Essential Research: 56-44 to Coalition
The latest Essential Research result has Labor gaining a point on two-party preferred for the second week in a row, with the Coalition now leading 56-44, and has Labor gaining three points on the primary vote – a very unusual occurrence in this series, which publishes weekly results derived from a two-week rolling average. Labor’s primary vote is at 33%, with the Coalition and the Greens each down a point to 49% and 10% respectively.
The first of the supplementary questions measures respondents’ knowledge rather than opinions: namely, the question of whether interest rates are higher or lower now than they were when Labor came to power, the purpose presumably being to determine whether misapprehensions are behind Labor’s diabolical polling. A majority (35% to 20%) were in fact aware that they were now lower, but only 10% thought they were a little lower against 25% for a lot, when the official interest rate has in fact gone from 6.75% to 3.75%. Respondents were then asked how much credit they gave Labor for the drop: 7% said a lot, 19% a fair amount, 27% a little and 35% none. Further questions cover the casualisation of the workforce, the mining boom, the value of various industries to average Australians, and the notion that the government is engaged in “class warfare” (28% agree, 46% disagree).
Further polling snippets:
• Yesterday’s Sunday Mail reported that the Galaxy poll of Queensland respondents covered in the previous post also found that Kevin Rudd’s lead over Julia Gillard in the state at 67-21, and at 62-37 among Labor voters.
• News Limited tabloids carried another Galaxy poll yesterday, this one conducted online from a national sample of 606, which showed support for gay marriage at 50% against 33% opposed. However, 26% of respondents said legislation to allow gay marriage would make them less likely to vote Labor, against only 22% who said more likely.
• Labor has gone public with polling conducted for it by UMR Research, which apparently found that 25% of respondents “would vote for” Julian Assange if he ran for a Senate seat. This tendency was fairly evenly spread among supporters of different parties: 39% for Greens, 26% for Labor and 23% for Coalition. The combined figure is similar to the 23% of respondents to a Galaxy poll in September last year who rated themselves “likely” to vote for Katter’s Australian Party at the Queensland state election: 11.5% would actually do so. It is not clear if the poll was entirely national, as the report from Phillip Coorey in the Sydney Morning Herald only spoke of results from New South Wales and Victoria, which perhaps surprisingly showed slightly stronger support for Assange in the former.
• Tasmanian Labor Senator Nick Sherry, who had already announced he would not contest the next election, has brought forward his retirement. David Killick of The Mercury reports the vacancy looks set to be filled by Lin Thorp, member for the state upper house seat of Rumney from 1999 until her defeat in 2011. Thorp has the backing of Sherry’s Left faction, including from Premier Lara Giddings. However, earlier reports suggested others in the Left wanted a younger candidate, and that a move was on to have the party’s administrative committee reserve the position for a candidate from northern Tasmanian – with Launceston commercial lawyer Ross Hart fitting the bill on both counts. Notably, Unions Tasmania secretary Kevin Harkins, who was said to have been locked out preselection in 2007 because Kevin Rudd had him confused with Kevin Reynolds, and again in 2010 because Rudd did not want to admit to his mistake, had ruled himself out because “we’re likely to have a very conservative government in just a tad over 12 months’ time, (and) the best place for me is with the union movement”.
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Categories: Federal Politics 2010-