Australian PM loses ground in her own seat: poll

16:41, July 24, 2011      

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Australian voters are turning away from Prime Minister and Labor party leader Julia Gillard in her own seat, with many unhappy about her carbon tax plan, new poll showed on Sunday.

The JWS Research poll of 625 voters conducted on Thursday night, and released in Sunday Herald Sun found primary support for Gillard in her west Melbourne seat had dropped by 18.3 percentage points to 46 percent.

However, on a two-party preferred basis, the poll found Gillard would retain the seat with 58 percent, down from 72.2 percent.

It also found that 43 percent of voters in Labor are opposed to Labor's carbon tax plan, 24 percent have yet to make up their minds and 33 percent are in favor.

Despite the fall in support showed in the latest poll, Federal assistant treasurer Bill Shorten said Gillard could well win the next election as plenty of past opposition leaders held commanding poll leads but still lost.

Shorten said Gillard remained safe and popular in her own Victorian electorate and he had no doubt the situation overall would improve over the medium term.

"When you look at this issue of polls, John Howard 12 months out from the 2001 election was unelectable, according to the polls, " he told Sky news on Sunday.

"Mark Latham on the other hand six months out from the 2004 poll was completely electable. As we know, the actual election turned out to be very different."

Labor government received glooming poll results after it released details of its carbon tax scheme.

The Age/Nielsen poll of the 1400 Australian voters earlier showed the Labor government's primary vote dropped one percent to 26 percent, the lowest for a major party in the poll's 39-year history.

Labor's two-party vote has fallen a further two points, leaving it trailing the Coalition by a massive 39-61 percent.

Source: Xinhua
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