A new Guardian Essential poll (3 March 2021) indicates an emerging Morrison vulnerability – he shares a female problem with Donald Trump. Well, not the major Trump one – just the electoral one.
Just as the US November election result was heavily influenced by the voting behaviour of suburban women, the Essential poll shows Morrison is less trusted by Australian females, who similarly regard him as less honest, visionary and out of touch with the public than most politicians.
The respondents were asked which of the following describe their opinion of Scott Morrison:
- good in a crisis: 59% compared with 66% in May 2020;
- trustworthy: 52% compared with 56% in 2020;
- more honest than most politicians: 50% compared with 51% in 2020;
- visionary: 41% compared with 48% inn 2020; and
- out of touch with ordinary people: 56%, up nine per cent since 2020.
There were stark differences between male and female respondents. On the crisis question, 64% of men thought Morrison was good in a crisis (the same as in 2020) while only 55% of woman shared that view – down 13% since 2020.
Some 55% of men thought Morrison was more honest than most politicians while only 44% of women concurred.
On trustworthiness, the figures were 56% (up 2%) of males while for women it was down 7% to 48%.
Some 46% of men thought he was visionary compared with 37% of women.
As for whether he was out of touch with ordinary people, males and females were aligned, with 56% thinking he was – although here the increase was greater for men (up 12%) compared to women (up 8%). They appear to have been in doubt about that since May 2020.
Asked how much trust all respondents have in any various institutions to ensure work is a safe space for women, the public service scored 51%; private companies 38%; political offices 34%, sporting clubs 39%; and the entertainment industry 36%.
The little or no trust responses were public services 41%; private companies 38%; political offices 59%; sporting clubs 52%; and the entertainment industry 56%.
Surprise, surprise, men overwhelmingly believe gender equality has gone far enough already and gender equality has largely been achieved. Only a third of women agree.
Past experiences have caused a knee-jerk reaction to distrust polls, and this one may be no different – except that it is measuring attitudes and not voting intentions. For that, we will have to wait and see.
But there is a warning for Scottie from marketing. A majority of the sample think that – despite all that ‘daggy dad’ stuff – he is out of touch with ordinary people and women neither trust him nor think he is any more honest than other politicians.