Essential Report

Preferred Prime Minister

Aug 3, 2021

Q. Who do you think would make the better Prime Minister out of Scott Morrison and Anthony Albanese?

Aug’21 Jul’21 Jun’21 May’21 Apr’21 Mar’21 Feb’21 Jan’21 Dec’20 Nov’20 Oct’20 Sep’20
Scott Morrison 45% 46% 48% 50% 47% 52% 52% 51% 50% 53% 50% 49%
Anthony Albanese 26% 28% 28% 24% 28% 26% 24% 25% 24% 24% 25% 26%
Don’t know 29% 26% 24% 26% 25% 22% 24% 25% 26% 24% 25% 25%
Base (n) 1,098 1,099 1,104 1,092 1,368 1,124 1,109 1,084 1,071 1,010 1,082 1,076
  • Less than half (45%) of Australians now think that Scott Morrison would make a better PM than Anthony Albanese (46% last month).
  • Just over a quarter (26%) think the opposition leader would make the better Prime Minister (28% in June). 29% of participants don’t know who would make the better PM.

Federal government response to Covid-19

Aug 3, 2021

Q. Overall, how would you rate the federal government’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak?

  02/08 19/07 05/07 07/06 24/05 12/04 15/03 01/03 15/02 01/02 30/11 16/11 02/11
Very poor 16% 13% 12% 10% 6% 7% 5% 6% 5% 4% 6% 5% 5%
Quite poor 19% 19% 17% 14% 12% 10% 7% 8% 7% 11% 8% 9% 10%
Neither good nor poor 28% 23% 26% 22% 25% 21% 18% 24% 19% 19% 19% 18% 24%
Quite good 28% 32% 33% 38% 40% 40% 39% 39% 42% 42% 41% 41% 39%
Very good 10% 14% 11% 15% 18% 22% 31% 23% 27% 25% 26% 26% 22%
TOTAL: Poor 35% 31% 30% 24% 18% 17% 12% 14% 12% 14% 13% 15% 15%
TOTAL: Good 38% 46% 44% 53% 58% 62% 70% 62% 69% 67% 67% 67% 61%
Base (n) 1,098 1,100 1,099 1,104 1,100 1,368 1,124 1,074 1,109 1,092 1,034 1,010 1,063

 

TOTAL: Good 02/08 19/07 05/07 07/06 24/05 12/04 15/03 01/03
NSW 39% 49% 44% 62% 56% 66% 69% 64%
VIC 33% 39% 40% 42% 57% 55% 65% 51%
QLD 40% 46% 48% 54% 56% 63% 69% 66%
SA 48% 51% 48% 58% 66% 62% 78% 68%
WA 37% 51% 42% 49% 56% 65% 75% 66%
  • 38% of people rate the federal government’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak as quite good or very good, with 35% rating it as quite poor or very poor. This is the worst rating recorded to date for this question which was first asked in March 2020.
  • Positive rating of the federal government’s handling of Covid-19 has dropped to its lowest recorded level in almost all states this month; most notably in WA (down from 51% last month, to 37%), NSW (39%, down from 49% in July), VIC (33% – the lowest rating of all states), and QLD (40%).

State government response to Covid-19

Aug 3, 2021

Q. How would you rate your state government’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak?

TOTAL: Good 02/08 19/07 05/07 07/06 24/05 12/04 15/03 01/03 15/02 01/02 30/11 16/11 02/11
NSW 47% 54% 57% 69% 68% 73% 75% 72% 72% 71% 76% 75% 68%
VIC 54% 49% 50% 48% 63% 58% 62% 49% 59% 61% 60% 59% 55%
QLD 60% 62% 61% 65% 68% 72% 75% 73% 76% 78% 72% 71% 69%
SA 73% 68% 67% 67% 71% 75% 85% 78% 79% 80% 70% 76% 77%
WA 82% 77% 86% 75% 77% 84% 91% 85% 88% 80% 83% 82% 81%
  • Amid the ongoing Covid-19 outbreak and lockdown in NSW, positive rating of the state government’s response to Covid-19 continues to drop, now at 47% from 57% a month ago.
  • Coinciding with the eased restrictions in VIC, rating of the state government has improved (now at 54%, 50% last month).
  • Positive rating of the SA government’s handling of Covid-19 has increased to 73%, an improvement from last month (67%).
  • Positive rating of the WA government’s handling of Covid-19 has increased to 82%, an improvement from mid-July (77%).
  • In QLD, positive rating of the state government’s handling of Covid-19 is at 60%, consistent with a month ago (61%).

State government handling of latest Covid-19 outbreaks

Aug 3, 2021

Q. How well do you think your state government has handled the latest Covid-19 outbreak in your state?

[Asked only to those in NSW, VIC, QLD, SA, and WA]

State
NSW VIC QLD SA WA
Extremely well 9% 24% 20% 40% 50%
Very well 15% 23% 27% 29% 24%
Fairly well 36% 30% 34% 24% 21%
Not that well 25% 13% 11% 4% 3%
Not well at all 15% 10% 8% 3% 3%
TOTAL: Extremely well + Very well 24% 47% 47% 69% 74%
TOTAL: Not that well + Not well at all 41% 23% 19% 7% 5%
Base (n) 352 276 220 86 111
  • Of people in states which were recently affected by Covid-19 outbreaks, NSW residents are the least likely to think their state government has handled the outbreak well.
  • About a quarter (24%) of those in NSW think their state government handled the outbreak extremely well or very well, compared to 47% of Victorians and Queenslanders respectively, 69% of South Australians, and 74% of Western Australians.

