Support for ETS slips below 50%

The latest climate change Morgan Poll finds that support for the government’s ETS has fallen below 50% for the first time, and is now at 46%, compared to 50% last November and 55% last August.

This seems to be due to low support (34%) among voters aged 50 or more, as all the other age groups are still at 50% or more.

Though there is no detail on Morgan’s website, a story about the poll in Crikey suggests that the shift is due to the growing partisanship of this issue that I blogged about last month. They don’t give a number for Coalition supporters, but if as Crikey says Labor and Green voters have become more likely to support the ETS, the overall decline must be due to weaker support from Coalition voters.

One curious thing: On the question about whether concerns about global warming are exaggerated the comparisons are all with November poll, omitting any mention of a December poll that asked the same question.

Update: Pollytics has the full results.

How should we deal with union political power?

Earlier in the week, an Age report suggested that negotiations between the parties on political donations and funding laws had broken down over the issue of union affiliation fees to the ALP. The Liberal spokesman on this issue, Senator Michael Ronaldson, was reported as saying:

”It is increasingly clear that the level of union influence means that the reforms are all but dead in the water. And this is a great tragedy for this country.”

But in an Age op-ed Joo-Cheong Tham argues that union affiliation fees to political parties should be exempted from controls on political funding.

A distinction can be made, as he does, between individual or group membership of a political party – implying some general commitment to it – and ad hoc donations. But if the concern is avoiding the threats to ‘integrity’ when ‘holders of public office give undue weight to the interests of their financiers’ (Joo-Cheong’s words), it is not clear that this distinction is a difference that counts in favour of exempting union payments. Continue reading “How should we deal with union political power?”