IR laws swung votes in marginal seats: exit poll

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IR laws swung votes in marginal seats: exit poll

A union exit poll has shown that there is concern over WorkChoices — indicating that the Federal industrial relations laws and threatened public service job cuts were decisive factors in Labor's re-election in NSW on Saturday.

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A union exit poll has shown that there is concern over WorkChoices - indicating that the Federal industrial relations laws and threatened public service job cuts were decisive factors in Labor's re-election in NSW on Saturday.

Unions NSW Secretary, John Roberson, said the polling of 1,529 voters in nine marginal seats found the Coalition plans to hand IR powers to Canberra was the decisive factor for 27% of Labor voters, with a further 35% saying it was a significant factor. The Coalition plan to cut 20,000 public sector jobs was the decisive factor for 24% of Labor voters and significant for a further 38%.

Robertson said the results sent a message to both the Federal and State Governments.

'For the Howard Government, this result shows the depth of feeling around industrial relations, and the way they are affecting working people everywhere,' he said.

'Ignore this at your peril'

'The Howard Government will ignore these results at their own peril — the public has the PM in their sights over IR, and they are now waiting to send him the message directly.

'For the Iemma Government the message is that the public has placed their trust in the ALP to maintain public services — and that means that job cuts in the public sector cannot be on the agenda.

'This may not be good news for elements of the State Government, but any move to attack the public sector by Labor would be the ultimate betrayal of public trust.'

About the poll

Essential Research rang 1,529 voters in the following seats: Tweed, Monaro, Penrith, Port Stephens, Gosford, Camden, Menai, Miranda and The Entrance. The questions were asked of the 774 voters who voted for or allocated their preferences to Labor.

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