition government if they together with Katter, Sharkie and Haines got to a bare majority of 76 seats.

  21. IF you want to know what the opposite of Scomo’s ‘let it rip’ approach to Covid looks like, download and read Mark McGowan’s press conference speech tonight. Feb 5 will not see McGowan open up the border and ‘let it rip’ like it has in eastern States.

    Sensible things like getting as many as possible third dosed because it provides 96% protection from severe or deadly illness from Omicron and getting 5-11 year olds vaccinated ahead of allowing Corona to ride amok in the State and not having hospitals in melt down and 100s of people dying and the economy in voluntary lockdown because people can’t work etc.

    Good on you McGowan I say. At least someone in government leadership is putting the health and safety of human beings ahead of self serving economic rationalism.

  22. I aced an honours-level microeconomics exam because I knew al the required calculus before the course began. Many of my cohort didn’t.

    So it seemed as if two years of an abandoned science degree in physics was not going to waste. Until I worked out that the Cobb-Douglas production function is just a nice fairytale.

  23. Dandy Murray at 11:18 pm

    Until I worked out that the Cobb-Douglas production function is just a nice fairytale.

    I hope you kept that quiet. One of the Economic Theory sects are bound to declare you a heretic and want to burn you at the stake.

  24. The planned reopening of Western Australia’s border to the rest of the country on February 5 will be delayed indefinitely, Premier Mark McGowan has announced.

    Mr McGowan called a late night press conference to announce the delay, which he said was due to the changing health risks posed by the Omicron COVID-19 variant.

    He said a new date would be considered over the next month.

    Some travel conditions were still set to change on February 5 including expanding the list of people exempt from the hard border, with a focus on those travelling into WA for compassionate reasons.

    But those people will still be required to isolate for 14 days.

    Mr McGowan said the former opening plan had been based on the previous Delta variant.

    “Unfortunately, the world changed in December, Omicron arrived,” he said.

    “Omicron is a whole new ball game.”

    “We can’t just shut our eyes and hope that it is different.”

    The Premier said there was insufficient information available on what the full impact of Omicron could be.

    “Except that we know because of case numbers it is a very bad situation,” he said.

    But Mr McGowan said it had become clear that a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine was important to deal with Omicron.

    Exemptions to be expanded

    Approved travellers permitted to enter WA under the new expanded exemption from February 5 will include:

    Returning West Australians with strong recent connections with WA
    Returning West Australians with family connections in WA
    Compassionate grounds including funerals and palliative care or terminally ill visitation
    People entering for urgent or essential medical treatment
    People entering WA for national or state security reasons
    People with specialist skills
    Commonwealth and state officials, members of parliament, and diplomats
    Other extraordinary circumstances approved by the Chief Health Officer or Police Commissioner

  25. Elmer Fudd
    I will sleep well tonight knowing that that the border s are not coming down. The operation I need will in all likelihood go ahead.

  26. Have the feeling the Labor PV has gone up a more than a couple more points in WA. Can imagine a wide choice of unchristian words being said in the PMO right now.

  27. Assantdj at 11:29 pm

    Great news re op ! My booster is due 3rd Feb. So I was hoping for a 2 week delay. So that’s 2 happy customers 🙂

  28. Dr Fumbles Mcstupid says:
    Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 11:32 pm
    Have the feeling the Labor PV has gone up a more than a couple more points in WA. Can imagine a wide choice of unchristian words being said in the PMO right now.

    MacGowan has a finely tuned sense of what to do and when. He’s been a very adroit politician. There’s been none else like him in my memory.

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