Support for Pauline Hanson’s far-right One Nation Party has risen tenfold since the 2013 election, where the party won 1.3% of the overall vote.
The latest opinion poll by Essential estimates that if an election were held in Australia today that support would increase to 10%.
The party has been ever-increasing its support base since a September 2016 poll found that a ban on Muslim immigration into the country was favoured by nearly half the electorate.
Support for such a ban was favoured by 60% of Coalition voters, 40% of Labor voters and a surprisingly high 34% among Green voters. That equated to about 49% of voters overall, with 40% expressing opposition to a ban.
One Nation is the only party calling for something like a blanket man on Muslims. Last year then-candidate for America’s Republicans, Donald Trump, called for a “total and complete shut down on Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what the hell is going on”.
On One Nation’s website the party states, in similar terms that it will “Stop further Muslim immigration and the intake of Muslim refugees until we can assure the safety of Australians”.
As part of making Australians safer for any perceived Muslim threat, a One Nation government would install surveillance cameras in all Mosques and Muslim schools. Furthermore, it Is party policy to hold a royal commission into Islam.
The Essential poll was taken between the 9th and 12th of February and polled voters across all states. Support for the governing Liberal-National coalition rose to 36% (up 1), Labor fell to 35% (down 2), the Greens fell 1 point to 9% and One Nation rose 1 to 10%.
It is only the second time since the election last year that One Nation has pulled ahead of the Greens. In January a ReachTEL poll found the Greens trailing their minor party rivals by 0.8 points.
On a two party preferred basis, Labor leads the Coalition by 52% to 48%. National approval for Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is at 34% while his rival Bill Shorten is on 30%. In the better Prime Minister stakes, Turnbull bests Shorten by 39% to 25%.
Meanwhile, the poll also found 14% of voters were “likely” to support the new Australian Conservatives.
– Bennett Morgan, Capital HardTalk.