Newspoll: Labor plummets

Disaster for Labor (Blue: Coalition/Abbott, Red: Labor/Gillard, Grey: uncommitted

In the first NewsPoll since the announcement of the carbon tax, Labor’s standing in the polls, and that of leader Julia Gillard, has dropped like a stone:

JULIA Gillard’s carbon tax plan has reversed public support for action on global warming, damaged her leadership and delivered Labor its lowest primary support on record.

Tony Abbott is now the closest he has been to Ms Gillard as preferred prime minister.

And, as satisfaction with the Prime Minister slumps just nine months after she agreed to challenge Kevin Rudd, she remains behind the Foreign Minister as the preferred Labor leader.

In just two weeks, Ms Gillard’s personal support has gone from its best since she became Prime Minister in June last year to her worst. It is now the same as Mr Rudd’s failing personal support when he began campaigning for the mining tax in May last year.

Since Ms Gillard announced her intention to introduce a carbon tax from July next year, overall positive public support for action on global warming, even if it meant rising prices for electricity and petrol, has turned negative. A majority of people, or 53 per cent, are now against Labor’s plan, with 42 per cent in favour.

According to the latest Newspoll survey, taken exclusively for The Australian last weekend, Labor’s primary vote crashed six percentage points to just 30 per cent, the lowest primary vote in Newspoll survey history. Previously, the lowest primary vote was 31 per cent, in 1993, when Paul Keating was prime minister and Australia was in recession.

The Coalition’s primary vote, after falling sharply two weeks ago because of internal divisions, bounced back to 45 per cent. This is the Coalition’s highest primary vote since March 2006, when John Howard was prime minister and nine months before Kim Beazley was replaced by Mr Rudd as opposition leader. (source)

The Australian people do not like being lied to. Whether you support action on climate or not, Gillards backflip, breaking her promise not to implement a carbon tax under “any government I lead”, has irked the electorate and could spell disaster for Labor. Dennis Shanahan:

JULIA Gillard’s decision to announce her plan for a carbon tax from July 1 next year could be the political game-changer for her leadership, the Labor government and, most importantly, the future of climate change action in Australia.

Every possible element to drive down the standing of the Prime Minister, her government and the climate change debate has combined in such a way that the political and social divisions in Australia that have been evolving for years have become palpable and public.

Labor has lost its licence to campaign on climate change, a hard-won goodwill it had towards fighting global warming and a preparedness of consumers to pay, which was the fundamental underpinning of any political campaign to sell a new tax and raise prices.

The extent to which all the fault lines within Labor become entrenched – between the stereotypical inner-city lefties and the suburban conservatives, between young and old and those prepared or able to pay the cost of trying to arrest global warming – will decide the government’s fate. (source)

And also worth a read is Tony Abbott’s comments on climate in Adelaide:

TONY Abbott has declared Julia Gillard wants to change Australia’s way of life by introducing a price on carbon that would make it harder for people to turn on their airconditioners or to drive their cars.

In a speech in Adelaide last night, the Opposition Leader said the carbon tax would be the “big issue” of the next election campaign, regardless of when it was held.

Seizing the opportunity to intensify his attack while the Prime Minister is on her trip to the US, Mr Abbott said: “If this is to be more than just a hit on people’s cost of living, it must utterly transform the way we live and how we work.”

Mr Abbott said, given people’s propensity to use their airconditioners and to drive their cars, “if a carbon tax is to reduce electricity use and car use it will have to raise the price of daily life very considerably indeed”. (source)

Interesting times.

UPDATE: Hilarious to see ABC and Fairfax try to avoid this completely, both leading with “Obama ♥ Gillard” stories… pass the sick bag. On second thoughts, shouldn’t it be Bob Brown visiting the US? He is the PM after all…


  1. Sean McHugh says:

    This poll is not only bad news for Gillard and the Greens; it’s also bad news for Malcolm Turnbull.

    • Yes, the good news for any Liberals wavering on having Malcolm as a leader is that opposition to carbon pricing within Liberal voters is 75%. Therefore any future Liberal leader must oppose carbon pricing or they will fail to win the support of their backers.

  2. The Greens Party is the driver for Labor’s carbon dioxide tax. The polls show that Labors’ vote has declined, yet the Greens vote has risen to 15%.

  3. The Loaded Dog says:

    Yes folk, you are currently watching – right across Orstrailya, episode 2 of:-

    “The Gillard Show”

    All credit to the geniuses behind The Gillard Show. For a start, the premise of this prime ministerial presentation is absolute comedy gold. Imagine: A tiny nation, at least in terms of population, sets out to change the entire planet’s weather. How? By hitting citizens with a tax on everything they do.

    This current episode is even funnier than the first.

    Yes folk, grab your popcorn….

    and sit back and enjoy the SHOW….

  4. The Loaded Dog says:

    US president Barack Obama and Prime Minister Julia Gillard discussed the war in Afghanistan and “being great mates” when they met overnight in Washington.

    Ha, Joooles, is obviously busy scripting episode three of “The Gillard Show” with another comic genius.

  5. heystoopid says:

    Some rubes are easily fooled by propaganda, that be for sure, lmao!

  6. Mervyn Sullivan says:

    You have to wonder just who is advising Julia Gillard. But that is not really the problem. The problem is really much bigger than that. The real problem is that since Rudd won government, the Labor government has simply squandered its time in office with ‘mickey mouse’ policies that have ended in one debacle after another. We get a lot of announcements, which seemingly never translate into any meaningful outcomes. And this has left a firm impression that Australia is resembling a ship on the ocean… rudderless… no compass… no ‘sat-nav’… and no captain… just drifting along, destination unknown!

  7. ‘UPDATE: Hilarious to see ABC and Fairfax try to avoid this completely, both leading with “Obama ♥ Gillard” stories… pass the sick bag. On second thoughts, shouldn’t it be Bob Brown visiting the US? He is the PM after all…’
    – Simon

    What was truly sickening was her disgraceful display of subservience to the wishes and will of the United States (her speech to Congress). If there is any karma in this world, her approval rating will plunge to below 10%. Absolutely horrible woman, such a conniving hypocrite.

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