Essential Report

Attributes to describe the Opposition Leader

Jun 27, 2011

Q.  Which of the following describe your opinion of the Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott?

5 Jul 10 4 Oct 10 7 Feb 11 27 Jun 11 Change
Intelligent 70% 71% 64% 61% -3%
Hard-working 76% 78% 72% 75% +3%
A capable leader 47% 52% 48% 45% -3%
Arrogant 59% 60% 58% 60% +2%
Out of touch with ordinary people 57% 53% 54% 57% +3%
Understands the problems facing Australia 50% 53% 50% 48% -2%
Visionary 32% 31% 27% 27%
Superficial 45% 49% +4%
Good in a crisis 40% 42% 41% 40% -1%
Narrow-minded 56% 53% 51% 54% +3%
More honest than most politicians 33% 32% 31% 32% +1%
Trustworthy 33% 35% 34% 32% -2%

Tony Abbott’s key attributes were hard-working (75%), intelligent (61%) and arrogant (60%).

There have only been minor changes since this question was asked in February.

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Cost of Living

Jun 6, 2011

Q. What do you think is the main reason for the increasing cost of living?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
The strong Australian dollar 17% 30% 9% 17%
Excessive company profits 18% 24% 10% 27%
Lack of competition 14% 18% 9% 24%
Economic management of the Federal Government 28% 8% 51% 9%
Economic management of State Governments 6% 3% 8% 6%
Wage increases 4% 3% 4% 3%
Don’t know 14% 14% 8% 14%

28% believe that economic management of the Federal Government is the main reason for the increasing cost of living. 18% blame excessive company profits and 17% the strong Australian dollar. Only 4% said wage increases.

Most of those blaming the Federal Government were Liberal/National voters. Labor voters nominated the strong Australian dollar and excessive company profits while Greens votes said excessive company profits and lack of competition.

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Best Leader of the Labor Party

May 30, 2011

Q. Which of the following do you think would make the best leader of the Labor Party?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Julia Gillard 23% 51% 10% 26%
Kevin Rudd 32% 31% 31% 31%
Wayne Swan 2% 1% 3% 3%
Greg Combet 4% 5% 3% 6%
Bill Shorten 3% 3% 3% 4%
Someone else 19% 5% 31% 11%
Don’t know 17% 5% 18% 19%

32% think Kevin Rudd would make the best leader of the Labor Party and 23% prefer Julia Gillard. Julia Gillard is preferred by 51% of Labor voters compared to 31% for Kevin Rudd. Men prefer Kevin Rudd over Julia Gillard 34% to 21% and women by 30% to 25%.

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Best Leader of the Liberal Party

May 30, 2011

Q. Which of the following do you think would make the best leader of the Liberal Party?

27 Sep 2010 28 Feb 2011 30 May 2011
Total Total Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Tony Abbott 26% 24% 22% 10% 40% 7%
Malcolm Turnbull 20% 18% 25% 35% 19% 33%
Joe Hockey 15% 16% 17% 13% 22% 18%
Julie Bishop 5% 4% 3% 4% 2% 1%
Andrew Robb na 1% 1% 1% 1% 1%
Someone else na 14% 13% 17% 7% 16%
Don’t know 33% 22% 19% 20% 8% 22%

25% (+7%) think Malcolm Turnbull would make the best leader of the Liberal Party, 22% (-3%) prefer Tony Abbott and 17% (+1%) Joe Hockey.

Among Liberal/National voters, 40% prefer Tony Abbott, 22% Joe Hockey and 19% Malcolm Turnbull.

Malcolm Turnbull is preferred by 25% of men and 24% of women, Tony Abbott by 24% of men and 19% of women.

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Reason for Budget Deficit

Apr 11, 2011

Q. The Federal Government is currently running a budget deficit, but intends to return to surplus in 2012-13. Which of the following do you think is most responsible for the deficit?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Poor economic management by the Government 23% 5% 43% 8%
The cost of the Government’s GFC stimulus packages 19% 19% 20% 21%
Big companies not paying their fair share of taxes 17% 29% 6% 30%
Spending on big projects like the National Broadband Network 14% 8% 18% 10%
Lower tax revenues because of the Global Financial Crisis 13% 25% 4% 19%
Don’t know 15% 14% 9% 11%

Overall, respondents believe the main reasons for the budget deficit are poor economic management by the Government (23%), the cost of the Government’s GFC stimulus (19%) and big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (17%).

