Essential Report

Federal budget priorities

May 8, 2018

Q. The Federal Budget will be announced on Tuesday 8th Do you think the Government should increase, decrease or keep spending the same for –

  Increase spending Keep spending the same Decrease spending Don’t know   Increase spending May 2017 Change since May 2017
Health care 67% 25% 3% 5% 62% +5
Age pensions 56% 31% 5% 8% 48% +8
Education 55% 33% 6% 6% 54% +1
More affordable housing 52% 36% 6% 6% 44% +8
Assistance to the needy in Australia 46% 41% 7% 7% 38% +8
Protecting Australian jobs 44% 43% 6% 7% 44%
Renewable energy 43% 39% 12% 6% 41% +2
Public transport infrastructure 41% 44% 8% 7% 47% -6
Building highways, roads 37% 48% 9% 6% 38% +1
Scientific research 36% 48% 9% 7% 37% -1
Environmental protection 35% 44% 15% 6% 30% +5
Assistance to the unemployed 33% 44% 17% 6% 22% +11
Anti-terrorism 31% 51% 11% 7% 32% -1
Military/defence 20% 50% 23% 7% 20%
Assistance to businesses 13% 47% 33% 7% 10% +3
Assistance to the needy in the rest of the world 12% 33% 48% 7% 11% +1

 

The areas with majority support for increasing spending were health care (67% support), age pensions (56%), education (55%) and affordable housing (52%).

Since this time last year, the main changes have been increased support for spending on assistance to the unemployed (up 11%), age pensions (up 8%), more affordable housing (up 8%) and assistance to the needy in Australia (up 8%).

The areas with the highest support for decreasing spending were assistance to the needy in the rest of the world (48% support), assistance to businesses (33%) and military/defence (23%).

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