Social Class Identification

May 17, 2016

Q. Do you consider yourself –

  Total   Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens Vote other   Income under $1,000pw Income $1,000 – $1,500pw Income $1,500 – $2,000pw Income $2,000+   Aug 2014
Working class 34% 42% 28% 26% 40% 46% 40% 31% 21% 31%
Middle class 48% 44% 62% 48% 39% 31% 45% 60% 67% 49%
Upper class 2%   2% 1% 2% 2% <1% 1% 2% 4%   2%
None of them 10%   9% 6% 20% 17% 19% 8% 4% 6%   13%
Don’t know 5% 3% 3% 4% 3% 4% 6% 3% 3% 6%

48% of respondents described themselves as “middle class” and 34% as “working class” – only 2% claimed to be “upper class”.

Those on higher incomes were more likely to identify as “middle class” while those on lower incomes were more likely to identify as “working class”.

The results are not substantially different from those when this question was asked in 2014.

Parties and Social Class

May 17, 2016

Q. Whose interests do you think the Labor Party mainly represent?

  Total   Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens Vote other   Working class Middle class   Apr

2013

Aug 2014
Working class 39% 47% 42% 27% 32% 40% 44% 30% 41%
Middle class 17% 21% 13% 29% 20% 16% 19% 16% 14%
Upper class 10%   6% 11% 14% 16%   14% 7%   13% 8%
All of them 8%   15% 4% 7% 5%   5% 8%   8% 8%
None of them 13%   2% 23% 9% 21%   12% 13%   22% 16%
Don’t know 13% 9% 8% 15% 6% 13% 9% 11% 13%

39% believe that the Labor Party mainly represents working class people and 17% think they represent the middle class. 47% of Labor voters think the Labor Party mainly represents the working class and 29% of Greens voters think they mainly represent the middle class. 23% of Liberal/National voters don’t think they represent any class.

40% of respondents who describe themselves as working class and 44% of those who say they are middle class think the Labor Party mainly represents the working class.

The results are not substantially different from those when this question was asked in 2014.

Parties and Social Class

May 17, 2016

Q. Whose interests do you think the Liberal Party mainly represent?

  Total   Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens Vote other   Working class Middle class   Apr

2013

Aug 2014
Working class 4%   5% 6% 3% 1%   6% 2%   5% 4%
Middle class 15%   8% 28% 7% 11%   13% 19%   20% 17%
Upper class 53%   79% 27% 79% 67%   59% 53%   40% 47%
All of them 12%   2% 29% 2% 8%   7% 16%   17% 14%
None of them 4%   2% 3% 5% 11%   4% 3%   8% 8%
Don’t know 11%   5% 7% 4% 3%   10% 7%   9% 11%

 53% believe that the Liberal Party mainly represents upper class people and 15% think they represent the middle class. 79% of Labor voters and Greens voters think the Liberal Party mainly represent the upper class. 28% of Liberal/National voters think they represent the middle class and 29% think they represent all classes.

59% of respondents who describe themselves as working class and 53% of those who say they are middle class think the Liberal Party mainly represents the upper class.

Since this question was asked in August 2014, the proportion thinking that the Liberals represent the upper class has increased from 47% to 53%.

Approval of Federal Budget

May 10, 2016

Q. Overall, do you approve or disapprove of the Federal Budget that was handed down on Tuesday 3rd May?

  Total

 

  Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens Vote other   May 2014 May 2015
Total approve 20%   11% 41% 6% 9%   30% 34%
Total disapprove 29%   50% 7% 50% 35%   52% 33%
Strongly approve 4%   2% 8% 1%   10% 8%
Approve 16%   9% 33% 6% 8%   20% 26%
Neither approve nor disapprove 35%   30% 45% 27% 40%   14% 26%
Disapprove 16%   26% 6% 23% 18%   19% 19%
Strongly disapprove 13%   24% 1% 27% 17%   33% 14%
Don’t know 15%   9% 8% 17% 17%   4% 8%

20% approve of the 2016 Federal Budget and 29% disapprove. Compared to previous years, those who neither approve nor disapprove is substantially higher at 35%. Overall, the 2016 budget was rated higher than the 2014 budget but lower than the 2015 budget.

