Newspoll: 50-50 (open thread)

Newspoll becomes the second pollster after Roy Morgan to record a disappearance in the lead Labor had enjoyed since the May 2022 election.

The Australian reports the latest Newspoll offers further evidence of an end to Labor’s period of federal polling dominance, recording a dead heat on two-party preferred, in from 52-48 in Labor’s favour three weeks ago. Labor has slumped by four points on the primary vote to 31%, with the Coalition up a point to 38%, the Greens up one to 13% and One Nation steady on 6%. Movements on leaders’ ratings are milder, with Anthony Albanese actually recording a marginal improvement in his lead over Peter Dutton as preferred prime minister, from 46-36 to 46-35. Albanese is down two on approval to 40% and up one on disapproval to 53%, with Peter Dutton unchanged at 37% and 50%. The poll was presumably conducted from Monday to Friday, from a sample of 1216.

Midweek miscellany: Morgan poll, redistributions, Liberal Senate preselections (open thread)

Morgan finds the Coalition with its nose in front; latest redistribution machinations; and Liberal Senate preselections in NSW and Tasmania.

The only new poll for the week is the the weekly Roy Morgan federal poll, which for the second time in recent months credits the Coalition with a two-party preferred lead. In this case it’s by the barest margin of 50.5-49.5, compared with 50-50 last week. The poll is also the first for the term with Labor’s primary vote below 30%, having fallen half a point from last week to 29.5%, with the Coalition up half to 37% and the Greens up half to 13.5%. The poll was conducted Monday to Sunday from a sample of 1401.

Further:

• The Age/Herald had further results from last week’s Resolve Strategic poll on Sunday, showing 48% support for constitutional recognition of Indigenous people as the first inhabitants of Australia, an even 40% for and against a legislated voice, 33% support for a Commonwealth treaty with 37% opposed, and 35% support for the Makarrata Commission for truth-telling with 31% opposed.

Public suggestions have been published for the Western Australian federal redistribution, with both major parties’ new submissions concurring with the conventional wisdom that the state’s new seat will need to be in Perth’s eastern suburbs. Labor proposes a seat called Farmer in honour of local football legend Graham “Polly” Farmer taking out a large part of the current seat of Hasluck, which would deeper into suburbia in the west. The Liberals propose a seat of Court in honour of two of the party’s past premiers, which would likewise take a large chunk of Hasluck, but extend instead beyond the metropolitan area in the conservative territory of the Avon Valley. The deadline for submission for Victoria’s federal redistribution is on Friday, to be published next Wednesday. The finalisation of Western Australia’s state redistribution is also due “no later” than December 1.

• Two Liberal Senate preselections will be held on the weekend, one being to fill the vacancy created by Marise Payne’s retirement in New South Wales. Moderate-aligned former state government minister Andrew Constance is routinely invoked as the front-runner, but Peter Dutton is supporting conservative former ACT Senator Zed Seselja, and Monica Tudehope, former deputy chief-of-staff to Dominic Perrottet and daughter of Finance Minister Damien Tudehope, has support from Business Council of Australia chief executive Bran Black. Also in the field are former parliamentarians Dave Sharma and Lou Amato, NSW RSL president James Brown, and Lowy Institute research fellow Jess Collins.

• A vote of 67 preselectors on Saturday will determine the Tasmanian Liberals’ Senate ticket, in which conservative-backed Clarence mayor Brendan Blomeley hopes to wrest the second position from moderate incumbent Richard Colbeck. Conservative incumbent Claire Chandler appears assured of top position, with another conservative, Simon Behrakis, a possibility for the usually unfruitful third position. UPDATE: Informed local observer Kevin Bonham notes in comments that Simon Behrakis has filled a vacancy in state parliament, and is presumably no longer in the running.

YouGov: 51-49 to Labor (open thread)

A new federal poll finds Labor clinging to the barest of leads, and Anthony Albanese no longer outpointing Peter Dutton on net satisfaction.

YouGov, from which we can expect federal polling every three weeks in future (give or take a looming seasonal furlough), had a federal poll yesterday showing Labor’s lead at 51-49, narrowing from 53-47 in a poll conducted shortly before the referendum. On the primary vote, Labor is down two to 31%, the Coalition is steady on 36%, the Greens are down one to 13% and One Nation are up to 7%. Net satisfaction ratings find both Anthony Albanese and Peter Dutton at minus 7%, marking a four point decline in Albanese’s case and a five point improvement in Dutton’s. Albanese nonetheless leads 48% to 34% as preferred prime minister. The poll was conducted last Friday to Tuesday from a sample of 1582.

