Julia Gillard regains lead as preferred PM: Poll

Tony Abbott`s rating as preferred prime minister fell five points to 35 percent - the lowest in nine months.

Melbourne: Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard has overtaken opposition leader Tony Abbott as the nation`s preferred leader for the first time in six months, according to a new opinion poll.

Abbott`s rating as preferred prime minister fell five points to 35 percent - the lowest in nine months – as Gillard`s rose one point to 40 percent, her highest since July, according to the latest Newspoll survey.

Her Labor party`s primary vote has stood at back to 30 percent, recording an increase in support.

The coalition has jumped back to the election-winning lead it held before the round of global summits and state visits that have dominated Australian politics, the report said.

Voter satisfaction in regards to the way Prime Minister was doing her job in the past two weeks grew up since May-June, while the Opposition Leader`s approval as preferred prime minister dropped to its worst since March.

Since June, Abbott has trailed Gillard as preferred prime minister and Gillard has been out of the 30s since July for the first time.

Gillard`s personal support also rose, with voter satisfaction with her job rising from 30 to 34 percent and dissatisfaction falling from 60 to 55 percent in the past two weeks - a period that included three overseas trips and the visit of the US President.

It is the first time dissatisfaction with Gillard has been below 60 percent since August and her highest satisfaction rating since 35 percent in May.

Her net satisfaction rating - the difference between satisfaction and dissatisfaction - is now minus 21 percent, the same as Abbott`s.

Overall satisfaction with Abbott changed slightly, with satisfaction steady at 34 percent and dissatisfaction down from 57 to 55 percent.

Despite the gain in Gillard`s personal support and her lead over Abbott, support for the Coalition rose sharply and fell marginally for Labor.

Primary vote support for the Coalition rose four points to 48 percent in the past two weeks - the highest since the beginning of October - while Labor`s primary vote fell from a seven-month high of 32 percent to 30 percent.


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