Roy Morgan has dropped its weekly federal campaign poll, which shows Labor’s two-party preferred lead narrowing from 54.5-45.5 to more believable 53-47. While this is Labor’s weakest two-party result from Roy Morgan since October, the respondent-allocated preferences measure the pollster used until last week had Labor at least one point higher when it was tied with the Coalition on the primary vote, and sometimes substantially higher. The two-party numbers are now determined by allocating preferences flows as per the result of the 2019 election.
The poll shows both major parties on what even by recent standards are remarkably low primary votes of 34% each, with Labor down 1.5% on last week and the Coalition steady. The Greens are on 13%, One Nation is on 4% and the United Australia Party is on 1%, all unchanged on last week, with independents up half to 9% and “others” up one to 5%.
The usual two-party state breakdowns have Labor leading 52-48 in New South Wales, out from 51.5-48.5 last week for a swing of around 4% compared with 2019; 57-43 in Victoria, in from 61-39, also for a swing of around 4%; 54.5-45.5 in Western Australia, in from 57.5-42.5 for a swing of about 10%; and 58-42 from the tiny Tasmanian sample. The Coalition leads 53-47 in Queensland, in from 53.5-46.5 for a swing to Labor of about 5.5%, and 51-49 in South Australia, its first lead on this small sample measure since October, and a rather stark contrast to Labor’s 62.5-37.5 lead last week (the result in 2019 was 50.7-49.3 in favour of Labor).
The poll was conducted Monday to Sunday from a sample of 1366. It will naturally be Morgan’s last of the campaign if it sticks to its usual schedule, although it may well pull something from its hat on the eve of the big day. The final Essential Research poll will reportedly be out on Wednesday, and it’s a known known that Newspoll and Ipsos each have a poll to come (it’s disappointing that we haven’t seen any state breakdowns from Newspoll, but hope springs eternal), and I assume the same will be true of Resolve Strategic. Until then:
• Ten News is teasing yet another result of Liberal Party internal polling from Peter van Onselen, this time suggesting Katherine Deves is “in with a shot” of unseating Zali Steggall in Warringah, seemingly along with results from other seats including Parramatta and Bennelong.
• Tom McIlroy of the Financial Review reports a Redbridge Group poll for North Sydney commissioned by Climate 200 has Liberal member Trent Zimmerman on 33.3%, independent Kylea Tink on 23.5% and Labor candidate Catherine Renshaw on 17.8%, with 7.5% undecided. The poll was conducted between May 3 and 14 from a sample of 1267.
• James Morrow of the Daily Telegraph reports a poll of Fowler conducted by Laidlaw Campaigns, presumably for independent Dai Le’s campaign, has Kristina Keneally leading Le by 45% to 38% after distribution of preferences and without excluding the 17% undecided. The poll also found Le was viewed favourably by 28% and unfavourably by 10%, while Keneally was at 24% and 30%. It was conducted three weeks ago from a sample of 618.
• Katharine Murphy of The Guardian notes a campaign endorsement for Katy Gallagher by Julia Gillard reflects concern that a win for independent candidate David Pocock in the Australian Capital Territory Senate race could come at the expense of Gallagher, and not Liberal Senator Zed Seselja as had generally presumed. A recent Redbridge poll suggested Pocock had gauged enough of his support from Labor to reduce Gallagher to 27%, well below the one-third quota for election
• The Australian Electoral Commission has issued a statement announcing that advertising by conservative activist group Advance Australia linking independents Zali Steggall and David Pocock to the Greens is in breach of the Electoral Act. The relevant section is section 329, banning material “likely to mislead or deceive an elector in relation to the casting of a vote”. The section is very commonly used as the basis of unsuccessful complaints about misleading political advertising, when it has been consistently been found to apply very narrowly to efforts to deceive voters into casting their ballots differently from how they intended. However, the statement suggests that the ruling made after the 2019 election over Chinese language signs encouraging votes for the Liberals in the seat of Chisholm, although dismissed, offers “a new judicial precedent” that seemingly paved the way for a more expansive interpretation.
• Ben Raue has produced highly instructive charts showing how each state’s two-party preferred vote has deviatied from the national result at elections going back to 1958.
• At the risk of getting ahead of ourselves, Andrew Clennell of Sky News reports that Josh Frydenberg is “said to have the numbers” against Peter Dutton to succeed Scott Morrison as Liberal leader should the party lose the election.