Coalition crisis as NSW heads for hung parliament.
Coalition crisis as NSW heads for hung parliament.

Gladys facing a poll axing

SUPPORT has collapsed for Premier Gladys Berejiklian's government, with NSW facing the prospect of a hung parliament in a poll result that will send shockwaves through the state Coalition.

An exclusive YouGov Galaxy poll conducted for The Saturday Telegraph shows new Labor leader Michael Daley's party leading the government 52 per cent to 48 on a two party preferred basis.

Coogee’s Claire Rivera, pictured with husband Christopher and son Rafael, says voters are turning away fro the Coalition. Picture: Dylan Robinson
Coogee’s Claire Rivera, pictured with husband Christopher and son Rafael, says voters are turning away fro the Coalition. Picture: Dylan Robinson


If the poll swing was repeated uniformly across NSW, the results would see the Liberal/Nationals fail to secure a third term of government outright on March 23 when the state goes to the polls.

The Telegraph results come just days after Ms Berejiklian sought to position herself as "the underdog" on the back of the Victorian wipe-out of the Liberal Party last Saturday.

Today's poll of 903 voters across the state shows primary support for the NSW Coalition has dropped more than eight percentage points since the last election to lie at just 37 per cent. Meanwhile support for Labor has climbed almost five points to 39 per cent.

And Ms Berejiklian only narrowly edges out Mr Daley as the better premier, 33 per cent to 31 per cent.

The Labor surge comes despite the party only weeks ago losing long-term leader Luke Foley in disgrace amid allegations he put his hand inside an ABC reporter's underpants. The government ­believed the scandal would hurt the Opposition, but today's results show it is strongly in the hunt to win the election, particularly if Mr Daley can continue building momentum­.

One Nation is also making a surge in the state, taking 8 per cent of the vote, just weeks after Mark Latham was announced as NSW leader of the minor party.

Today's results, if repeated across the state in the election, would see Labor win six seats from the government, resulting in a hung parliament.

It highlights how Liberal chaos at a federal level has clearly played a factor in eroding support for the Berejiklian government.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and her party could be in for a tough time at the state election. Picture: Sam Ruttyn
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and her party could be in for a tough time at the state election. Picture: Sam Ruttyn

The poll shows 33 per cent of voters say the performance of the Coalition in federal parliament makes them less likely to vote for the state government. Just 20 per cent of NSW voters say the federal performance makes them more likely to vote for the state government.

The parties are almost neck and neck when asked who offers a more stable government - 38 per cent say Ms Berejiklian and the Coalition, 37 per cent say Mr Daley and Labor.

It caps a bruising few months for the state government. The Liberal Party received a battering in the Wagga Wagga by-election in September, losing a decades-safe seat with a crushing 22 per cent swing. It largely blamed the result on federal and hyper-local factors, but the Telegraph's ­research indicates there is likely to be a smaller swing carried right across the state.

If today's results were carried on March 23, the Liberals would lose the seats of East Hills and Coogee, while the Nationals would lose Lismore, Upper Hunter, Monaro and Tweed.

The government has battled a series of bungles and instability in the months since Wagga. This included the humiliating stoush between two ministers over who got what seat when Treasurer ­Dominic Perrottet complained he had to drive too far to get to work.

New NSW Opposition Leader Michael Daley is building momentum for Labor. Picture: Chris Pavlich
New NSW Opposition Leader Michael Daley is building momentum for Labor. Picture: Chris Pavlich

Sara Wakar, from Bankstown in the state's most marginal electorate of East Hills, told The Saturday Telegraph she would be voting Labor in March as the cost of living had become a key issue.

"The Liberals are for wealthy people," Ms Wakar said.

In Coogee, another seat that would change hands under today's poll, mother-of-two Claire Rivera said voters in the electorate had shifted from backing conservative policies to wanting movement on climate issues.

"Coogee is a beautiful place and brings tourism and it runs very smoothly so what we want to see is more movement towards recycling and sustainability initiatives," Ms Rivera said.

The poll for The Saturday Telegraph was conducted on November 29 and 30, distributed through the state.