NSW Labor has been leading the way in the run-up to the upcoming election, but a turbulent week and a long road ahead will dampen any celebration.
If elections were held on Saturday, not in six months, Labor would come to power for the first time since 2011, according to the latest surveys by Newspoll and Resolve.
The Newspoll, conducted for News Corp by YouGov and published in the AustralianLabor and the Coalition had been neck and neck on two sides in three consecutive polls since March 2018.
The latest results, released on Saturday, show that Labor has a four-point lead.
Dissolve Strategic’s political monitoring on behalf of Nine . newspaper The Sydney Morning Herald showed that Labor won 43 percent of the vote, compared to 30 percent for the coalition.
While it’s good news for Labour, it’s less so for leader Chris Minns.
Minns is getting a little extra
Support for Minns as prime minister fell from 32 percent in February. He and Prime Minister Dominic Perrottet, who lost one point, were both tied at 28 percent, while 44 percent of voters were undecided.
Sunday’s first preference results showed a marked change from a February poll in which the Liberals and Nationals led 37 percent to 34.
Since then, the government has faced the John Barilaro scandal over the trade appointment and allegations of harassment that led to a minister being fired.
Multiple assessments of Mr Barilaro’s appointment have blamed a since-fired department secretary, who acquitted former deputy Liberal leader and senior minister Stuart Ayres.
Whether those two actions can shake the perception of ‘jobs for the boys’ in an aging government ahead of the March elections remains to be seen.
The Resolve poll was held before a turbulent week led to Bankstown MP Tania Mihailuk being removed from the inner circle of the opposition after she launched a sensational attack on her own party.
She accused a potential Labor MP, currently a local mayor, of corruption and linked him to disgraced former Labor Minister and power broker Eddie Obeid.
Labor’s internal quarrels
Mr Minns fired Ms Mihailuk from his shadow cabinet after failing to respond to an ultimatum to substantiate her claims through appropriate channels and delaying the use of parliamentary privileges to carry out further attacks.
After failing to respond to text messages and voicemails from the Labor leader, Ms Mihailuk learned of her resignation when Mr Minns announced it on commercial radio on Friday.
He said she had not put forward any new information in parliament late Tuesday night and the allegations, which were more than a decade old, had already been investigated.
Ms Mihailuk was recently the subject of bullying allegations that she dismissed as an “internal sting”.
Veteran MP Walt Secord also resigned, announcing that he will retire in the March election after allegations of bullying emerged last month.