News National MPs get behind Bill Shorten as voters turn away

MPs get behind Bill Shorten as voters turn away

bill shorten
Bill Shorten's Labor Party will discuss increasing Australia's refugee intake cap on Monday. Photo: Getty
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Opposition Leader Bill Shorten’s colleagues are standing by their leader despite his popularity with voters taking a tumble.

The latest Fairfax-Ipsos poll results show since May, Mr Shorten’s approval rating has fallen from 42 to 36 per cent, while his disapproval rating rose from 47 to 52 per cent.

But shadow attorney-general Mark Dreyfus insists Mr Shorten is leading the party with tremendous distinction.

“He’s the reason we are the unified team that we are today,” he told ABC radio on Monday.

“Very many elections have been won by parties led by opposition leaders who were less popular.”

The poll also revealed Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s approval rating fell by three percentage points and his disapproval rating rose three percentage points.

Labor continues to enjoy a two-party preferred lead over the government of 53 to 47 per cent.

The results follow ongoing political arguments about electricity supply and upcoming same-sex marriage postal survey.

The drawn-out citizenship saga has also featured heavily in federal politics for months, ensnaring senior coalition, Greens and some Labor and independent MPs.

The Turnbull government clawed back some ground on Labor in the latest Newspoll released last week, with Mr Turnbull retaining his spot as the preferred prime minister.

Labor remained ahead on a two-party preferred basis for the 19th Newspoll in a row, nearly two years after Mr Turnbull cited the polls for ousting Tony Abbott as prime minister.

The latest Newspoll in The Australian showed the coalition’s support rose 47 per cent to Labor’s 53, up from a previous 46 to 54 per cent, on a two-party preferred basis.

Despite his government’s lack of public support, Newspoll put Mr Turnbull as Australia’s preferred leader, at 46 per cent to Opposition Leader Bill Shorten’s 29 per cent.

Mr Turnbull replaced Mr Abbott as leader in September 2015, claiming at the time the loss of 30 consecutive Newspolls was part of his justification.

The acrimony between the two men has plagued the federal Liberal party recently and won’t be helped by News Corp Australia report on Monday.