Was the March poll on federal voting trends conducted for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age so disastrous for the Morrison Government that it’s been axed by senior editors or higher-up management?
That’s the question The Bug put to the papers’ owner, Nine Entertainment Co., through its chairman Peter Costello in a zoom interview conducted by phone last night.
The full interview is reprinted below.
The Bug: With only two days left in the month, why hasn’t your monthly Resolve Political Monitor poll appeared in The Age and The Scott Morrison Herald?
Costello: The Sydney Morning Herald.
The Bug: That’s what we said. In February, your pollster Resolve Strategic stamped its RPM survey completed by February 20 and the Scott Morrison Herald ..
Costello: The Sydney Morning Herald…
The Bug: That’s what we said… and the SMH‘s David Crowe ran the results online two days later. They didn’t make for good reading for the government, did they?
Costello: Not at all. I have those figures in front of me now and the LNP primary vote was befitting the only side of Australian politics that can manage economies well.
The Bug: Sorry, Mr Costello but we can’t help but notice you’re holding the chart of those February poll results upside down.
Costello: Shit. I’m always doing that!
The Bug: A bad habit from when you were rated the world’s greatest ever Treasurer, living or dead?
The Bug: And we’ve heard the March RPM poll was even worse than that.
Costello: Who on earth told you that?
The Bug: : As we said, it’s just what we heard ourselves saying among ourselves as we speculated how shitty the figures must have been for the Morrison government this month if you haven’t run them yet. We heard ourselves saying that the LNP primary vote had weakened another two points and Labor had gone up by the same amount to….
Costello: That’s simply not true. I’ve got the new March results here somewhere (rustles around on his desk and checks drawers) and as you can see, the LNP vote is quite solid, given that the LNP is the only side of government capable of providing good strong economic management.
The Bug: Once again, sir, sorry to have to say this but you’re holding the chart upside down.
Costello: Shit. I’m always doing that.
The Bug: : What we also also heard ourselves making up was the suggestion that when you first saw the RPM March figures you turned white because it proved the mainstream media’s concerted “Labor murdered Kimberley Kitching!” and “Albanese’s gutless for not calling an inquiry we could all rip to shreds for weeks!” campaign had not achieved the results you all wanted.
Costello: Not all all.
The Bug: And that when they saw the March figures, two of your most senior journalists Phillip Coorey and Chris Uhlmann were seen sobbing uncontrollably in their respective offices?
Costello Okay, that might be true.
The Bug: So when will you print the March RPM poll details?
Costello The only reason we’ve delayed publication is that everything this past week has been focussed on tonight’s feral Budget.
The Bug: Federal.
Costello: That’s what I said.
The Bug: So you can promise that the results will be published shortly?
Costello Most definitely. They’ll be run in either the Monday May 16 or Monday May 23 edition of both The Age and The Scott Morrison Herald.
The Bug: The Sydney Morning Herald.
Costello That’s what I said.
Below: The Resolve Political Monitor’s February survey.