Next morning swings and roundabouts


Wow! Okay so where are we at on Sunday morning?

With my work in the Guardian we have called 132 seats. There’s a handful I haven’t called (such as Parramatta and Werriwa) that can probably be called once the pre-poll vote comes in.


When I went to bed last night, Labor was leading in 75 seats, but they are now leading in 79.

Of those nine seats where Labor is leading, I am close to calling Tangney, Parramatta and Werriwa. The other six seats are Lyons, Sturt, Gilmore, Bennelong, Deakin and Lingiari. Labor needs to win two of those six for a majority.

I am also close to calling Curtin and Fowler, and I have only hesitated to call North Sydney for the independent because of the possibility of Labor overtaking Tink in the distribution of preferences.

At the moment, including undecided seats, I count 22 seats that have either changed hands or the incumbent party is currently behind. That includes:

  • 8 Labor gains and 4 Labor leading
  • 4 Independent gains and 3 independent leading
  • 1 Greens gains and 2 Greens leading

Labor’s 12 potential gains include 4 WA seats, 3 NSW seats, 3 Victorian seats, 2 South Australian seats, and no gains in Queensland or Tasmania.

Independent gains include 4 in Sydney, 2 in Melbourne and one in Perth.

All of the Greens gains are in Brisbane.

I’ve made a map with three layers. The first layer shows the two-candidate-preferred swing in the 128 seats with a valid swing. We don’t have TCP swing in seats where they have had to reset the count, and we also don’t have swings in new independent seats.

The next layer shows the current prediction (called seats in a dark colour, leading seats in a lighter colour), and the final layer highlights the seats that have changed hands.

There is a repeated trend of Labor gaining larger swings in more inner-city electorates while gaining small swings or even losing ground in outer suburbia.

In Melbourne, Labor suffered small swings to the Liberal Party in large parts of the city, specifically the northern, western and outer south-eastern suburbs, but gained very large swings in the eastern suburbs. The Liberal Party has lost a contiguous block of four electorates in eastern Melbourne, but this could extend to six electorates if they lose Deakin and Menzies.

That pattern of outer suburban swings against Labor is not so obvious in other cities, although the Liberals did gain swings in most Tasmanian seats, and they did gain swings in Lindsay and Werriwa.

The swings to Labor are certainly more muted in the western suburbs of Sydney compared to seats closer to the city, and of course the Liberal Party suffered big swings to independents in the eastern and northern suburbs. In particular I noticed that, if Labor wins Bennelong, the Liberal Party no longer holds any seats on the harbour front or on the Parramatta River, having lost Bennelong, Reid, Wentworth and North Sydney.

If Labor wins Sturt, where they lead by 0.6%, the Liberal Party will be left with no seats in Adelaide. The swings here match the pattern elsewhere, with the Labor-friendly northern suburbs having the smallest swings.

The swings are massive across Perth, but particularly large in inner-city Perth and Tangney, along with outer suburban Pearce.

The Greens gains in inner city Brisbane also fit with the trend, but even in neighbouring seats like Moreton and Lilley, Labor had larger swings.

That’s it for now, I’m planning a few blog posts for today and tomorrow.

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  1. Im sure there’s been plenty of discourse about this already, but I think a big conversation we’ll need to address is how Labor may end with less seats in QLD than the last election

  2. Wow indeed! Thanks for your fine work, Ben – and for all the intelligent commentary I’ve read here in the last few weeks. Judging by how rattled Antony Green got last night on ABC, he’s only got one or two more elections in him… Get your CV ready, Ben!

    I’ve been amusing myself today listening and reading the various insiders interpretation on why the vote sprayed all over the place, with swings this way and that. The only constant was that votes for the 2 majors are way down. A few commentators have (tentatively) mentioned the last two years of covid disruptions, but have either backtracked themselves, or been shot down (why? Is it fear?) Our professional experts all have their alternate theories ready, but they just seem confused – unable too explain why we now have a government only a bit over 30% of us actually wanted.

    To me its obvious. How could any country go through the trauma of the last two years of covid and our various state and fed governments’ inconsistent, incoherent responses to it – and not expect an equally inconsistent and incoherent voter response? Few government in the western world will survive their first real post-pandemic election unscathed – and that includes the one run by Saint Jacinda (NZ’s Labour second in the their polls already, with a long post-lockdown economic slide to go). France recently ended up with Marcon, another 30%er only a minority of voters wanted. And we have Albo…

    ps.I was one of the 30%, btw. I made one prediction here (Reid) and got that wrong.

  3. Brisbane will be very interesting to watch, and potentially close? Current Greens lead over ALP is 582 votes. The candidates below them (Animal Justice, UAP, One Nation, Lib Dems) total 5240 votes – who ever remains of them, hard to see they end up having a substantial proportion going Green. UAP (1495) didn’t direct preferences and are leading the pack, assuming their preferences will be less likely to go Green?

  4. Anton, for the standard Labor v LNP contests in Queensland I think what generally happened was LNP generally lost votes in its safer seats but sandbagged most of its marginal seats enabling it to hold ground whilst still losing votes overall.

  5. Legalise Cannabis has a serious shot against Pauline Hanson for the final Queensland Senate seat.

  6. I’ve thought for a while that Stephen Bates’ campaign was the weakest out of the three inner city Brisbane Greens outfits and I think Labor will win it on postals, but it feels unkind to say that when he’s looking at a 5-6% swing to the Greens.

    Someone who I think has been overlooked in the sudden Greens media hysteria is Claire Gorton, a transgender woman who’s looking at about a 4% swing to the Greens to put them into the 20% range in a seat that, as I’ve said before around here, is not a typical inner-city Greens target seat. If Moreton loses suburbs to the south, or gains suburbs from the east and north, then she could be the third (or fourth) Green MP in Parliament. Alternatively, I could see her as a shoe-in for the Electoral District of Miller at the next state election.

  7. Queensland and Tasmania results aren’t good for Labor with Labor going backwards in both states. However, it’s overshadowed by the strong results elsewhere particularly in Perth and Melbourne. The swings there are a lot stronger than what anyone was predicting. The eastern Melbourne results are essentially even worse than the 2018 landslide. With NSW, the seats being gained by Labor are what people were expecting with a weaker than expected performance in Gilmore.

  8. United Australia got 10.2% in my electorate (Holt – outer SE suburbs of Melbourne) – I’m trying to find out if that’s some sort of record. I’m definitely going to be squinting at my neighbours when I leave the house! 1 in 10 is scary.

  9. That Yougov poll saying 54-46 was full of it. I knew it. The Nats even got a swing TO THEM in Parkes.

    Gippsland is trending away from Labor as well it is evident.

    Could the seat of Hawke be in play in future? It’s only 7%. Labor people will be complaining that the AEC didn’t give “Hawke” a safer area for Labor.

    LaTrobe is also probably out of reach for Labor for a long time. And Labor is dead in Berwick at the state election.

    Does anybody know why Tasmania swung Liberal? Special appeal?

  10. I wonder how much of the swing in Greenway and Mitchell can be attributed to interest rates.

  11. Nicholas, If it was Interest rates you would think it would have washed through in Western Sydney such as Lindsay,Chifley and Werriwa. It did not.

  12. Yes, you’re right, and La Trobe is an even more striking counterexample. I wonder what it is then. I live in Mitchell (and previously in Greenway) and the only other reason I can think of is demographic change.


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