6

Super Saturday election night live

8:56 – Nothing has changed in Braddon, Longman and Mayo. The sitting MPs are on track for increased majorities. We are starting to get voting figures from the two western by-elections. At the moment the Greens are on track for a distant second in Fremantle, with a chance of falling into third place behind the Liberal Democrats (presumably favoured by confused Liberal voters). We have no preference data from Perth. The Greens are doing quite well but still trail Labor on primary votes.

7:44 – I’m going to refrain from updates for a while, since it seems reasonably clear that the three sitting MPs in Braddon, Longman and Mayo are on track for re-election with increased majorities.

6:34 – Just after posting I saw a second booth has reported. Garland’s vote is down to 20%.

6:31 – We have one booth in Braddon and it’s produced swings against both major party candidates. Independent Craig Garland is on 26% of the vote. Of course it’s far too early to extrapolate but this suggests he will do well. It’s worth noting that Garland did much better in the more rural west of Braddon in the March state election. Presumably this booth is in his better areas and it doesn’t suggest a big result for him in Burnie or Devonport.

6:00 – Polls have just closed in the seats of Braddon and Longman. Polls will close in Mayo in half an hour, with Perth and Fremantle following in two hours from now.

As I mentioned in my earlier post, I’m at a friend’s wedding tonight so these posts will be a bit more sparse than normal. I’ll try to bring you quality over quantity, and there will definitely be some maps before the night is done.

12

Super Saturday open thread

Polls have now opened in three of the five Super Saturday by-elections, and polls will open in Western Australia in just over an hour.

Feel free to use this post as an open thread to discuss the day. I’ll be back with another post for the results at 6pm AEST.

I’ll be at a friend’s wedding tonight so will only be posting intermittently. Don’t expect me to be first with the latest booth. Quality over quantity will be my approach tonight.

Of course I will do some wrap-up blogging on Sunday, and I’ll also be appearing on Buzzfeed’s twitter show on Sunday at 11am so please tune in. I’ll be recording a special episode of the podcast later on Sunday and hope to get it out the same day, but it should at least be available for your Monday morning commute.

3

Early voting stats point to turnout levels tomorrow

The AEC publishes daily updates of how many people have voted pre-poll, and have requested a postal ballot (which is not strictly the same as someone voting), and you can use this data to get a sense of the rates of early voting.

We’ve had a strong trend of increasing pre-poll voting at recent elections at all levels of government, but that trend hasn’t been consistent in every seat. This first table shows the breakdown of vote by type in the five by-election seats in 2016.

SeatOrdinaryPre-pollPostalAbsentOthers
Braddon76.4113.386.441.901.87
Fremantle71.8313.107.916.490.67
Longman52.1531.9411.183.511.23
Mayo69.4917.297.854.460.91
Perth68.8114.588.187.011.43

Longman looks very different to the other seats, with almost one third of votes cast as pre-poll votes, and a slightly higher postal vote, resulting in barely half of the vote being cast as an ordinary election day vote.

So a higher pre-poll vote in Longman is expected, but the trend (as compared to last time) can be interesting.

This table shows the equivalent counts up to the last comparable point (Thursday for pre-poll, and Wednesday for postals).

Seat2016 prepoll2018 prepoll2016 postal2018 postalPrepoll changePostal change
Braddon6,7969,4105,2635,767+38.5%+9.6%
Fremantle9,7866,3658,7277,584-35.0%-13.1%
Longman24,05229,00812,62412,503+20.6%-1.0%
Mayo12,34616,8769,78710,539+36.7%+7.7%
Perth12,7036,8018,8746,931-46.5%-21.9%

This is pretty convincing evidence that we should expect a big drop in turnout in the two WA by-elections, but wouldn’t expect much (if any) drop in the other three.

The pre-poll vote has increased substantially in Braddon, Longman and Mayo, while it has crashed in Fremantle and Perth. The postal vote has dropped slightly in Longman but there have been substantial increases in these categories in Braddon and Longman.

This isn’t a thorough blog post, but I thought readers would be interested. I’ll see you for more coverage tomorrow night.

