A few days after I complained that none of the major pollsters had published their party and leader preference results by sex, The Australian has remedied the situation and published Newspoll’s demographic summary.
Though there is no evidence that the budgie smugglers are disproportionately attracting women, who remain slightly less likely than men to support the Coalition, over the January to March period women were more likely to support the Coalition than at any time since it went into opposition.
It’s a similar story with the leader satisfaction and better PM questions. The male lead for Abbott is more part of a pattern of greater male than female support for the Coalition than something distinctive about the Abbott leadership. While on the better PM question the male lead is quite large (5 percentage points) this is not an uprecedented gap – and in absolute terms Abbott is seen as the better PM by more women than Nelson or Turnbull. Abbott’s ‘honeymoon’ period with female voters (43% satisfaction with the way he is doing his job as opposition leader) is not as strong as Turnbull’s (49%), but that was true of men too.
Overall, the decision to switch to Abbott seems to have paid off for the Coalition, with increased support from both men and women.
BTW – If anyone has a good method of converting Excel file tables into web images, let me know.