The State of the House


At the moment, it appears that the Coalition parties have won or are ahead in 73 seats, Labor in 72, Independents in four, and the Greens in one.

It appears that five seats are yet to be decided. In the Hobart seat of Denison, former Greens member and independent candidate Andrew Wilkie can be expected to get a strong preference flow from the Greens and Liberals, but this is still unclear, and Possum believes that he will not be able to win the seat.

In the seats of Corangamite, Lindsay, Brisbane, Boothby and Hasluck, the result will not be known for several days:

  • Corangamite – Western Victorian seat, sitting ALP member Darren Cheeseman is leading by 1189 votes.
  • Lindsay – Western Sydney seat, sitting ALP member David Bradbury is leading by 1017 votes.
  • Brisbane – Inner Brisbane seat, sitting ALP member Arch Bevis is trailing Liberal National candidate Teresa Gambaro by 858 votes.
  • Hasluck – Eastern Perth seat, sitting ALP member Sharryn Jackson is trailing Liberal candidate Ken Wyatt by 363 votes.
  • Boothby- Adelaide seat, sitting Liberal member Andrew Southcott is leading over Labor candidate Annabel Digance by 814 votes.

If all five of these seats go to the Coalition, it will produce a result of 75/70/4/1 in their favour. Alternatively, if all five go to Labor, it will produce a result of 75/70/4/1, or possibly 76/70/3/1 if Andrew Wilkie is defeated in Denison.

So while it is a possibility that either party could win half the seats in the House, there is no possibility of a party winning the 76 which guarantees a majority, short of an extremely good performance by Labor in Brisbane, Hasluck and Boothby, which would be very unlikely.

In two other seats apart from Denison, we’ve seen major parties lose seats to smaller parties:

  • Melbourne – Greens candidate Adam Bandt has won with 36.1% of the primary vote and 55.7% of the two-party preferred vote.
  • O’Connor – This seat has been radically redrawn to cover a massive area in Western Australia. Sitting Liberal MP Wilson Tuckey has been defeated by Nationals candidate Tony Crook. Crook polled 29.7% of the primary vote to Tuckey’s 37.6%, and he won 54.2% of the two-party preferred vote on Labor and Greens preferences.

It’s worth noting that the Western Australian branch of the Nationals currently holds no federal seats, and has a tradition of independence from the Liberal Party. They have previously said that they would not sit in the joint party room, and Crook cannot necessarily be counted as another Coalition seat, even though he is counted amongst the 73 Coalition seats.

The ALP won two seats off the Coalition last night, both in Victoria:

  • La Trobe – Eastern outskirts of Melbourne. Sitting Liberal MP Jason Wood has been defeated by Labor candidate Laura Smyth, who is on 50.8%.
  • McEwen – Northern Victoria. After narrowly losing the seat in 2007, Labor candidate Rob Mitchell has won the seat with 55.3% of the two-party preferred vote.

The Coalition has retained all five seats that were made notionally Labor in the redistribution, namely Gilmore, Macarthur, Dickson, Herbert and Swan.

They also gained nine seats won by the ALP in 2007:

  • Solomon – Darwin. Sitting Labor MP Damian Hale has lost to Country Liberal Party candidate Natasha Griggs, who is on 53.2%.
  • Bennelong – Northwestern Sydney. Sitting Labor MP Maxine McKew has lost to Liberal candidate John Alexander, who is on 53.8%.
  • Macquarie – Outer Western Sydney. This seat was redrawn to include the Hawkesbury area. Sitting Liberal Member for Greenway has gained the seat, defeating Labor candidate Susan Templeman and winning 51.1% of the two-party preferred vote.
  • Bonner – Brisbane. Sitting Labor MP Kerry Rea has lost to Liberal National candidate (and former Member for Bonner) Ross Vasta, with Vasta polling 53.1% of the two-party preferred vote.
  • Dawson – Central Queensland. Labor candidate Mike Brunker defeated by Liberal National candidate George Christensen, who is on 52.2%.
  • Flynn – Central Queensland. Sitting Labor MP Chris Trevor has lost to Liberal National candidate Ken O’Dowd, who is on 53%.
  • Forde – Southern fringe of Brisbane. Sitting Labor MP Brett Raguse has lost to Liberal National candidate Bert Van Manen, who is on 51.6%.
  • Leichhardt – Far North Queensland. Sitting Labor MP Jim Turnour has lost to Liberal National candidate Warren Entsch, who held the seat from 1996 until his retirement in 2007, and is on 54.5%.
  • Longman – Sunshine Coast and Caboolture. Sitting Labor MP Jon Sullivan has lost to 20-year-old Liberal National candidate Wyatt Roy, who is on 52.4%.

