Support for Commission of Audit Policies

May 13, 2014

Q. Do you support or oppose the following possible policies that could be announced in the budget, as set out in the recently released ‘Commission of Audit’ report:

 

Total Support

Total Oppose

Strongly support

Support

Neither support nor oppose

Oppose

Strongly oppose

Don’t know

Privatise Australia Post

18%

54%

6%

12%

18%

23%

31%

9%

Privatise Snowy Hydro

16%

39%

5%

11%

23%

19%

20%

21%

Introduce co-payments for all Medicare services: $15 per service for general patients and $5 per service for concession holders with payments reduced after 15 visits

25%

55%

7%

18%

14%

19%

36%

6%

Partial or full deregulation of university fees

17%

43%

5%

12%

24%

20%

23%

17%

Increase interest rates on student (HELP) debt

13%

63%

5%

8%

17%

33%

30%

7%

University graduates to repay HELP debt once they earn the minimum wage ($32,354).

50%

24%

15%

35%

17%

13%

11%

9%

Include the value of family home in an assets test for new pensioners, but with a high threshold

22%

50%

7%

15%

16%

21%

29%

11%

Scrap the national minimum wage in favour of a new Minimum Wage benchmark of 44 per cent of Average Weekly Earnings.

18%

35%

5%

13%

25%

17%

18%

22%

Single people aged 22-30 without dependents must relocate to high employment areas or lose access to unemployment benefits after 12 months

44%

31%

18%

26%

19%

15%

16%

7%

Privatise the Royal Australian Mint

15%

49%

5%

10%

20%

24%

25%

16%

Raise pension age to 70 by 2053

18%

62%

5%

13%

15%

24%

38%

5%

Make those under 25 apply for Youth Allowance, instead of Newstart (Youth Allowance is around $100 less per fortnight)

39%

31%

13%

26%

19%

18%

13%

11%

More people opposed than supported each of the policies listed, except for:

  • University graduates to repay HELP debt once they earn the minimum wage ($32,354) (50% support, 24% oppose)
  • Single people aged 22-30 without dependents must relocate to high employment areas or lose access to unemployment benefits after 12 months (44% support, 31% oppose)
  • Make those under 25 apply for Youth Allowance, instead of Newstart (Youth Allowance is around $100 less per fortnight) (39% support, 31% oppose)

The highest levels of opposition were registered for:

  • Increase interest rates on student (HELP) debt (62% oppose)
  • Raise pension age to 70 by 2053 (62% oppose)
  • Introduce co-payments for all Medicare services: $15 per service for general patients and $5 per service for concession holders with payments reduced after 15 visits (55% oppose)
  • Privatise Australia Post (54% oppose)

Overall, Lib/Nat voters were more likely than the other voting groups to support each of the policies. The only areas (in addition to those listed above) where they were more likely to support than oppose were ‘Introduce co-payments for all Medicare services: $15 per service for general patients and $5 per service for concession holders with payments reduced after 15 visits’ (43% support and 35% oppose) and ‘Partial or full deregulation of university fees’ (28% support, 26% oppose).

The areas of highest opposition for Lib/Nat voters were:

  1. Raise pension age to 70 by 2053 (51% oppose)
  2. Include the value of family home in an assets test for new pensioners, but with a high threshold (50% oppose)
  3. Increase interest rates on student (HELP) debt (50% oppose)

Key differences by gender included:

  • Females (60%) were more likely than males (49%) to oppose the co-payment for Medicare services
  • Females (66%) were more likely than males (59%) to oppose the increase of interest rates on HELP debts

Females (67%) were more likely than males (56%) to oppose the raising of the pension age to 70 by 2053

Support for Commission of Audit Policies (by voting intention)

May 13, 2014

Q. Do you support or oppose the following possible policies that could be announced in the budget, as set out in the recently released ‘Commission of Audit’ report:

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Green

Vote Other

 

