Morgan in the Age of Rudd – and a few oddities.
Posted by Possum Comitatus on December 10, 2007
We have our first poll out after the election that measures voting intention, and it’s of the Morgan phone poll variety.
“The first post-election Morgan Poll since the Rudd Government’s victory shows the inevitable boost in ALP primary support, now 49% (up 5.6% since the election), with L-NP support at 36.5%, Greens 7%, Family First 1.5%, and Others 6%. On a two-party preferred basis, ALP support is 58.5%, L-NP 41.5%.“
However, I do have it on good authority that the result is expected to narrow between now and the next election
I was looking forward to seeing the results of the “heading in the right direction” question so we could all have a giggle about the soft Coalition vote – but alas, Gary of Morgan fame has treated us like the naughty children we are and taken away our fun. With a “heading in the right direction” percentage recording its second highest level since May on 60%, one would imagine Spanky Nelson would have a vote softer than a poached egg using the old methodology.
So we bid farewell to the legendary Morgan soft vote question, and usher in a new dawn with a brand new measure; a measure so important it even has its own acronym.
Yes, we now have (insert orchestral fanfare) “The Roy Morgan Government Confidence Rating” – the GCR.
Currently the GCR, which Gary tells us is calculated as “100 plus the difference between the percentage of Australians who say the country is ‘going in the right direction’ and the percentage who say the country is ‘going in seriously the wrong direction’ “, is sitting on a record breaking 144.5
I’m not exactly sure what that means – but it’s a big number! 😉
I’m currently going over the election results seat by seat and hunting down relationships between the swings in electorates and various bits of Census data and whatnot. In the lead up to the election we heard a lot about how single parents with dependent children could be the big swingers and determine a number of seats, simply as a backlash to Howard’s welfare to work programs.
While there was certainly a relationship between the proportions of single parents with dependent children in an electorate and the size of the swing to the ALP, it actually had a greater effect of consolidating the relationship between the ALP two party preferred vote and the single parent with dependent children population.
The following two diagrams are scatter plots on the proportion of single parents with dependent children in an electorate and both the swing to the ALP by electorate, and the TPP vote by electorate.
The R-sq on the swing regression is 3.2%, on the TPP regressions it’s 30.5% (this is cross sectional data, so we expect the fit to be pretty low- I was surprised at how strong it was for the TPP)
So single parents did what some were suggesting they might, but have now really consolidated themselves as a key Labor demographic.
On something completely different, one of the things I found while rummaging around the data was the correlation between the size of the mortgage burden in an electorate (defined as the proportion of median household income used to make the median mortgage repayment) and the proportion of GP visits in the electorate that are bulk billed (using 2006 non-census data for the latter). Running a scatter plot and a simple regression line for the two we get:
If anyone has any theories as to why bulk billing rates would be higher in electorates with a higher mortgage burden, I’d love to hear them? That’s a pretty interesting result.
I thought I’d also throw in the bulk billing vs the proportion of couples with dependent children by electorate as well.
It seems to suggest that while dependent children play a role, there’s something else going on as well.
I’ve found a few more correlations, some are interesting while others are just unusual.
First up, atheists and the housing market:
The higher the proportion of people in an electorate that ticked the “No Religion” box in the census, generally the lower the mortgage burden of that electorate (which is the percentage of the median household income in that electorate it takes to make the median mortage repayment for that electorate). The ‘no religion’ electorates also tended to have experienced the greatest increase in median house prices over the past 12 months.
Atheists make the best property investors?
Also on the religion thing I found this interesting:
It charts electorates by the proportion of people in them over 15 that have a year 10 education of less, against the proportion of the electorate that were of christian religion. There’s a big age and location driver here with older people and regional/rural electorates tending to have overall lower levels of education as well as being christians, but I was surprised at how strong the pattern held in metropolitan electorates that contained only average levels of the 55+ age group.
The next interesting bit was how the proportion of private school enrollments in an electorate played out against median household income ($ p/w) and the proportion of the electorate with a year 10 education or less:
I thought that the income vs private school relationship would have had less variance than the education level vs private school , but it is actually the other way around.
Finally, total child support case numbers by elecorate vs income and education:
The income relationship was as expected for all the obvious reasons, but I was expecting the education result to show a fair bit more variance than it did.