South Australia 2014 Archive


SA and TAS 2014 – campaigns conclude

Today we saw the conclusion of the count in Tasmania’s electorates, with all five electorates now finalised.

Results in Franklin and Bass were reasonably decisive, with Labor MPs David O’Byrne and Brian Wightman losing their seats to the Liberal Party.

In Lyons, former Labor MP David Llewellyn won back his seat, while the Greens’ Tim Morris lost his seat to the Liberal Party.

In the northern seat of Braddon, the ALP’s Brenton Best narrowly missed out for the final seat and the Greens’ Paul O’Halloran also lost his seat, resulting in an unprecedented four seats for the Liberal Party, a result not seen since the reduction in seats in 1998.

In the southern seat of Denison, there was no change to party representation, but the ALP’s second seat was left open with the retirement of Graeme Sturges, and all four non-incumbent Labor candidates were in with a chance. Madeleine Ogilvie narrowly won the seat ahead of Julian Amos.

This produced a final result of 15 Liberal, 7 Labor and 3 Greens. This is a solid majority for the Liberal Party, and also results in loss of parliamentary party status for the Greens.

In South Australia, the election night result of 23 Labor, 22 Liberal and 2 Greens held through late counting. After independent MP Bob Such was admitted to hospital for an indefinite period, independent MP Geoff Brock decided to support the ALP to continue in government, recognising that both independents would need to support the Liberal Party to achieve stable government.

This is the last word for the South Australian and Tasmanian elections for this blog. I’ll be covering the Western Australian Senate by-election next Saturday, April 5, and you can read the guide for the by-election (including sub-pages for all 15 electorates in Western Australia), and comment on any of the pages.

Beyond that, I’m close to finishing my maps for all 88 Victorian electorates for the November state election. On April 17, the final boundaries for the New Zealand general election will be released, and I will start work on that election guide, and I plan to have both ready to go well in advance of those elections.

While I work on these projects, you may notice less activity on the Tally Room, but be assured that I will be working hard in the background to get ready for the next campaign.


SA 2014 – boundary issues

South Australia’s election produced a result that has sparked a lot of interest: despite the Liberal Party winning a majority of the two-party-preferred vote (and by even more than in 2010), the Liberal Party has won less seats than the ALP, and we appear to have narrowly avoided the Labor government holding an outright majority.

It’s not an uncommon outcome, in South Australia and elsewhere in the country. The ALP has formed government in South Australia despite losing the statewide vote three times in the last 25 years: in 1989, 2002 and 2010, and in two of those cases the ALP won an overall majority.

In federal politics, the 1990 and 1998 elections both saw the sitting government maintain power despite losing the vote (Labor in 1990, and the Coalition in 1998).

Following Saturday night’s result, multiple Liberal figures have come out to complain about the outcome and to vaguely criticize our existing electoral system which allows such an ‘unfair’ result.

Tony Abbott described South Australia’s election laws as ‘extraordinary’, ignoring the fact that Saturday’s outcome could just as easily happen under federal electoral law. Read the rest of this entry »


SA 2014 – The close races

There are six seats that sit on margins of less than 2% at the current point in the counting, I will run through each of these electorates and summarise the situation.

In short, the results suggest that it is not possible in five of these six seats for the declaration votes to swing sufficiently to change the current lead. Only in Mitchell is it conceivable, but the most likely outcome is that the Liberal Party will win in Mitchell.

SeatLeadDec votes 2010Dec votes 2010 marginMargin needed for lead to changeSwing needed for lead to change
AdelaideLIB by 3685,129LIB 55.5%ALP 53.5%9.0%
ColtonALP by 5214,041ALP 52.7%LIB 56.5%9.2%
ElderALP by 5714,703ALP 53.2%LIB 56.1%9.3%
HartleyLIB by 4154,761LIB 51.0%ALP 54.4%5.4%
MitchellLIB by 1484,700ALP 52.5%ALP 51.6%-0.9%
NewlandALP by 5644,241ALP 51.8%LIB 56.7%8.5%

Read the rest of this entry »


SA 2014 – results wrap

At the end of the night, the election result in South Australia is extremely close, and we don’t know who will be forming government.

At the moment, the ABC has called the result in 46 out of 47 electorates, and these seats break down along these lines:

  • ALP – 23
  • LIB – 21
  • IND – 2

The electorate of Mitchell is the closest seat, with the Liberal Party leading by 148 votes at time of writing.

However, there are ten electorates with margins of less than 1000 votes: with each major party leading in five. If there is a substantial shift in these seats, either side could form a majority government.

Altogether, the ALP is leading in ten electorates by a margin of less than 6%, which gives you a sense of how Labor managed tonight’s result. Despite losing the two-party-preferred result by a handy margin, the ALP is leading in the seat count and has a shot at forming majority government.

While the Liberal Party holds three seats by over 70% and a further ten with margins between 60% and 70%, the ALP holds only nine seats with margins over 60%, and none with margins over 70%. This means that the ALP doesn’t ‘waste’ as many votes in safe areas – instead focusing their vote in areas where they can make a difference. I’ll return to the topic of South Australia’s electoral system in coming days.

