Party Best At…

Apr 10, 2012

Q. Which party – Labor or Liberal – do you think is best when it comes to:

 

Labor

Liberal

No difference

Don’t know

Difference

Representing the interests of Australian working families

37%

25%

29%

9%

+12

Representing the interests of you and people like you

29%

35%

26%

10%

-6

Standing up for the middle class in Australia

26%

33%

30%

11%

-7

Representing the interests of the large corporate and financial interests

10%

54%

25%

11%

-44

Being more concerned about the interests of working families in Australia than the rich and large business and financial interests

37%

22%

30%

11%

+15

Handling the economy overall

22%

41%

26%

10%

-19

Handling the economy in a way that tries to take the interests of working families into consideration as much as it takes the interests of the large corporate and financial groups

29%

34%

25%

12%

-5

Handling the economy in a way that best helps small business

22%

40%

25%

13%

-18

Handling the economy in a way that best helps the middle class

23%

38%

27%

12%

-15

Handling the economy in a way that helps you and people like you the most.

26%

36%

27%

11%

-10

Labor was considered best at representing the interests of Australian working families (37%) and being more concerned about the interests of working families in Australia than the rich and large business and financial interests (37%). The Liberals were considered best on all the other measures.

In particular, the Liberal Party was considered much better on representing the interests of the large corporate and financial interests (54%), handling the economy overall (41%) and handling the economy in a way that best helps small business (40%).

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Interests Represented by Parties

May 30, 2011

Q. Which political party do you think best represents the interests of –

Labor Liberal Greens Don’t know
Families with young children 34% 31% 5% 29%
Students 30% 28% 10% 33%
Working people on average incomes 40% 32% 5% 23%
Working people on low incomes 43% 27% 6% 24%
Working people on high incomes 13% 63% 2% 22%
People on welfare 38% 23% 8% 30%
Pensioners 33% 28% 5% 34%
Small businesses and self-employed 20% 47% 4% 29%
Big business 13% 62% 2% 23%
The next generation of Australians 19% 31% 17% 33%
Indigenous people 23% 21% 16% 40%
Ethnic communities 22% 21% 15% 42%
Rural and regional Australians 18% 34% 11% 36%

The Labor Party is considered the party which best represents the interests of working people on low and average incomes, people on welfare and pensioners. The Liberal Party is considered best at representing the interests of people on high incomes, big business, small business and self-employed, rural and regional Australians and the next generation. The Greens’ main strengths are in representing the next generation, indigenous people and ethnic communities.

There was little difference between the major parties in terms of representing the interests of families with young children, students, indigenous people and ethnic communities.

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Important election issues

Jan 24, 2011

Q. Which are the three most important issues in deciding how you would vote at a Federal election? (Number from 1 to 3 where 1 is the most important, 2 the second most important, etc)

One Two Three Total Total 11th Oct 10 Total 25th Jan 10
Management of the economy 37% 18% 10% 65% 62% 63%
Ensuring a quality education for all children 5% 10% 11% 26% 32% 23%
Ensuring the quality of Australia’s health system 13% 20% 16% 49% 48% 48%
Protecting the environment 4% 3% 6% 13% 12% 16%
A fair industrial relations system 2% 4% 4% 10% 11% *
Political leadership 6% 5% 5% 16% 16% 23%
Addressing climate change 3% 3% 4% 10% 11% 16%
Controlling interest rates 5% 8% 8% 21% 17% 15%
Australian jobs and protection of local industries 10% 8% 12% 30% 30% 33%
Ensuring a quality water supply 1% 2% 3% 6% 6% 12%
Housing affordability 5% 5% 6% 16% 17% 14%
Ensuring a fair taxation system 4% 6% 8% 18% 16% 14%
Security and the war on terrorism 1% 2% 2% 5% 6% 9%
Treatment of asylum seekers 1% 2% 2% 5% 5% *
Managing population growth 2% 5% 4% 11% 10% *

*Not asked

65% of people surveyed rated management of the economy as one of their three most important issues, followed by 49% ensuring the quality of Australia’s health system and 30% Australian jobs and protection of local industries.

Only 10% rate addressing climate change as one of their three most important issues and 6% rate ensuring a quality water supply.

Over the past 12 months there has been an increase in the importance of controlling interest rates (from 15% to 21%) and a decrease in the importance of addressing climate change (from 16% to 10%).

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Important election issues

Jan 24, 2011

Q. Which are the three most important issues in deciding how you would vote at a Federal election? (Number from 1 to 3 where 1 is the most important, 2 the second most important, etc)

Total Labor Liberal/ National Green
Management of the economy 65% 63% 77% 47%
Ensuring a quality education for all children 26% 33% 20% 24%
Ensuring the quality of Australia’s health system 49% 52% 47% 37%
Protecting the environment 13% 12% 6% 42%
A fair industrial relations system 10% 18% 5% 8%
Political leadership 16% 11% 25% 14%
Addressing climate change 10% 10% 5% 22%
Controlling interest rates 21% 17% 22% 19%
Australian jobs and protection of local industries 30% 33% 32% 18%
Ensuring a quality water supply 6% 4% 6% 5%
Housing affordability 16% 15% 13% 21%
Ensuring a fair taxation system 18% 17% 19% 14%
Security and the war on terrorism 5% 5% 8% 5%
Treatment of asylum seekers 5% 3% 5% 15%
Managing population growth 11% 8% 12% 9%

Compared to the average, Labor voters are more likely to rate ensuring a quality education for all children (33%) and a fair industrial relations system (18%) as important.

Liberal/National voters attach more importance to management of the economy (77%) and political leadership (25%) while Greens voters are more likely to nominate protecting the environment (42%), addressing climate change (22%) and treatment of asylum seekers (15%).

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Party best handling important election issues

Jan 24, 2011

Q. And which party would you trust most to handle the following issues?

Labor Liberal Greens Don’t know
Management of the economy 33% 43% 2% 22%
Ensuring a quality education for all children 39% 33% 4% 24%
Ensuring the quality of Australia’s health system 33% 33% 7% 27%
Protecting the environment 16% 19% 40% 24%
A fair industrial relations system 40% 30% 5% 25%
Political leadership 28% 37% 4% 31%
Addressing climate change 18% 20% 34% 28%
Controlling interest rates 22% 40% 2% 35%
Protecting Australian jobs and protection of local industries 36% 33% 4% 27%
Ensuring a quality water supply 21% 28% 20% 31%
Housing affordability 26% 30% 7% 37%
Ensuring a fair taxation system 28% 35% 4% 32%
Security and the war on terrorism 23% 37% 4% 36%
Treatment of asylum seekers 20% 33% 12% 35%
Standing up for regular Australian working families 41% 27% 6% 25%
Managing population growth 21% 36% 7% 37%
Making sure Australian working people got fair treatment at their workplace 41% 29% 6% 25%

Labor is trusted most to handle a fair industrial relations system (40%), ensuring a quality education for all children (39%) and standing up for regular Australian working families (41%).

The Liberals are trusted most to handle management of the economy (43%), controlling interest rates (40%), political leadership (37%) and security and the war on terrorism (37%).

In October, Labor was considered substantially better to handle 5 of the issues surveyed and Liberals 5 issues – compared to this survey where Labor leads on 4 issues and Liberals on 8 issues. The Liberals have now established a lead on political leadership (+9%), water supply (+7%), and taxation (+7%).

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