Coalition draws level with Labor as Abbott bites

Energy Matters0


Mr Abbott might be basking in the sunshine of the customary honeymoon period enjoyed by new opposition leaders but Labor strategists believe the figures just reflect the public response to a new leader with an aggressive media presence. The strategists are still banking on a Labor victory later this year.

Mr Rudd acknowledged yesterday the insulation program would cost the government in the polls but promised to fix the problems.

Labor still wants to get its emissions trading scheme up, but is prepared to go to an election with a broader message based on soon-to-be-revealed changes to the health system. It will also play its trump card – taking the plaudits for getting Australia through the global financial crisis.

Today’s results show a majority of those polled (59 per cent) believe the government’s economic stimulus package was justified.

The Coalition’s message about the size of the debt taken on to finance that stimulus is resonating only with its own supporters – 43 per cent of people think Australia is now in too much debt, while 47 per cent think it is manageable.

The poll also shows both Mr Rudd and Mr Abbott are the most popular choices to lead their parties.

Close to half – 49 per cent – of those polled said Mr Rudd was more appealing, compared to 36 per cent who preferred Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

Only 15 per cent of people said they would be more likely to vote for Labor if Ms Gillard was leader, while 23 per cent said they would be less likely to vote Labor.

Treasury spokesman Joe Hockey fared better, with 39 per cent of people saying they preferred him to lead the Coalition.

But Mr Abbott is still ahead of the field, with 45 per cent of people saying he is the better leader for the Liberal Party.