Pascoe Vale – Victoria 2018

ALP 16.8%

Incumbent MP
Lizzie Blandthorn, since 2014.

Northern Melbourne. Pascoe Vale covers northern parts of the City of Moreland, specifically the suburbs of Coburg North, Hadfield, Oak Park and Pascoe Vale and parts of the suburbs of Coburg, Glenroy and Pascoe Vale South.

Pascoe Vale has existed in two incarnations, first for a single term in the 1950s and then again since 1985. In that time it has always been held by the ALP.

The original Pascoe Vale was created for the 1955 election, when it was won by the ALP’s Arthur Drakeford. He had previously held the seat of Essendon for one term in the 1940s. The seat was abolished after only one term.

Pascoe Vale was recreated in 1985, and was won by the ALP’s Cyril Edwards. He had previously been Member for Moonee Ponds and Ascot Vale, serving continuously from 1967 until his retirement at the 1988 election.

In 1988 Pascoe Vale was won by Deputy Mayor of Coburg, Kelvin Thomson. He served as Member for Pascoe Vale until he resigned in March 1996 to contest the federal seat of Wills. The federal election was held only four weeks before the Victorian state election, so no by-election was held. Thomson has served as Member for Wills ever since, and served as a shadow minister prior to the ALP winning government in 2007.

Pascoe Vale was won at the 1996 state election by Christine Campbell. Campbell served as a minister from 1999 to 2010, and held the seat until her retirement in 2014.

Labor’s Lizzie Blandthorn won Pascoe Vale in 2014.


Pascoe Vale is a safe Labor seat.

2014 result

Lizzie Blandthorn Labor 18,67947.7-6.9
Jacqueline Khoo Liberal 10,41626.6-0.7
Liam Farrelly Greens 6,37216.3+0.4
Francesco TimpanoIndependent1,2823.3+3.3
Sean BrocklehurstSocialist Alliance1,2603.2+3.2
Thomas HaFamily First1,1482.9+2.9

2014 two-party-preferred result

Lizzie Blandthorn Labor 26,24466.8-1.7
Jacqueline Khoo Liberal 13,06033.2+1.7

Booth breakdown

Booths in Pascoe Vale have been divided into three areas, named after the three main suburbs in the electorate: Coburg in the south-east, Glenroy in the north-west, and Pascoe Vale in the centre.

Labor won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in all three areas, ranging from 64.2% in the north-west to 71.2% in the east.

The Greens primary vote ranged from 10.2% in the north-west to 24.2% in the east.

Voter groupGRN prim %ALP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Other votes18.864.54,79512.2

Election results in Pascoe Vale at the 2014 Victorian state election
Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and Greens primary votes.

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  1. My seat.

    Oscar Yildiz is a prominent local councillor who is running a very vigorous campaign, absolutely plastering the electorate with signs and letterbox drops. A number of people I know speak very highly of him, and there is definitely a bit of a Safe Seat Syndrome sentiment around here that he is tappig into.

    John Kavanagh is another prominent local councillor and Moreland mayor, who would have some name recognition in the area.

    Liz Blandthorn hasn’t really been that prominent from what I’ve seent. This might be a chance for Yildiz (or Kavanagh) to catch her napping.

  2. Oscar Yildiz has some seriously big billboards in Bell Street Coburg and I have seen lots of corflutes on my way to and from the airport. This must cost serious amounts of money. Does he have a party background as a local councillor? With the resources and high profile, this could be an election night upset.

  3. @Redistributed RE party background. Oscar Yildiz is (formerly) Labor but it is doubtful they are contributing anything. He must be either raking in a bit of money through donations and/or by milking any connections he has attained over the years during his time on Council. I wouldn’t make much of a few billboards and letterbox drops though – unless he has an army volunteers knocking on doors every weekend and is able to staff every polling place on polling day, he’ll have no chance of taking the seat IMO.

    Interestingly, though, there are three Councillors from Moreland Council standing in the state election. Kavanagh and Yildiz in this seat, and Sue Bolton in Northern Metro. It shows that a significant layer of constituents in this area are really pissed about the representation they have been getting at the state level.

  4. Oscar Yildiz seems to have a high local profile. The key here will be whether he can get to third place and if the Greens preference him. If he can do both of these – and it would seem unlikely the libs would preference the ALP above him – then he may be in with a good shot.

    Lib voters may also vote tactically to get the ALP out.