I’ll also come back to the close races in the coming days, but as a summary, these seats are:

  • Adelaide – LIB by 368 votes
  • Ashford – ALP by 721 votes
  • Bright – LIB by 865 votes
  • Colton – ALP by 521 votes
  • Dunstan – LIB by 701 votes
  • Elder – ALP by 571 votes
  • Hartley – LIB by 415 votes
  • Light – ALP by 686 votes
  • Newland – ALP by 564 votes

There was a swing towards the ALP in nineteen seats, despite the statewide trend. The swing against the ALP ranged up to over 11% in Stuart and over 21% in Chaffey, and on the other hand the ALP gained 4.5% in Hammond.

In the upper house, it appears the most likely outcome at the moment is:

  • LIB – 4
  • ALP – 4
  • XEN – 1
  • FF – 1
  • GRN – 1

The Shooters and Fishers are not out of the game, possibly at the expense of either the Greens or the final Labor candidate, but the Greens vote has been rising as the number of votes counted has increased.

Finally, I’ve posted below an image of the new electoral map of Adelaide. Mitchell is marked in white, and the two other seats the Liberals have gained off the ALP (Bright and Hartley) are in a darker shade of blue.



SA and TAS live

11:17pm – I’m going to leave the results there for the night. A wrap-up of the South Australian results will be up shortly, including some analysis of the key races and the Legislative Council, where it appears that the three incumbent crossbench MLCs have held their seats, with an outside chance for the Shooters and Fishers.

I’ll be back tomorrow with more analysis.

Until then, I leave you with this map of the new South Australian electoral map.

Results of the 2014 election in Adelaide. Labor seats in red, Liberal seats in blue, independent seats in yellow, undecided seats in white. Seats won by the Liberal Party off the ALP in dark blue.

Results of the 2014 election in Adelaide. Labor seats in red, Liberal seats in blue, independent seats in yellow, undecided seats in white. Seats won by the Liberal Party off the ALP in dark blue.

10:31pm – We’re getting an increasing amount of votes being counted in the Legislative Council, and the Greens vote has been climbing. Mark Parnell was previously switching between winning the final seat and missing out, but is now winning the ninth seat. That’s on almost 45% of the vote.

10:24pm – At 10:30 I’ll be posting my summary of the results from Tasmania. From then on this post will only deal with South Australia. In short, two seats in Tasmania remain up for grabs, and the Liberal Party holds 14 seats.

10:15pm – We’re starting to see substantive figures from South Australia’s Legislative Council. With 30% counted, Antony Green’s Senate calculator is predicting 4 Liberals, 4 Labor, 1 Family First, 1 Shooter and John Darley of the Xenophon team.

There’s a very close race between the fourth Labor candidate and the lead candidates for the Greens and the Shooters and Fishers for the final two seats.

10:00pm – On my latest figures, the ALP has 23 seats in South Australia. The Liberals have 21, and there are two independents. In Mitchell, the race is extremely close. If Labor wins, they will form majority government. If the Liberal Party wins, they will need both independents to form government.

9:37pm – I’m off writing up the results wrap for Tasmania, but just quickly on South Australia: Labor is now leading in 24 seats, which would give them a majority.

9:05pm – Updated seat count in South Australia:

  • ALP – 20, leading in three more.
  • LIB – 19, leading in three more
  • IND – 2

So if those six close seats split in that way, there will be a hung parliament.

8:44pm – The Greens vote in Braddon has fallen below the PUP vote, while the Labor vote has climbed to 1.4 quotas. The final Braddon seat is now a four-way race between a fourth Liberal, a second Labor, Greens or PUP.

8:42pm – Two of those marginal seats have moved into the Labor column for a topline figure of 21 Labor, 19 Liberal, 2 independent and 5 too close to call in South Australia. Those five close seats are:

  • Adelaide
  • Ashford
  • Bright
  • Mitchell
  • Wright

8:33pm – Let’s look at Tasmania again. A majority of votes have been counted in four out of five electorates. The ALP has lost a seat to the Liberal Party in Bass, and another in Franklin. In Braddon, the Liberal Party has won a third seat off the ALP, and the final seat is a race between a fourth Liberal, and the Greens and the Palmer United Party. In Lyons, the Liberal Party has gained a third seat. The ALP and Greens are competing for the final seat. The possible range now is:

  • LIB – 14-15
  • ALP – 6-7
  • GRN – 3-5
  • PUP – 0-1

8:21pm – I’ve done some estimates on the South Australian results so far, and I have got:

  • 19 – ALP
  • 18 – LIB
  • 2 – Others
  • 6 – Too close to call
  • 2 – No results so far

One of the two seats with no results is Stuart, which will be a safe Liberal seat. There’s a serious prospect of a hung parliament at this point.

8:13pm – Labor minister Grace Portolesi has lost her Adelaide seat of Hartley.

7:52pm – In Denison, the ALP has dropped back and the Greens have climbed, and it seems there is still a prospect of a second Green to win.

7:45pm – The ABC has projected that the ALP has lost its bid to gain back Adelaide, it’s best prospect of a gain in South Australia, despite Labor gaining a swing towards them.

