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No Death Penalty for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran say 53% of Australians

Finding No. 6104 – This special snap SMS Morgan Poll was conducted with a representative cross-section of 1,277 Australians over the weekend of February 27 – March 1, 2015.

A snap SMS Morgan Poll over the weekend shows Australians’ views unchanged on the general question of whether the death penalty should be carried out for Australians convicted of drug trafficking overseas. A small majority of Australians (52%, unchanged since January 2015) say Australians convicted of drug trafficking in another country and sentenced to death should be executed while 48% (unchanged) don’t.

However on the specific question of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran the majority of Australians say no to their execution. When asked directly whether convicted Australian drug traffickers Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran should have the death penalty carried out 53% of Australians say the death penalty should not be carried out on Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran while 47% of Australians say it should.

Today’s special SMS Morgan Poll was conducted with a cross-section of 1,277 Australians over the last few days, February 27-March 1, 2015.

Gary Morgan, Executive Chairman, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“The majority (53%) of Australians do not support the death penalty for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran.

“However, on the more general question of ‘if an Australian is convicted of drug trafficking in another country and sentenced to death’, Australians remain unchanged in their view - a small majority (52%) say yes the penalty should be carried out.

“In the case of Bali 9 leaders Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran , Australians clearly recognise the complexities involved. Some 5% of Australians surveyed initially agreed  ‘if an Australian is convicted of drug trafficking in another country and sentenced to death the penalty should be carried out’  but when asked specifically about  Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran they said they should not be executed. The complicating factors include: 

      • Rehabilitation: the most common reason given among those who changed their view is  that they  believe the time already spent in prison ‘on death row’ in Indonesia, coupled with strong signs of rehabilitation, remorse and contribution to the community means that some leniency should be applied.

      • The fact that if the Australian Police had arrested the men here the death penalty would not be under consideration.
      • Bribery and corruption allegations among the judiciary in Indonesia. While there appears no doubt that the men were guilty, presumably the allegations of corruption raise questions about the consistency and equity with which the law including death penalties and legal penalties are carried out in Indonesia.
      • The importance of the Australian-Indonesian relationship is clear from the Government to Government engagement, and business to business engagement. At a human level, the application of the death penalty to the two men could be divisive – the decision to show leniency in this high profile case could provide a very real bond at a human level between the nations.

“It should be noted, the views reported here are those garnered from a nationwide survey of 1,277 Australians on February 27 – March 1, 2015.

“Roy Morgan, founder of Roy Morgan Research, when asked why he conducted public opinion polls, explained that he believed that the voice of the Australian people should be heard – that it was important to accurately measure and report the views of the people on issues of importance and not to allow journalists or politicians or anyone else to claim to speak for the people.

“Roy Morgan also explained, the ‘actual questions’ asked were critical – that they should not seek to set agendas but to reflect the issue in its most honest independent form – and wherever possible should be monitored over time so changing attitudes can be monitored.

“The question on death penalty for drug traffickers ‘In Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Singapore and some other countries, the penalty for drug trafficking is death.  If an Australian is convicted of trafficking drugs in another country and sentenced to death, in your opinion, should the penalty be carried out or not?’ has been asked since the 1980s.

"The new question ‘Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been convicted of drug trafficking by the Indonesian courts. Should the death penalty be carried out?’ is specifically designed to allow for any specifics of this particular situation. ie to allow Australians to record their views in general – which they have – (52% say the death penalty should be carried out for convicted drug traffickers), and then to give a potentially different view about this particular case: some 5% of Australians said in general the death penalty should be carried out – but not in the case of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran).  Overall, a majority 53% of Australians say Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran should not be executed.”

 

Detailed analysis

A nation-wide sample of 1,277 Australians on February 27 – March 1, 2015 were asked two questions:

Question 1: Death Penalty for Drug Trafficking?

Respondents were asked: “In your opinion if an Australian is convicted of drug trafficking in another country & sentenced to death, should the penalty be carried out? Y=Yes N=No”

Question 2: Follow-up question on Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran

Respondents answering yes were asked: “Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been convicted of drug trafficking by the Indonesian courts. Should the death penalty be carried out? Y=Yes N=No”


Death Penalty for convicted drug traffickers

Analysis by Voting Preference

Analysis by voting intention of  the results of the general question on the death penalty for drug trafficking overseas shows Liberal voters strongly in favour of executions being carried out (58% cf. 42%), as are National voters (61% cf. 39%), however both ALP voters (54% cf. 46%) and Greens voters (68% cf. 32%) are against the executions being carried out.

Analysis by Gender

Analysis by gender shows a gender split with men in favour of the death penalty and women against the death penalty:

  • Men: Favour executions being carried out (60%) cf. against executions being carried out (40%);
  • Women: Favour executions being carried out (46%) cf. against executions being carried out (54%).

Analysis by Age

Analysing by age shows Australians across all age groups are fairly evenly split on the issue:

  • 18-34yr olds: Favour executions being carried out (53%) cf. against executions being carried out (47%);
  • 35-49yr olds: Favour executions being carried out (57%) cf. against executions being carried out (43%);
  • 50-64yr olds: Favour executions being carried out (49%) cf. against executions being carried out (51%);
  • 65+yr olds: Favour executions being carried out (49%) cf. against executions being carried out (51%).

Analysis by State

Analysing by State shows all States except New South Wales – the home State of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran – in favour of the executions being carried out for Australians convicted of drug trafficking in another country:

  • Western Australia (61% in favour of executions being carried out cf. 39% against), Queensland (57% cf. 43%), South Australia (55% cf. 45%), Tasmania (52% cf. 48%), Victoria (51% cf. 49%) while those in New South Wales are slightly opposed (52% cf. 48% against).