41% of Liberal/National voters approve and 50% of Labor and Greens voters disapprove.

41% of those with incomes less than $600 pw disapprove compared to 25% of those earning $2,000+ pw.

Confidence in Government

May 10, 2016

Q. Does this budget make you feel more confident or less confident in the Government’s ability to manage the economy?

  Total

 

  Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens Vote other   May 2015
More confident 21%   15% 38% 8% 11%   31%
Less confident 32%   50% 11% 55% 38%   31%
A lot more confident 4%   1% 9% 1%   7%
A little more confident 17%   14% 29% 7% 11%   24%
Makes no difference 35%   27% 45% 26% 40%   31%
A little less confident 14%   18% 10% 19% 13%   14%
A lot less confident 18%   32% 1% 36% 25%   17%
Don’t know 13%   9% 7% 10% 12%   7%

21% (down from 31% in 2015) say it makes them feel more confident in the Government’s ability to manage the economy and 32% (up 1%) say it makes them feel less confident.

Of those earning over $1,500 pw, 28% say it makes them more confident and 26% say it makes the less confident. For those earning less than $1,000 pw, 16% were more confident and 37% less confident.

Approval of Budget measures

May 10, 2016

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of the following measures contained in the Budget?

  Total approve Total dis-approve

 

  Strongly approve Approve Dis-approve Strongly dis-approve Don’t know
Tax cut for people earning over $80,000 43% 44%   11% 32% 24% 20% 13%
Cuts of $1.2 billion to aged care providers 19% 70%   5% 14% 30% 40% 11%
Increasing tax on cigarettes 72% 21%   45% 27% 11% 10% 7%
Capping tax concessions for those with more than $1.6 million in superannuation 62% 21%   28% 34% 13% 8% 17%
Reducing company tax for medium and large businesses over the next 3 years 50% 34%   13% 37% 19% 15% 16%
A taskforce to address tax avoidance by multinational companies 82% 8%   52% 30% 5% 3% 10%
Internships for young unemployed which pay $100 for up to 25 hours work per week on top of their welfare payments. 69% 14%   25% 44% 9% 5% 16%

There was substantial majority approval of addressing tax avoidance by multinationals (82%), increasing tax on cigarettes (72%) and internships for young unemployed (69%).

50% approved reducing company tax – including 72% of Liberal/National voters but only 36% of Labor voters. 55% of those earning over $1,500 pw approved of tax cuts for people earning over $80,000.

Impact of Budget

May 10, 2016

Q. In general, do you think the Federal Budget, will be good or bad for?

  Total good Total bad

 

  Very good Good Neither good nor bad Bad Very bad Don’t know   Total good

2014

Total bad 2014 Total good 2015 Total bad 2015
You personally 15% 26%   2% 13% 48% 18% 8% 10% 13% 52% 15% 28%
Average working people 21% 35%   3% 18% 33% 25% 10% 11% 14% 59% 22% 27%
Small businesses 53% 12% 11% 42% 22% 9% 3% 13% 36% 23% 66% 6%
Big businesses 50% 9% 16% 34% 29% 7% 2% 13% 34% 10%
The economy over all 28% 22% 4% 24% 35% 16% 6% 14% 40% 32% 30% 22%
People who are well off 49% 10% 20% 29% 30% 8% 2% 12% 45% 16% 36% 14%
People on lower incomes 15% 46%   3% 12% 28% 25% 21% 12% 11% 66% 22% 34%
Australian families 16% 36%   3% 13% 35% 24% 12% 13% 11% 62% 29% 27%
Older Australians 11% 51%   2% 9% 27% 31% 20% 11% 10% 66% 20% 34%
Younger Australians 25% 28% 3% 22% 34% 18% 10% 13%   16% 55% 21% 29%

The budget was considered more likely to be good for small business (53%), big business (50%) and people who are well off (49%). It was more likely to be considered bad for older Australians (51%) and people on lower incomes (46%).

Compared to the 2015 budget it was considered worse for average working people, people on low incomes, Australian families and older Australians.

Compared to the 2015 budget it was considered better for big businesses and people who are well off.

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