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The latest weekly Essential Research survey shows no change on last week, bar a one point drop in the Greens vote to 10 per cent: the Coalition is on 49 per cent of the primary vote and Labor on 32 per cent, with the Coalition’s two-party lead at 56-44. Essential also found plenty of interesting questions to ask about the Labor leadership. Respondents were asked to evaluate the performance of various actors during the challenge, with Kevin Rudd coming out least badly (33 per cent good, 35 per cent poor), “Labor Party ministers” the worst (10 per cent and 52 per cent), the media also very poorly (14 per cent and 43 per cent), Julia Gillard not well at all (23 per cent and 49 per cent) and Tony Abbott hardly better even if it might be hard to recall what he did exactly (25 per cent and 40 per cent).

Sixty-two per cent of respondents said the leadership challenge was bad for the government and 47 per cent that it has made them less likely to vote Labor (64 per cent among Coalition supporters, obviously including many who wouldn’t vote Labor in a pink fit), against 13 per cent who said it was a good thing and another 13 per cent (or perhaps the same 13 per cent) who they were more likely to vote Labor. A question on Kevin Rudd’s future produces a miraculously even three-way split with 29 per cent saying he should stay in parliament and again challenge for the leadership, 28 per cent saying he should stay in parliament and not challenge for the leadership and 30 per cent saying he should resign from parliament.

Respondents were asked to indicate whether they supported the Australian system of leaders being elected by MPs (36 per cent), American-style presidential primaries (31 per cent) and British-style election by both MPs and party members (11 per cent). Fifty-six per cent believed MPs should be guided by public opinion in leadership contests against 30 per cent by who they believed was the best person. The poll also points to a slight increase in support for an early election since the end of January, up three to 44 per cent with support for a completed term down two to 46 per cent.

We have also had Newspoll publish results from last week’s polling on the most important political issues and the best party to handle them. Such figures are invariably very closely associated with voting intention, and since this was a 53-47 poll result, it finds Labor improving considerably since the question was last asked as part of the poll of October 7-9, which was a 57-43 result. Labor has recovered big leads on its traditional strong suits of health, education, industrial relations and climate change, and closed the gap on the economy, interest rates and national security. Full tables from GhostWhoVotes.

William Bowe — Editor of The Poll Bludger

William Bowe

Editor of The Poll Bludger

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, is one of the most heavily trafficked forums for online discussion of Australian politics, and joined the Crikey stable in 2008.

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2780 comments

2,780 thoughts on “Essential Research: 56-44 to Coalition

  1. The Finnigans

    [‘PETER COSTELLO’S COALITION ECONOMIC RECORDS
    Economic Records of Costello and the Coalition:

    BW, we have the BISONS. They have the HOGS: Holes Of Gargantuan Size, as George called ]
    How about WARTHOGS ? They are certainly ugly enough 🙂
    What Abbott Really Touts, Holes Of Gargantuan Size

  2. [NEWSLIMITED MISREPRESENTATION

    Have a look at this letter sent to The Australian by Bob Brown.

    This was what was published in The Australian.

    They have actually rewritten parts of his letter to mention the Carbon Tax.

    There must be something illegal about this massive misrepresentation.]

    That is as disgusting as phone hacking celebs.

  3. Boerwar,

    [Someone forward these COALITION ANTI-BISONS (I can’t say whether they are accurate or not).]

    They’re accurate alright. 😉

  4. GD:

    I was actually referring to Lang marrying her, which enabled Rose to become truly wealthy. He bestowed all kinds of things on Rose throughout their marriage: property, money etc.

    As I recall it, Gina’s instigation of legal action after Lang’s death alleged that Rose’s behaviour contributed to Lang’s early death. Truly tiresome, self-indulgent carry on from the whole mob of them.

  5. [Puff, the Magic Dragon.
    Posted Tuesday, March 6, 2012 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    dio,
    On Saturday 17th march, in the immortal words from Are You Being Served; are you free Mr Diogenes? ]

    Talking of that and all the recent publicity re the leadership … Did anybody else notice a resemblance between Bruce Hawker and Captain Peacock?

    My OH assures me that it is only my imagination, that Captain Peacock is thinner in the face, etc., but I can’t seem to lose the comparison.

