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Saturday, September 24 2022

Can still win election despite trailing in polls: Aus PM

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Canberra: Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday declared he can still win the May 21 federal election despite trailing in the polls.

Morrison said that opinion polls that show his Coalition set for defeat in the election are not necessarily conclusive, with many voters yet to make up their mind, reports Xinhua news agency.

According to the polls, the opposition Labor Party is likely to win up to 80 out of 151 seats in the lower house of Parliament — the House of Representatives — and form the government for the first time since 2013.

“People have not made up their mind and they’re looking to determine what is going to drive their choice,” Morrison was quoted by the Australian Financial Review (AFR) on Friday.

“And at the end of the day, that is going to come down to who they think has got the credibility to be able to deal with these pressures.”

Friday marked day 26 out of 41 of the election campaign and the end of a week dominated by cost of living issues.

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) recently increased the official cash rate by 25 basis points to 0.35 per cent.

It was the first rate rise in about 11 years and has been regarded as a blow to Morrison’s campaign, which has been largely focused on the Coalition’s economic record.

A survey published by the Australian National University (ANU) on Friday found that reducing cost of living tops voters’ list of concerns leading up to the election.

Of more than 3,500 participants, 64.7 per cent identified the high cost of living as an issue that needs to be “urgently addressed”.

It found that cost of living transcended the political divide, with more than 60 per cent of supporters of both major parties choosing it as major issues.

It also found the second highest priority was fixing the aged care system, with 60.1 per cent of voters highlighting this as a key issue.

The economy, reducing the cost of healthcare and addressing climate change also rated highly as concerns.

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