As the first full week of the Western Australian election campaign concludes, the big news is the pre-election financial statement issued yesterday by Treasury, which wiped out a budget surplus that was earlier projected for 2019-20, and amended the peak debt forecast for that year from $39.7 billion to $41.1 billion. With lip service thus paid to the big picture, the rest of this post probes into electorate-specific happenings of the campaign so far.
Articles from Poll Bludger
Labor slips back a point in this week’s reading of the Essential Research fortnightly average, from 54-46 to 53-47, although this is to do with a particularly weak result for the Coalition a fortnight ago washing out of the result, rather than a turn in their favour this week.
The first Newspoll of the year, courtesy of The Australian, has Labor with a lead of 54-46, compared with 52-48 in the final poll last year, from primary votes of Coalition 35% (down four), Labor 36% (steady), Greens 10% (steady) – and, impliedly, One Nation rather a lot.
Still only the weekly Essential Research results to go on so far this year, and this week’s figures have made very little difference to this week’s reading of BludgerTrack, except that Labor gains an extra seat in Queensland. Also of note is that One Nation’s upward trend shows no signs of abating, with the party now level with the Greens. Nothing new this week on leadership ratings.
Courtesy of The Australian, a Newspoll timed to coincide with the start of a Western Australian state election campaign that officially began yesterday has Labor leading 54-46, out from 52-48 since the previous poll in November. One Nation has gone from 3% to 13%, which I suspect has something to do with how it’s been treated in the questionnaire.
The steady ascent of One Nation continues in this week’s fortnight rolling average from Essential Research, which finds the party up a point to 10% to surpass the Greens, down one to 9%, with the Coalition, Labor and Nick Xenophon Team steady on 35%, 37% and 3%. Labor’s lead on two-party preferred is unchanged at 54-46.
BludgerTrack is being heavily determined at present by the two new year data points from Essential Research, but for what those data points are worth, they suggest the government may have entered a new phase in its polling fortunes. The latest result has wrenched two-party preferred almost a full point in favour of Labor, although this has only yielded a gain of one on the seat projection.