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MaltaToday survey | Labour opens 14-point lead

The past two weeks of electoral campaigning has seen the PL widening its lead over the PN from 11 points two weeks ago to 14 points now.

james
James Debono
28 January 2013, 12:00am
Joseph Muscat (right) enjoys a 13 point advantage over Lawrence Gonzi in trust ratings.
Joseph Muscat (right) enjoys a 13 point advantage over Lawrence Gonzi in trust ratings.


FULL DATA

In a survey held among 650 respondents between Monday and Wednesday, both major parties have seen an increase in their support, but while Labour gained 6.2 points, the PN only gained 3.5 points.

The Greens have also seen a slight increase in support from 1.5% to 1.7%.

Labour now enjoys its strongest lead since March - on the eve of local elections - when the party also led by 14 points.

Joseph Muscat also enjoys the highest trust rating in MaltaToday's surveys carried out over the past year.

Labour now enjoys a bigger lead than it enjoyed in October when it led by 12 points. The gap had been narrowed by 4 points following the budget and the election of Simon Busuttil as PN deputy leader. This is an indication that the PN's recovery has been thwarted by the PL's tempestuous electoral campaign which left the PN in reactive mode.

The survey was held before the presentation of the PN's electoral programme.

But while the PL has increased its lead over the PN the swing of voters from the PN to the PL has decreased from 10 to 7 points.

This suggests that in the past two weeks the PN has consolidated its position among its own former voters.  But while Labour is benefitting from a smaller swing from the PN, it has increased its share among new voters and respondents who had not voted in the 2008 election.

But even if both parties recover all their former voters in 2008 who are presently non committed, the PN would still be 6 points behind Labour.

Support for the Greens has increased slightly over the past two weeks while the percentage of people who intend not voting has dropped to the lowest mark in the past year - 2.3%. The percentage of undecided has decreased by 10 points.

Younger voters shifting to PL

In this survey, the PN has seen its gains among younger voters registered in the previous survey evaporate as the PL had a 15-point surge in support among 18- to 34-year-olds. On the other hand, the PN has lost 4 points in this category. This is a clear indication that undecided younger voters are shifting towards Labour.

AD now enjoys the support of 4.6% of younger voters - an increase of 1.6% over the last survey.

But while the PN lost ground among younger voters, it has consolidated its position among middle-aged voters. In fact, among those aged between 35 and 54, support for the PN has increased by 4 points while the PL has lost 1 point.

Both parties have increased the level of support among over 55-year-olds by the same level. 

PN decreases haemorrhage

Although the gap between the two parties has increased, the PN is losing less votes to Labour from its 2008 base of voters.

The survey shows the PN losing 8.9% of its 2008 voters to Labour, down from 11.3% in the latest survey. The percentage of PL voters in 2008 now shifting to the PN has increased slightly from 1.5% to 2%.

This means the net swing between the two major parties is equivalent to 6.9% down from 9.8% last month.

But the survey sees the PN losing more to the Greens than last month, up from 1% to 1.6%.

The survey sees the PN retaining the highest share of its 2008 voters in the past year. Over the past two weeks, the percentage of voters retained by the PN has increased from 70% to 73%. 

The survey shows the PL retaining 92% of its voters-the same amount as last month. 

The survey suggests that over the past two weeks, the PN has consolidated its voting base while Labour has strengthened its appeal among new voters and respondents who did not vote in the 2008 election.

In fact, this survey shows Labour gaining a majority among both new voters and non-voters in the previous elections, thus neutralising the PN's recovery among its own former voters.

The survey suggests a higher turnout in the next election, with 46% of those who did not vote in 2008 already decided on which party to vote for. But while only 10% of this category opt for the PN, 32% are opting for Labour and 4% opt for the Greens.

In this survey, AD retains 50% of its 2008 vote, losing 22% of its voters in 2008 to the PL. 28% of AD's former voters are still undecided.  But AD compensates for these losses by making inroads among non-voters, new voters and former PN voters. In fact, the survey shows AD improving on its 2008 performance.

Muscat enjoys highest trust rating

Both Lawrence Gonzi and Joseph Muscat have seen their trust rating increasing by 2.4 points and 4.8 points respectively. The gains made by both leaders corresponds to a drop in the percentage of those who trust neither leader, or who are undecided.

With a trust rating of 46%, Muscat enjoys his highest trust rating in the past year. This suggests that the highly personalised PL campaign which projects Muscat as a leader of a wider, informal movement is paying off.   It also suggests that the PL has turned the tables on its adversaries by conducting a campaign reminiscent of the 'GonziPN' campaign in 2008.  In fact, while back in 2008 it was the PN which morphed itself in its leader's image, it is now the PL which is doing this, banking on Muscat's high trust rating and his ability to appeal to former PN voters.

Both leaders remain slightly more popular than their own parties but less than in previous months, when the two leaders were substantially more popular than their party.



Methodology

The survey was held between Monday 21 January and Wednesday 23 January. A total of 891 respondents were randomly chosen from telephone directories and contacted by telephone. Of these 650 accepted to be interviewed.  Results were weighed to reflect the age and sex balance of population. The survey has a margin of error of +/-4%.

 
james
James Debono is MaltaToday's chief reporter on environment, planning and land use issues, ...
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Jonathan Tabone
It would be interesting to make a poll in the 5th district in order to see whether the PN is losing votes in Franco Debono's district.
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Manuel Scicluna
It appears that the corruption within the GonziPN tribe is catching the attention of more and more of the voting population. We HAVE to get them out of office.
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Joseph Saliba
Meta rajt u smajt lil IM. Beck dal ghodu fuq pbs net, bdejt nifhem aktar ghala il PL qieghed daqshekk min fuq fis-surveys. X'arroganza.
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COME ON JOE LETS RECYCLE ALL THIS PN RUBBISH INTO A BREATH OF FRESH AIR.
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COME ON JOE LETS RECYCLE ALL THIS PN RUBBISH INTO A BREATH OF FRESH AIR.
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emanuel cauchi
@gborgos7 - Dik il-Final Countdown? :)
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MaltaCross
@Eitor: It would have been nicer to have a bar chart to represent this data!
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Monique Vella
Tick tock. Tick tock. Tick tock. Tick tock....