  6. So if News Ltd will get so low as to alter letters from Politicians where will they stop?

    Don’t answer I think we know. 🙁

  7. [So if News Ltd will get so low as to alter letters from Politicians where will they stop?

    Don’t answer I think we know. 🙁 ]

    I FCPA doesn’t do News serious damage the US will look very very silly

  8. Bobalot.
    They did not even spell it correctly. “cabon tax”! I see they gave Ghandi’s quote the chop. Obviously Mahatma Ghandi is not good enough for the that newspaper.

  9. Bobalot, it is the most perfect exposure of what line the msm, generally, have been running since the beginning of their propaganda campaign on the carbon price, with Newslimited leading the charge.

    I shall pass it on.

  10. Bobalot, I’d assume that degree of missrepresentation would be highly illegal, at the very least Mr Brown may have some very good grounds to sue Newscorpse for a lot of do-rae-me

  11. boerwar #853, thats Dr Marx to you … keep up the inaccurate references and you could get a job with various well known media organisations

  12. [As I recall it, Gina’s instigation of legal action after Lang’s death alleged that Rose’s behaviour contributed to Lang’s early death. Truly tiresome, self-indulgent carry on from the whole mob of them.]

    He was only 82.
    he had his whole life behind him.

  13. confessions
    [As I recall it, Gina’s instigation of legal action after Lang’s death alleged that Rose’s behaviour contributed to Lang’s early death. Truly tiresome, self-indulgent carry on from the whole mob of them.]
    Not to mention hinting Lang had been poisoned.
    [GINA RINEHART TO INQUEST: “We heard rumours that someone was going to poison my father.”]
    You might like to read this very revealing article by David Leser http://tiny.cc/iiQe2b

  14. [There must be something illegal about this massive misrepresentation.]

    I believe the fine print of newspapers says something like letters may be edited as needed. But yes, it’s still appalling.

    The other day Brown tweeted that he couldn’t get a letter published in the OO, so I’m assuming the publishing was as a result of that?

    Incidentally, Robert Manne has been having his own problems with the paper.
    http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3871300.html

  15. confessions

    [There must be something illegal about this massive misrepresentation.

    I believe the fine print of newspapers says something like letters may be edited as needed. But yes, it’s still appalling.]
    I am sure there is a very large legal gulf between “editing” and misrepresentation.

  16. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/mar/05/new-right-ayn-rand-marx

    [How Ayn Rand became the new right’s version of Marx
    Her psychopathic ideas made billionaires feel like victims and turned millions of followers into their doormats

    George Monbiot
    guardian.co.uk, Monday 5 March 2012 20.30 GMT

    It has a fair claim to be the ugliest philosophy the postwar world has produced. Selfishness, it contends, is good, altruism evil, empathy and compassion are irrational and destructive. The poor deserve to die; the rich deserve unmediated power. It has already been tested, and has failed spectacularly and catastrophically. Yet the belief system constructed by Ayn Rand, who died 30 years ago today, has never been more popular or influential.]
    worth reading

  17. good analysis of Finlesteins report by Wendy Bacon. We all know who we are dominated by Rupert, but it is frightening

    [Australia has the most concentrated media in the developed world. News Ltd has 65 per cent of total circulation of metropolitan and national daily newspapers — Fairfax controls another 25 per cent. In a study of 26 countries, Australia was the only one in which a single company — News Corporation — accounts for more than half of daily circulation. In 20 of the countries surveyed the share of the top company was under 40 per cent. With a share of 86 per cent, Australia’s top two companies — News Corp and Fairfax Media — hold a greater share than in any of the other countries. ]

    http://newmatilda.com/2012/03/06/why-market-cant-ensure-free-press

  18. Leroy @1020
    from the linked article
    [Almost one third of Americans, according to a recent poll, have read Atlas Shrugged, and it now sells hundreds of thousands of copies every year.]

    That has to be bullshit.
    A third?, that is psychoville.

  19. The Tool very agitated (seem to be shaking) when interviewing the calm and reasoned Bob Brown on Seven-turdy. Had to keep looking down at his monitor to see what the next question from HQ was.

