Via The Oz, this fortnight’s Newpoll comes in with the primaries running 41/40 to the Coalition (a one point increase for both), washing out into a two party preferred of 52/48 for Labor – a one point gain to the Coalition. The Greens are on 9 (down 3), while the broad “Others” are on 10 (up 1). This comes from a sample of 1162, giving us an MoE that maxes out around the 3% mark.

Whacking Day never quite arrived this poll for Rudd – although one could argue that Rudd has been getting whacked for 4 months now. I’d imagine Labor Party types are now regretting gifting Abbott a free ride over the Christmas period.

The polls this year – particularly the last month or so – have suggested that the government has been in a bit of a public opinion holding pattern. PM Satisfaction hasn’t moved, dissatisfaction had a jump in late January and has held constant since, the vote hasn’t moved, Rudd’s Better PM hasn’t moved. In fact, the only thing that has really moved are Abbott’s personal ratings.

The Coalition are getting all the right results so far under the Abbott leadership – his dissatisfaction is stable and the undecideds are breaking into his satisfaction column. Better PM is inching up and the vote has improved. So far so good. What must be worrying the Libs though is that with all the media hysteria surrounding the insulation program, 52/48 is all they could manage. A month of full-blown media negativity, in all media consumption demographics, with the threat of little old ladies getting burned alive in their bedrooms and 52/48 is it?

Before we get onto the usual charts, let’s go through that Taverner poll on the weekend of NSW voters and their federal voting intention that suggested a two party preferred of 50/50 in that state. Nothing wrong with the poll – apart from a sample size of 609 – the problem has come in the way the figures were treated.

Their raw results had Labor on 42, Coalition on 39. Greens on 6, Others on 3 and “Undecided” on 9. Nearly all political polls in Australia exclude the undecideds when it comes to calculating the final, published vote estimates – and the reason is a good one, it’s pointless keeping them in.

So, after excluding the undecideds and making this poll like all the others, we get Labor leading on the primaries 46/43, washing out into a two party preferred of 54/46 the same way. A little different from 50/50.

Meanwhile the usual Newspoll charts come in like this:

pmsatmar1 npopsatmar1

netsatsmar1 npppmmar1

nptppmar1 netsattppmar1