In a world exclusive, The Bug can reveal that Newspoll was in fact in the field last week but The Australian late last Sunday spiked the results after some of its findings shocked the newspaper’s senior editorial staff.
The Bug can reveal exclusively – we’re fairly confident not even Renee Viellaris has this story – that the News Corp presses were about to be plated up for last Monday’s edition when senior management realised the findings, in the words of one deputy editor, “could make us an even bigger laughing stock than normal” .
And the reason for all the kerfuffle? It appears the firm that conducts Newspoll for The Australian suggested a new format for determining preferred prime minister – namely that respondents unhappy with just the choice of PM Morrison or Opposition Leader Shorten could offer their preferred alternative as our nation’s political leader.
And it is understood executives at The Australian’s Holt Street, Sydney, headquarters eagerly went along with the idea, believing it would further expose the public’s dislike for Shorten.
But as the pie chart above shows, the poll of 1625 people from Wednesday to Saturday last week threw up some amazing results for preferred PM, with both Morrison and Shorten dipping alarmingly.
Egg Boy and The Two Kates from ABC TV’s Get Krackin both scored 18 per cent, which suggests that the voters polled liked what Egg Boy did to politicians he didn’t like, or were wondering if the Two Kates might be funny if they turned their hand to politics.
They edged out both Shorten (14%) and Morrison (12%). Next on 9% was much loved kangaroo Skippy – perhaps those polled were unaware the TV star died from paw health quite some decades ago – with ex-boxer Milo Kerrigan on 8%.
Sharing 5% were much-loved Australian diplomat Sir Les Patterson and One Nation founder and leader Pauline Hanson.
A virtual who’s who of Australian life made up the 7% for “others”. They included Darryl Kerrigan, Evonne Goolagong, Brian Henderson, the Logie Awards statuette, Ita Buttrose, Prince George, Steve Irwin, Andrew Bolt, Nick Kyrgios, Burt Newton, Jimmy Barnes, Sir Don Bradman, the Captain from the Flight Centre adverts, Aussie Ostrich, Laura Tingle and Lara Bingle, but only if she did the job nude.
In the axed Newspoll, Labor maintained its 54-46 two-party preferred lead.