Monday’s Essential Report had its usual Approval Ratings and Better PM questions, but it’s worth having a closer squiz at the way the gender breakdowns have been tracking.

First up, the approvals:



Back when the campaign first started and up to about the time of the leaders’ debate, Gillard was enjoying a substantial lead in the polls, with our Phone Pollster Trend sitting on over 52% and where the three most recent phone polls had spiked for Labor at 54% (Nielsen), 55% (Newspoll) and 55.5% (Morgan’s phone poll).

At the time, Gillard was not only much stronger among females than Abbott was among males, but Gillard was also much stronger among voters under 40 than Abbott was among voters over 55  — giving Labor a substantial overall lead, simply because the magnitude of Gillard’s strengths were larger than the magnitude of Abbott’s.

However, this doesn’t quite tell the full story. The strength of Gillard’s female vote came mostly from younger women while the strength of Abbott’s male vote came more from older men than younger men, even though all men as a block leaned toward Abbott.

Older women on the other hand, were much more evenly divided — voting pretty much along the lines of the national average level for each party.