A slight shift to the Coalition in this week’s Essential Research, which also finds the recent Senate turmoil has changed very few minds about the utility of minor parties holding the balance of power.
This week’s Essential Research result ticks back a point to the Coalition on two-party preferred, who now trail by 52-48, from primary votes of 39% for both the Coalition and Labor (respectively up one and down one), with the Greens and Palmer United steady on 9% and 6%. Other findings:
• Perceptions of the Senate balance of power have not changed since last year, with 32% thinking it best when the government has a majority (up one), 25% favouring independents and minor parties holding the balance of power (up one), 8% preferring the opposition holding the balance of power (down two), 7% saying it doesn’t matter, and 28% saying they don’t know.
• Perceptions of the present situation are likewise unchanged on immediately after the election, with 36% thinking the micro-parties good for democracy (steady), 28% bad (up two) and 15% opting for makes no difference (down two).
• Twenty-seven per cent would sooner the Greens hold the balance of power versus 22% for Palmer United, with 34% saying no difference.
Other inquiries relate to respondents’ retirement and superannuation arrangements. Another polling nugget to emerge yesterday was a ReachTEL result commissioned by the Electrical Trades Union showing Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls facing a 13% swing in his affluent Brisbane seat of Clayfield, but nonetheless leading 57-43 on two-party preferred.
UPDATE (ReachTEL): The Seven Network this evening brings us a ReachTEL automated phone poll of national voting intention, as it does one a month or so, conducted to gauge reaction to Tony Abbott’s handling of the MH17 disaster. The poll shows a slight tick to the Coalition, which now trails 52-48 from primary votes of 36% for the Liberals, apparently not including the Coalition (up one); 37% for Labor (down one); 10% for the Greens (steady); and 8% for Palmer United (up one). Abbott scores strong ratings for his handling of MH17, being rated very good or good by 51%, satisfactory by 26% and poor or very poor by 23%.