Voters are backing the government’s nanny subsidy pilot program, today’s Essential Report shows, but are split on taking retaliatory action against Indonesia for the executions of two of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran.
According to the poll, 43% of voters approve of the government’s program to subsidise nannies for families who can’t access mainstream childcare services, while 31% don’t approve. Liberal voters are the strongest supporters, splitting 52%-29%, but Labors voters split 42%-34% and Greens voters 37%-33% with only other voters, on balance, disapproving, 37%-38%. Significantly for Tony Abbott, a politician especially disliked by women, women split 47%-25% compared to 39%-37% for men, though over-55s, who tend to be strongly aligned with the Coalition, disapprove 44%-35%, making this a policy that reaches out to Abbott’s opponents while ignoring his base.
There’s been a very small improvement in the government’s reputation as a foreign affairs manager: 58% of voters have no or only a little trust in the government’s capacity to handle international relations compared to 35% who have some or a lot of trust; that’s compared to 62%-33% in February. However, there’s been no change in relation to Indonesia: 42% think the government’s handling of relations Indonesia are poor, while 26% rate it as good. In February, it was 42%-24%.
And voters have mixed views on taking some form of action in response to the Chan and Sukumaran executions against Indonesia. Forty per cent approve of such actions but 42% disapprove. Labor and Coalition voters are evenly split, while Greens voters lean toward retaliation, 44%-38%.
Essential also asked about how confident voters are about whether they would have an adequate income from their superannuation and investments to live a comfortable lifestyle. Confidence improved with income level, unsurprisingly, but a large number of Australians profess to be worried or unsure about whether they’ll be comfortable in retirement.
In particular, nearly half of women are worried they don’t have enough to live on comfortably, although men are more likely to be uncertain as to whether they have enough. Older voters are more certain about their finances, but also more worried that they won’t have enough.
On voting intention, no change from last week. The two-preferred outcome remains 53%-47% in the opposition’s favour, with the Coalition on 40%, Labor on 39% and the Greens on 10%, all unchanged.