Post election surge in support for Anthony Albanese’s new Labor government
Voters have swung behind Labor with a surge of support to give the new federal government a strong lead in the community with a primary vote of 42 per cent, up from 33 per cent at the election just three months ago.
The significant shift has given Prime Minister Anthony Albanese a commanding lead over Opposition Leader Peter Dutton of 55 to 17 per cent as preferred prime minister, repeating the stunning gains for new leaders after previous elections.
With federal politics dominated by a dispute over former prime minister Scott Morrison and his decision to take five ministerial portfolios without telling parliament, the new findings show voters have cut their primary vote support for the Coalition from 36 to 28 per cent since the election.
The exclusive survey, conducted by Resolve Strategic for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, marks a return to political polling for the firm since independent observers described it as “easily the best final poll” when Australians went to the ballot box on May 21.
“It’s not uncommon for a new government to enjoy a honeymoon period where voters are hopeful for change under the new management,” said Resolve director Jim Reed.
“But the size of Labor’s vote gain is more than that. This is a relieved electorate affirming they collectively made the right choice.
“Labor has used its first 100 days to get runs on the board on wages, foreign affairs and climate, set up a social agenda and manage expectations on economic issues.
“In doing so, they’ve reassured and converted a segment of around eight per cent of the electorate, taking that support from a new opposition that nobody is listening to yet.”
Labor won the election with a relatively low primary vote of 32.6 per cent but has gained a powerful endorsement from voters over the past three months on its core performance as well as major policy issues including national security and the economy.
While the Coalition held a lead of 10 percentage points on economic management in the final Resolve survey before the election, Labor now leads by 9 percentage points on the same issue.
The Coalition held a lead of 15 percentage points on national security before the election but Labor now has a narrow lead of 4 percentage points on this key issue.
Labor and Albanese held a lead of 6 percentage points before the election when voters were asked to name the party and leader best to manage jobs and wages, with the latest survey showing the lead has increased to 25 points.
On the environment and climate change, Labor held a lead of 5 percentage points before the election but now has a lead of 26 points.
The survey also shows the Greens have held their support steady at12 per cent while voters have swung toward independent candidates – from 5 to 8 per cent – after the “teal” candidates and other independents stormed into parliament.
Voters who backed Pauline Hanson’s One Nation held their support, giving the party a primary vote of 5 per cent, but they marked down mining billionaire Clive Palmer and his United Australia Party by cutting its primary vote from 4 to 2 per cent.
The Resolve Political Monitor surveyed 2011 eligible voters from Wednesday to Sunday, a period when political debate was dominated by revelations that Morrison took on five ministerial portfolios without telling parliament or most of his colleagues.
The margin of error for the national results was 2.2 percentage points.
The results show that Albanese leads Dutton as preferred prime minister by 55 to 17 per cent in a dramatic turnaround from the survey before polling day, when Albanese lagged slightly behind Morrison by 36 to 40 per cent.
Asked about Albanese, 61 per cent of voters said he was doing a good job and 22 per cent said he was doing a poor job, resulting in a net performance rating of 39 points. This was a significant improvement on his net rating of minus 8 points in the Resolve survey in the week before polling day.
Asked about Dutton, 30 per cent said he was doing a good job and 38 per cent said he was doing a poor job, producing a net rating of minus 8 points. This was in line with the net rating for Morrison just before the election, which was minus 7 points, but voters held stronger views on the former prime minister because of the prominence of his position. While only 7 per cent of voters were undecided about Morrison, 32 per cent are undecided about Dutton.
Because the Resolve Political Monitor asks voters to nominate their primary votes in the same way they would write “1” on the ballot papers for the lower house at the election, there is no undecided category in the results, a key difference from some other surveys.
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