Will the Coalition deliver a surplus

Feb 5, 2013

Q. Do you think that if Tony Abbott and Coalition win the next election, they will deliver a budget surplus in their first year of Government?

 

Total

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Probably will deliver a surplus

19%

10%

31%

14%

Probably won’t deliver a surplus

60%

74%

52%

66%

Don’t know

20%

16%

18%

20%

60% think that if Tony Abbott and Coalition win the next election, they probably won’t deliver a budget surplus in their first year of Government and 19% think they probably will.

A majority of all demographic and voter groups (including Liberal/National voters) think the Coalition will probably not deliver a surplus in their first year if elected.

Budget surplus

Nov 26, 2012

Q. In order to keep to their commitment to return to surplus in 2012-13, which measures should the Government take?

 

Total

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Increase taxes for big corporations

59%

70%

51%

65%

Reduce tax breaks for high income earners

46%

51%

41%

62%

Cut “middle class welfare” such as the Baby Bonus, first home buyers grant and Family Tax Benefit payments

43%

42%

48%

52%

Reduce defence spending

38%

40%

33%

70%

Postpone building the NBN

27%

18%

42%

14%

Cut spending on unemployment and disability benefits

26%

20%

36%

17%

Postpone other infrastructure projects like new roads and highways

12%

12%

13%

12%

Measures most supported by respondents in order to keep the commitment to the 2012-13 budget surplus are increasing taxes for big corporations (59%), reducing tax breaks for high income earners (46%) and cutting ‘middle class welfare’ (43%).

Looking at the results by voting intention, the majority of Lib/Nat voters support increasing taxes for big corporations (51%).  Labor voters are most in favour of increasing taxes for big corporations (70%) and reducing tax breaks for high income earners (51%).  Greens voters are most inclined to support reducing defence spending (70%) and increasing taxes for big corporations (65%).

Approval of return to surplus

Oct 29, 2012

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of the Government’s intention to return the budget to surplus this financial year, even if it means making more spending cuts?

 

Total

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Total approve

37%

52%

31%

43%

Total disapprove

43%

32%

54%

35%

Strongly approve

5%

8%

5%

7%

Approve

32%

44%

26%

36%

Disapprove

31%

26%

38%

26%

Strongly disapprove

12%

6%

16%

9%

Don’t know

19%

17%

16%

23%

37% approve of returning the budget to surplus even if it means spending cuts and 43% disapprove.

Labor voters (52%) and Greens voters (43%) are more likely to approve but 54% Liberal/National voters disapprove. There were no substantial differences across demographics.

Federal government surplus

Oct 2, 2012

Q. Thinking about the federal government budget, how important do you believe it is for the budget to be in surplus…?

 

Total important

Total not important

Very important

Quite Important

Not very important

Not at all important

Don’t know

…for the country as a whole

68%

22%

26%

42%

18%

4%

10%

…for you personally

46%

42%

15%

31%

31%

11%

11%

A clear majority of respondents (68%) regard having a federal government budget surplus to be important for the country as a whole, whereas a significantly smaller portion regard to be important for them personally (46%).

Forty two per cent (42%) of respondents believe having a federal government budget surplus was not important for them personally.

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Total important

Total not important

Total important

Total not important

Total important

Total not important

…for the country as a whole

59%

31%

78%

16%

58%

34%

…for you personally

39%

49%

59%

32%

28%

65%

Looking at the results by voting intention, Coalition voters were the most likely to regard a federal budget surplus to be important for the country as a whole (78%) as well as for them personally (59%).

Greens voters were the most likely to regard it as not important for them personally (65%).

Reason for Budget Deficit

Apr 10, 2012

Q. The Federal Government is currently running a budget deficit, but intends to return to surplus with the budget for 2012-13 to be announced next month. Which of the following do you think has been most responsible for the deficit over the last few years?