2

Seat of the day: Wagga Wagga

I’ve been steadily posting one seat guide every day. This week I’ve been posting guides to the respective Senate races, and then hopefully I’ll follow those up with federal Victorian seat guides (although I may need to post a few Victorian state seats to bridge the gap) but I’ve decided to prioritise one seat which has been in the news.

The NSW state seat of Wagga Wagga is normally considered a very safe Liberal seat. There is now some doubt about whether the sitting MP Daryl Maguire will finish the last eight months of his term after resigning from the party following recent findings at ICAC. If there is a by-election, I will convert this seat guide into a by-election guide, but for now it’s the sixth NSW state seat guide I’ve posted.

[EDIT: Gladys Berejiklian has now announced that Maguire will be resigning next week, so the link is now the guide to the by-election.]

Read the guide to Wagga Wagga.

You can see the list of all NSW state seat guides here. My plan at the moment is to post the rest of the guide after the Victorian state election in November, but if you would really like to see a particular seat you can make a request if you donate $5 or more per month via Patreon.

4

Podcast #3 – Mayo, Longman and Senate party-hopping

In this episode I’m joined by Peter Brent and Amanda McCormack. We preview the by-elections in Mayo and Longman, and discuss the phenomenon of party-hopping in the Senate.

The next episode is due the week before the by-elections but I’ve pushed it back to be recorded and released on the day after the by-elections, so keep an eye out for that.

You can subscribe using this RSS feed in your podcast app of choice, but should also be able to find this podcast by searching for “the Tally Room”. If you like the show please considering rating and reviewing us on iTunes.

9

Using 3PP data to understand three-cornered races

I was recently alerted to a new source of data on the AEC website. The AEC has always published the distribution of preferences at the seat level, as well as a more detailed dataset showing the flow of preferences from each candidate’s primary votes to the two-candidate-preferred count. They have now published this data at the booth level. This means you can see how many votes in each booth flowed to other candidates as the count progressed. Until now, the only booth-level data we had was the primary votes and the top two count.

You could probably use this data to make some interesting maps (how the flow of Greens or One Nation preferences shifts across a diverse electorate) but that’s for another day. I’m finding it most useful now because it allows us to recalculate a three-party-preferred count for electorates that have been redistributed, and there were two in particular I wanted to look at.

The Greens were not far off getting into the top two in Melbourne Ports in 2016. While the Greens candidate trailed Labor MP Michael Danby on primary votes by 3.21%, this gap shrunk to 1.12% after preferences from minor candidates were distributed. We already knew that this primary vote gap had narrowed in the renamed seat of Macnamara following the redistribution, but until now I haven’t done a 3PP count.

The new seat of Canberra has a big question mark floating over it. The best Greens areas in the ACT were previously split between Canberra and Fenner, but the new inner-city seat (confusingly taking the name of Canberra, while the old Canberra was renamed Bean) now concentrates these areas in one seat. My primary vote calculations put the Greens 14.1% behind the Liberal Party, but with over 4% of the vote going to the Bullet Train party. I was curious to know whether that gap would narrow once those Bullet Train preferences were distributed.

The answer is below the fold:

Read the rest of this entry »

3

ACT redistribution finalised

The final boundaries for the ACT were released today. There was one small change on the Bean/Canberra boundary in the Woden Valley area, where the remainder of the suburb of Phillip was moved from Canberra to Bean. This made no change to the margin.

I’ve now published the final ACT map, as well as the final Victorian and South Australian election maps, and you can download them all from the maps page.

I’ve now started work on my guides for federal seats in South Australia and the ACT, but I will wait to do the Victorian seats until the official maps are released on July 13. There were enough changes, and they were described vaguely enough, that I’ll want to check that the boundaries are correct.

I’m still regularly posting a seat guide every day. Today’s seat guide was the Western Sydney seat of Chifley. There are only two more seats in NSW to publish, and I’ve now published every seat in Queensland, WA, Tasmania and the NT (although I will post new guides to the five by-election seats once the results are finalised). Once I finish New South Wales on Thursday, I’ll be posting guides to the Senate races, and then ACT and South Australia seats through mid-July. So please keep an eye out, and join in the numerous conversations taking place across many guides.

