Sagging support for the Voice has not dampened the optimism of leading ‘Yes’ campaigner Thomas Mayo who insists the referendum will be passed.
The latest Newspoll, released yesterday, showed only 41 per cent of voters now favoured changing the constitution to create a raced-based Voice to Parliament. This was down from 46 per cent in May.
Those opposed to the Voice increased by one point to 48 per cent, while 11 per cent of voters said he were still undecided.
But Mr Mayo insisted the ‘Yes’ campaign were not paying attention to the polls.
“I’m not worried about the trend because I know polls will go up and down,” he told Sky News Australia.
“We’ve got quite a way to go in this campaign, there’s still a lot of opportunities to reach Australians… We are working hard on that.
“I’m confident that when Australians have the information before them, they are going to vote Yes.”
The Newspoll also revealed that women were now more likely to oppose the Voice than men, with 49 per cent indicating they will vote No.
As well, support for the Voice in regional Australia had fallen through the floor. Just 31 per cent of regional Australians said they would vote Yes at the referendum.
But Mr Mayo told Sky News that Australians were “demanding” the Voice be created.
“I think if you really listen to people, there is one thing that is absolutely consistent,” he said.
“And that is simply about recognising over 60,000 years of continuous culture and heritage as part of who we are as Australians.
“And also to do it in a practical way that helps Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to resolve the issues around housing, around health and education and employment.”
He said Aboriginal people had “been ignored for too long”.
“And that’s why we have a life expectancy gap of around eight years, why we have such terribly high suicide rates among our youth.
“These aren’t choices of us as Indigenous people ourselves. It’s a result of trauma and poor policy over a long period of time.
“And a Voice is absolutely vital to that.”