The New Daily

Cracks are starting to appear in the Coalition: poll

Latest Fairfax-Ispos Poll reveals support falls below 2013 election levels.

Tax talk has allowed Labor to claw back valuable ground.

Tax talk has allowed Labor to claw back valuable ground. Photo: AAP

The honeymoon may be over for Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull with a new poll showing a sharp fall in popularity for his government following a series of ministerial crises and discussion of increasing the GST.

With an election expected later in 2016, whispers of superannuation reform, a boost in the GST to 15 per cent and privatisation of parts of Medicare appear to have unsettled the electorate.

The Coalition has enjoyed strong support since the sacking of Tony Abbott, but recent policy discussions and controversies have sapped the government of momentum, according to the latest Fairfax-Ispos poll.

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The poll was conducted with 1403 respondents between February 11 and 13 following days of controversy over allegations that Human Services Minister Stuart Robert had breached ministerial standards during a 2014 mission to China where he tried to secure personal gain from a business trip.

This followed a sustained and ultimately successful attack by Labor on Mal Brough over the Peter Slipper affair, the loss of Jamie Briggs after a misconduct complaint from a female public servant and the resignation last week of another two senior frontbench ministers.

The Fairfax-Ipsos poll revealed a four-point two-party-preferred slide to 52, compared to Labor’s 48.

The Coalition’s share of votes was now sitting below the Abbott government’s numbers at the 2013 election, Fairfax Media reported.

However, on preferred PM, Mr Turnbull’s support remained strong with voters preferring him over Labor leader Bill Shorten – 64 (down 5 percentage points) to 19.

New, new-look ministry

The weak poll reading follows another cabinet reshuffle sparked by the retirements of MPs Warren Truss and Andrew Robb, which left big gaps in the ministry.

Stuart Robert

Mr Robert repeatedly denied allegations of wrongdoing. Photo: AAP

Mr Turnbull called the new ministry “dynamic”, but Mr Shorten said the reshuffle can’t disguise the fact there are a whole lot of “L-plate” ministers running around trying to make informed decisions just months out from the budget.

“The Turnbull government is in a bit of chaos,” Mr Shorten told reporters in Melbourne on Sunday.

Both the Coalition’s primary and two-party-preferred vote had dropped four percentage points since the last poll, while the ALP’s primary and two-party-preferred vote had jumped by three and four percentage points.

Meanwhile, primary support for the Greens was up two points at a staggering 15 per cent, while the Palmer United Party (PUP) was at just 1 per cent after the recent woes and criticisms of its leader Clive Palmer.

Mr Palmer was under the microscope in early February when records confirmed he donated almost $10 million to his political party during the past financial year, with $6 million of that coming from his embattled Queensland Nickel refinery.

The plant was placed into voluntary administration two weeks prior, with 237 employees from its Townsville site sacked, most likely without entitlements.

Former Special Minister of State Mal Brough.

Former Special Minister of State Mal Brough. Photo: AAP

The Fairfax-Ispos poll also revealed that the PM’s approval rating – which was the percentage of voters happy with his performance minus the percentage of voters unhappy – fell 15 points since November, totalling a a net rating of 38. He was at 53 in November.

Mr Shorten’s approval rating had jumped slightly by three points – but he was still at a net rating of minus 25.

Musical chairs

News that embattled Liberal MP Mal Brough resigned from the Turnbull ministry surfaced on Saturday, with the decision confirmed before the Cabinet reshuffle. 

Due to an ongoing police investigation into the James Ashby affair taking several more months, Mr Brough told Mr Turnbull not to keep a space open for him in the ministry.

As did Mr Robert resigning over the China trip allegations on Friday, and Cities Minister Jamie Briggs, who resigned in 2015 over a Hong Kong bar scandal.

Last week’s Morgan Poll showed the ALP had spiked by 2.5 per cent on a two-party-preferred basis.

Primary support for the Liberal-National Party was 43.5 per cent (unchanged), with the ALP at 29 per cent (up 1 per cent).

-with AAP


  • Boris Feigin


    • RGG

      Praise be to Abbott!

  • edweirdo

    Polls are not news, nothing has happened. It is manufactured information about a small group of people who are asked to say something on the spur of the moment and it means nothing to them and it means nothing to us.

