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Well the latest polling holds no real joy for Gillard fans because while Labor have improved their numbers slightly it has been at the expense of the Greens which means it is a zero sum game and Gillard is still leading Labor into political oblivion and a very long sojourn in the wilderness.
In the past three months, Coalition support has slipped in NSW and Western Australia, dropping below its primary vote support at the 2010 election.
Coalition primary vote support was steady in Victoria, Queensland and South Australia and the Coalition has a clear two-party-preferred lead, based on preference flows at the last election, in every state except Victoria, where Labor leads 54 per cent to 46 per cent, and South Australia, where the major parties are level.
The key states in next year’s federal election at this stage are still Queensland and NSW, where the most seats are likely to change hands.
In Queensland, Labor’s primary vote rose from 30 per cent in the July-September quarter to 32 per cent to this month, after being just 22 per cent in the middle of the year.
While Labor’s support has risen 10 points in six months, the Coalition’s support has fallen from 42 per cent to 40 per cent, and the Greens’ support fell from 11 per cent in June to just 7 per cent in the December quarter.
Queensland is also the state with the highest level of primary vote support for “others” at 14 per cent.
Compared with the 2010 primary vote in Queensland, Labor is just below — 32 per cent now and 33.6 per cent then — while the Coalition is steady on 47 per cent and the Greens’ support is well down from 10.9 per cent at the election to 7 per cent.
Based on preference flows at the last election the Coalition still has a commanding two-party preferred lead in Queensland of 58 to Labor’s 42 per cent — the opposition’s highest in any state and up three points since the election.
Labor’s improved primary vote has not helped it lift its two-party-preferred vote because a fall in Greens’ support offsets Labor’s preferences and the high “others” helps keep up the Coalition’s second-preference vote.
Of course this should not bee seen as an excuse for complacency because Gillard is as cunning as a shit-house rat as the way that she was able to neutralise the Rudd revival threat earlier in the year demonstrates, even I have to admit that was a strategic mistress-stroke that left her rival whimpering in his gimp mask and politically neutered.
But what does this mean for politics coming into the new year?
Frankly I think that we will see a season of very ruthless politicking from both sides, Labor are desperate in “cornered rat” mode when it comes down to it, and The coalition can smell the scent of those treasury benches which is electoral Viagra to an opposition so it will be a tough fight but my money is still on Abbott to win convincingly.
- Labor’s stock slides in latest Newspoll (bigpondnews.com)
- ALP shifts office to avoid NSW taint – MPs (smh.com.au)
- Gillard hit on trust in poll slump (dailytelegraph.com.au)
- Labor’s stocks reverse in Newspoll (bigpondnews.com)
- Support for Labor up in latest Newspoll (abc.net.au)
- Beyond 2013 (cafewhispers.wordpress.com)
- PM Julia Gillard has Rudd on her hands (dailytelegraph.com.au)
- Anything is possible (abc.net.au)