An eleventh hour poll has indicated that the Voice will be defeated with a majority of Australians, and a majority of states, set to vote against the proposal in a landmark referendum.
In the latest poll, conducted by Roy Morgan Research, respondents around Australia were asked: “This month’s referendum proposes a law to alter the Constitution to recognise the First Peoples of Australia by establishing an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice. At the referendum to be held on October 14, will you vote yes, no, or are you undecided?”
Of all respondents a majority of 51 per cent said they would vote No, or were leaning towards voting No.
Forty four per cent said they would vote Yes, or were leaning towards Yes.
A further five per cent said they were still undecided with just two days to go before heading to the polls.
A successful referendum requires not only a majority of people nationally but also a majority of people in a majority of states to pass.
Support for the referendum is highest in Victoria, with the State set to be the only one to vote Yes.
At the last Australian referendum in 1999, held to decide whether the nation should become a republic, Victoria was the state with the highest support for ditching the monarchy, with 49.8 per cent of Victorians voting Yes.
Meanwhile, Red Bridge polling puts support for the Voice at about 40 per cent.
“New South Wales and Victoria could go either way, but it’s really not that close. They’ve got the right demographic mix to sustain enough support,” director Kos Samaras said.
“Even Tasmania, which has been declared as in support of the Voice in some polls – that was a very small sample.
“On the flip side, Queensland and Western Australia are overwhelmingly No and there’s no coming back.”
When Prime Minister Anthony Albanese initially announced his intention to take the Voice to a referendum, polls indicated that about 60 per cent of the country supported the notion.
That figure quickly fell, with “patterns of eroding support emerging very early”, Mr Samaras said.
“Based on all polls we’ve seen, it will be hard for Yes to succeed,” he said.
“The regions will predominantly vote no,” he said.
“There will be significant support in wealthy inner-city electorates like Sydney, Brisbane, Kooyong and the like. That will drop off as you get into the suburbs. That will be the pattern of the vote.”
The Australian Electoral Commission at the weekend said some 2.2 million people have already cast their votes at pre-poll locations across the country.”
The Prime Minister has travelled to Uluru this week as part of his final push before Saturday’s vote.
“I came here when I became leader of the Labor Party and committed right here with Linda Burney to hold a referendum in our first term for a constitutionally enshrined Voice to our parliament, and that is what we are doing,” he said.
“I believe that Australia can rise to the occasion between now and October 14.”
Speaking in South Australia before he jetted off to central Australia, Mr Albanese reiterated his preparedness to walk away from the Voice as the Coalition questioned if his leadership could survive the defeat.
“I do hope that Australians accept this invitation from the First Australians on Saturday and in the lead-up because a no vote is a saying that what we have now is just good enough and we can just keep doing the same,” he said.
“There is no alternative on the table. This is the option that has been asked for, requested by First Nations people themselves, after a long process, most of which occurred under the former Coalition government.”
Opposition Leader Peter Dutton, who spent the day campaigning in South Australia, argued the Prime Minister’s decision to withhold detail about what Australians are voting for meant that referendum was doomed.
“Australians aren’t stupid and the Prime Minister is treating them as such because he thinks this thing gets through on the vibe but Australians are not silly,” he said.
The government has repeatedly stressed that details around how the Voice will operate would be worked through by politicians on both sides, should the referendum succeed.
Asked directly if the Yes had sacrificed “heart” over the detail, Mr Albanese defiantly told Sky News: “The detail’s there.”
“The detail’s there in the wording being put forward here,” he said.