Voters are losing confidence in Scott Morrison’s pandemic management, with the latest Newspoll showing Coalition support slumping to its lowest electoral position this term.
Conducted exclusively for The Australian, the survey of 1506 voters across metropolitan and regional areas from July 14-17 showed the lockdowns in Sydney and Victoria and increasing community frustration with the vaccine rollout had hit the Prime Minister where it hurts.
Not only had Mr Morrison’s net approval slid to its lowest level since the 2019-20 bushfire crisis, popular support for the Coalition (down two points) and Labor (up two points) was deadlocked at 39 per cent.
The four-point turnaround equates to Labor taking a 53-47 lead in a two-party-preferred vote and a significant defeat for the Morrison government if a federal election was held.
#BREAKING: The federal Coalition has slumped to its lowest electoral position this term as voters lose confidence in Scott Morrison’s management of the pandemic #Newspoll #auspoI #ausvoteshttps://t.co/fPnXHynyVU pic.twitter.com/3HPMWQ6eEV
— The Australian (@australian) July 18, 2021
The swing to Labor came as the Greens fell a point to 10 per cent, and minor parties gained ground from the Coalition.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation party remained stable at 3 per cent.
The latest result, which was calculated on underlying primary vote rather than rounded results, comes as prospective voters’ satisfaction with the PM’s performance in handling the pandemic fell nine points in three weeks to 52 per cent.
It’s a far cry from April 2020, when Mr Morrison had an approval rating of 85 per cent.
Confidence in the government’s management of the vaccine rollout entered negative territory for the first time, with just 40 per cent believing it was being handled adequately.
It has fallen from 53 per cent (43 per cent dissatisfied) in April to 50 per cent (46 per cent dissatisfied) in late June and 40 per cent (57 per cent dissatisfied) in Sunday’s poll.
The result reflects a split along party lines, with 62 per cent of Coalition voters satisfied, compared with 27 per cent of Labor voters.
Interestingly, the parties were 39 per cent apiece at the height of the Liberal Party’s women crisis in March, but the two-party-preferred vote was 52-48.
The Newspoll also found an eight-point shift in overall satisfaction with Mr Morrison’s leadership with a four-point fall to 51 per cent for those satisfied and a four-point rise in those dissatisfied (45 per cent).