  5. Blandthorn has had a very low public profile in her electorate. From personal observation she does not appear to actually enjoy public appearances….and certainly not a real grassroots campaigner.
    My guess is that Yildiz and Kavanagh through their high profiles in Moreland City Council – both having served as city Mayors, they would be more well known than Blandthorn.
    The latter obviously is relying on the Labor “brand” in Pascoe Vale. Unfortunately, for her, the long dominant Labor “brand” is fast diminishing within her electorate. On Moreland City Council, Labor is now down to 2 out of the 11 councilors (compared to 4 Greens, 1 Socialist and 4 Independents.
    I doubt if either Yildiz or Kavanagh have enough people to cover the electorate with door knockers and htv volunteers and that will probably impact their primary vote.
    The Liberals generally poll around 25% or so in Pascoe Vale. If they were not to run in the electorate, then that would open up a very interesting scenario. Who would usually Liberal voters go for…..probably an Independent such as Kavanagh…..but not a long term, now disaffected Labor turned Independent…
    If the Greens grows by a few per cent up towards 20%….with the ongoing demographic changes favouring a higher Greens vote and a diminishing Labor vote…and the two Independents run behind Jackson, the Greens candidate…….and the Liberals don’t show up….it could turn out to be either a Greens vs Labor or Kavanagh -v- Labor… Pascoe Vale…..
    Pascoe Vale could well be a surprise result come polling day……

  6. This is a seat to watch – Yildiz has deep pockets (from who?). Kavanagh hates him and it will be interesting to see his HTV. Can’t see Kavanagh preferencing Yildiz above ALP but who knows. The Greens will no doubt preference Oscar ahead of conservative anti abortion and anti euthanasia Blandthorn. My guess is Blandthorn will end up on 40%, Yildiz 20%, Greens 15%, Kavanagh 10% and then others.

    The Greens and Kavanagh have a pact on Council and they will preference him above Oscar. IF Kavanagh can get ahead of The Greens he’s in with a shot.

    Having said all that, I predict a Yildiz win.

  7. I found an old Crikey article from 2009 describing shenanigans on Moreland Council. Kavanagh comes from a DLP background and Yildiz described as an ‘up and comer’. Either he had not come up as far as he would have thought or the byzantine world of the Victorian ALP had decided that he had come far enough. Though they work together on Council it would be odd if Greens and Kavanagh preferenced each other. Kavanagh preferencing the ALP or Libs seems plausible.

    Kavanagh seems a 10% type independent.

    If Daniel Andrews starts turning up during the campaign, then Labor are worried. If he doesn’t turn up they have either given it away or aren’t worried. The latter seems most unlikely.

  8. Running Lizzie Blandthorn a former SDA organizer and an anti abortion warrior again does seem like an awful idea for Labor, but I think Labor’s brand is still strong enough in this area for her to get over the line with a much reduced margin though.

  9. HTVs are irrelevant if you don’t have anyone handing them out for you. Labor hasn’t really been trying in local politics in the area (which they’ve reevaluated and will be re-engaging), and independent suburban candidates rarely get above 10%. With Greens preferences, Blandthorn should sail over the line – perhaps with a slightly reduced margin.

  10. This is my electorate.

    Definitely a seat to watch – Blandthorn has had to start to show her face in the area (though the constant trips from her comfortable Eastern Suburbs home seem to be wearing her down already) and has already called in Daniel Andrews to help during the campaign. They appear genuinely concerned.

    Oscar Yildiz is riding a wave of genuine community dissatisfaction and disenfranchisement and with the Labor brand and their ‘safe seat’ mentality. His name is everywhere and most in the community know him to be of good character, integrity and grounded in approach. He seems enthusiastic and invested in helping the electorate.

    Should make for a fascinating result and perhaps a long-overdue change. Preferences may play a huge role.

  11. My seat.

    Oscar agrees with everyone on everything – complete populist hard to grasp what he actually believes or stands for. However he is a throughly good guy well known to many in the electorate – and he is on a mission to knock on every door in the seat. In contrast, this year is the first year I remember seeing Blandthorn (or Campbell before her) actually physically in the electorate, printing posters, erecting billboards, ie campaigning beyond sending out a government funded annual fridge magnet.

    Blandthorn doesn’t represent Paco. Pro life, anti euthanasia, not a grassroots MP by any stretch. Just a factional warrior with values at odds with the greener / progressive gentrifying parts of the electorate, and does nothing to counter the deep taken for granted by the ALP dissatisfaction. Many don’t trust Oscar but will vote for him regardless on the basis that he’s a “total politician but good guy.”

    This is the electorate that replaced Bob Hawke with Phil Cleary when the ALP tried to impose a horrible candidate on us in 1992, the re-elected him in 1993.

    Noteworthy that of the field of candidates only two actually live in the electorate – Oscar and Phil Jackson.

    It might be the saturation – every billboard in town has Oscar beaming at you, and Oscar corflutes outnumber Lizzie 5:1 – but I feel like they might be in for a shock.

