Port Macquarie builder Anthony Shipway with wife Kodie and children Sonny and Lewis. Picture: Nathan Edwards Source: The Daily Telegraph
JULIA Gillard’s carbon tax budget bribe has backfired spectacularly, with the majority of voters believing they will be worse off despite thousands of dollars a year in extra handouts and tax cuts.
In a sign the PM’s hold on the leadership could again be put to the test, a third of voters said they would be now less likely to vote Labor because of the budget.
Already suffering from record polling lows, the Gillard government appears to have failed in its bid to woo back low and middle-income families with its $5 billion cost of living handout.
Almost two thirds of all voters believe the government has not done enough to offset the cost of the carbon tax, despite up to $600 a year in extra cash payments on top of the carbon compensation package and tax cuts, to help struggling families.
An exclusive post-budget Galaxy poll commissioned by The Daily Telegraph has revealed almost half of all households on less than $40,000 a year expected to be worse off.
This is despite exclusive Treasury modelling revealing the average family on between $40,000 and $60,000 a year will be up to $5000 a year better off as a result of the family tax payment increases, tax cuts, schoolkids bonus and carbon compensation.
More than half of middle- to high-income earners – 53 per cent of those earning more than $90,000 a year – believed they would be hit hard by the budget, bearing the brunt of the redistribution to help lower income families.
But Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has also been delivered a warning from voters. They have even less faith in his economic credentials than they do the government’s.Only 29 per cent of people polled believed the Coalition would have delivered a better budget. Despite governments rarely getting a poll “bounce” from the delivery of a budget, some MPs said they were shocked that it had been received so poorly.
A senior Labor source warned last night the PM now faced a critical few weeks.
“The real test is that if you are throwing that much money at people and you don’t get a bounce, then you realise they have just stopped listening,” the source said.
The poll revealed 46 per cent of people expected to be worse off. Only 37 per cent of Labor voters believed they had done well from the budget.
And in a blow to Treasurer Wayne Swan, 80 per cent of those polled did not believe his claim he would be able to deliver a $1.5 billion surplus.
Rather than shore up support among those Labor regards as its blue-collar base, the “class-war” budget appears likely to lose the government even more votes.
While 11 per cent of those polled said they would be more likely to vote Labor because of it, 33 per cent said they would be less likely to.
According to Galaxy CEO David Briggs, this represented a net voting loss of 22 per cent, which the government could not afford with its primary vote already at rock bottom levels below 30 per cent.
He said that the real concern for Labor was the mood in the low to middle-income households – those the budget was designed to help.
“The majority of voters do not believe the government has done enough in the budget to offset the likely price increases that will occur after the carbon tax has been introduced,” he said.
Tradie Anthony Shipway believes Labor has to do a lot more if it has any hope of getting his vote.
The self-employed builder works up to 12 hours a day, seven days a week to build a better life for his family.
“Traditionally Labor is a blue-collar working party, well they have lost touch with who they represent, I don’t feel represented,” Mr Shipway, from Port Macquarie, said.