Essential Report

Support towards a separate national day

Jan 19, 2021

Q. It has been suggested that Australia should have a separate national day to recognise Indigenous Australians. Do you…?

  Jan‘21 Jan‘20 Jan’19 Oct‘18
Support a separate day and keep Australia Day 35% 32% 37% 36%
Support a separate day to replace Australia Day 18% 18% 15% 14%
Do not support a separate day 35% 40% 40% 37%
Don’t know 12% 11% 8% 12%
TOTAL: Support a separate day 53% 50% 52% 50%
Base (n) 1,084 1,080 1,652 1,027
  • Support for a separate day to recognise Indigenous Australians (either in place, or alongside Australia Day) is now at 53% (50% in 2020).
  • 35% support including a separate national day with a further 18% supporting a replacement of Australia Day.
  • Over a third (35%) don’t support a separate day.
  Total Gender Age Group Federal Voting Intention
  Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Labor TOTAL: Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Support a separate day and keep Australia Day 35% 38% 32% 39% 41% 26% 43% 36% 24% 30%
Support a separate day to replace Australia Day 18% 16% 20% 27% 16% 13% 18% 13% 53% 17%
Do not support a separate day 35% 35% 34% 17% 29% 55% 29% 45% 14% 45%
Don’t know 12% 11% 14% 16% 14% 6% 11% 7% 9% 8%
TOTAL: Support a separate day 53% 54% 52% 67% 56% 39% 61% 49% 77% 47%
Base (n) 1,084 539 545 341 358 385 334 431 118 106
  • Support for a separate day is highest among Greens voters (77%), Labor voters (61%) and those aged 18-34 (67%).

Support towards the national anthem change

Jan 19, 2021

Q. On January 1st 2021, the second line of Australia’s national anthem changed from, “For we are young and free” to “For we are one and free”.

To what extent do you support or oppose this change?

  Total Gender Age Group Federal Voting Intention
  Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Labor TOTAL: Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Strongly support 25% 27% 24% 22% 31% 21% 27% 28% 30% 20%
Somewhat support 29% 28% 29% 33% 23% 30% 31% 29% 36% 21%
Neither support nor oppose 30% 28% 32% 32% 29% 30% 29% 26% 30% 28%
Somewhat oppose 7% 6% 7% 6% 6% 7% 6% 7% 3% 11%
Strongly oppose 10% 11% 8% 6% 10% 12% 8% 10% 2% 20%
TOTAL: Support 54% 55% 52% 56% 54% 51% 57% 57% 65% 41%
TOTAL: Oppose 16% 17% 15% 12% 17% 19% 14% 17% 5% 31%
Base (n) 1,084 539 545 341 358 385 334 431 118 106
  • Over half (54%) of Australians support the change in the national anthem’s second line from “For we are young and free” to “For we are one and free” which was implemented at the start of the year. A quarter (25%) strongly support this change.
  • Support towards the national anthem change is strongest among Greens voters (65%), followed by Coalition voters (57%), Labor voters (57%) and other voters (41%).
  • Those voting for independent and minor parties are the most opposed to the change (31%).

Attitudes towards bushfires and climate change

Jan 19, 2021

Q. Thinking about the bushfires in some parts of the country, which of the following statements is closest to your view?

Jan’21 Jan’20 Nov’19 Oct’13
It is likely that the bushfires are linked to climate change and it is appropriate to publicly raise this issue 49% 44% 43% 27%
It is likely that the bushfires are linked to climate change, but it is inappropriate to publicly raise this issue at this this time 18% 19% 17% 14%
It is unlikely the bushfires are linked to climate change 20% 26% 30% 48%
Don’t know 12% 11% 11% 11%
Base (n) 1,084 1,081 1,083 1,075
  •  Just under half (49%) of people think it is likely that the bushfires are linked to climate change and it is appropriate to publicly raise this issue, the highest proportion in the last three years (up from 44% this time last year). Correspondingly, fewer think it is unlikely the bushfires are linked to climate change (20%, down from 26%).
  • About the same amount of people as previous years think it is likely that the bushfires are linked to climate change, but it is inappropriate to publicly raise this issue at this this time (18%).
  Total Gender Age Group Federal Voting Intention
  Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Labor TOTAL: Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
It is likely that the bushfires are linked to climate change and it is appropriate to publicly raise this issue 49% 49% 50% 49% 51% 48% 58% 42% 65% 42%
It is likely that the bushfires are linked to climate change, but it is inappropriate to publicly raise this issue at this this time 18% 20% 16% 26% 17% 12% 15% 20% 24% 17%
It is unlikely the bushfires are linked to climate change 20% 21% 20% 10% 18% 32% 15% 28% 4% 32%
Don’t know 12% 10% 14% 14% 14% 8% 11% 9% 7% 9%
Base (n) 1,084 539 545 341 358 385 334 431 118 106
  •  About a third (32%) of those over 55 think it is unlikely the bushfires are linked to climate change, the highest among the three age brackets.
  • More people aged 18-34 think it is likely that the bushfires are linked to climate change, but it is inappropriate to publicly raise this issue at this this time, than those aged 35-54 and those over 55 (26% to 17% and 12% respectively).
  • The view that it is likely that the bushfires are linked to climate change and it is appropriate to publicly raise this issue is high; this is highest among Greens voters (65%), followed by Labor voters (58%), Coalition voters (42%) and other voters (42%).
  • Minor and independent party voters and Coalition voters are the most likely to think it is unlikely the bushfires are linked to climate change (32% and 28% respectively).