    Stop doing it you media idiots – especially you lot on the ABC, reading out Newspoll results – talk about getting into bed with the enemy. I hope they are not paying for that spurious information – that would really make my blood boil.

    • Seb

      Actually this poll seems to reflect community sentiment. The ‘small group of people’ is somewhat representative and history has shown how polls can influence day-to-day decisions of politicians

    • mulga mumblebrain

      The ABC has been a branch-office of the Australian for years, with input controlled by the likes of the IPA, CIS, Grattan, Lowy and other nests of ‘Leftists’.

  • mulga mumblebrain

    Now Abbortt and Murdoch’s real white-anting can begin. And it will be easy because Money-Bags has NO ticker. Mind you Murdoch might just use Abbortt to insert Morrison.

  • Geoff S

    For me, the Medicare privatisation moves are Turnbull’s ‘work choices’ moment.

    A wolf in wolf’s clothing.

  • Kage

    Does anyone have any idea why Luke Hartsuyker was dropped from the Ministry ?

    • mulga mumblebrain

      Was he competent, possibly? Just won’t do. He might outshine his Master.

  • Dominic

    The premise of the analysis is wrong. This is not a weak poll.

  • No mess Charlie

    Malcolm Turdbull is clearly on the nose.

    • mulga mumblebrain

      The bogans are beginning wake up to the real Turnbull.

  • Seb

    Thankfully right would rather lose the election than let him have that change of heart

  • Jack

    Its not about what has been talked about the voters just dont believe that this Government has the ticket for hard decisions that are fair . Negative gearing , FBT on cars , CGT , super tax , personal tax deductions , company tax deductions all needed to be changed to be fair . The Tax office states that 55 of Australia’s highest income earners ( earned over $ 1 million ) paid no tax last year . Profit shifting means average company tax rate is already around 26% so reducing company tax rates without reducing company expense deductions is illogical. The neo conservatives in the Government want to throw students , unemployed and pensioners out on the street while giving the hight incone earners welfare . The Government needs to get real .

  • RT

    These polls are being misread.
    With all the drama going on, Turnbull approval still at 60%+ and Shorten making no headway. ALP languishing at 29%. Delusional and wishful thinking

  • mulga mumblebrain

    Turnbull is Rightwing to his marrow. There will be no change, even if he wins an election of his own.

  • mulga mumblebrain

    Turnbull and Morrison have the same class hatred driven priorities as Abbortt and Hockey or Howard and Costello or Cameron and Osbourne et al. Reward the rich and screw the rest.

  • mulga mumblebrain

    Triggs is an eminent person of irreproachable character much admired by her peers, and J. Edgar Brandis is not.

  • Bob T

    Sounds like a good result. Praise God

  • Bob T

    and how does that make sense?

  • Arrrgghhh!!!

    Anything written by Paul Sheehan is bound to be viewed with suspicion.

  • Arrrgghhh!!!

    Turnbull would do so much better if he learned to say the same thing out of both sides of his mouth, rather than say one thing to his cabinet out of the right side and another out of the left side to the rest of us. It’s hard to believe anyone who tailors his speech according to the audience.

  • RGG

    I hope that you’re right!

  • Bob T

    Leigh, I am sure that you and i could watch the same video, listen to the same debate, read the same article and reach quite different conclusions.

    • Leigh

      I’m not so sure of that BT.
      If one tells a lie and it’s immediately called out with hard evidence to the contrary, you or I would find it difficult to come to a different conclusion.
      When Triggs was asked if she’d discussed initiating a report into children in detention with any labor minister before the election,she first said she had not and decided herself that she would delay initiating any enquiry because she thought there may be an election coming.
      Further questioning Triggs herself revealed that she had, with not one but two labor ministers,Burke and Bowen.
      To compound that ,Triggs herself said those discussions took place during the caretaker period, a really big no no.
      When it was pointed out to the honorable Triggs that could be deemed a criminal offence she retracted that statement.
      These are not fairytales made up by me these are statements made in those hearings chaired by her goodself.
      Unless your an ostrich with your head firmly stuck in the sand BT, yours and my opinion could not be that divergent based on Triggs own statements. Which are only stating the bleeding obvious, that Triggs motivations were purely political.

