South Australian state redistribution – draft map published


The Electoral Districts Boundaries Commission of South Australia (EDBC) this morning released their draft electoral map for the 2022 South Australian election.

The map is the first to be drawn since the repeal of the ‘fairness provision’ which required the Commission to draw boundaries that ensured that a party winning a majority of the two-party-preferred vote would be on track to win a majority of seats. I won’t go into the implications of that decision here, but I’ve blogged and podcasted about this topic before.

If you want to understand the population statistics prior to this redistribution, click here.

Not a single electorate has flipped party, but a number of seats have become more winnable for Labor, and thus the swing needed for Labor to win a majority has shrunk.

Based on the vote at the 2018 election, the redistribution maintains the Liberal Party on 24 (plus a twenty-fifth seat held by an independent who left the party since the election), 19 for Labor, and four independents. The ALP currently requires a 4.4% swing to win four seats, giving them 23, which would make them the largest party. They now need a swing of just 1.5% to gain those four seats.

The three most marginal Liberal seats are Adelaide, Newland and Elder. They all became more marginal, with Elder in particular having its margin cut from 4.4% to 0.1%. The seat of King has become slightly safer, with its Liberal margin increasing from 0.7% to 1.5%.

19.7% of voters have been transferred into a different seat. A majority of seats underwent modest changes. 29 out of 47 seats have been drawn with over 70% of their previous population included.

No changes were made to Mount Gambier, while Cheltenham and Port Adelaide only gained voters while maintaining their existing population. Changes were also minor in Taylor, Adelaide and Mawson.

I will return next week with a full map of the state but that will take some time to complete. Before I leave I wanted to just touch on Frome and Kavel – the only two seats where the former seat’s population makes up less than half of the new seat’s population.

Frome shifted south towards Adelaide, taking in parts of Narungga, Light, Schubert and Stuart. Port Pirie used to be the main population centre of the electorate (making up over 40% of the election day vote in 2014, on the 2018 boundaries) but has been moved into Stuart, while Narungga expanded to take in other parts of Frome.

The city of Port Augusta has been split down the middle, with the western half moved into Giles, the same seat that covers Whyalla.

The seat of Kavel has also lost more than half of its former population, with Mount Barker moved into Hammond. The seat has moved north, stretching almost as far as Gawler.

    That’s it for now, but I’ll be back with the map some time next week.
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  1. Stuart will be interesting. Assuming Geoff Brock runs there, he does well enough in Port Pirie to come at least second overall, and then he’ll get a big majority of Labor preferences. Plus, the southern end of Stuart (around Burra and Eudunda, now in Frome) had some of the strongest Lib booths. Considering he originally won Frome in 2009 while only getting about 10% of the non-Port Pirie vote, I reckon it’s do-able for him.

    Giles loses a couple of ultra-Liberal Eyre Peninsula towns to Flinders, which offsets the Lib booths added from Port Augusta – Labor should be pretty happy with that. The new Frome is very safe Liberal – the southern end of the old Frome was over 60% Lib 2cp vs Brock, and the rest of it is safer than that vs Labor.

    Schubert has now become a seat the Libs could lose in a bad year, which wouldn’t bother some of them – it’s one way of getting rid of Stephan Knoll. If he’d kept his nose clean he could’ve had a decent claim to run for Frome.

  2. Here’s some booth results from Stuart and Frome in 2018. (No absents or anything – this is just late night Excel bashing.)

    Continuing Stuart: Lib 71, ALP 22.6, Green 6.4. (8582 votes.)

    The bits added from Frome: Lib 25.5, Brock 62.1, ALP 7.5, Green 2, Dignity 3. (8731 votes.)

    Both together: Lib 48.1, Brock 31.3, ALP 15, Green 4.2, Dignity 1.5.

    Assuming Brock gets 80% of preferences (as in Frome 2018), that’s a Lib/Brock margin a bit over 2%. And remember, that’s assuming not a single person votes for Brock in Port Augusta. Game on.

  3. To split port Augusta is wrong all of port Augusta should be in the same seat. Stuart will be interesting….. the Alp vote is very much depressed in the old Frome because of the candidature of Mr Bock. How they treat the 3 iron triangle towns needs to be looked at properly.

  4. It doesn’t seem possible numbers-wise to keep all of Port Augusta together. I was able to keep most of it in Giles, but still had to split some outer satellite areas. I think the Liberals were able to keep it together, but in the context of an extreme minimalist change proposal that left all rural seats at the bottom of quota.

    If population in rural SA continues to decline, it will probably be possible to unite all of PA in Giles next time. This is very likely a temporary situation until the numbers sort themselves out.

    On Frome/Stuart, it’s also worth noting that Brock is 70 years old. Who says he will even go around again for 4 years beyond 2022?

  5. The final boundaries have now been released.

    They’ve undone some of the changes around the fringe of Adelaide; specifically they’ve returned Gawler back to Light (making Schubert a safe seat again) and pushed Kavel back down to be more focussed on the Hills.

    It somewhat undoes the advantage Labor received from the draft boundaries (e.g. Elder isn’t as marginal as originally proposed), but nothing too dramatic.

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