Younger Australians are less willing to fight in “unnecessary” wars

April 24, 2024, 3:27 AM GMT+0

YouGov has released new public data with insight into what Australians think the most important lesson to draw from ANZAC Day is.

This poll has found that younger age groups have a larger amount of scepticism towards Australia’s participation in wars not necessary for the direct defence of Australia.

Under the age of 50, more Australians agreed that the most important lesson to draw from ANZAC Day is “We should be sceptical of politicians who want to commit troops to wars not necessary to the direct defence of Australia.”

However, Australians over 50 were more inclined to agree that “Australians have died for Australia, and we should also be prepared to fight for our country’s values if called upon.”

Australians aged 25-34 were the most sceptical of “unnecessary” wars (50% versus 34% who thought we should be prepared to fight). A sentiment that was similarly held by 18-24s (44% versus 34%).

35-49s were also more sceptical (47% versus 42%).

However, 50–64-year-olds favoured being prepared to fight for their country’s values (49% versus 40% who were sceptical). This was felt even more so by those over 65 years (60% versus 34%).

Overall Australians were evenly divided with 46% prepared to fight versus 42% who expressed their scepticism of wars unnecessary for the direct defence of Australia.12% were undecided.

Paul Smith, Director of Public Affairs and Public Data, said, “There is a notable age split for what Australians believe Anzac Day’s most important lesson for today is.

“Younger Australians, the demographic that is military age, are the most sceptical being involved in unnecessary wars. However, older Australians are more likely to say we should be prepared to fight for our country’s values if called upon.”

This poll also measured voter intention.

YouGov’s latest public data insights indicate that if an election were held tomorrow, the Labor Party would receive 52% of the two-party preferred vote, an increase of 1%.

For the first time in three months, Labor’s primary vote has risen by 1% to 33%, while the Greens remain unchanged at 13%.

The Coalition’s primary vote has fallen 2% to 36%, and Pauline Hansen’s One Nation Party has risen 1% to 8%.

Paul Smith, Director of Public Affairs and Public Data, said,” Our poll shows that Labor, the Coalition, and the Greens at virtually the same primary vote as at the last Federal election.

“If preferences flowed the same as the 2022 Federal election in an election were held tomorrow then the result would be similar to the 2022 outcome of 52-48 to Labor.”

Methodology: This survey was conducted between 19 and 23 April with a sample of 1514. Results are weighted to be representative of the population by age, gender, education, AEC region, household income, weighting by past vote (Federal vote and Voice referendum), with an effective margin of error of 3.2%. See Australian Polling Council methodology statement for full weightings.

YouGov correctly predicted the result of the recent referendum at 40% Yes, 60% No, and is a founding member of the Australian Polling Council, as well as a global leader in polling research. We are the only polling company to have polled our entire panel of survey participants to ensure our polls are representative of how Australians vote in the Voice referendum.

For further information or comment contact Paul Smith, Director of Government or Amir Daftari, Director of Polling