Turnbull, Shorten in dead heat on election eve: polling

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten Rob Williams

VERY few Australians expect Opposition Leader Bill Shorten to actually win on Saturday, but half will still vote for Labor as their first or second choice, creating a likely dead heat according to new election eve polling.

The Fairfax-Ipsos poll figures suggest Labor is still within striking distance of victory, and a hung Parliament is a real risk.

The poll found 27% of voters would support the Greens, independents and cross-bench parties, as the two major parties continue to haemorrage support.

The numbers contradict a widely held view in the minds of the Coalition that it has this election in the bag.

Fairfax reports the results show Labor and the Coalition sitting 50-50 based on first preferences, but when specifically asked where their second vote would go, Labor snuck ahead.

If this 4.5% swing was repeated across the country on Saturday, Shorten and the ALP would have the power to form government.

The high number of voters backing the parties other than Labor or the Coalition could likely deliver the government -- whatever colour it is -- another "feral" Senate as former PM Tony Abbott described the crop after the 2013 election.

Topics:  bill shorten editors picks federal election 2016 malcolm turnbull

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