Essential Research: Coalition 56%, ALP 44%; More From Galaxy

There’s a new Essential Research poll out today, with findings that federal voting intention is unchanged from their survey last week at 56% to the Coalition as opposed to 44% for Labor.

As is often the case with Essential’s research findings, questions relating to approval and disapproval of the respective leaders, as well as a question on the preferred PM measure, appear not to have been asked this time around.

One interesting aspect of this poll is the “question of the missing point”: its findings (Liberals on 46, Nationals on 3, Labor on 32, Greens on 10 and “Others” on 8 ) add up to 99%, not 100%.

I wonder where the misplaced point was from?

Still, this survey simply reinforces the Herculean task Labor faces if it is to even be competitive at the next election, with support for the Coalition across the major polls stuck at 56-57% after preferences.

Speaking of that, more details from the Galaxy poll we looked at on Saturday are now available.

Galaxy — in addition to its questions on voting intention for the forthcoming Queensland state election — also asked its respondents about their intentions at the federal level.

According to its findings, Labor now registers just 23% of the primary vote — in consideration of a federal election — in Queensland.

After preferences, the figures are 63% to the Coalition and 37% to the ALP.

This represents a swing away from Labor in Queensland of 8% since last year’s federal election and — according to a lot of other commentary posted on the poll — would leave Kevin Rudd as the sole Labor MP in the House of Representatives from Queensland were the figures to be replicated at an election.

Certainly — if the swing were uniform and Galaxy’s findings accurate — Rudd (currently sitting on an 8.5% margin in Griffith) would just scrape home. Swings, especially larger ones, are rarely uniform, though.

However, I’m very wary about accepting that sort of prediction — Griffith did fall to the Liberals in 1996 (when Rudd stood the first time); personal vote in more recent times notwithstanding, there’s no guarantee Rudd will be re-elected in Griffith if a swing of that size is really on.

Indeed, the ALP could be wiped out altogether in Queensland; or one of the other traditional Labor seats on smaller margins (Oxley or Rankin) might hold for Labor as Rudd is swept away.

Oxley — then held by Bill Hayden — was the only seat that stuck to Labor in 1975, and even then only by a few hundred votes over a National Party candidate.

And in 1996, Rankin held whilst Oxley and Griffith were both lost; the seat of Brisbane at the time was also retained by the ALP, despite being a marginal seat before the 1996 election (whereas Oxley and Griffith were supposedly rock-solid).

So we’ll stick with headline figures rather than seat runs for now, as interesting as they might be!

Although if the polls stay in the proportions they are it could make for good sport to speculate which might go where as the election draws closer, and not just in Queensland.