 

Total 11/4/11

Total 10/4/12

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Poor economic management by the Government

23%

28%

7%

48%

7%

Big companies not paying their fair share of taxes

17%

16%

28%

5%

28%

Lower tax revenues because of the Global Financial Crisis

13%

16%

27%

10%

22%

Spending on big projects like the National Broadband Network

14%

15%

14%

17%

10%

The cost of the Government’s GFC stimulus packages

19%

12%

11%

13%

15%

Don’t know

15%

14%

13%

8%

18%

Overall, respondents believe the main reasons for the budget deficit are poor economic management by the Government (28%), big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (16%) and lower tax revenues because of the Global Financial Crisis (16%).

Since this question was asked 12 months ago, those blaming the Government for poor economic management has increased from 23% to 28% and those blaming the cost of the Government’s GFC stimulus packages has declined from 19% to 12%.

Labor voters were most likely to blame big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (28%) and lower tax revenues because of the GFC (27%) while Liberal/National voters blame poor economic management by the Government (48%). Greens voters tended to blame big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (28%).

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Return to Surplus

Apr 10, 2012

Q. Do you think it is more important for the Government to return the budget to surplus by 2012/13 as planned – which may mean cutting services and raising taxes – OR should they delay the return to surplus and maintain services and invest in infrastructure?

 

Total 4/4/11

 

Total 28/11/11

Total 10/4/12

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Return to surplus by 2012/13, cut services, raise taxes

14%

13%

12%

13%

13%

7%

Delay return to surplus, maintain services, invest in infrastructure

69%

71%

73%

73%

76%

81%

Don’t know

17%

15%

15%

13%

12%

12%

 

12% support the return to surplus by 2012/13 if it means cutting services and raising taxes and 73% think the Government should delay the return to surplus and maintain services and investment. Support for a return to surplus has not significantly changed since this question was asked in November last year.

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Measures to Return to Surplus

Apr 10, 2012

Q. In order to meet their commitment to return to surplus in 2012-13, which measures should the Government take?

Total

11/4/11

Total 10/4/12

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Increase taxes for big corporations

63%

67%

81%

55%

80%

Reduce tax breaks for high income earners

51%

57%

65%

52%

71%

Postpone major infrastructure projects like the NBN

na

41%

29%

58%

19%

Reduce defence spending

32%

38%

42%

30%

64%

Cut “middle class welfare” such as the Baby Bonus, first home buyers grant and Family Tax Benefit payments

36%

36%

37%

38%

36%

Cut spending on unemployment and disability benefits

21%

23%

18%

32%

12%

It does not need to return to surplus so quickly

38%

63%

67%

66%

58%

Overall, the most favoured means of returning the budget to surplus were increasing taxes for big corporations (67%) and reducing tax breaks for high-income earners (57%). Both these measures were strongly favoured by Labor and Greens voters.

Although support was less strong, these two measures were also two of the three the most preferred among Liberal/National voters – 58% think the Government should postpone major infrastructure projects like the NBN.

The main changes since this question was asked 12 months ago are increases in support for reducing tax breaks for high-income earners (up 6%) and reducing defence spending (up 6%).

Note, although 63% thought that the budget does not need to return to surplus so quickly, some of these respondents also agreed with some of the measures listed.

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Return to Surplus

Nov 28, 2011

Q. Do you think it is more important for the Government to return the budget to surplus by 2012/13 as planned – which may mean cutting services and raising taxes – OR should they delay the return to surplus and maintain services and invest in infrastructure?

April 4 Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Return to surplus by 2012/13, cut services, raise taxes 14% 13% 13% 19% 7%
Delay return to surplus, maintain services, invest in infrastructure 69% 71% 76% 68% 82%
Don’t know 17% 15% 11% 13% 11%

13% support the return to surplus by 2012/13 if it means cutting services and raising taxes and 69% think the Government should delay the return to surplus and maintain services and investment. Opinions are unchanged since this question was asked in April.

No more than 19% of any demographic or voter group supported the return to surplus by 2012/13.

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