Support for Sending Asylum Seekers to Malaysia

Aug 1, 2011

Q. The Government has recently made an agreement to send asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia to Malaysia for processing, and in return Australia will take a fixed number of refugees from Malaysia. Do you support or oppose this agreement?

16 June 11 Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Total support 40% 31% 50% 25% 19%
Total oppose 39% 53% 31% 67% 60%
Strongly support 13% 6% 9% 4% 3%
Support 27% 25% 41% 21% 16%
Oppose 22% 23% 17% 24% 35%
Strongly oppose 17% 30% 14% 43% 25%
Don’t know 21% 16% 18% 9% 21%

31% support the agreement to send asylum seekers to Malaysia for processing and 53% oppose. This represents a significant increase in opposition to this scheme from that recorded 6 weeks ago – support is down 9% and opposition up 14%.

This shift is mainly due to changed opinions of Liberal/National voters. Support from Labor voters is up 3% to 50% while opposition from Liberal/National voters has increased by 22% to 67%. Opposition from Greens voters has also increased by 9% to 60%.

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Asylum Seeker Plans

Jun 20, 2011

Q. The Government has proposed sending asylum seekers arriving by boat to Malaysia for processing and the Opposition has proposed sending asylum seekers to Nauru. Which of these two options do you favour?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Malaysia 16% 29% 12% 9%
Nauru 34% 18% 55% 12%
Neither 30% 34% 18% 61%
Don’t know 20% 20% 14% 18%

34% favoured sending asylum seekers to Nauru and 16% favoured Malaysia, with a further 30% selecting ‘neither’.

Labor (34%) and Green voters (61%) were most likely to favour ‘neither’ – Liberal/National voters were most likely to favour Nauru (55%).

Males (37%) were more likely than females (31%) to favour Nauru. Females were more likely to select Don’t Know (25%).

Older respondents were more likely to favour Nauru – 48% of those aged 55+.

Younger respondents were more likely to select ‘neither’ – 37% of those aged 18-34.

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Awareness of Malaysia Proposal

Jun 14, 2011

Q.  The Government has announced a possible agreement with Malaysia on asylum seekers. Under these agreements, asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia will be sent to Malaysia for processing, and in return Australia will take a fixed number of refugees from Malaysia. How much have you heard about this proposal?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
A lot 27% 24% 34% 27%
Something 31% 38% 29% 30%
A little 29% 28% 29% 28%
Nothing 9% 8% 6% 14%
Don’t know 3% 2% 2% 1%

58% said they had heard a lot or something about the Government’s possible agreement with Malaysia on asylum seekers. Awareness was similar across voter groups.

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Support for Malaysia Proposal

Jun 14, 2011

Q. Do you support or oppose the Government’s plan to send asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia to Malaysia?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens Heard a lot Heard something Heard a little/ nothing
Total support 40% 47% 40% 27% 34% 42% 46%
Total oppose 39% 33% 45% 51% 60% 39% 28%
Strongly support 13% 13% 15% 4% 14% 11% 15%
Support 27% 34% 25% 23% 20% 31% 31%
Oppose 22% 21% 24% 31% 26% 24% 20%
Strongly oppose 17% 12% 21% 20% 34% 15% 8%
Don’t know 21% 20% 14% 23% 6% 19% 27%

40% support the Government’s plan to send asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia to Malaysia and 39% oppose.

Those who say they have heard more about it are more likely to oppose this proposal.  Only 34% of those who have heard a lot about it support the proposal compared to 46% of those who have heard a little or nothing. There were not substantial differences by gender or age.

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Processing Asylum Seekers

May 16, 2011

Q.  The Government has announced two possible agreements with Malaysia and Papua New Guinea on asylum seekers. Under these agreements, asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia will be sent to either Malaysia or PNG for processing, and in return Australia will take a fixed number of refugees from Malaysia.

Do you support or oppose the Government’s plan to send asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia to PNG and Malaysia?

Total Vote Labor Vote Liberal/ National Vote Greens
Total support 40% 55% 40% 29%
Total oppose 40% 25% 49% 53%
Strongly support 11% 16% 12% 5%
Support 29% 39% 28% 24%
Oppose 20% 16% 19% 33%
Strongly oppose 20% 9% 30% 20%
Don’t know 19% 20% 12% 17%

Respondents were divided over the Government’s plan to send asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia to PNG and Malaysia – 40% support and 40% oppose. Labor voters were more likely to support the plan (55%) while Greens voters were most likely to oppose it (53%).

There were no substantial differences by demographic groups.

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Processing Asylum Seekers

May 16, 2011

Q. Do you support or oppose the Government’s plan to send asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia to PNG and Malaysia if it means it will cost taxpayers substantially more than it would if we just processed asylum seekers on the mainland in Australia?

Total Vote Labor Vote Liberal/ National Vote Greens
Total support 24% 35% 23% 15%
Total oppose 60% 49% 66% 69%
Strongly support 6% 8% 6% 3%
Support 18% 27% 17% 12%
Oppose 29% 31% 25% 35%
Strongly oppose 31% 18% 41% 34%
Don’t know 16% 16% 11% 16%

Respondents were more likely to oppose the plan to send asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australia to PNG and Malaysia if it means it will cost taxpayers substantially more than it would if we just processed asylum seekers on the mainland in Australia – 24% support and 60% oppose.

Labor voters showed the largest shift in opinion if increased cost to taxpayers was taken into account  – their opposition increased from 25% to 49%.

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