Carrum – Victoria 2018

ALP 0.7%

Incumbent MP
Sonya Kilkenny, since 2014.

South-eastern Melbourne. Carrum covers the suburbs of Seaford, Skye, Carrum Downs, Bonbeach, Carrum and Patterson Lakes. Most of the electorate lives in the Frankston and Kingston council areas, and a small part of the Greater Dandenong council area.

Carrum was first created for the 1976 election. It has been won by the ALP at every election except for the 1996 election, when it was won by the Liberal Party.

Carrum was first won in 1976 by the ALP’s Ian Cathie, who had previously been a member of the Legislative Council for South East Province from 1964 to 1970. Cathie served as a minister in the Labor state government from 1982 until his retirement at the 1988 election.

Cathie was succeeded in 1988 by Mal Sandon. He had previously been an MLC representing Chelsea Province from 1982 until earlier in 1988. He served as a minister in the state government from 1990 until 1992. Sandon lost his seat in 1996 to the Liberal Party’s David Lean.

Lean held the seat for one term, losing in 1999 to the ALP’s Jenny Lindell.

Lindell was re-elected in 2002 and 2006, and was elected Speaker of the Legislative Assembly in 2006.

Lindell was defeated in 2010 by Liberal candidate Donna Bauer. Bauer only held Carrum for one term, losing in 2014 to Labor candidate Sonya Kilkenny.


Carrum is a very marginal Labor seat. While Labor should benefit from incumbency, the return of the former sitting member may blunt this effect.

2014 result

Donna Bauer Liberal 17,80245.2+1.6
Sonya Kilkenny Labor 16,64542.2+2.0
Henry Kelsall Greens 2,9897.6-1.6
Richard VernayFamily First1,2813.2+0.6
Margaret QuinnRise Up Australia7081.8+1.8

2014 two-party-preferred result

Sonya Kilkenny Labor 19,99850.7+1.0
Donna Bauer Liberal 19,42749.3-1.0

Booth breakdown

Booths in Carrum have been divided into three areas: East, West and North-West. The ‘East’ area mostly covers Carrum Downs, while West and North-West cover areas closer to the Bay.

Labor won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in two out of three areas, polling 55.2% in the east and 57.5% in the south-west. The Liberal Party polled 54% in the north-west.

Voter groupALP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Other votes48.18,16920.7

Two-party-preferred votes in Carrum at the 2014 Victorian state election

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  1. Like Frankston, in Carrum the pre-2014 redistribution appears to* have made all the difference between Labor winning and losing. In both cases the changes had a certain poetic logic: Frankston North into Frankston; Carrum Downs into Carrum.

    * I say “appears to” because the swing was bigger in neighbouring Mordialloc, where the rest of the old Carrum went.

  2. I think the Liberals will win Carrum back this time.

    Labor have thrown big dollars into this seat, to keep the incumbent MP in, but I think the popularity of the Liberal candidate will be enough to see her return to Parliament.

  3. This area seemed to have moved towards the Liberals in recent decades. Labor held it even in the landslide loss of 1992, and only narrowly lost it in another large defeat in 1996. Yet in 2010 and 2014, the seat has basically mirrored the overall statewide result.

    I think it will continue the pattern in 2018 and go with whichever side forms government.

  4. Patterson Lakes, the big 62 is strongly Liberal, and with Donna Bauer, the Liberal candidate, a Patterson Lakes local, expect that much or more again.
    With the redistribution, a lot of the old Carrum went into Mordialloc, so she probably doesn’t really have as big a profile as if she had been the member for 4 years.

    It could verge on how strongly Seaford swings Liberal, with most of Carrum Downs probably staying Labor.

  5. Given that the Greens vote in Carrum is integral to Labor, is it significant that the Greens haven’t announced a candidate yet? I’m assuming the Greens will eventually, but the election is now less than a month away.

    A possible reason for this is because it’s not an inner-city or ‘winnable’ seat – although they have announced candidates in safe liberal territories such as Kew and Hawthorn.

    By delay or design? Either way, do people think this could indirectly hurt Labor or is this standard election practice for a minor party in a seat like this?

  6. It’s quite wrong to say the Greens vote is “integral” to Labor. In a seat like Carrum, the effect of the Greens is zero sum; what’s taken in primary vote is returned in preferences.

    Besides, it probably doesn’t matter much who the candidate is or how vigorous their campaigning.

  7. I think the ALP will hold Carrum, it strikes me as the sort of seat that will only go Liberal when they are winning government and I just don’t get the vibe that there will be a change of government at this stage.

  8. If any Labor seat is to fall to the Liberals it will be this one, though at this stage I don’t know if the Liberals will win any seats off Labor. This one is probably about 50-50.

  9. Daniel Andrews and Lily D’Ambrosio at the Seaford Wetlands today with Kilkenny, announcing more money for parks etc. Obviously a sign that they know they need to hold this seat (and Frankston).

    As my local seat, I feel like Sonya Kilkenny will hold it. Patto will stay Libs, Carrum Downs and the rest will stay Labor. In the suburb of Carrum itself it might depend how much of the anti-skyrail noise was legit and how much was astroturfing. TBH, a lot of people actually sound pretty positive about the Carrum shopping area redevelopment that will happen with the station. Quite a lot of front yards in Carrum with Sonya Kilkenny signs up – and she’s been very present at the markets and local events, with local schools, sports clubs etc. Haven’t seen Donna Bauer on the street at all yet.

