POLLWATCH 2013 – Issue #3

9 February, 2013

Everyone in the Commentariat has a favourite opinion polling organisation or one they “most trust” and this usually reflects their positioning in the Left-Right political spectrum. Newspoll often is mentioned as “one of the most authoritative” of the opinion polling companies and it is no coincidence that they are one of the “early birds” of 2013. And, on the surface, Newpolls findings mirror the general malaise in the body politic.

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On Monday, 4 February, Newspoll’s findings amounted to similar analyses to those of last week…the conclusive finding being that Labor’s primary vote has slumped to 32% whilst the LNP Coalition’s primary vote has stretched out 4 more percentage points to 48%…Extrapolation: a 56%:44% 2PP far and away winning lead to the LNP Coalition.

To bring a little more balance to the equation, the Galaxy polling organisation released their findings from the exact same data-gathering period: the 2 days of the just-previous weekend. Galaxy reported that Labor had only dropped down to a 35% primary vote to the Coalition’s (again) hard-core primary vote of 48%…Extrapolation: a 54%: 46% 2PP almost as far and away election-winning lead to the LNP Coalition.

A significant comparison between these 2 published opinion polls is that the primary vote loss for Labor is a hard-to-retrieve 4+% – only a percentage point less than last week’s assessed loss of ground – but with the claim from Galaxy’s media release that, to quote them: “Labor’s primary vote is going nowhere but down. Furthermore, 53% of the 2000 odd voters we polled did not accept the first explanation the PM gave for calling the expected 2013 General election seven and a half months ahead of time. We report, also, that only 41% of those polled accepted the PM’s initial claims”.

Essential Research, in corroborating these findings, proffered the considered view that the clear trend in ALL this is a minimum (at best for Labor) 54%: 46% 2PP LNP/ALP trade-off and a loss of 14 Seats.

Galaxy’s CEO, David Briggs, said: “Labor can be grateful that their horror 1st week [of the 2013 Federal election campaign] hasn’t put them further behind [their main opponents]. There’s no circuit-breaker; Labor is 3 [primary]percentage points behind the primary vote that delivered a hung parliament in August, 2010.”

Well, it is fitting that at the end of thisa 3rd PollWatch bulletin I give some of the last words to the AFR’s Laura Tingle, esteemed Canberra Watcher, who, on Friday, 8 February, asserted as follows: “Let’s be clear. It has not been a good [second] week [of the 2013 Federal election] campaign for the incumbent government”. Indeed. In describing the rumblings within the PM’s own caucus as having handed them [her enemies within] “the longest suicide note in history” Tingle was most damaging in describing the paranoia within the government as palpable – with the sense that some stupid event “could bring the whole thing toppling down, such is the brittle hold the Labor government has on events”. An almost-invisible Tony Abbott meanwhile has counselled his fellow MHRs to “not get in the way of the Gillard government destroying itself”.

It appears as though ALL the Labor MHRs in Federal Parliament will stew in their own juices over a protracted 7+ months long period. The Beguiler has somewhat “fireproofed” herself from challenge or overthrow by enveloping her party in her survival scheme. A reasonable scenario is: having plopped ALL her Labor MHRs in to the boiling pot, the frogs will slowly cook on their way to an inevitable, unstoppable death. Painless? Hmmm. Dunno!

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