Pollster Roy Morgan surveys showed Australians’ levels of distrust in the government and its services far exceeded the level of trust and were now at record levels.
It follows a clutch of scandals enveloping the government including those involving former Attorney General Christian Porter, Queensland MP Andrew Laming , Education Minister Alan Tudge and the handling of the alleged sexual assault of Brittany Higgins.
Roy Morgan said there was a clear increase in trust levels during the early stages of the pandemic but it peaked at the end of 2020 before the Higgins scandal broke.
“The sexual assault allegations surrounding the Morrison Government have lingered over the past year from June 2021 the emergence of the Delta variant laid bare the Government’s lack of preparedness for another outbreak of Covid-19,” Roy Morgan found.
“The extended lockdowns in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra in the second half of 2021, along with the failure to procure enough vaccines and rapid antigen tests later in the year when the Omicron variant emerged have seen distrust levels in the government increase to record levels.”
Roy Morgan chief executive Michelle Levine said levels of distrust had been high during the Rudd-Gillard years and that had continued under the governments of Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull and even the early term of Scott Morrison.
However, after his re-election the public was prepared to show some faith in Morrison, all of which evaporated after the 2019 bushfires, the end of JobKeeper, the sex scandals and the handling of the pandemic.
Consumer confidence has also plunged and was now at its lowest level since September 2020 and the second wave of Covid-19 in Victoria as concerns about inflation rose, according to the Roy Morgan-ANZ survey.
“The continued rapid increase in petrol prices saw inflation expectations rise to 6 per cent,” ANZ’s head of Australian economics David Plank said.
Concerns about “current economic conditions” were also highlighted in the survey and have declined for five consecutive weeks.
Plank said petrol costs had a sharp impact on confidence, however the lack of confidence was at odds with the strong labour market.
He said the mood was a reflection of pressure household budgets were under because of the lack of wage growth.
Jump to next article