    I don’t think Seaford will swing to Libs – the area has grown with a lot of young families recently, and on the beach side is starting to get a bit hipster even.

  10. I feel the active presence of the current Carrum MP has been very little up until a few months ago. Whilst her office is in Carrum I never see her unless it is for a Government announcement or activity. Seldom do I see her out in the community to simply ask “Whats going on” without an agenda to back in a Government action or upcoming plan
    I want open and transparency in Government and I think this will be a tipping point in the Carrum outcome

  11. My prediction: The best chance for a Liberal gain off Labor in my opinion – former MP Donna Bauer is back on the trail and is making this competitive. Won’t be surprised if Labor win overall but this turns blue.

  12. No way, This is in Dunkley with Crewther being referred to high court, And the fed gov being unpopular this stays Labor

  13. Even living here, I can’t pick this one.

    I will say though, that I have still seen Donna Bauer zero times in public (at least not since last time she was the local member). Whereas I see Sonya Kilkenny pretty often – at local schools, community markets etc, out the front of the supermarket in Patterson Lakes. I don’t know if that reflects on the two of them, or just that Sonya is targetting the kind of locations that I am often at with my family, whereas Bauer is hanging out elsewhere. Kilkenny is constantly visiting schools, there are a huge number of young families in Seaford as of about 5 years ago.

    All that said though, my gut feeling is same as Anton’s above. It could well be a tight race, and go Lib even if Labor. The variables are things like how much the Carrum skyrail pisses people off. AFAIK the independent Tellesson is also using keeping Eel Race Rd open as a key issue.

  14. Put it this way, a few weeks ago I was more confident of Kilkenny holding. Now I’m not so sure. It’ll be a tight race either way.

    In my previous comment, the second sentence in the last paragraph should read “even if Labor win government”.

  15. Expat – I’m feeling exactly the same here in Bentleigh. A couple of things….the Donkey vote is with the Libs this time, the DLP is standing, older Australians talking about dividend imputation, people refusing to take ALP flyers. It’s just so like 2010, with the break going the libs way…..and you never really get a sense until the last week

    We’ll see but I’m being to think Bentleigh may be a lib gain as well.

  16. Why are you predicting a hung Parliament? Have you seen the latest poll? 56-44 to the gov in a statewide poll. 54-46 in another one, if you saying this and bentleigb falls your basically saying its a likely Hung Parliament, i highly doubt it i say 1/100 chance that Labor doesn’t get a majority even sportsbet disagrees on the seat diff 11 seats or more dif has the cheapest price, Labor is likely to gain seats according to sportsbet. I am very confident Labor will gain 3-5 seats and an upset is coming that may shock you. I do agree the greens gain 1 seat, But labor holds all theirs and gains a few, They might crack 50 seats

  17. I know, my head tells me labor will win comfortably but I have this perverted feeling that the libs may do better than many expect here.

    In all honesty, Bentleigh shouldn’t even be a contest, the Liberal candidate is a fraud and hasn’t got a clue, though if Lobo the independent preferences Judah and the greens preference labor, that should make things even out.

    Do nothing Donna is a disgrace, I can’t stand her she too is full of it and is a fraud. Fake twitter followers, fake supporters, blocks anyone on social media for questioning her.

  18. @Sandbelter

    With regard to it feeling like 2010 – I’d rate that as different, as there was still the last poll then saying it was 51-49 to the Libs during the final week.

    This time around we’ve been totally in the dark. Notably, we’ve seen seat polling for Bentleigh (Lab going ok) and Mordy/Franga (Lab in a tight one) but Carrum is an obvious omission. Last seat poll here was months and months back, and had it as a dead heat (my wife got robopolled for it).

    It’s a weirdly mixed seat. Multi-million dollar cub mansions on the water in Patto, gentrifying hipster zones along beachside Carrum and Seaford, migrants and working class in Carrum Downs. Too diverse to easily gauge at a glace.

  19. Libs have always said they’re polling best in Bentleigh and Carrum. Carrum has another 4000 voters since 2014 mostly in the newer estates in Carrum Downs. On past voting trends, I’d expect a 55% ALP/45% lib voting split, Also Carrum at 42% has the highest ALP primary of the sandbelt seats, probably ALP but I don’t say that with a lot of confidence. The reason is as follows.

    The problem is all the polls are showing independents getting circa 10% of the vote, greens circa 11%, Libs/NP getting low 40% ALP high 38% and then on assumed preference flows this breaking out to a 53/47 split. The ALP maybe going well, but the Greens have had a disastrous election, and in these seats (and Bentleigh, Mordialloc and Frankston which are few ALP/Lib competitions which have ALP first pref with a “3” in front of it), Green preferences are vitally important. Swing can thus be in the preference flow which can mitigate any rise in the primary vote I just think we don’t know enough about that 10% Independent voter to be assuming anything.

  20. @Sandbelter

    Well, in hindsight, I am very happy to have been very wrong 🙂 I was worried about Labor losing Bentleigh and Carrum, but they look like both having a 11.5% swing to Labor at this stage. This ties them as equal second for biggest Labor swing in the entire state – only Yan Yean had a bigger swing to Labor (maybe about 13%), after the shenanigans with Klein.


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