29.06.20. Scott Morrison has posted record approval ratings while the Coalition maintains its narrow lead over Labor nationally as both parties enter the final week of campaigning for the by-election in the NSW seat of Eden-Monaro. An exclusive Newspoll conducted for The Australian shows a continued strengthening in popular support for the Prime Minister. But the government has yet to reap any considerable electoral benefit, with the Coalition’s primary vote remaining unchanged at 42 per cent while the two-party preferred vote in the Coalition’s favour also remains unchanged at 51-49.
Source: Simon Benson, News Corp
Record approval for PM as by-election looms in Eden
The poll follows a string of branch-stacking and Chinese spy scandals that have rocked the NSW and Victorian state divisions of the Labor Party over the past fortnight.
But the federal Labor Party appeared to have been quarantined from any fallout with a lift in its primary vote to 35 per cent.
Mr Morrison’s dominance remains unchallenged with the Prime Minister posting his highest net approval ratings since taking the leadership in August 2018.
Approval of his performance as leader rose two points to 68 per cent while dissatisfaction levels fell a corresponding two points to 27 per cent, confirming a trend of broad support from both Liberal and Labor voters.
Mr Morrison now has the highest approval ratings of any prime minister since the early period of Kevin Rudd’s leadership. No other leader since Newspoll began in the mid-80s has had such a sustained period of support at these levels.
Mr Morrison has also increased his margin over Anthony Albanese as the preferred prime minister, lifting two points to 58 per cent against an unchanged 26 per cent for the Labor leader. Sixteen per cent of voters would not commit to backing either.
This marks a dramatic reversal of political fortune for Mr Morrison since the outbreak of coronavirus. Following the summer bushfires and claims he had mishandled the crisis, Mr Morrison fell behind the Labor leader as the preferred prime minister for the first time with many in the party fearing his authority as leader would not recover. Mr Albanese, who last week signalled an about-face on Labor’s climate and energy policies by claiming it would not support a return of the national energy guarantee or the clean energy target, appears also to have been inoculated against the state Labor Party scandals.
The Labor leader’s approval ratings lifted a point to 42 per cent. This was countered by a two-point rise in disapproval but Mr Albanese is still in net positive territory.
But there is a large group of voters who have yet to make up their mind about the Labor leader, with 16 per cent uncommitted when asked whether they were satisfied or dissatisfied with his performance as opposition leader. This compares to 5 per cent of voters refusing to take a position on Mr Morrison’s performance as prime minister. The latest Newspoll, conducted between Wednesday and Saturday, covers a three-week period.
It shows the Greens have lost a point, falling to 11 per cent, reflecting the consistent flow of left-wing votes between Labor and Greens.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation lost ground, falling back a point to 3 per cent, leaving the right-wing Queensland-based party below its election result.
The poll surveyed 1521 voters across capital cities and the regions.