Views towards level of lockdown

Aug 3, 2021

Q. Thinking about the latest Covid-19 lockdown in your state, do you think your state government…?

[Asked only to those in NSW, VIC, and SA]

State
NSW VIC SA
locked down too harshly 11% 23% 6%
locked down at about the right level 39% 71% 85%
did not lock down hard enough 50% 6% 9%
Base (n) 352 276 86
  • Half (50%) of those in NSW think their state government did not lock down hard enough. 39% think their state government locked down at about the right level, and 11% think they locked down too harshly.
  • In contrast, the majority of Victorians (71%) and South Australians (85%) think their state governments locked down at about the right level.
  • 23% of Victorians think their state government locked down too harshly.

Views towards sufficiency of lockdown support

Aug 3, 2021

Q. As far as you know, is the Australian Government doing enough, not enough or too much to support people affected by lockdowns?

  Total Federal Voting Intention State
  Labor TOTAL: Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other NSW VIC QLD SA WA
Not doing enough 37% 49% 19% 63% 45% 33% 43% 36% 42% 33%
Doing enough 47% 39% 66% 29% 36% 50% 45% 47% 44% 50%
Doing too much 6% 5% 7% 2% 12% 6% 6% 7% 5% 6%
Unsure 9% 8% 8% 6% 8% 11% 6% 11% 9% 11%
Base (n) 1,098 371 402 90 128 352 276 220 86 111
  • Just over a third of people (37%) think the government is not doing enough to support people affected by lockdowns, while just under half (47%) think the government is doing enough about this. 6% think they are doing too much and 9% are unsure.
  • Greens, Labor and minor/independent party voters are more likely than Coalition voters to think the government is not doing enough to support those affected by lockdowns (63%, 49% and 45% to 19% respectively).
  • In all states, around half of people think the government is doing enough to support those affected by the lockdowns. However, Victorians and South Australians are more likely than other states to think the government is not doing enough to support people affected by lockdowns (43% and 42% respectively).

Views towards government support during lockdowns

Aug 3, 2021

Q. [Jun’21] As you may be aware, because support such as JobKeeper ended in April, people and businesses affected by the lockdown in Victoria have not been able to get financial support from the federal government.

The Victorian government has offered its own support package but has said the federal government should be helping out too, as support for people out of work is usually the responsibility of the federal government.

Which of the following is closer to your view?

Q. [Aug’21] As you may be aware, because support such as JobKeeper ended in April, people and businesses affected by the lockdowns across the country have not been able to get financial support from the federal government.

Some state governments have offered their own support packages but have said the federal government should be helping out too, as support for people out of work is usually the responsibility of the federal government.

Which of the following is closer to your view?

  Aug’21 Jun’21
 
The federal government should provide financial support to people and businesses affected by future lockdowns 59% 55%
If state governments choose to lockdown their populations, state governments should be the ones providing financial support to people and businesses affected 41% 45%
Base (n) 1,098 1,104

 

  Total Federal Voting Intention State
  Labor TOTAL: Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other NSW VIC QLD SA WA
The federal government should provide financial support to people and businesses affected by future lockdowns 59% 68% 49% 72% 52% 62% 56% 55% 62% 60%
If state governments choose to lockdown their populations, state governments should be the ones providing financial support to people and businesses affected 41% 32% 51% 28% 48% 38% 44% 45% 38% 40%
Base (n) 1,098 371 402 90 128 352 276 220 86 111
  • 59% now think the federal government should provide financial support to people and businesses affected by future lockdowns (55% in June). 41% now think if state governments choose to lockdown their populations, state governments should be the ones providing financial support to people and businesses affected (45% in June).
  • The view that the federal government should provide financial support to people and businesses affected by future lockdowns remains the majority view across all states.
  • Labor and Greens voters are the most likely voters to hold this view (68% and 72% respectively).
  • Of all voters, Coalition voters are the most likely to think if state governments choose to lockdown their populations, state governments should be the ones providing financial support to people and businesses affected (51% to 34% all other voters).

Support for returning JobKeeper

Aug 3, 2021

Q. To what extent do you support or oppose the return of JobKeeper to assist people and businesses affected by lockdowns in Australia?

  Total Gender Age Group Federal Voting Intention
Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Labor TOTAL: Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Strongly support 33% 28% 36% 37% 36% 25% 37% 23% 50% 33%
Somewhat support 33% 34% 32% 31% 32% 36% 39% 35% 26% 27%
Neither support nor oppose 23% 24% 23% 26% 22% 23% 19% 26% 16% 19%
Somewhat oppose 6% 7% 5% 4% 4% 10% 3% 9% 4% 12%
Strongly oppose 5% 6% 4% 1% 6% 7% 2% 7% 4% 8%
TOTAL: Support 66% 62% 69% 69% 68% 61% 77% 58% 76% 60%
TOTAL: Oppose 11% 13% 9% 5% 10% 16% 5% 16% 8% 20%
Base (n) 1,098 537 561 341 372 385 371 402 90 128

 

  State
NSW VIC QLD SA WA
Strongly support 34% 34% 30% 28% 25%
Somewhat support 34% 35% 28% 42% 33%
Neither support nor oppose 22% 21% 28% 19% 29%
Somewhat oppose 6% 6% 6% 5% 6%
Strongly oppose 5% 3% 6% 5% 7%
TOTAL: Support 68% 69% 59% 70% 58%
TOTAL: Oppose 10% 10% 13% 11% 13%
Base (n) 352 276 220 86 111
  • Around two-thirds (66%) of people would support the reintroduction of JobKeeper measures during lockdowns.
  • Those with the highest support for the return of JobKeeper measures include women (69%), those aged 18-34 (69%), and Labor and Greens voters (77% and 76% respectively).
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COVID-19 RESEARCH

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