The fortnightly Essential Research result brings a return of federal voting intention numbers from the pollster, which were not provided for the poll that coincided with the referendum weekend. Research director Gavin White relates they have added education to a weighting frame that had encompassed age, gender, location and past vote following the referendum, the margin of which they underestimated. This should be kept in mind when comparing the voting intention results from the last set four weeks ago.
The most striking feature of the new numbers is a four point drop for the Greens, whom the pollster had long had hovering around 14% as compared with a 2022 election result of 12.3%. Now they are at 10%, with Labor down a point to 32%, the Coalition up two to 34%, One Nation up one to 7%, the United Australia Party up one to the top end of its long-term range of 1% to 3%, and uncommitted up one to 6%. The pollster’s 2PP+ measure has Labor down two to 48% and the Coalition up one to 46%, the remainder being uncommitted, which surpasses the mid-September result of 49% to 45% as the narrowest of the term. The gender breakdowns bear examination – where the pollster had hitherto reflected the usual pattern in having Labor doing better among women than men, this time it’s quite markedly the other way round.
Most of the other questions relate to electricity and the environment, including a semi-regular question on whether the government is doing enough to address climate change maintains a consistent pattern since Labor came to power, at which point a large gap between not doing enough and doing enough almost disappeared. Here the former is down one since April to 38% and the latter is up three to 36%, with doing too much up a point to 17%. Thirty-one per cent think it likely Australia will reach its target of net zero emissions by 2050, with 57% thinking it unlikely. A question on nuclear energy finds 50% supportive of developing nuclear plants for electricity with 33% opposed, all but unchanged when the same question was asked two years ago. The poll was conducted Wednesday to Sunday from a sample of 1149.
Also out are the weekly Roy Morgan numbers, which do not repeat last week’s unusual preference flow to the Coalition and resulting 50.5-49.5 lead for them on two-party preferred. This time Labor leads 53-47, from primary votes of Labor 32.5% (up half), Coalition 35% (down one) and Greens 15% (up one). The poll was conducted last Monday to Sunday from a sample of 1375.
Because of the change in methodology and the likely related change in results, Essential Research going forward will be treated as a new series for bias adjustment purposes in the BludgerTrack poll aggregate — meaning in won’t be included at all until there are enough results to get a handle on its peculiarities relative to the other pollsters. The results can nonetheless be found on the poll data page, together with Roy Morgan results which likewise aren’t used to calculate the poll trend.