In other news, there are the following developments from the world of preselection, once again relating entirely to the Liberal Party:

• Gisele Kapterian, international trade lawyer and executive director of cloud computing firm Salesforce, has been preselected as the Liberal candidate for North Sydney, notwithstanding the possibility that it might be abolished or effectively merged with a neighbouring seat as part of the looming redistribution. The latter course is the effective recommendation of the Liberal Party’s own submission to the redistribution, which proposed maintaining North Sydney as the name of a seat encompassing most of an abolished Warringah. Grahame Lynch of the North Sydney Sun reports the moderate-aligned Kapterian won a ballot over Jess Collins, conservative-aligned researcher for the Lowy Institute (also a candidate for the preselection that will be held next weekend to fill Marise Payne’s Senate vacancy), by 145 votes to 106. Other nominees were Georgia Lovell, policy manager at the NSW Department of Customer Service, and Sophie Lambert, media manager at the NSW Education Department.

• Russell Broadbent has quit the Liberal party room after losing a preselection vote for his regional Victorian seat of Monash on Sunday to Mary Aldred, Fujitsu executive and daughter of the late former Liberal MP Ken Aldred. Aldred secured a sweeping victory with 162 votes against 16 each for Broadbent and a third contender, South Gippsland mayor Nathan Hersey. An ABC report cites a Nationals source saying that party was “likely to aggressively campaign for the seat”.

Josh Zimmerman of The West Australian reports a view among Liberals that Moore MP Ian Goodenough is likely to lose preselection next month to Vince Connelly, who narrowly failed to topple Goodenough after his own seat of Stirling was abolished in 2022.

• Angira Bharadwaj of News Corp reports Liberal deputy leader Sussan Ley has said it would be “totally unacceptable” if Lindsay MP Melissa McIntosh succumbed to a preselection challenge from Mark Davies, Penrith councillor, factional conservative and husband of state Mulgoa MP Tanya Davies, and that “we would not let this occur”.

Essential Research 2PP+: Labor 49, Coalition 47 (open thread)

Another poll with weakening personal ratings for Anthony Albanese, plus a flurry of results on the situation in the Middle East.

The fortnightly Essential Research results find no change for the major parties on the primary vote, with results inclusive of a 5% undecided component putting the Coalition at 34% and Labor at 32%. The Greens are up two to 12%, recovering half of a four-point drop in the previous poll, while One Nation are steady on 7%. Labor’s lead on the 2PP+ measure is 49% to 47%, the remainder being undecided, compared with 48% to 46% last time. I noted a fortnight ago that gender breakdowns from the previous poll presented the opposite from the usual pattern, which has distinctly not been repeated this time.

The survey includes bi-monthly favourability ratings, as distinct from approval ratings, in which respondents rate the leaders’ performance on a scale of zero to ten. Anthony Albanese’s reading is negative for the first time, with a four point drop in ratings designated positive (seven to ten) to 33% and a six-point increase in negative (one to three) to 35%. Peter Dutton gets his best results since November, his positive rating is up five to 32% and negative steady on 35%.

The supplementary questions largely related to international affairs, including a question as to whether Australia should provide “active assistance” to Israel or Palestine, the nature of such assistance presumably being hinted at by the either/or (or neither) response options. Seventeen per cent favoured such assistance going to Israel compared with 21% who favoured it going “to Palestine”, an ambiguous proposition under the circumstances. Thirty-five per cent rated the Israeli response proportionate, down seven from four weeks ago, compared with 25% for disproportionate, up seven. Thirty-one per cent rated themselves satisfied with the Australian government’s response, down six, with dissatisfied up one to 20%.

The Albanese government scores a 25% positive rating on its handling of international relations, with 45% for average and 30% for negative. Forty-four per cent rate Australia’s relationship with China as better since Labor came to power, compared with 11% for worse (allowance should perhaps be made here for those who consider a good relationship a bad thing). Twenty-seven per cent said active support should go to the United States in its tensions with China, compared with 6% for the opposite proposition and 67% for “stay as neutral as possible”. Thirty-nine per cent felt the AUKUS partnership would make Australia more secure, down one from March, compared with 18% for less secure (down three) and 42% for no difference (up three). The poll was conducted Wednesday to Sunday from a sample of 1150.

