Eden-Monaro – Australia 2019

ALP 2.9%

Incumbent MP
Mike Kelly, since 2016. Previously 2007-2013.

South-Eastern NSW. Eden-Monaro covers parts of south-eastern New South Wales surrounding the ACT, along the south coast and in the Snowy Mountains. Major centres include Bega, Yass, Tumut, Queanbeyan and Cooma.

Eden-Monaro is an original federation seat, and because of its position in the corner of the state, it has always covered mostly the same area. The seat was a safe conservative seat for the first few decades, but it has been a marginal seat since the Second World War, and was considered a ‘bellwether seat’ from 1972 until 2016, having always been won by the party of government for the last four decades until it swung to Labor in 2016.

The seat was first won by Austin Chapman of the Protectionist Party in 1901. Chapman held the seat until 1926, during which time he served as a Minister in Alfred Deakin’s governments. He later returned to the ministry under Stanley Bruce from 1923 to 1924. Chapman died in 1926, and John Perkins won the seat in a by-election.

Perkins was defeated by John Cusack (ALP) in 1929, but won it back for the United Australia Party in 1931. Perkins served in a number of ministerial roles under Joe Lyons, and was defeated in 1943 by Allan Fraser of the ALP.

Fraser served in the seat for over twenty years, including a period as a senior Labor member in opposition. Fraser was defeated by Dugald Munro in the 1966 landslide but regained the seat in 1969. He retired from Eden-Monaro in 1972.

Bob Whan (ALP) held the seat from 1972 to 1975, which was the beginning of Eden-Monaro’s period as a bellwether seat. Whan was defeated in 1975 by Murray Sainsbury (LIB). Jim Snow (ALP) defeated Sainsbury in 1983, and he was defeated by Gary Nairn (LIB) in 1996.

Nairn became a Parliamentary Secretary in the final term of the Howard government and then served as Special Minister of State. Despite the seat being held by a government MP for so long, Nairn was the first member for Eden-Monaro to be a minister since John Perkins in the 1930s.

Nairn was defeated in 2007 by Mike Kelly (ALP), a former senior lawyer with the Australian Army.

Kelly was re-elected in 2010 but lost in 2013 to Liberal candidate Peter Hendy. Kelly returned to win the seat back in 2016.


  • Mike Kelly (Labor)
  • Fiona Kotvojs (Liberal)
  • Patrick McGinlay (Greens)
  • David Sheldon (Independent)
  • Andrew Thaler (Independent)
  • Sophie Wade (Nationals)
  • Assessment
    Eden-Monaro is a very marginal seat, even if Labor’s win has deprived it of bellwether status. A likely swing to Labor may deprive this seat of attention, but it would be silly to assume that Kelly will win re-election easily.

    2016 result

    Mike Kelly Labor 39,56541.9+5.9
    Peter Hendy Liberal 39,04941.3+0.1
    Tamara Ryan Greens 7,1777.6+0.2
    Frankie SeymourAnimal Justice1,9862.1+2.1
    Ursula BennettChristian Democratic Party1,7631.9+0.9
    Daniel GrosmaireIndependent1,6831.8+1.8
    Don FriendVeterans Party1,4481.5+1.5
    Andrew Evan ThalerIndependent9811.0-0.1
    Ray BuckleyIndependent8170.9+0.9

    2016 two-party-preferred result

    Mike Kelly Labor 50,00352.9+5.8
    Peter Hendy Liberal 44,46647.1-5.8

    Booth breakdown

    Booths in Eden-Monaro have been split into five parts. Polling places in the Queanbyean urban area have been grouped together, and the rest has been split between:

    • East – Bega Valley and Eurobodalla council areas
    • North – Queanbeyan-Palerang and Yass Valley council areas
    • South – Snowy Monaro council area
    • West – Snowy Valleys council area

    Labor won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in four of these five areas, ranging from 51.2% in the north to 58% in Queanbeyan. The Liberal Party polled 52% in the south.

    Voter groupALP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
    Other votes47.39,65610.2

    Two-party-preferred votes in Eden-Monaro at the 2016 federal election

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    1. Would it be worth the Nationals to contest this seat now? Either with or without the Liberals?

    2. BJA the Nats will undoubtedly contest E -M, as there is no sitting Lib. The polling figures from 2016 look very solid for labor, not at all like a marginal seat. Still Peter Henry was the world’s worst MP. We will see how the electorate rates Kelly, i don’t at all.

    3. WD – I don’t see why the Nats would. They didn’t contest in 2010 when Kelly held the seat, indeed, if Wikipedia is correct, the last time the Nats contested was in 1993 when they only managed seven percent.

      This should be a Labor hold. Kelly is well regarded as a hard working local member.

      That the Libs haven’t preselected a candidate yet speaks volumes of their low confidence about reclaiming the seat.

    4. PJ
      I must say i’m very surprised. I do find it inexplicable that the Nats would contest Whitlam, but not E-M.
      I have many friends, & acquaintances in E-M. None of them are impressed with him. In essence he is just a Public Service Lawyer who happened to be placed in the Army. On the simple basis that we need more lawyers like a hole in the head, i desperately want him gone.
      As for the libs not selecting a candidate, i just hope they don’t, as they have no chance. The Nets might, if they get rid of that idiot McCormack.

    5. This week ” Pornstar Mike ” illustrated why there is a case for disqualifying any Canberra resident from ever being an elected representative.

      These people are so completely removed from the rest of Australia, it is as if they are from another planet.

      Canberran’s income averages about 60% more than other Aussies. Their infrastructure ,services, & everything else is flawless. Housing is cheap, & they wouldn’t know an immigrant from a tourist.

      So P Mike gets out there rabbiting on about Emma Husar being a single mum. Apparently all her transgressions are fine, dandy, & OK because we need to support women in politics. So it’s ok that she turns one of her publicly paid staffers into a live in nanny !!??.

      This level of delusion i would expect from SHY or that nasty little cretin Bandt. It seems they have more insane & otherworldly company to add to their ranks.

      I doubt Kelly will pay for his spectacular lack of judgement. But he bloody well should. He is an absolute disgrace

    6. Even If Fiona Nash runs here, it isn’t the right environment for them, Labor hold. Just like how Peter Beattie, and Kennealy Lost their bids, However Nash might reduce the swing to Labor in this seat maybe just a 0.5 swing to Labor TPP here

    7. From SMH :”Internal Nationals polling in Eden Monaro, a swing seat near Canberra held by Labor MP Mike Kelly, show the party ahead 51.8 per cent on two-party terms (and with a sample size of 1708 voters, it’s no can and string effort either)”.
      The Nationals candidate is Sophie Wade.


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