  20. TheFinnigans天地有道人无道 ‏ @Thefinnigans Reply Delete Favorite · Open
    Senator Bob Brown called Toolsman “The Liberal Propaganda” tool on #ABC730. Oouchh how appropriatement

  21. Leroy
    [Yet the belief system constructed by Ayn Rand, who died 30 years ago today, has never been more popular or influential]
    Also horrifying is seeing that Alan Greenspan was an acolyte and coauthor with the psychopathic Rand. Well done Alan, with your economic philosophy you may have succeeded where Nikita Khrushchev failed to “bury” the United States.

  22. [Almost one third of Americans, according to a recent poll, have read Atlas Shrugged, and it now sells hundreds of thousands of copies every year]
    That figure would be bull biscuits of the first water considering A) The reading habits……or rather lack of of Americans and B) The fact it is a god awful boring as batshit read.

  23. Puff @ 951

    [Letting the sociopaths, shysters and jackols who get to the top of the tallest tree in the business jungle run an economy of a country is like giving your ship pirates so they can sail it for you.]

    Spot on – I have been in private industry all of my working life (since the middle 1970’s) and the majority of senior managers in businesses I have been associated with in that time fall into one of two categories – (1) the corporate psychopaths who have zero empathy with others and can only lie, cheat and steal their way to the top, and (2) the ‘good guys’ who want to be liked, but are incapable of making any decisions.

    Both are equally bad for the good governance of any business, and the very idea that either of these two ‘management’ traits (which are sadly very common in Australian private industry) could somehow translate into good public policy and a better idea of how to manage the Australian economy is errant nonsense.

    Give me an ambitious achiever from within the sphere of public service ahead of the grasping and narrow profit-driven confines of the private sector.

  24. [Senator Bob Brown called Toolsman “The Liberal Propaganda” tool on #ABC730. Oouchh how appropriatement]

    Horsey, all is forgiven, please come back :kiss:

  25. Cheque books win out apparently in the latest rumour that Uhlmann would interview socialite Rose Porteous but now looks like Channel Eddy.

  26. From Robert Manne’s piece in The Drum outrageous. Of all the things I’ve read about The OO in recent weeks, this example appalls me the most. The relentless pursuit of a respected academic for clearly political purposes. We expect this kind of behavior from fascist regimes but in Australia. Sickening.

    http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3871300.html

    “Australian is of course not interested in the vast majority of the authors who receive grants from the ARC and publish commercial books – those who write for example on literature or military history or Australian 19th century gardens. It is exclusively interested in harassing those it regards as left-wing intellectuals and, a fortiori, the critics of the Murdoch Empire against which it wishes to use its vast resources and influence to intimidate and to wound and if possible to discredit. In cases like this, it can often seem that an editor whistles, and the well-trained team of attack dogs – Andrew Bolt, Piers Akerman, Miranda Devine, Tim Blair et hoc genus emerge from their various kennels, teeth bared, snarling, moving in for the kill. This is the kind of culture that now prevails in the media corporation that dominates between 65 per cent and 70 per cent of the Australian newspaper market.

    The Finkelstein inquiry into media ethics in contemporary Australia was sorely needed. This little incident underlines why.

    It is time for fellow democrats in Australia to stand up to the bullying tactics of the Murdoch press in general and in particular to the bullying tactics of its most important general staff – Chris Mitchell’s editorial team at the Australian.”

    Robert Manne is Professor of Politics at La Trobe University. View his full profile here.

  27. oyster

    [channel 10 could counter with Bolt interviewing Rhineheart ]
    Fortunately the 8 people that watch the program are rusted on Coalition voters so no damage 😆

  28. SBS had Rabbott going on about Swannie’s bashing the Billionaires and said it was bashing the Middle Class ???????????????????? Are Billionaires the new middle Class ? He thinks he’s on a winner here. They really are unhinging now. The last poll I had , i put Barnaby as best for PM , followed by Pynne ,Bishop, hockey ,turngate and abbott last. I hope they don’t take my advice.

  29. [SBS had Rabbott going on about Swannie’s bashing the Billionaires and said it was bashing the Middle Class ???????????????????? Are Billionaires the new middle Class ? He thinks he’s on a winner here. They really are unhinging now. The last poll I had , i put Barnaby as best for PM , followed by Pynne ,Bishop, hockey ,turngate and abbott last. I hope they don’t take my advice.]