Labor voters were most likely to blame big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (29%) and lower tax revenues because of the GFC (25%) while Liberal/National voters blame poor economic management by the Government (43%). Greens voters tended to blame big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (30%).

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Form of Compensation Preferred

Mar 28, 2011

Q. The Federal Government says that the funds raised from the carbon tax will be used to compensate those affected by price increases. Which of the following forms of compensation do you favour?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
A direct payment to households 39% 44% 37% 50%
An income tax cut 33% 36% 34% 26%
A cut to the GST rate 13% 11% 17% 8%
Cuts to corporate taxes 2% 1% 2% 1%
Don’t know 13% 8% 10% 14%

39% favour compensation as a direct payment to households and 33% favour income tax cuts. Greens voters (50%) and Labor voters (44%) are most likely to favour a direct payment while Coalition voters split 37% direct payment/34% tax cut.

Older people strongly favour a direct payment  – among those aged 55+, 51% favour direct payment and 21% a tax cut, while for those aged 18-44, 39% favour a tax cut and 33% favour a direct payment.

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Balance of Power

Mar 7, 2011

Q. Do you think the independents and Greens holding the balance of power in Parliament has been good or bad for Australia?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Total good 27% 33% 12% 83%
Total bad 41% 25% 66% 2%
Very good 7% 8% 1% 34%
Good 20% 25% 11% 49%
Neither good nor bad 33% 41% 22% 15%
Bad 22% 18% 29% 2%
Very bad 19% 7% 37%

27% think that the independents and Greens holding the balance of power in Parliament has been good for Australia and 41% think it has been bad.

Greens voters overwhelmingly think it has been good (83%) while two-thirds of Coalition voters think it has been bad. Labor voters are somewhat split – 33% good/25% bad/41% neither. Older respondents were more likely to think it was bad – those aged under 35 split 32% good/29% bad while those aged 55+ split 21% good/52% bad.

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Performance of Groups/Organisations

Jan 31, 2011

Q. And from what you have seen and heard, how would you rate each of the following in terms of how they have responded to the floods?

Total good Total poor Very good Good Average Poor Very poor Don’t know
The Federal Labor Government 48% 15% 15% 33% 26% 7% 8% 11%
The Federal Coalition Opposition 29% 19% 6% 23% 37% 12% 7% 15%
The Queensland State Government 78% 3% 48% 30% 10% 1% 2% 9%
The Queensland State Government (Qld only) 79% 3% 51% 28% 11% 1% 2% 7%
The Victorian State Government 48% 4% 14% 34% 22% 3% 1% 26%
The Victorian State Government (Vic only) 53% 8% 13% 40% 23% 6% 2% 16%
The NSW State Government 33% 12% 8% 25% 27% 8% 4% 27%
The NSW State Government (NSW only) 26% 22% 5% 21% 33% 13% 9% 20%
The Australian military 78% 2% 49% 29% 8% 1% 1% 10%
State emergency services 88% 2% 71% 17% 4% 1% 1% 7%
The media 61% 9% 26% 35% 23% 5% 4% 7%
The banks 22% 26% 6% 16% 30% 17% 9% 23%
The insurance industry 10% 53% 2% 8% 22% 25% 28% 14%
Australian businesses overall 48% 8% 13% 35% 30% 6% 2% 14%
The Australian people overall 85% 2% 56% 29% 7% 1% 1% 6%

Groups with highest ratings for their response to the floods were state emergency services (88% good), the Australian people overall (85%), the Queensland State Government (78%) and the Australian military (78%).

The Federal Government’s response was rated 48% good/15% poor/26% average while the Federal Opposition was rated 29% good/19% poor/37% average.

The only groups with overall negative ratings were the insurance industry (53% poor/10% good) and the banks (26% poor/22% good).

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