Question 2: Follow-up question on Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran

Respondents answering yes were asked: “Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been convicted of drug trafficking by the Indonesian courts. Should the death penalty be carried out? Y=Yes N=No”

Analysis by Voting Preference

Analysing the results by voting preference shows Liberal supporters in favour of the death penalty being carried out for Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, (53% cf. 47%), as are National voters (56% cf. 44%), however both ALP voters (58% cf. 42%) and Greens voters (74% cf. 26%) believe the executions of these two men should not be carried out.

Analysis by Gender

Analysis by gender shows a split with a majority of men saying the executions of these two men should be carried out while a majority of women believe they should not be:

  • Men:  Death penalty should be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (54%) cf. Death penalty should not be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (46%);
  • Women:  Death penalty should be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (42%) cf. Death penalty should not be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (58%);

Analysis by Age

Analysing by age shows a Australians are divided on whether the death penalty should be carried out for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran:

  • 18-34yr olds: Death penalty should be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (50%) cf. Death penalty should not be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (50%);
  • 35-49yr olds: Death penalty should be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (52%) cf. Death penalty should not be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (48%);
  • 50-64yr olds: Death penalty should be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (43%) cf. Death penalty should not be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (57%);
  • 65+ yr olds: Death penalty should be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (46%) cf. Death penalty should not be carried out for Chan and Sukumaran (54%);

Analysis by State

Analysing by State shows the residents of Australian States are once again split on the question of whether the death penalty should be carried out for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran:

  • Western Australia (59% should be carried out cf. 41% should not be carried out), Queensland (53% cf. 47%), South Australia (53% cf. 47%), Victoria (46% cf. 54%), Tasmania (44% cf. 56%) and New South Wales (43% cf. 57%).


Finding No. 6104 – This special snap SMS Morgan Poll was conducted with a representative cross-section of 1,277 Australians over the weekend of February 27 – March 1, 2015.

Question 1: Death Penalty for Drug Trafficking?

Respondents were asked: “In your opinion if an Australian is convicted of drug trafficking in another country & sentenced to death, should the penalty be carried out? Y=Yes N=No”

On previous telephone polls respondents were asked:  “In Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Singapore and some other countries, the penalty for drug trafficking is death.  If an Australian is convicted of trafficking drugs in another country and sentenced to death, in your opinion, should the penalty be carried out or not?”*

All Australians 14+

Jan
‘86
Jul
‘86
Jul
‘87
Feb
‘89
Jun
‘90
May
‘92
May
‘93
Aug
‘95
Nov
‘05
Dec
‘05
Aug
‘09
Aug
‘09#

Jan
‘15#
Mar
‘15#

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Death Penalty
should be carried out

73

80

80

79

75

76

70

66

57

61

50

53

52

52

Death Penalty
should not be carried out

21

16

17

17

21

19

26

29

36

35

44

47

48

48

Can’t say

6

4

3

4

4

5

4

5

7

4

6

-

-

-

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

* This question initially referred to Malaysia only. Sri Lanka was added in 1989 and Indonesia and Singapore were added in 2005. #August 2009 results re-percentaged without ‘can’t say’. Can’t say was not offered as an option for this special SMS Morgan Poll conducted over the weekend with Australians aged 18+.

Voting Preference

Total

Electors

Liberal

National#

ALP

Greens

Other#

Can’t say#

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Death Penalty should be carried out

52

51

58

61

46

32

56

73

Death Penalty should not be carried out

48

49

42

39

54

68

44

27

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Small sample sizes (Under 100) should be treated with caution.

Age & Gender

Total

Gender

Age

Men

Women

18-34

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Death Penalty should be carried out

52

60

46

53

57

49

49

Death Penalty should not be carried out

48

40

54

47

43

51

51

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Small sample sizes (Under 100) should be treated with caution.

State

 

State

Total

NSW

VIC

QLD

WA

SA

TAS#

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Death Penalty should be carried out

52

48

51

57

61

55

52

Death Penalty should not be carried out

48

52

49

43

39

45

48

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Small sample sizes (Under 100) should be treated with caution.


Question 2: Follow-up question on Andrew Chan & Myuran Sukumaran:

Respondents answering yes were asked: “Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been convicted of drug trafficking by the Indonesian courts. Should the death penalty be carried out? Y=Yes N=No” 

Voting Preference

Re: Andrew Chan & Myuran Sukumaran

Total

Electors

Liberal

National#

ALP

Greens

Other#

Can’t say#

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Death Penalty should be carried out

47

47

53

56

42

26

52

70

Death Penalty should not be carried out

53

53

47

44

58

74

48

30

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Small sample sizes (Under 100) should be treated with caution.

Age & Gender

Re: Andrew Chan & Myuran Sukumaran

Total

Gender

Age

Men

Women

18-34

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Death Penalty should be carried out

47

54

42

50

52

43

46

Death Penalty should not be carried out

53

46

58

50

48

57

54

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Small sample sizes (Under 100) should be treated with caution.

State

Re: Andrew Chan & Myuran Sukumaran

Total

State

NSW

VIC

QLD

WA

SA

TAS#

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Death Penalty should be carried out

47

43

46

53

59

53

44

Death Penalty should not be carried out

53

57

54

47

41

47

56

Total

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Small sample sizes (Under 100) should be treated with caution.



For further information: 

Contact

Office

Mobile

Gary Morgan:     

+61 3 9224 5213  

+61 411 129 094

Michele Levine:       

+61 3 9224 5215  

+61 411 129 093


Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. The following table gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. The figures are approximate and for general guidance only, and assume a simple random sample. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

Percentage Estimate

40%-60%

25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%

1,000

±3.2

±2.7

±1.9

±1.4