Reason for Budget Deficit

Apr 11, 2011

Q. The Federal Government is currently running a budget deficit, but intends to return to surplus in 2012-13. Which of the following do you think is most responsible for the deficit?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Poor economic management by the Government 23% 5% 43% 8%
The cost of the Government’s GFC stimulus packages 19% 19% 20% 21%
Big companies not paying their fair share of taxes 17% 29% 6% 30%
Spending on big projects like the National Broadband Network 14% 8% 18% 10%
Lower tax revenues because of the Global Financial Crisis 13% 25% 4% 19%
Don’t know 15% 14% 9% 11%

Overall, respondents believe the main reasons for the budget deficit are poor economic management by the Government (23%), the cost of the Government’s GFC stimulus (19%) and big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (17%).

Labor voters were most likely to blame big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (29%) and lower tax revenues because of the GFC (25%) while Liberal/National voters blame poor economic management by the Government (43%). Greens voters tended to blame big companies not paying their fair share of taxes (30%).

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Measures to Return to Surplus

Apr 11, 2011

Q. In order to meet 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 63% 79% 51% 77%
Reduce tax breaks for high income earners 51% 57% 46% 67%
Cut “middle class welfare” such as the Baby Bonus, first home buyers grant and Family Tax Benefit payments 36% 33% 41% 39%
Reduce defence spending 32% 36% 26% 51%
Cut spending on unemployment and disability benefits 21% 15% 31% 11%
It does not need to return to surplus so quickly 38% 39% 36% 57%

Overall, the most favoured means of returning the budget to surplus were increasing taxes for big corporations (63%) and reducing tax breaks for high income earners (51%). Both these measures were strongly favoured by Labor and Greens voters.

Although support was less strong, these two measures were also the most preferred among Liberal/National voters.

Note, although 38% 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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Tony Abbott’s Welfare Proposal

Apr 11, 2011

Q. Tony Abbott has proposed changes to Australia’s welfare system – including cutting back the pension for people whose disabilities can be treated, suspending the dole for young people in areas where job vacancies have not been filled and making work-for-the-dole mandatory for those under 50 receiving unemployment benefits for more than six months.

Do you think Tony Abbott’s proposal will significantly reduce unemployment in Australia or will it just make things more difficult for the unemployed and people on disability benefits?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Will reduce unemployment 36% 18% 61% 20%
Will just make things difficult for the unemployed and people on disability benefits 47% 67% 24% 74%
Don’t know 17% 15% 16% 6%

36% believe that Tony Abbott’s changes to the welfare system will reduce unemployment and 47% think they will just make things difficult for the unemployed and people on disability benefits.

The only groups more likely to think it would reduce unemployment were Liberal/National voters (61%/21%), full-time workers (43%/39%)and those on income over $1,600 pw (48%/36%). 59% of those on incomes under $1,000 pw agreed that it will just make things difficult for the unemployed and people on disability benefits.

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Party Trust to Handle Benefits/pensions

Apr 11, 2011

Q. Which party would you trust more to handle welfare issues like unemployment benefits and disability pensions?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Labor Party 34% 75% 6% 53%
Liberal Party 31% 4% 66% 8%
No difference 25% 16% 21% 26%
Don’t know 10% 55 6% 13%

34% trust the Labor Party more to handle welfare issues and 31% trust the Liberal Party more. 25% think there is no difference.

The Liberal Party is trusted more by people earning $1,600+ pw (40% to 29%) while those on incomes under $1,000 pw favor the Labor Party 39% to 22%.

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Difference between Labor and Greens Policies

Apr 11, 2011

Q. How much difference do you think there is between the policies of the Labor Party and the Greens?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
They are completely different 8% 10% 10% 12%
Different on most issues 15% 15% 16% 26%
Different of some and similar on some 41% 54% 33% 47%
Similar on most issues 14% 7% 22% 8%
They are exactly the same 5% 2% 7% 1%
Don’t know 17% 13% 13% 5%

19% think the Labor and Greens policies are similar or exactly the same, 23% think they are mostly or completely different and 41% think they are different on some and the similar on some issues.

Labor voters are more likely to think they are different on some and similar on some (54%), Liberal/National voters more likely to think they are similar or the same (29%) and Greens voters more likely to think they are different (38%).

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Federal Budget

Apr 5, 2011

Q. Do you support or oppose the Australian Government’s proposal to establish a regional processing centre for asylum seekers in East Timor?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens Men Women Age

18-34

Aged

35-54

Aged 55+
Total support 37% 47% 33% 38% 42% 32% 40% 37% 35%
Total oppose 38% 27% 46% 38% 39% 36% 29% 39% 46%
Strongly support 11% 13% 9% 5% 12% 9% 8% 11% 13%
Support 26% 34% 24% 33% 30% 23% 32% 26% 22%
Oppose 18% 16% 20% 22% 18% 18% 17% 20% 18%
Strongly oppose 20% 11% 26% 16% 21% 18% 12% 19% 28%
Don’t know 25% 25% 21% 25% 19% 32% 31% 24% 20%

Opinions on the Australian Government’s proposal to establish a regional processing centre for asylum seekers in East Timor are evenly divided – 37% support the proposal and 38% oppose.

Strongest support comes from Labor voters (47%) and those aged 18-34 (40%). Strongest opposition comes form Liberal/National voters (46%) and those aged 55+ (46%).

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Federal politics – voting intention

Apr 4, 2011

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 =1,860

First preference/leaning to Election

21 Aug 10

4 weeks ago 2 weeks ago Last week This week
Liberal 44% 44% 43% 43%
National 3% 3% 3% 3%
Total Lib/Nat 43.6 47% 46% 46% 46%
Labor 38.0 36% 36% 37% 36%
Greens 11.8 10% 10% 10% 10%
Other/Independent 6.6 7% 8% 7% 8%
2PP Election

21 Aug 10

4 weeks ago 2 weeks ago Last week This week
Total Lib/Nat 49.9% 53% 53% 52% 53%
Labor 50.1% 47% 47% 48% 47%

NB.  The data in the above tables comprise 2-week averages derived 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 2010 election.

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State of the Economy

Apr 4, 2011

Q. Compared to other developed countries (e.g. USA, UK, Japan, European nations) how would you rate the current state of the Australian economy?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Total good 69% 82% 66% 75%
Total poor 7% 2% 9% 1%
Very good 24% 37% 15% 38%
Good 45% 45% 51% 37%
Average 21% 14% 24% 21%
Poor 4% 2% 5% 1%
Very poor 3% 4%
Don’t know 3% 2% 1% 2%

69% believe that, compared to other developed countries, the current state of the Australian economy is good and 7% think it is poor. 82% of Labor voters think it is good compared to 75% of Greens voters and 66% of Liberal/National voters.

Those on higher incomes are more likely to think it is good – 75% of those on $1,600+ per week compared to 66% of those under $600 per week.

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