The latest bi-monthly New South Wales state Newspoll result is about what you’d expect. Conducted through November and the first half of December, it has Labor’s primary vote down four points to 26 per cent, the Coalition up two to 44 per cent and the Greens vaulting five to an unprecedented 17 per cent. Labor’s primary vote equals the record low set in November-December last year, which is three points lower than the next worst ever major party result (as I illustrated at the time with this chart). The Coalition is up from 55-45 to 59-41 on a two-party measure that tells you less than the primary vote, due to optional preferential voting and a combined minor party and independent vote that exceeds Labor’s.

For all that, Kristina Keneally’s personal ratings are better than she might have feared. From a sample of the 637 most recent respondents, she leads Barry O’Farrell as preferred premier 35 per cent to 34 per cent, and more say she will be a better leader than Nathan Rees (24 per cent) than worse (16 per cent). The former ratings are about the same as Nathan Rees’s towards the end, but they have been achieved against an O’Farrell whose approval rating has improved six points to 44 per cent, with disapproval down seven to 30 per cent. Approval and disapproval ratings for Keneally are not provided.

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