7:38pm – We have almost one third of the vote in Lyons, and the Liberal Party has won a third seat. It looks likely that the Greens’ Tim Morris will win, but it’s still possible that the ALP’s David Llewellyn could win his seat back.

7:36pm – In Franklin, 12% has reported and the Liberal Party is over three quotas, and the Greens have a quota. With Lara Giddings not far short of a quota in her own right, David O’Byrne is left with only 0.4 quota, and is likely to lose his seat.

7:33pm – In Braddon, by contrast, over 15% of the vote is in and the Liberal Party are in the best position to win the last seat, which would give them four seats. The Liberal Party is on 3.7 quotas, compared to 0.54 for the Greens.

7:30pm – 16.5% of the vote has reported from Bass, and the prospects of a fourth Liberal seat have faded, with the Liberal vote down to 3.5 quotas, and the Greens vote over 0.8 quotas.

7:29pm – The Labor vote is rising in Denison and has almost reached two quotas, and thus the chances of the Greens to win two in Denison, and to overtake Labor, are almost dead.

7:20pm – Let’s take a look at South Australia. There is a swing to the Liberal Party and away from the ALP, but by much less than in Tasmania.

7:15pm – Just looking at current figures, I estimate the following range for each party in Tasmania:

  • LIB – 14-17
  • ALP – 5-6
  • GRN – 2-6
  • PUP – 0-2

Remember that these numbers are likely to shift against the Liberal Party.

7:10pm – My standard disclaimer of ‘it’s far too early’ applies, but in Franklin, Premier Lara Giddings is just ahead of David O’Byrne, and it’s certainly a possibility that Labor will only have enough votes to elect one MP. Worth watching.

7:08pm – Looking at the Tasmanian results, it appears the Liberal Party is in a very strong position to win, and could win as many as 17 seats.

6:53pm – Unfortunately the Tasmanian Electoral Commission doesn’t provide booth-level results on its website so we’re relying on the ABC to know how representative our sample is. The TEC does provide a media feed, but refused to provide it when I asked a few weeks ago. Apparently it’s only for ‘accredited media’.

6:46pm – Antony Green suggests that Braddon’s result, while favouring the Liberal Party so far, should result in the Liberal Party staying about 50% and thus winning three seats. That will be the first Liberal gain, of three needed.

6:43pm – We have small figures for Lyons and Braddon, and in both places the Liberal Party are well over three quotas, but these numbers are still small.

6:39pm – So far, a tiny proportion of the vote has been counted in Tasmania, and Labor’s vote is down by 15% and the Liberal vote up by almost 12%. The Greens vote is down by about 6%. Far too early to make assumptions.

6:30pm AEDT – Polls have just closed in South Australia, and closed half an hour ago in Tasmania. I’ll be staying with you throughout the night covering election results in both states, as we expect to see ageing Labor governments lose to Liberal oppositions. I’ll be posting updates timestamped with Australian Eastern Daylight Time, which is the timezone where I reside, and the timezone in Tasmania. Sorry South Australians. Stick with us and we should have the first results soon.


SA and TAS 2014: Prediction time

South Australia and Tasmania goes to the polls for their state elections on Saturday.

I’ll be covering the results from 6:30pm AEDT.

This is your opportunity to post your predictions for the election results.

You can also read more about each electorate, and join each electorate’s discussion thread, at the election guides:


Seat #47: Fisher

Fisher2-2CPFisher is an independent-held seat in southern Adelaide, covering Aberfoyle Park, Happy Valley, Coromandel Valley, Cherry Gardens, Clarendon, Reynella East and parts of Chandlers Hill, Flagstaff Hill and O’Halloran Hill.

Bob Such has held the seat since 1989. Such originally held Fisher for the Liberal Party, serving as a minister from 1993 to 1996. He became an independent in 2000, and has managed to win re-election without a party’s support at the last three elections.

Such holds the seat by a 17.4% margin.

Read more


Seat #46: Chaffey

Chaffey2-2PPChaffey is a Liberal seat covering areas along the Murray River, close to the Victorian and NSW borders.

The Liberal Party’s Tim Whetstone won the seat in 2010, defeating Karlene Maywald, who was the sole parliamentary representative of the National Party, and a minister in the Labor-led government.

On paper, Chaffey is held by a 3.8% against the Nationals, and is the safest Liberal seat in the state with a margin of 28.1% against the ALP. Despite the seat being held so recently by the Nationals, they are not running a candidate in Chaffey in 2014.

Read more


Seat #45: Flinders

Flinders1-2PPFlinders is a safe Liberal seat covering the majority of the South Australian coastline, including the Eyre Peninsula and the Nullabor. The largest town in the seat is Port Lincoln.

The Liberal Party’s Peter Treloar won the seat in 2010, and holds it by a 26.2% margin.

Read more


Seat #44: MacKillop

Mackillop1-LIBMacKillop is a safe Liberal seat covering southeastern parts of South Australia. The seat stretches from the Murray River to just north of Mount Gambier.

Mitch Williams has held the seat since 1997. He holds the seat by a 19.3% margin against the independent candidate who ran in 2010, and by a 24.8% margin against the ALP.

Read more