Climate change acceptance

Jan 19, 2021

Q. Do you believe that there is fairly conclusive evidence that climate change is happening and caused by human activity or do you believe that the evidence is still not in and we may just be witnessing a normal fluctuation in the earth’s climate which happens from time to time?

Jan’21 Jan’20 Nov’19 Mar’19 Oct’18 Sep’17 Aug’16
Climate change is happening and is caused by human activity 58% 56% 61% 62% 63% 64% 57%
We are just witnessing a normal fluctuation in the earth’s climate 32% 32% 28% 27% 25% 24% 26%
Don’t know 10% 13% 11% 12% 13% 12% 17%
Base (n) 1,084 1,081 1,083 1,089 1,027 1,011 1,022
  • There has been little shift in attitudes to the acceptance of climate change over recent years. Over half of people (58%) believe climate change is happening and is caused by human activity.
  • Over a third still believe we are just witnessing a normal fluctuation in the earth’s climate (32%) and 10% aren’t sure which they believe. 
  Total Gender Age Group Federal Voting Intention
  Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Labor TOTAL: Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Climate change is happening and is caused by human activity 58% 54% 61% 62% 58% 54% 67% 50% 78% 45%
We are just witnessing a normal fluctuation in the earth’s climate 32% 36% 28% 24% 31% 40% 24% 43% 17% 44%
Don’t know 10% 9% 11% 15% 11% 6% 9% 7% 5% 11%
Base (n) 1,084 539 545 341 358 385 334 431 118 106
  • Acceptance that climate change is happening and is caused by human activity is high across all voters, but highest among Greens voters (78%) and Labor voters (67%), followed by Coalition voters (50%) and other voters (45%).
  • Climate change denial is highest among Coalition voters (43%), those over 55 (40%) and men (36%), whom are the most likely to believe we are just witnessing a normal fluctuation in the earth’s climate.

Addressing climate change

Jan 19, 2021

Q. As far as you know, do you think Australia is doing enough, not enough or too much to address climate change?

Jan’21 Jan’20 Nov’19 Mar’19 Dec’18 Oct’18 Sep’17 Aug’16
Not doing enough 42% 62% 60% 51% 53% 56% 56% 52%
Doing enough 35% 19% 22% 27% 24% 23% 20% 22%
Doing too much 10% 8% 8% 11% 9% 7% 8% 8%
Don’t know 13% 11% 10% 12% 14% 13% 16% 18%
Base (n) 1,084 1,081 1,083 1,089 1,032 1,027 1,011 1,022
  • Over a third (35%) of people think Australia is doing enough to address climate change, the highest proportion in the last five years.
  • 42% still think not enough is being done, however this is a significant drop from last year (62%) and the years before.
  • 10% think Australia is doing too much to address climate change and 13% don’t know. Both figures are similar to previous years. 
  Total Gender Age Group Federal Voting Intention
  Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Labor TOTAL: Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Not doing enough 42% 36% 48% 40% 41% 45% 56% 28% 69% 39%
Doing enough 35% 38% 33% 33% 34% 39% 29% 52% 17% 28%
Doing too much 10% 15% 4% 9% 13% 7% 6% 12% 7% 21%
Don’t know 13% 11% 15% 17% 12% 9% 9% 8% 8% 12%
Base (n) 1,084 539 545 341 358 385 334 431 118 106
  • Greens voters are the most likely to think Australia is not doing enough to address climate change (69%), followed by Labor voters (56%).
  • Compared to other voters, Coalition voters are the most likely to think enough is being done (52%), and those voting for minor and independent parties are the most likely to think Australia is doing too much for climate change (21%).
  • Women are more likely to think not enough is being done to address climate change than men (48% to 36% respectively).