  • mulga mumblebrain

    That’s just projection, a pathopsychological manifestation rampant on the diseased outer limits of the Right.

  • Salvation the from the business maverns.

  • Carol Miller

    I see Turncoat a replica of Rudd actually. All talk and no action. Just poncing around on the world stage and in love with himself.

    • mulga mumblebrain

      Pretty close, but Rudd is the greater phony and more psychologically damaged.

  • mulga mumblebrain

    Sheehan should have moved over ‘to the other side’, long ago.

  • mulga mumblebrain

    Never. Australia is one of the most viciously racist countries on Earth after decades of Rightwing agitation to foment and encourage race and xenophobic hatred.

  • Leigh

    Just one other point I should have made.
    Those big orange lifeboats we place them in after removing them from the floating “coffins” are GPS tracked. We know exactly where and when they again make landfall.

    • Boris Feigin

      We don’t know..the government knows. Big difference:)

      • Leigh

        Seriously, do you just sit in a closet with a radio and TV tuned to the ABC, then get your SMH dropped daily through a slot in the door?
        Every time one of these big orange lifeboats turns up on shore, it’s national news in Indonesia. We notify the Indonesian miltary, if they haven’t been informed already of its precise whereabouts, to fetch it for us and tow it back to their moorings with any others till we pick them up (per payed agreement) and return them to their (home) moorings on Christmas Island.
        Do you remember the patrol boats we donated to Indonesia?
        Very convenient tugs those big engined boats.
        Just because it’s not reported by the ABC or fairfax publications doesn’t mean it’s not news outside your cupboard.
        The “big” difference is none of this is secret, it’s just that it’s old news.

  • Boris Feigin

    The existence of these “appropriate channels” is a fallacy. Just how are you meant to legally apply for asylum while fleeing for your life in Syria? Of course, if you made it to a refugee camp in, say, Lebanon, you could apply from there and then what? Sit there while surviving on the occasional UN food parcel? These people are just like us, you know. When Aussies get caught up in a natural disaster overseas, they are aghast if the government doesn’t fly a plane out to save them post-haste 🙂

    Good luck with the non-abusive “lazy peanut” posts there 😛

    • Leigh

      “Just how are you meant to legally apply for asylum while fleeing for your life in Syria? ”
      The same way you travel halfway around the world, traveling through Allah only knows how many countrys all cashed up with yours and your familys travel documents intact till you suddenly arrive at our back door uninvited and unannounced penny less and no documention of who you are or where you came from.
      Then have the absolute gaul to complain about being kept in detention while we try to unravel the rats maize you have created.

  • Boris Feigin

    The Liberal supporters should be the last ones talking about the government assisting people smugglers, given the revelation that an Australian government official on board an Australian navy vessel has actually paid the crew of an asylum seeker boat to take the boat back to the Indonesia..smuggle it in, we might say 😛 Can’t think of more direct assistance to people smugglers than actually giving them money.

    The countries which are not signatories to the refugee convention are not obliged to stop refugees from entering their country. They don’t have any obligations, in fact, as you can’t have any obligations under an agreement you are not part of. FYI, if Indonesia wants to, it can run a full open-border policy…are you going to say they are not allowed to? If not, why not? Under what agreement? Can you please explain as to why they should stop asylum seekers at the entrance?! The world does not revolve around Australia, you know…other countries are not obliged to help us, especially not when we have someone who was almost openly disdainful of Asia as our leader.

    The fact that these countries are not signatories is not a fallacy or a legal fiction but has real effects on the people entering these countries. They are not obliged to listen to any claims for asylum they might have, the asylum seekers have little or not rights to work and the country is not obliged to provide even basic assistance to them. I agree, it’s pretty deplorable that these people want to indulge their highly selective needs, such as, you know….FOOD, SHELTER AND A BIT OF SECURITY AFTER FLEEING FOR THEIR LIVES, but there’s just no accounting for some people’s high falutin’ taste.

    As to Labor’s Malaysia Solution or whatever it was called, read my original comment. Everything that Labor did, has done or is prepared to do in the future to asylum seekers is due to Howard and Abbott poisoning the political debate, peddling lies and making racists out of people. I lay anything that happens in Nauru and Manus Island squarely at their door.

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