The “Indigenous Voice” referendum in Australia is in serious trouble. With just months to go before Australians vote whether or not to change their Constitution, polls are trending steadily downward for the “Yes” vote. The newest poll shows the “No” vote winning.
Australian referendums need a double majority to pass: a majority of voters overall, and a majority of voters in each of a majority of states.
According to the latest Newspoll, the referendum would fail on both.
The referendum to enshrine an Indigenous voice to parliament and executive government would fail if a vote were held next weekend, with more voters for the first time opposed to altering the Constitution to achieve it and a majority of states lined up to deliver a “No” vote.
The poll also shows that the government, and Anthony Albanese personally, are on the slide. Resorting to cheap emotional blackmail seems unlikely to help the PM’s cause or personal standing.
The new blow to the “Yes” campaign comes amid fresh warnings from Anthony Albanese, whose personal approval ratings have also fallen to the lowest level since the election, that a failed referendum would set back the cause of reconciliation.
An exclusive Newspoll conducted for the Australian shows the referendum on a path to possible defeat, with the “Yes” campaign falling short of achieving the double majority test of more than 50 per cent of the national vote and majorities in a majority of states.
While previous polls have seemed to show the “Yes” vote leading, the caveat was that there remained a substantial “Undecided” cohort. Historically in Australian referendums, “Undecided” almost always translates to “No” at the ballot-box. But what’s happening in the polls is even worse for “Yes” than that. The “Undecided” remains relatively stable — which suggest that either more “Yes” votes are switching to “No”, or the number of “Undecided” hardening to “No” are being matched by “Yes” votes moving into “Undecided” territory.
Either way, the trajectory for the referendum seems to be an unstoppable downward slide.
The “No” vote rose four points to 47 per cent, confirming for the first time that more people are opposed to the Albanese government’s referendum model than those who support it.
Just as critical was the shift in the second key test for a referendum to succeed – a majority in a majority of states – with four of the six states now indicating a “No” vote and just two delivering “Yes” vote majorities.
Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania are now poised to vote “No” with only Victoria and NSW likely to deliver majorities for the “Yes” case, according to an aggregated Newspoll of 3852 voters conducted between May 31 and June 24.
The rise in the “No” vote came from Labor voters as well as Coalition voters, with Greens supporters alone hardening their views in favour of the voice. But the sharpest fall in support came from 35- to 49-year-old voters, with a seven-point fall among those who support it – from 53 per cent to 44 per cent.
Unsurprisingly, Dandrewstan (Victoria) remains the strongest “Yes” state. Australia’s second-wokest state, NSW, also has the highest “Undecided” cohort.
While there’s no shortage of bad news for the government, from the ongoing Higgins saga to the hot-button issue of spiralling cost of living, it seems likely, too, that the failing referendum is hurting the PM personally.
The fall in support for the voice comes as Mr Albanese’s personal approval ratings fell to their lowest levels since the election amid a small lift in support for the Coalition. Following a fortnight of parliamentary debate focused on the voice and the controversy over the politicisation of sexual assault allegations, satisfaction with Mr Albanese’s performance fell three points to 52 per cent, while those dissatisfied with him rose five points to 42 per cent. This is the worst result for the prime minister since the election.
There was also a tightening of the contest between the two leaders, with the gap narrowing to its tightest margin between Mr Albanese and Peter Dutton on the question of who would make the better prime minister.
Labor’s primary vote has flatlined at 38 per cent, which is still an historical low, while the Coalition’s vote has risen to 35 per cent.
Meanwhile, Peter Dutton is throwing Anthony Albanese an olive branch that he would be increasingly wise to take.
The Opposition Leader has called on Mr Albanese to call off the referendum if it looks likely to fail.
“I think the uncertainty and the danger that the Prime Minister is setting our country up for and the division that he’s creating is quite remarkable,” Mr Dutton said last week.
Dutton is right: for all the left’s blatherskite, it’s them and their racially divisive referendum that is stoking division in Australia. If they really had the country’s best interests at heart, they’d call the whole thing off.
But ‘wisdom’ and ‘the left’ rarely belong in the same sentence. Instead, what we’re almost certainly going to see in the government digging its heels in and ramping up the divisive name-calling.
Left-wing advocacy group GetUp has launched its campaign backing the Yes side in the voice referendum […]
The GetUp-backed group Passing the Message Stick has urged advocates to alienate opponents and encourage them to make racist comments so more Australians join the Yes camp, the Australian has revealed.
Because calling the people you want to vote for you ‘deplorables’ is such a winning strategy, as we all know.
Lushington describes himself as Punk rock philosopher. Liberalist contrarian. Grumpy old bastard. This article was first published HERE