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Newspoll: 53-47 to Labor

The first Newspoll in four weeks is well in line with other results to emerge from a busy weekend polling cycle, with Essential Research still to come.

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The first Newspoll in four weeks has Labor leading 53-47, compared with 51-49 in favour of the Coalition last time. Primary votes are 38% for the Coalition (down five), 34% for Labor (steady) and 14% for the Greens (up three). Tony Abbott is down five on approval to 35% and up nine on disapproval to 56%, while Bill Shorten is up four to 35% and down one to 41%. Abbott’s lead as preferred prime minister has shrunk from 41-33 to 40-38.

This is the latest in a polling avalanche which has followed the interruption of Easter and Anzac Day, to which Essential Research is still to be added tomorrow. Three other polls published over the past two days have produced strikingly similar results on the primary vote, from which Newspoll differs in having Labor lower and the Greens higher:

• Galaxy, for the first time adding an online panel component to its live-interview phone polling to produce an enlarged sample of 1391, has the Labor lead at 52-48, with primary votes of 39% for the Coalition, 37% for Labor, 11% for the Greens and 6% for Palmer United.

• A ReachTEL poll conducted on Saturday, also from a larger-than-usual sample of 4016, has Labor’s lead at 54-46, with primary votes of 38.9% for the Coalition, 39.6% for Labor, 11.2% for the Greens and 6.0% for Palmer United.

• Morgan’s multi-mode face-to-face plus SMS poll, conducted every weekend but compiled fortnightly, has Labor leading 53.5-46.5 according to the conventional two-party preferred method that allocates preferences as per the result of the previous election, increasing to 55-45 when preferences were allocated by the respondent. The primary votes are 37.5% for the Coalition, 37% for Labor, 12% for the Greens and 5.5% for Palmer United.

UPDATE: And now Essential Research comes in entirely unchanged on last week, with Labor leading 52-48 from primary votes of 40% for the Coalition, 38% for Labor, 10% for the Greens and 5% for Palmer United. Questions on the deficit tax show the importance of wording in these situations – just as carbon tax questions got a more favourable response when the rationale for them was laid out, inquiry about “a temporary ‘deficit’ tax on high and middle income earners aimed at bringing the budget back to surplus” has support and opposition tied at 34%. However, 48% favour the proposition that “introducing a new ‘deficit’ tax would be a broken promise by the Abbott Government” versus 33% for “it is more important to reduce the deficit than stick to pre-election promises”.

Other findings have “management of the Australian economy” all but unchanged since a year ago, with a total good rating of 40% (up one) and total bad of 31% (down one), but with results by party support having changed beyond recognition; Joe Hockey favoured over Chris Bowen to manage the economy by 33% to 27%; Labor better than Liberal at “representing the interests of working families (47-20), Liberal a lot better than Labor at “representing the interests of the large corporate and financial interests” (54-13), and Liberal better at handling the economy overall (40-26); 23% very concerned about job losses, 34% somewhat concerned and 29% not at all concerned; 77% believing the gap between rich and poor to have increased over the last 10 years, with only 3% for decreased; 29% thinking their own financial situation good versus 26% for poor; “the cost of living” rated by far the economic issue of most concern (56%, with unemployment in second place on 11%).

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