    Labor must continue and go harder. Real middle class like it and hate it when the Govt looks weak. Time this Govt stopped being best at looking weak.

  30. Lord Barry Bonkton @ 1041

    [ Posted Tuesday, March 6, 2012 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

    SBS had Rabbott going on about Swannie’s bashing the Billionaires and said it was bashing the Middle Class ???????????????????? Are Billionaires the new middle Class ? He thinks he’s on a winner here. They really are unhinging now. ]

    SBS is an absolute disgrace for letting Abbott’s crap see the light of day – although it is so laughable that it is likely to be seen by the public as a negative . Not sure any other outlet reported it.

  31. MM

    [boerwar #853, thats Dr Marx to you … keep up the inaccurate references and you could get a job with various well known media organisations]

    In my posterworld everyone usually gets ‘Mr’ or’ M’s and sometimes ‘Mrs’ if so desired. I usually use initials to indicate when I am addressing other Bludgers.

    All attempts at misrepresentation, distraction, confusion and deception by way of titles, honourifics, religious designations (such as ‘father’, ‘pope’ and ‘imam’), job names and so on and so forth, are avoided in a more or less inconsistent fashion by yours truly. If used, they should only be used because they add information to the discussion.

    For example, referring to Mr Abbott as probably the most destructive LOTO Australia has ever gives him a relative order of merit amongst LOTOs.

    Similarly, the title of ‘Dear Leader’ is useful because it provides a real insight into the mind of dear leaders. The terms brings insight.

    ‘Mr’ and ‘Ms’ are used consistently by yours truly to give everyone an equal place as a human being and also to keep me on the rails of politeness in posting. This, too, fails from time to time.

    Turning to Mr Marx as a case in point, the thrust of my argument is that he wrote turgidly, without wit, humour or irony.

    That he reached an official level or standard of education does not bear on the case at all. In reference to the discussion, it would make no difference whether he attained his Merit Certificate, his Intermediate Certificate, his Leaving Certificate. In fact your readiness to advert to his tertiary education title does what the use of such titles so often does… distract from reality, in this case the reality that Mr Marx was not a laugh a minute sort of writer.

    Consistent with the above, whenever I see degrees framed in the offices of professional people, my first response is one of scepticism and mistrust and bring to mind questions such as, ‘What are they hiding? What are they compensating for?’ Ditto when I see alphabet soups appended to names. Finally, I have always found the use military titles such as ‘Rear Admiral, ret.’ rather filled with pathos.

  32. [The Tool very agitated (seem to be shaking) when interviewing the calm and reasoned Bob Brown on Seven-turdy.]

    Maybe Peter Singer was in contact, today, over his appalling, poor taste, tweet of the other night. A distinguished academic should not have been belittled by someone in Chris Uhlmann’s position.

  33. Lord Barry Bonkton
    [SBS had Rabbott going on about Swannie’s bashing the Billionaires and said it was bashing the Middle Class ???????????????????? Are Billionaires the new middle Class ? ]
    Well that would explain why the Coalition over the HIR issue portrayed families on over a quarter of a million dollars a year as downtrodden Muzhiks 🙁

  34. Tom the first and best

    [Maybe they are anti-Gandhi? Churchill was anti-Gandhi.]
    He was anti many who were not melanin challenged 🙁
    [“I hate Indians. They are a beastly people with a beastly religion.” This hatred killed. To give just one, major, example, in 1943 a famine broke out in Bengal, caused – as the Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen has proved – by the imperial policies of the British. Up to 3 million people starved to death while British officials begged Churchill to direct food supplies to the region. He bluntly refused. He raged that it was their own fault for “breeding like rabbits”. At other times, he said the plague was “merrily” culling the population.]
    [Churchill believed that Kenya’s fertile highlands should be the preserve of the white settlers, and approved the clearing out of the local “blackamoors”. He saw the local Kikuyu as “brutish children”. When they rebelled under Churchill’s post-war premiership, some 150,000 of them were forced at gunpoint into detention camps – later dubbed “Britain’s gulag” by Pulitzer-prize winning historian, Professor Caroline Elkins. ]

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/not-his-finest-hour-the-dark-side-of-winston-churchill-2118317.html