Three months out from the election, the latest figures from Newspoll continue to credit South Australia's Liberals with a decisive lead, but by a narrower margin than they would like and with the trend running against them.
The year’s final quarterly Newspoll survey of state voting intention in South Australia, where an election looms on March 15, finds the Liberals on track for what by recent historical standards is a modest victory. The poll has the Liberals leading 53-47 on two-party preferred, which compares with 56-44 for the last poll covering the April-June period (couldn’t tell you why there was no July-September result, but perhaps interference from the federal election had something to do with it). On the primary vote, Labor is up one point to 33% and the Liberals are down four to 40%. Last time there was an extra 1% for the Nationals I’m not sure if they have troubled the scorers on this occasion (UPDATE: GhostWhoVotes relates in comments that they have not). The Greens are steady on 10%, with others up four to 17%.
Jay Weatherill is still in net positive territory on personal ratings, which is pretty good work for the head of a 12-year-old government, although he’s down four on approval to 43% and up two on disapproval to 37%. Steven Marshall is holding up even better, his approval rating up two to 43% and disapproval up one to 21%. Weatherill holds a 40-29 lead as preferred premier, which is hardly changed on the previous 41-30. The sample for the poll was 874. Hat tip to James J in comments.
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.