Six of these nine seats were in Queensland, along with two in New South Wales and one in the Northern Territory.

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  1. Hey Ben, Rob Berry (formerly Kelly) here, loved your effort on this site, I’ve been a frequent visitor over the last couple of months.

    I was wondering about the state of my own electorate – Grayndler. Looking at the results at the moment, Albanese has lost his majority of first preferences, now down to 46.8%, and with the Green’s Sam Byrne narrowly ahead of the Liberal’s Alexander Dore’s first preference vote as well (25.4 and 24.1 respectively). It is currently down for an ALP retain, but surely that is yet to be decided?

    I guess there are two factors that would make it a likely retain:

    1. Postal votes are probably going to favour the two major parties ahead of the Greens, and
    2. Despite the fact that the Liberal’s official how to vote cards had the Green’s preferenced ahead of the ALP, the Liberal party were thin on the ground in the electorate (at least where I voted, where there was a single Liberal on hand), which makes me think that it is quite unlikely that enough Liberal preferences will go to e Greens before the ALP, as no doubt not all Liberal voters would be following the how to vote card, even if they did actually receive one.

    Still, looking forward to the NSW state election and the next federal election (be it in the next few months or a few years away, this seat looks to have gone from safe to marginal if the Liberal party is going to continue to preferenceeveryone before the ALP.

  2. I wrote this for the Drum comments but it’s quite fitting for here:

    One thing not examined here is where votes went when they swung from Labor to Liberal or the Greens. To keep this simple, let’s look at the 6 seats where there were only 3 candidates:

    Barton (ALP +14.9%, Sydney St George), 2007 3% to right-wing minors, this election thus 6% from Labor to Liberals, 2% from Labor to Greens.

    Braddon (ALP +2.3%, NW Tasmania), 2007 4% to right-wing minors, this election 4% to Greens, bucking the 5% Labor swing in this seat, that likely due to incumbency.

    Bradfield (LIB +13.9%, Sydney Nth Suburbs), 2007 3% to right-wing minors, this election thus 2% from Labor to Liberals, 5% from Labor to Greens.

    Canberra (ALP +11.8%), 2007 1% to right-wing minors, this election 1% from Labor to Liberal, 5% from Labor to Greens. No incumbency here, yet swing is not as great as in Fraser (yet that is likely due to fewer left-wing minors running there).

    Mackellar (Lib +12.4%, Sydney Northern Beaches), All to Greens from left-wing minors, Liberal swings from Labor & right-wing minors.

    Werriwa (ALP +15.1%, SW Sydney), All to Liberal from right-wing minors, all to Greens from Labor.

    In conclusion, a large amount of the major three parties swing is due to less minor party & independent candidates this election. Even with that, the remaining Greens swing can only be explained as coming from Labor voters, especially in NSW.

    It’s worth noting that the higher the Non-English Speaking Background, the higher the swing to the Liberals vs the swing to the Greens. That in combination with Albanese’s incumbency bonus ultimately stopped the Greens from taking Grayndler. The biggest task for the Greens over the next 3 years is to raise awareness in ethnic communities of the Greens’ platform. Any confusion over Greens’ position on immigration may jeopardise these efforts, thus future chances in Grayndler.

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