Total Support

Total Oppose

Total Support

Total Oppose

Total Support

Total Oppose

Total Support

Total Oppose

Privatise Australia Post

6%

69%

30%

40%

9%

62%

15%

60%

Privatise Snowy Hydro

11%

50%

27%

28%

8%

52%

11%

50%

Introduce co-payments for all Medicare services: $15 per service for general patients and $5 per service for concession holders with payments reduced after 15 visits

15%

69%

43%

35%

12%

78%

23%

61%

Partial or full deregulation of university fees

11%

55%

28%

26%

5%

71%

11%

49%

Increase interest rates on student (HELP) debt

9%

53%

20%

50%

3%

84%

11%

36%

University graduates to repay HELP debt once they earn the minimum wage ($32,354).

44%

31%

64%

15%

44%

39%

42%

27%

Include the value of family home in an assets test for new pensioners, but with a high threshold

18%

54%

27%

50%

24%

45%

21%

59%

Scrap the national minimum wage in favour of a new Minimum Wage benchmark of 44 per cent of Average Weekly Earnings.

11%

55%

29%

19%

8%

43%

16%

30%

Single people aged 22-30 without dependents must relocate to high employment areas or lose access to unemployment benefits after 12 months

30%

43%

61%

16%

32%

40%

40%

40%

Privatise the Royal Australian Mint

9%

59%

24%

40%

2%

61%

12%

56%

Raise pension age to 70 by 2053

13%

72%

28%

51%

8%

74%

15%

68%

Make those under 25 apply for Youth Allowance, instead of Newstart (Youth Allowance is around $100 less per fortnight)

29%

43%

59%

14%

25%

52%

33%

32%

More people opposed than supported each of the policies listed, except for:

  • University graduates to repay HELP debt once they earn the minimum wage ($32,354) (50% support, 24% oppose)
  • Single people aged 22-30 without dependents must relocate to high employment areas or lose access to unemployment benefits after 12 months (44% support, 31% oppose)
  • Make those under 25 apply for Youth Allowance, instead of Newstart (Youth Allowance is around $100 less per fortnight) (39% support, 31% oppose)

The highest levels of opposition were registered for:

  • Increase interest rates on student (HELP) debt (62% oppose)
  • Raise pension age to 70 by 2053 (62% oppose)
  • Introduce co-payments for all Medicare services: $15 per service for general patients and $5 per service for concession holders with payments reduced after 15 visits (55% oppose)
  • Privatise Australia Post (54% oppose)

Overall, Lib/Nat voters were more likely than the other voting groups to support each of the policies. The only areas (in addition to those listed above) where they were more likely to support than oppose were ‘Introduce co-payments for all Medicare services: $15 per service for general patients and $5 per service for concession holders with payments reduced after 15 visits’ (43% support and 35% oppose) and ‘Partial or full deregulation of university fees’ (28% support, 26% oppose).

The areas of highest opposition for Lib/Nat voters were:

  1. Raise pension age to 70 by 2053 (51% oppose)
  2. Include the value of family home in an assets test for new pensioners, but with a high threshold (50% oppose)
  3. Increase interest rates on student (HELP) debt (50% oppose)

Key differences by gender included:

  • Females (60%) were more likely than males (49%) to oppose the co-payment for Medicare services
  • Females (66%) were more likely than males (59%) to oppose the increase of interest rates on HELP debts

Females (67%) were more likely than males (56%) to oppose the raising of the pension age to 70 by 2053

Policies of the major parties

May 13, 2014

Q. In general, do you think the policies of the Liberal/National Coalition and the policies of Labor favour the rich, favour the middle class, favour the poor, or do they treat all groups equally?

 

Favour the rich

Favour the average Australian

Favour the poor

Treat all groups equally

Don’t know

The policies of the Liberal/National Coalition…

54%

16%

5%

13%

12%

The policies of Labor…

16%

34%

22%

11%

17%

Just over half (54%) of Australians believe that the policies of the Lib/Nat Coalition favour the rich. 16% think they favour the average Australian, 5% think they favour the poor and 13% think they favour all groups equally.