  12. What about Independent Francesco Timpano with an unequaled record of achievements, owes nobody any political favours AND the only candidate running his campaign without destroying forests and not using truckloads of paper. In fact to date he has NOT USED ONE PIECE OF PAPER IN HIS ELECTION CAMPAIGN. AND check out his Key Policies & Initiatives. AND has only had two death threats to date.

  13. Can anyone confirm if the Liberals are running a candidate? Papers reporting they were considering not running as late as yesterday, but not part of the Richmond/Brunswick/Melbourne/Northcote reporting today.

  14. Did anyone else get that weird “handwritten” letter from Liz Blandthorn? I don’t think I’ve seen anything quite like that before from an MP.

    I think it is a sign that she must be a little concerned here.

  15. Apparently the Lib candidate’s name is Genevieve Hamilton, but I can’t find any confirmation online so far, except on the wikipedia election list of candidates.

  16. Preferences will be crucial in this seat. Where will Yildez, Kavanagh, Timpano, Reason and Animal Justice Preferences go? Will they, combined with demographic shifts, put the greens ahead of the Liberals? We could be waiting for the final distribution of preferences to know the outcome in this seat.

  17. Yep very interesting and I predict it will get messy with distributions. Interestingly, the Animal Justice preferenced Labor in the 2017 Northcote by-election – so I wonder if they will here. Also, I’m pretty sure Reason preferenced Labor in that same by-election, but may be wrong.

  18. Tonight The Age is exclusively reporting that the Greens have offered to preference Blandthorn in exchange for upper house preferences
    Doesn’t seem in line with their progressive values as Blandthorn is a renowned social conservative with views that most Greens would find abhorrent
    Greens are saying Yildiz is a credible threat with Kavanagh likely to poll well too
    Continuing to watch it unfold with interest

  19. Reason tend not to be particularly fond of the SDA wing of the ALP, whether any preference deal with the ALP (whose preferences I am sure Patten wants in the Legislative Council) overrides that is another question.

  20. LABOR, GREENS, LIBERAL’S ALL plying their Social Engineering games at our expense. THEY NEED A GOOD WAKE UP CALL. How many more have to die?

  21. I presume the Greens, having been rebuffed on Legislative Council preferences, are preferences Yildiz and/or Kavanagh ahead of the ALP, reducing the ALP`s chances of retaining the seat.

  22. Hey Tom the first and best. Suggest you have a look at the HTV cards making a fool of you. How dare they?!

  23. Oscar Yildiz is preferencing the Libs above Labor, according to his htv (on Twitter).

    I’ve heard Labor are quite concerned about this seat.

    If Yildiz were a kingmaker, I can’t imagine him backing anyone other than Labor… Am I wrong??

    (Side note; check out Jenny Mikakos’ twitter feed re this seat. Indicates some desperation within ALP.)

  24. Well, I can’t see Yildiz’s preferences getting the Libs far enough ahead of Labor for the Libs to win, but the other way around works – so it’s probably a straight swap.

    If the Greens, Reason and Libs all preference Yildiz over Labor, he’s got a good shot. I don’t know enough about Kavanagh’s feelings on Yildiz to guess if he’ll preference him also.

  25. Note: I haven’t actually seen the preference cards from the Greens in Pascoe Vale yet though. And now that I look at it, Yildiz has the ALP above the Greens, so clearly no deal there.

    So it will be Libs + however much Yildiz pulls, vs the combined voted of Labor, the Greens and maybe the Socialists? If so, I’m tipping the latter grouping to be larger and the ALP to still scrape in.

    I thought Margee Glover was planning running for Reason in PV, but I guess not.

  26. I’ve heard Yildiz and Kavanagh can’t stand each other – but Yildiz has preferenced him 2nd, so maybe that’s evidence of a buried hatchet.

  27. Just voted today at the Coburg pre-poll centre.

    Kavanagh and Yildiz are definitely preferencing each other, so expect a fairly tight exchange between the two. Yildiz has the Liberals over Labor (although this seems to be just a donkey vote), while Kavanagh has a sort-of split ticket.

    Liberals are obviously preferencing both Yildiz and Kavanagh over Labor. The Greens appear to be preferencing Kavanagh (but not Yildiz) over Labor.

    As for the argument that Yildiz won’t have enough people to cover the polling places, he certainly had more than a handful of supporters out there at the pre-poll centre.

  28. Initially I thought Labor secure here but Blandthorn 48% primary last time was against no significant independent opposition so not that impressive? Still Glenroy is very rusted on old Labor, is there an ethnic base for Yildiz that might be crucial?

  29. Yildiz is of Turkish background, but I have no idea how the Turkish community votes and whether that would be a clincher.

