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Turnbull's lead as preferred PM evaporates: Newspoll

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Malcolm Turnbull is only narrowly clinging to his preferred prime minister status following recent scandals that continue to disrupt the government, the latest Newspoll reveals.

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He is sitting on 37 per cent, just ahead of Opposition Leader Bill Shorten on 35 per cent, according to the poll published by The Australian today. The prime minister was 14 points ahead of Shorten at the start of February.

Satisfaction ratings of both men also fell, with Turnbull dropping two points to 32 per cent and Shorten down one to 33 per cent.

There was no change to the two-party preferred vote, which remains at 53 per cent to 47, with the Coalition behind Labor for the 28th consecutive Newspoll.

The Coalition’s primary vote rose one point to 37 per cent and Labor’s went up by the same margin to 38 per cent.

The poll follows former deputy PM Barnaby Joyce’s admission he doesn’t know if the baby his partner is carrying is his.

Having previously asked for privacy and an end to the scrutiny of his private life, Joyce said the baby’s paternity was “a grey area” and claimed no-one asked if it was his child, but he won’t be getting a paternity test.

“And can I say, even if it wasn’t, I wouldn’t care, I’d still go through this, I’d still love him,” he told Fairfax Media.

Joyce says he and Vikki Campion, his former media adviser, were not together during the time when she is estimated to have conceived.

– AAP

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