Labor remains streets ahead in the latest Morgan Poll.

The weekend before the Burke affair broke, February 24/25, Morgan showed ALP support at a record high with a two party preferred of 61.5% compared to 38.5% for the coalition. The latest results – taken March 3-4 – have the two party preferred vote unchanged. Labor has maintained its position.

“I often go on about the foolishness of reading too much into a single opinion poll,” Peter Brent from Mumble Politics wrote on Monday, “but tomorrow’s Newspoll should be interesting – more for the way it’s interpreted than what it says.”

Well, there was some champion spinning when the 57/43 result in Labor’s favour appeared – dizzying dexterity from the deputies, Peter Costello and Julia Gillard.

We’ve just come through the most uproarious week and a bit in Australian politics since travel rorts a decade ago. It would be wise to remember that that episode only ended with the attempted suicide of a parliamentarian. The consequences of the recent feeding frenzy haven’t had that touch of tragedy, but it’s scarcely been business as usual.

Today, what we probably should do is have a Bex and a cup of tea and a nice lie down – except it’s impossible to stay still when you have momentum. And that’s exactly what this poll shows Kevin Rudd and Labor have got. They’re going places.

Just how far, though, remains to be seen. Brian Burke has put a bump in the road. The number of people who think Labor will win the next poll has dropped from 52.5% to 47.5%. The number who say the Government will be returned has increased from 31.5% to 39.5%. The “don’t knows” have dropped – but appear to think the Coalition has the edge.

Still, Labor leads. Kevin Rudd has momentum. Will it carry him past the Budget, through the campaign and into the Lodge?

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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