War in Afghanistan

Oct 25, 2010

Q. Thinking about the Australian troops in Afghanistan, do you think Australia should –

Total

25 Oct 10

Labor Liberal Greens 30 March 09 21 June 10 11 Oct 10
Increase the number of troops in Afghanistan

10%

10%

12%

10%

14%

7%

13%

Keep the same number of troops in Afghanistan

30%

31%

34%

23%

24%

24%

24%

Withdraw our troops from Afghanistan 47% 49% 45% 55% 50% 61% 49%
Don’t know 14% 10% 8% 12% 12% 8% 14%

47% say Australia should withdraw our troops from Afghanistan, 30% say we should keep the same number and 10% say we should increase troop numbers. The support for keeping the same number of troops in Afghanistan has increased by 6% since previous surveys.

Support for withdrawal is highest among Greens voters (55%) and those on higher incomes (54% of those earning over $1,600 per week).

Support for maintaining or increasing troop numbers is highest among Liberal/National voters (46%), men (46%) and those aged 55+ (48%).

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Leader and Party most trusted to handle the war in Afghanistan

Oct 25, 2010

Q. Which leader and party would you trust most to handle our involvement in the war in Afghanistan?

Julia Gillard and the Labor Party 33%
Tony Abbott and the Liberal Party 32%
Bob Brown and the Greens 7%
Don’t know 28%

Respondents were split over which leader and party they would trust most to handle our involvement in the war in Afghanistan. 33% prefer Julia Gillard and the Labor Party and 32% prefer Tony Abbott and the Liberal Party.

Those aged 55+ prefer the Liberal Party over the Labor Party 40% to 34%.

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Holding centre ground can be war

Oct 12, 2010

First Published on The Drum 12/10/2010

Attempting to manage public confidence in the war in Afghanistan, the Labor Party is exposing its left flank in a way that calls into question three decades of political centrism.

These are challenging times for the ALP, with minority control in Canberra, hand-wringing election post mortems and flagging state administrations around the nation. A key theme appears to be ‘Labor has lost its way’.

But what is the ALP way? Since at least the Whitlam era, Labor orthodoxy has been that the occupation of the centre ground was a precondition for electoral success. Careers were built on the tough work of shifting Labor from ideological dogma to more pragmatic policies.

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