Fortnightly results from Newspoll and Morgan both record shifts to the Coalition, in the former case giving them the lead for the first time in over three months.
GhostWhoVotes reports that the latest Newspoll has the Coalition in the lead for the first time since late November, their lead of 51-49 comparing with Labor’s 52-48 lead in the poll of a fortnight ago. The primary votes are 43% for the Coalition (up three), 34% for Labor (down two) and 11% for the Greens (down two). More to follow. UPDATE: Tony Abbott’s net approval improves slightly with approval steady on 40% and disapproval down three to 47%, while Bill Shorten is respectively down five to 31% and down one to 42%. There is also a less decisive result on preferred prime minister, with Abbott down two to 41% and Shorten down three to 33%. The Australian’s report here.
Morgan had its fortnightly face-to-face plus SMS poll out today, encompassing 2869 respondents over the past two weekends. It too has Labor losing ground on the previous poll, down from 54-46 ahead on respondent-allocated preferences to 51.5-48.5 (and on previous election preferences, 53.5-46.5 to 52-48), from primary votes of 34.5% for Labor (down four), 38.5% for the Coalition (up half a point), 12% for the Greens (up one point) and 5% for Palmer United (up half).
UPDATE (Essential Research): This week’s Essential Research fortnightly average records very little change, with Labor maintaining its 51-49 lead from primary votes of 43% for the Coalition, 38% for Labor, 9% for the Greens and 3% for Palmer United, the only change there being a one point drop for Labor. Also featured are the monthly leaders ratings, which have Tony Abbott up a point on approval to 41% and steady on disapproval at 47%, Bill Shorten up two to 32% and down one to 38%, and Abbott’s lead as preferred prime minister up from 39-33 to 42-32. Other questions find 25% support for the privatisation of Medibank Private and 46% opposition, 61% expecting it would cause health insurance fees to increase against just 3% who think they would decrease, and 25% approving of the sale of government assets to fund new infrastructure against 58% disapproving. A semi-regular question on climate change finds 56% thinking it caused by human activity, up five on January, with 34% favouring the more skeptical response, down five.