Further poll news:

• The Age/Herald provided further results from the Resolve Strategic poll on aid to the principals in the Middle East conflict, identified as Hamas and Israel in the question, with response options specifying Israel, Gaza or both equally. The results were 21%, 13% and 47% for medical and food aid, 14%, 9% and 29% for accepting refugees, and 21%, 4% and an enigmatic 8% for providing military equipment, with a respective 30%, 48% and 66% favouring providing no such aid at all.

• The weekly Roy Morgan result is the second poll published this term that fails to have Labor ahead on two-party preferred, the first being its result of three weeks ago. The primary votes are 30% for Labor, down one-and-a-half, 36.5% for the Coalition, up one-and-a-half, and 13% for the Greens, down half. The 50-50 two-party result is based on respondent-allocated preferences, which are again flowing to Labor more weakly than they did at the election. Applying the election preference flows, I make it 51-49 in favour of Labor. The poll was conducted last Monday to Sunday from a sample of 1397.

• Roy Morgan also has an SMS poll with a forced response question on whether Israel should withdraw immediately from Gaza, finding 51% for yes and 49% for no. It was conducted Thursday to Sunday from a sample of 1650.

Resolve Strategic: Labor 35, Coalition 30, Greens 13 (open thread)

Resolve Strategic finds an ongoing weakening in Anthony Albanese’s personal ratings, but little sign of damage to Labor on voting intention.

I’m not seeing any reporting on it in the Sydney Morning Herald or The Age, but the papers’ collective Resolve Political Monitor page features results of the latest monthly Resolve Strategic federal poll (hat tip to Nadia88 in comments), an early intimation of which was Saturday’s New South Wales state results. The federal primary vote shares have Labor down two on last month to 35%, the Coalition down one to 30%, the Greens up one to 13% and One Nation steady on 7%. I make this out to be 57-43 in Labor’s favour on two-party preferred, little changed on last month, which maintains the pollster’s form as the strongest series for Labor.

Anthony Albanese’s personal ratings continue to deteriorate, his very good plus good performance rating being down five to 39% with poor plus very poor up three to 46%. Peter Dutton is respectively at 35% and 40%. Conversely, Peter Dutton records his best results yet from Resolve Strategic, being rated favourably by 35% (up five, although the previous result was down five on the one before) and unfavourably by 40% (down five on the last poll and three on the one before). Albanese leads 40-27 on preferred prime minister, in from 47-25 last time. The lack of accompanying reporting leaves us none the wiser on field work dates and sample size, but it was presumably conducted Wednesday to Saturday from a sample of about 1600.

UPDATE: The Age/Herald report relates the poll was conducted the Wednesday to Sunday before last from a sample of 1602. It also has further results illustrating growing economic pessimism, with between 41% to 46% expecting conditions to worsen over various time frames from a month to a year, with the share expecting improvement increasing from 5% for a month from now to 23% for a year. The 70% who said they expected more interest rate rises this year were vindicated shortly after the poll was conducted, and fully 64% said they expected inflation to get worse in the near future, which is not strictly speaking what any economic forecaster expects.

Friday miscellany: Liberal preselections, SEC Newgate poll and more (open thread)

Liberal disunity interrupts the Tasmanian branch’s federal preselection process, as a new poll records a growing sense that the country is headed in the wrong direction.

Once again, the latest haul of federal preselection news is dominated by both action and inaction on the Liberal Party front:

Matthew Denholm of The Australian reports the Tasmanian Liberal executive has delayed until March preselection votes that were scheduled for Braddon on November 12 and Bass for November 18 amid a conservative push to oust Bridget Archer from Bass. Candidates will also be required to sign an agreement not to speak out against the party line, which was likely prompted by Archer’s outspokenness on issues such as the party’s push in parliament for a royal commission into child sex abuse.

• A report on the above matter from Benjamin Seeder of the Burnie Advocate draws my attention to the fact that Liberals preselected Susie Bower, who was also the candidate in 2022, in the central Tasmanian seat of Lyons back in April. Bower is chief executive of the Bell Bay Advanced Manufacturing Zone and a former Meander Valley councillor. Brian Mitchell has held the seat precariously for Labor since 2016, Bower reducing his margin in 2022 to 0.9% with a 4.3% swing that was partly a correction after a troubled Liberal campaign in 2019.

