Australia PM poll boost after sexism speech
SYDNEY, Australia - Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard's popularity has surged following her aggressive speech calling the opposition leader a misogynist and a sexist, a poll showed Monday, October 22.
In the latest Fairfax-Nielsen poll, Gillard has a 10-point margin as preferred leader over the man she savaged, Tony Abbott, in a speech that went viral and won praise around the world.
Gillard, the nation's first woman leader, is now seen as as preferred prime minister by 50 percent of voters, up three points, while Abbott has slipped four points to 40 percent. It is her biggest lead in 20 months.
While Gillard's personal popularity has jumped, her ruling Labor party continues to lag the opposition in the two-party vote by 48 percent to 52 percent, according to the poll conducted a week after Abbott's dressing down.
Elections are due in Australia next year.
A fired-up Gillard accused Abbott of hypocrisy this month, saying she had been offended by many of his remarks over the years and she would not be "lectured about sexism and misogyny by this man".
"I've had enough, Australian women have had enough. When I see sexism and misogyny I'm going to call them for what they are," she said.
Her speech prompted a leading dictionary last week to broaden its definition of the word misogyny as debate raged about whether Abbott really had a pathological hatred of women, which is the current basic definition.
Macquarie Dictionary editor Sue Butler said it would now include "entrenched prejudice against women" because usage of the word no longer refers just to a hatred of women. - Agence France-Presse