The largest proportion of Australians (34%) think that the policies of Labor favour the average Australian. 16% think they favour the rich, 22% think they favour the poor and 11% think they treat all groups equally.

Labor and Green voters were more likely to think that the Lib/Nat’s favour the rich (81% each), and that Labor favour the average Australian (53% of Labor voters and 57% of Green voters).

There were no significant differences based on gender.

For a more detailed breakdown of this question, please download the Essential Report.

Federal Budget

May 13, 2014

Q. In general, do you think the next Federal Budget, to be announced on Tuesday 13th May 2014 will be good or bad for?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total Good

Total Bad

Very good

Good

Neither good nor bad

Bad

Very bad

Don’t know

You personally

8%

55%

2%

6%

28%

36%

19%

9%

Average working people

9%

63%

2%

7%

19%

45%

18%

9%

Australian business

25%

33%

3%

22%

28%

25%

8%

14%

The economy over all

28%

36%

6%

22%

24%

22%

14%

12%

People who are well off

40%

23%

14%

26%

27%

18%

5%

11%

People on lower incomes

12%

60%

2%

10%

17%

33%

27%

10%

Australian families

11%

59%

2%

9%

20%

37%

22%

10%

Older Australians

8%

67%

1%

7%

18%

34%

33%

9%

Younger Australians

11%

49%

2%

9%

28%

29%

20%

12%

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Green

Vote Other

Total Good

Total Bad

Total Good

Total Bad

Total Good

Total Bad

Total Good

Total Bad

7%

70%

11%

38%

4%

69%

5%

67%

6%

77%

15%

44%

3%

81%

5%

72%

28%

34%

27%

30%

17%

40%

20%

40%

11%

55%

54%

14%

11%

14%

15%

47%

50%

20%

26%

28%

56%

12%

47%

20%

9%

79%

21%

39%

1%

78%

7%

74%

6%

77%

20%

37%

2%

78%

5%

71%

6%

78%

14%

47%

76%

5%

79%

11%

65%

15%

30%

1%

70%

6%

58%

Over half (54%) of Australians believe that the budget will be bad for them personally.  67% think it will be bad for older Australians, 63% for average working people and 60% for people on lower incomes.

The only group that more Australians thought the budget would be good for rather than bad was ‘people who are well off’ (40% good, 23% bad).

Just 25% think the budget will be good for Australian business and 28% for the economy overall.

Labor voters are most likely to think that the budget will be bad for ‘people on lower incomes’ (79%), ‘older Australians’ (78%), ‘average working people’ (77%) and ‘Australian families’ (77%).

The only area where Lib/Nat voters were more likely to think that the budget would be good rather than bad was for ‘the economy overall’ (54% think it will be good, 14% think it will be bad).

In terms of the impact for them personally, there was no difference between males and females. Those aged 30-55 were the most likely to think that the budget would be bad for them personally (61% compared to 46% for those under 30 and 51% for those aged 55+).

Federal politics – voting intention

May 6, 2014

Q. If a Federal Election was held today to which party will you probably give your first preference vote? If not sure, which party are you currently leaning toward?

Q. If don’t know -Well which party are you currently leaning to?

Sample size = 1,929 respondents

First preference/leaning to

Election

7 Sep 13

 

4 weeks ago 8/4/14

2 weeks ago

22/4/14

Last week

29/4/14

This week

06/05/14

Liberal

 

40%

39%

38%

38%

National

3%

2%

2%

3%

Total Lib/Nat

45.6%

42%

41%

40%

40%

Labor

33.4%

38%

37%

38%

38%

Greens

8.6%

9%

11%

10%

10%

Palmer United Party

5.5%

3%

5%

5%

5%

Other/Independent

6.9%

8%

6%

6%

8%

 

2 Party Preferred

Election

7 Sep 13

 

4 weeks ago 8/4/14

2 weeks ago

22/4/14

Last week

29/4/14

This week

06/05/14

Liberal National

53.5%

49%

49%

48%

48%

Labor

46.5%

51%

51%

52%

52%

NB. The data in the above tables comprise 2-week averages derived from the first preference/leaning to voting questions.  Respondents who select ‘don’t know’ are not included in the results.  The two-party preferred estimate is calculated by distributing the votes of the other parties according to their preferences at the 2013 election.