Performance of Scott Morrison

Dec 15, 2020

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of the job Scott Morrison is doing as Prime Minister?

Dec’20 Nov’20 Oct’20 Sep’20 Aug’20 Jul’20 Jun’20 May’20 Apr’20 Mar’20 Feb’20 Jan’20
TOTAL: Approve 62% 66% 63% 64% 66% 63% 65% 64% 59% 41% 39% 40%
TOTAL: Disapprove 28% 25% 27% 28% 23% 27% 26% 27% 31% 49% 52% 52%
Don’t know 11% 9% 10% 8% 11% 10% 8% 9% 10% 10% 9% 8%
Base (n) 1,071 1,010 1,082 1,076 1,010 1,054 1,059 1,093 1,069 1,096 1,056 1,081

 

  Total Federal Voting Intention
Labor Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Strongly approve 23% 12% 43% 7% 21%
Approve 39% 36% 47% 35% 36%
Disapprove 17% 27% 6% 25% 20%
Strongly disapprove 11% 18% 1% 26% 16%
Don’t know 11% 6% 3% 8% 7%
TOTAL: Approve 62% 48% 90% 41% 57%
TOTAL: Disapprove 28% 45% 7% 50% 35%
Base (n) 1,071 356 406 102 107
  • The Prime Minister’s approval rating is now at 62%, a fall from 66% last month, but equivalent to approval in October.
  • Approval of the Prime Minister is at 90% among Coalition supporters (94% last month) and 48% among Labor voters (50% last month).

Performance of Anthony Albanese

Dec 15, 2020

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of the job Anthony Albanese is doing as Opposition Leader?

Dec’20 Nov’20 Oct’20 Sep’20 Aug’20 Jul’20 Jun’20 May’20 Apr’20 Mar’20 Feb’20 Jan’20
TOTAL: Approve 43% 40% 44% 44% 44% 44% 43% 42% 44% 41% 41% 43%
TOTAL: Disapprove 29% 33% 29% 29% 30% 28% 30% 27% 29% 33% 31% 30%
Don’t know 28% 27% 27% 27% 25% 28% 26% 31% 27% 26% 28% 27%
Base (n) 1,071 1,010 1,082 1,076 1,010 1,054 1,059 1,093 1,069 1,096 1,056 1,081

 

  Total Federal Voting Intention
Labor Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Strongly approve 9% 13% 7% 11% 15%
Approve 34% 48% 29% 30% 22%
Disapprove 19% 14% 30% 20% 18%
Strongly disapprove 10% 3% 17% 5% 17%
Don’t know 28% 21% 17% 35% 29%
TOTAL: Approve 43% 62% 36% 40% 36%
TOTAL: Disapprove 29% 17% 47% 25% 35%
Base (n) 1,071 356 406 102 107
  • The Opposition Leader’s approval rating is now 43% (40% in November) and about the same as ratings seen throughout the year.

Preferred Prime Minister

Dec 15, 2020

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

  Dec’20 Nov’20 Oct’20 Sep’20 Aug’20 Jul’20 Jun’20 May’20 Apr’20 Mar’20 Feb’20 Jan’20
Scott Morrison 50% 53% 50% 49% 52% 50% 53% 50% 46% 40% 36% 36%
Anthony Albanese 24% 24% 25% 26% 22% 27% 23% 25% 27% 35% 36% 39%
Don’t know 26% 24% 25% 25% 26% 23% 24% 25% 27% 25% 28% 25%
Base (n) 1,071 1,010 1,082 1,076 1,010 1,054 1,059 1,093 1,069 1,096 1,056 1,081

 

    Federal Voting Intention
Total Labor Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Scott Morrison 50% 27% 84% 36% 53%
Anthony Albanese 24% 46% 8% 34% 19%
Don’t know 26% 28% 8% 31% 28%
Base (n) 1,071 356 406 102 107
  • Half of participants believe that Scott Morrison would make a better PM than Anthony Albanese (50%), while a quarter would prefer the opposition leader (24%). A further quarter (26%) of participants don’t know who would make the better PM.
  • Morrison is strongly favoured by Coalition voters, with 84% believing Morrison makes the better PM, compared to Albanese (8%).
  • Over half of Labor voters believe Albanese would make the better PM (46%). 28% of Labor voters said they don’t know who would make the better leader.
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