2

Podcast #2 – Braddon, Fremantle, Perth and how we name seats

In this episode I’m joined by Maiy Azize and Kevin Bonham. We preview the by-elections in Braddon, Fremantle and Perth, and discuss how we name electorates in light of Batman being renamed. In the news segment we discuss the results of the Darling Range by-election and begin the conversation about single-seat polling (sure to be revisited).

This episode involved guests joining me remotely, and there were some technical hiccups we’ll need to work on. You’ll notice that my guests are not with me for the whole show, but we still have a great conversation.

I mentioned this article about who federal electorates are named after. Kevin also mentions his analysis into single-seat polling which has since turned into this long and interesting post.

You can subscribe using this RSS feed in your podcast app of choice, but should also be able to find this podcast by searching for “the Tally Room”. If you like the show please considering rating and reviewing us on iTunes.

I’ll be back in two weeks, until then, enjoy this episode!

9

Vic redistribution – final(ish) map finished

The AEC announced its final decision for the Victorian federal redistribution on Wednesday. That day I published my new estimates of the margins, and I’ve now also finished my map of the new electoral boundaries.

I am not 100% sure these are correct, because the AEC did not publish data or maps on Wednesday. They simply published descriptions of the changes they made to the draft boundaries (albeit detailed ones). I believe I have accurately drawn all the changes that involved voters moving but I will need to wait for the publication of the maps and data on July 13 to double-check.

You can download this map as a Google Earth file, or browse the map below.

3

Darling Range – results wrap

Yesterday’s by-election in the Perth seat of Darling Range was undoubtedly a disappointment for Labor, with a swing of 9% after preferences, producing a reasonably comfortable victory for Liberal candidate Alyssa Hayden.

A Reachtel poll last week predicted a 54-46 result in favour of Labor, which was out by about 7%. While it’s just one poll, it’s more evidence that we don’t really have the ability to do good accurate polls in Australia (at least for the budgets available to media organisations).

In one way the result wasn’t that surprising. Labor’s sitting MP was forced out in absurd embarrassing circumstances, and then the party had to change candidates shortly before the election. But on the other hand Labor is a new state government performing reasonably well, and statewide polling suggests the party is on the up at a state and federal level. These strong fundamentals made it plausible that the party could have withstood its local problems and held on.

I don’t think we can say anything more generally about the state of Labor in Western Australia based on this one by-election. The circumstances were too strange.

I’ve analysed the results at the booth level (thanks to William Bowe for tracking them down – they’re not yet available on the WAEC website).

Firstly, this booth breakdown divides the booths in the same way I did for the pre-election guide. The ‘central’ area mostly aligns with Armadale council area while the ‘south’ mostly aligns with Serpentine-Jarrahdale.

The Liberal Party did much better in the north and south than they did in the centre. Labor’s vote held up better in Armadale, just barely losing. Labor also won close to half of the pre-poll.

The sparsely-populated north was already favourable to the Liberal Party in 2017, so it’s unsurprising that the swing was smaller there. The south had the biggest swings to the Liberals, which explains the divergence in the vote between the centre and the south.

Booth breakdown

Voter groupLIB 2PP %LIB 2PP swingTotal votes% of votes
South55.4+11.78,42535.2
Central50.3+6.44,89620.4
North55.2+4.61,2735.3
Other votes58.1+13.92,0528.6
Pre-Poll51.2+9.27,30030.5

Below the fold I have posted a map showing the two-party-preferred vote per booth. You can toggle this map off and instead show the swing map. Labor only gained a swing towards them in one booth, increasing their vote by 2.8% at Kelmscott Primary School. I think this is probably explained by the closure of the neighbouring Clifton Hills Primary School booth after a garbage truck crashed into the school on Thursday. Clifton Hills Primary was much more pro-Labor than Kelmscott Primary in 2017.

Read the rest of this entry »