Management of the Australian economy

May 6, 2014

Q. How would you rate the Government’s management of the Australian economy compared to how governments in other countries around the world have managed their economies?

 

Total

 

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote other

 

6 May 2013

(Labor Government)

Total Good

40%

24%

68%

22%

30%

39%

Total Poor

31%

47%

6%

55%

43%

32%

Very good

9%

3%

17%

6%

7%

11%

Good

31%

21%

51%

16%

23%

28%

Neither good nor poor

24%

26%

23%

24%

25%

24%

Poor

14%

20%

4%

20%

18%

17%

Very poor

17%

27%

2%

35%

25%

15%

Don’t know

5%

4%

3%

2%

5%

40% of Australians would rate the government’s management of the economy, compared to other countries around the world, as good.

31% would rate their management of the economy as poor.

There has been no major shift in attitudes since the last time this question was asked in May 2013 (for the then Labor Government).

Labor (24%), Green (22%) and other (30%) voters were less likely to rate the government’s management of the economy as ‘good’. Lib/Nat voters (64%) were more likely to rate the government’s management of the economy as ‘good’.

Those aged 65+ were more likely to rate the government’s management of the economy as ‘good’ (55%).

Trust to handle the economy

May 6, 2014

Q. Who would you trust most to handle Australia’s economy – The Treasurer Joe Hockey or the Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen?

 

Total

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote other

Joe Hockey

33%

6%

73%

1%

21%

Chris Bowen

27%

53%

5%

42%

22%

Don’t know

41%

41%

22%

57%

57%

33% of Australians most trust Joe Hockey to handle Australia’s economy. 27% most trust Chris Bowen. The largest proportion of Australian’s selected ‘don’t know’ (41%).

Although Labor voters were more likely to select Chris Bowen (53%), 41% still selected ‘don’t know’.

Lib/Nat voters were more likely to select Joe Hockey (73%), but 22% still picked ‘don’t know’.

Green voters were more likely to select Chris Bowen, with the majority (57%) selecting don’t know.

Party best at looking after the economy

May 6, 2014

Q. Which party – Labor or Liberal – do you think is best when it comes to:

 

Labor

Liberal

No Difference

Don’t Know

Difference (Labor v. Liberal)

Representing the interests of Australian working families

47%

20%

26%

7%

27%

Representing the interests of you and people like you

39%

29%

24%

8%

10%

Standing up for the middle class in Australia

38%

24%

29%

9%

14%

Representing the interests of the large corporate and financial interests

13%

54%

22%

11%

-41%

Being more concerned about the interests of working families in Australia than the rich and large business and financial interests

46%

17%

26%

10%

29%

Handling the economy overall

26%

40%

23%

10%

-14%

Handling the economy in a way that tries to take the interests of working families into consideration as much as it takes the interests of the large corporate and financial groups

37%

27%

23%

13%

10%

Handling the economy in a way that best helps small business

27%

32%

28%

13%

-5%

Handling the economy in a way that best helps the middle class

31%

30%

27%

12%

1%

Handling the economy in a way that helps you and people like you the most.

37%

29%

23%

11%

8%

Labor was more likely to be selected as the party best at all of the items, except for ‘Representing the interests of the large corporate and financial interests’ (54% Liberal, 13% Labor), ‘Handling the economy overall’ (40% Liberal, 26% Labor) and ‘Handling the economy in a way that best helps small business’ (32% Liberal, 27% Labor).

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