    I met him about 15-20 years ago as he was coordinating a Turkish community side for a multicultural footy tournament. I obviously can’t say for 100% certain, but he certainly gave the impression then that he was good at capitalising on community links. He was (probably still is) associated with the Coburg footy club from the VFA, and therefore would probably be mates with Phil Cleary…

  30. Pascoe Vale is an interesting seat in that it is seen as being a safe seat however if you drove around it without knowing its politics, it feels like a marginal with a real mixture of housing types and demographics.

    This seat may surprise but has the trend seems to be with the government then I see the ALP holding here, this is the kind of seat that would only be in trouble if we were seeing a landslide defeat aka 1992 style.

  31. Inside word remains that Blandthorn’s vote will take a serious hit, but not a Wentworth-level hit. Looks like she should hold on.

  32. Gloves are off here now…..Labor have sent out a hit-piece leaflet, smearing Yildiz as basically being a Liberal in disguise.

    They must be really worried here.

  33. Anyone pondered how this might play out? Some back of the envelope psephology musings…

    Pascoe Vale Results 2014 – Rounded to Whole Numbers

    19000 ALP
    11000 Lib
    6000 Green
    1000 Timpano
    1000 Family First
    1000 Socialist

    Moreland Council 2016 – North West Ward which is about half the state district
    7000 Oscar
    3000 Kavanagh

    Theoretically 2018
    13000 ALP – Oscar pinches 6k
    7000 Lib – Oscar pinches 4k, preferences flow to Oscar
    10000 Oscar
    8000 Green – gentrifying electorate expect some growth and Greens won’t typically support Oscar, preferences flow to ALP (although greens voters don’t often follow HTVs)
    3000 Kavanagh – based on his council support in 2016, preferences flow to Oscar
    1000 Timpano – preferences flow to Oscar
    Balance is others / informal

    Bloody close – he needs good preference flows from the Libs, Kavanagh and Timpano…

  34. Has anyone thought about how this might play out? Some back of the envelope psephology musings…

    Pascoe Vale Results 2014 – Rounded to Whole Numbers

    19000 ALP
    11000 Lib
    6000 Green
    1000 Timpano
    1000 Family First
    1000 Socialist

    Moreland Council 2016 – North West Ward which is about half the state district
    7000 Oscar
    3000 Kavanagh

    Theoretically 2018
    13000 ALP – Oscar pinches 6k
    7000 Lib – Oscar pinches 4k, preferences flow to Oscar
    10000 Oscar
    8000 Green – gentrifying electorate expect some growth and Greens won’t support Oscar, preferences flow to ALP – even though greens voters don’t really follow HTVs
    3000 Kavanagh – based on council support in 2016, preferences flow to Oscar
    1000 Timpano – preferences flow to Oscar
    Balance is others / informal

    Bloody close – he needs good preference flows from the Libs, Kavanagh and Timpano, or a runaway primary…

  35. Paco Chick Good analysis. But who knows which way the wind will blow, the level of science in this is poor and most rely on actuaries. I treat all these as a science experiment in terms of collecting data. Note Samantha Ratnam with a huge budget to splash around at the Wills Federal Election only picked up some 8,000+ votes. i.e. $125 per vote. AND still nowhere near enough. The illusion of power & real power is two very different things. I know what I stand for it’s on my Facebook. But with some of the other candidates, it is difficult to say.

  36. A felt a bit sorry for the poor old Labor activists standing in the rain at Glenroy Railway Crossing today, waving Blandthorn signs at passing motorists…..

  37. Drove through Pascoe Vale today and the Yildiz posters/ corflutes easily outnumber any others. The Blandthorn poster with husband, child and dog definitely departs from the usual candidate head shot!! From 50km/h, it almost looks Pre Raphaelite in its composition.

  38. ALP has won the seat as it should be. Oscar is a lier and an untrustworthy person. He is a person who does things to assist and/or benefit the community without there being something for him to personal gain. He is a man without integrity of humility.

  39. Well, Blandthorn hasn’t won yet. Her position deteriorated as the night went on, and she did poorly on the pre-polls and postals counted so far.

    Yildiz is on 25%, with Liberals (11%) and Kavanagh (8%) directing to him.

    Blandthorn is on 37%, with the Greens (12%) directing to her above Yildiz.

    Any further drop in Blandthorn’s position with late votes will put her at some genuine risk.

  40. Apparently the VEC and Victoria Police are investigating an incident where Liz Blandthorn’s brother allegedly turned up to the early voting centre and started threatening Oscar Yildiz’s wife. Allegedly involved miming slitting her throat and calls to “come around the corner and I’ll fix you up”. Other candidates witnessed it and it’s apparently been officially reported.

    Sounds like a right charmer.

    (I had heard whispers about ‘a nasty incident’ at the early voting centre last week. When I was there voting, all the different candidates and volunteers seemed to be getting along fine, so I was surprised. But I guess this it was it was referring to).


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