• A Liberal preselection will be held tomorrow for Russell Broadbent’s seat of Monash in regional Victoria, where the 72-year-old incumbent faces challenges from Nathan Hersey, mayor of the Shire of South Gippsland, and Mary Aldred, head of government relations for Asia Pacific at Fujitsu. Aldred is the daughter of the late Ken Aldred, who held various federal seats for the Liberals from 1975 to 1996. While her father was a figure of some controversy, The Age reports Mary Aldred is “viewed as a moderate”, in common with Broadbent.

• The Australian’s Feeding the Chooks column reports displeasure among Liberal National Party members at the time being taken to begin preselection proceedings for the Gold Coast seat of McPherson, which will be vacated at the next election on the retirement of Karen Andrews. Mentioned as possible contenders are Ben Naday, former migration agent and federal ministerial adviser; Leon Rebello, solicitor at King & Wood Mallesons; and David Stevens, managing director of a private strategy and investment consulting firm and Howard government cabinet policy unit adviser.

Canberra CityNews reports the Liberals have preselected Joanne van der Plaat, Cooma lawyer and former president of the Law Society of New South Wales, as candidate for Eden-Monaro. Van der Plaat was chosen ahead of Vanessa Cheng, a management consultant.

There is also the following to relate on the polling front:

• This week’s Roy Morgan poll has Labor leading 52-48 on two-party preferred, in from 53-47 last week, from primary votes of Labor 31.5% (down one), Coalition 35% (steady) and Greens 13.5% (down one-and-a-half). The poll was conducted last Monday to Sunday from a sample of 1371.

• SEC Newgate’s regular bi-monthly Mood of the Nation survey finds 32% rating the federal government’s performance as good, down four points from August, with poor steady at 36%. Expectations about the state of the economy three years from now have taken a hit, with the positive rating down eight from the last survey to 50% and negative up six to 34%. The question of whether Australia is headed in the right direction, on which opinion was evenly divided through 2022, is now running 63-37 against. Of the mainland states, small sample state breakdowns have consistently found optimism highest in Western Australia and lowest in Queensland. Queensland was targeted with an elevated sample of 603, of whom 27% rated the state government’s performance as good compared with 43% for poor. The poll was conducted October 18 to 23 from an overall sample of 1610.

The Australian reports Newspoll found the most favoured options for helping with the cost of living were, in order, subsidising energy bills (84%), subsidising fuel prices (81%), cutting government spending to reduce inflation (77%), personal tax cuts (73%) and cash payments to low-income families (56%).

Kos Samaras from RedBridge Group offers further results from its poll last week showing 34% consider the Albanese government has the right priorities compared with 50% who disagree, while 30% believe “the Coalition led by Peter Dutton” is ready for government and 50% think otherwise.

Newspoll: 52-48 to Labor (open thread)

Newspoll records a post-referendum slump for Anthony Albanese and Labor’s weakest voting intention numbers since the election, though there is somewhat better news for the government from RedBridge Group.

The Australian reports the latest Newspoll has Labor’s lead at 52-48, in from 54-46 at the poll conducted from October 4 to 12 in the lead-up to the referendum, from primary votes of Labor 35% (down one), Coalition 37% (up two), Greens 12% (steady) and One Nation 6% (steady). This is the narrowest two-party Newspoll result since the election, eclipsing two of the last four results which had it at 53-47.

Anthony Albanese’s personal ratings have taken a tumble, down four on approval to 42% and up six on disapproval to 52%. The net rating of minus 10 is substantially weaker than his previous worst results for the term of minus one, likewise recorded in two of the previous four polls. Peter Dutton is at 37% approval and 50% disapproval, which is respectively up two and down three on the previous Newspoll result, but equal to the poll before. Albanese’s lead as preferred prime minister is now 46-36, in from 51-31 last time. The poll was conducted Monday to Friday from a sample of 1220.

Also out today was the latest federal poll from RedBridge Group which has Labor’s two-party lead at 53.5-46.5, in from 54.1-45.9 in the pollster’s previous result from early September. The primary votes were Labor 34% (down three), Coalition 35% (down one), Greens 14% (up one) and others 17% (up three). The poll was conducted October 27 to November 2 from a sample of 1205.

Essential Research 2PP+: Labor 48, Coalition 46 (open thread)

A retooled Essential Research poll finds Labor’s lead narrowing, while Roy Morgan fails to replicate its surprise Coalition lead from last week.

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.

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