Barwon – NSW 2019

NAT 12.9%

Incumbent MP
Kevin Humphries, since 2007.

Geography
North-western NSW. Barwon is a massive seat, stretching from Broken Hill to Narrabri, and covering rural areas to the north of Dubbo. Barwon covers the entirety of thirteen local government areas: Bogan, Bourke, Brewarrina, Broken Hill, Central Darling, Cobar, Coonamble, Gilgandra, Lachlan, Narrabri, Walgett, Warren and  Warrumbungle, as well as unincorporated territory between Central Darling and Broken Hill.

History
An electoral district named Barwon has existed since 1927. A previous incarnation existed from 1894 to 1904. Barwon has been held by the Country/National Party continuously since 1950.

The seat was first won by the Nationalist Party in 1927. The ALP held the seat from 1930 to 1932, and the Country Party held the seat from 1932 to 1940.

In 1940, the ALP’s Roy Heferen won the seat. He held it for the next decade. He was disendorsed for the 1950 election after he was suspected of having broken with the ALP and voted against the party line in a ballot to fill a vacancy in the Legislative Council in 1949. He ran as an independent, and the seat was won by the Country Party.

Geoff Crawford won the seat for the Country Party in 1950. He held the seat for eight terms, retiring in 1976. He also served as Minister for Agriculture from 1968 to 1975.

Wal Murray won the seat for the National Country Party in 1976. He became the party’s deputy leader in 1981, serving until 1984. In 1985, he was elected leader of the NSW National Party. He became Deputy Premier when the Coalition won power in 1988, and served in the role until 1993. He retired at the 1995 election.

Ian Slack-Smith held Barwon for the National Party from 1995 until his retirement in 2007. He was succeeded in 2007 by Kevin Humphries.

Kevin Humphries was re-elected in 2011 and 2015.

Candidates

  • Roy Butler (Shooters, Fishers & Farmers)
  • Eve-Lyn Kennedy (Greens)
  • Andrew Schier (Nationals)
  • Darriea Turley (Labor)

Assessment
Barwon is a reasonably safe Nationals seat. A strong independent could threaten the Nationals, but it’s not clear who that independent would be.

2015 result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Kevin Humphries Nationals 23,42649.1-22.9
Craig Ashby Labor 11,45424.0+2.5
Rohan BoehmIndependent8,05116.9+16.9
Cameron Jones Greens 2,9426.2+0.3
Ian HutchinsonChristian Democrats1,1922.5+2.5
Nella LopreiatoNo Land Tax6461.4+1.4
Informal1,6703.4

2015 two-party-preferred result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Kevin Humphries Nationals 25,52462.9-13.1
Craig Ashby Labor 15,06537.1+13.1

Booth breakdown

Booths in Barwon have been split into four parts. Polling places in the city of Broken Hill have been grouped together, with the remainder split as follows:

  • Central – Bogan, Bourke, Brewarrina, Central Darling and Cobar local government areas
  • North-East – Narrabri and Walgett local government areas
  • South-East – Coonamble, Gilgandra, Warren and Warrumbungle local government areas

The Nationals won large majorities of the two-party-preferred vote in three out of four areas, ranging from 66.3% in the centre to 72.6% in the north-east.

The picture was very different in Broken Hill, where Labor polled almost 66% of the two-party-preferred vote.

The primary vote for independent candidate Rohan Boehm varied from 8.8% in the centre to 20.2% in the north-east.

Voter groupIND prim %NAT 2PP %Total votes% of votes
South-East18.570.08,54617.9
North-East20.272.67,21115.1
Central8.866.36,74714.1
Broken Hill19.334.16,23513.1
Other votes15.171.39,37619.7
Pre-poll18.756.19,59620.1

Election results in Barwon at the 2015 NSW state election
Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and primary votes for independent candidate Rohan Boehm.

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