Corangamite – Australia 2013

ALP 0.3%

Incumbent MP
Darren Cheeseman, since 2007.

Geography
South-western Victoria. Corangamite covers suburbs on the southern fringe of Geelong and then extends as far west as Colac. As well as parts of Greater Geelong, Corangamite covers all of Surf Coast, Colac Otway and Queenscliff councils, as well as a majority of Golden Plains Council. The main towns outside of Geelong are Ocean Grove, Torquay, Colac and Winchelsea.

Map of Corangamite's 2010 and 2013 boundaries. 2010 boundaries appear as red line, 2013 boundaries appear as white area. Click to enlarge.
Map of Corangamite’s 2010 and 2013 boundaries. 2010 boundaries appear as red line, 2013 boundaries appear as white area. Click to enlarge.

Redistribution
Corangamite underwent relatively minor changes. Corangamite’s western boundary was aligned with the western boundary of Colac Otway Shire. Corangamite lost sparsely populated ares on the northern side of the Barwon peninsula to Corio.

History
Corangamite was an original federation division, and a seat which changed hands often in early years, before becoming a solid conservative seat in the latter half of the 20th century.

It’s first member was Chester Manifold of the Protectionists, but he retired due to ill-health at the 1903 election and the seat was won by Grafton Wilson for the Free Traders. Wilson was defeated in 1910 by the ALP’s James Scullin, who held the seat for one term before being defeated by former member Manifold, who returned to contest the seat for the Liberals. Manifold, whose son, Sir Chester, was a state MP and a famed horse-breeder and racing administrator, held the seat until he died at sea in 1918.

The December 1918 by-election saw the first use of preferential voting for the federal parliament. Scullin returned to contest the seat for the ALP, and topped the primary vote, but was comfortably defeated on preferences by the Victorian Farmers Union’s William Gibson. Scullin would subsequently win the seat of Yarra in 1922 and serve as Prime Minister from 1929-32.

Gibson held the seat for the Country Party, serving as Postmaster-General and Minister for Works and Railways until his defeat in 1929 by Labor’s Richard Crouch, who had previously been a Protectionist/Liberal MP for Corio from 1901-1910. Crouch then lost to Gibson in 1931, who served one more term before winning election to the Senate in 1934.

Geoffrey Street of the UAP, who would serve as Defence Minister in Menzies’ first government, won Corangamite in 1934 and held it until his death, along with two other ministers, in a plane crash in 1940.

Allan McDonald, a former state MP, won the seat for the UAP in 1940, and quickly became a minister in the Menzies government. He unsuccessfully contested the UAP leadership in 1941 and 1943, and remained on the backbench when the Liberals returned to power in 1949. He died in 1953, and was succeeded by Daniel Mackinnon, who had previously been MP for Wannon.

Mackinnon retired in 1966, and was succeeded by Tony Street, son of the former member Geoffrey, who served as a minister in various portfolios in the Fraser government and subsequently retired in early 1984.

Stewart McArthur won the seat in 1984, and held it until defeated by the ALP’s Darren Cheeseman in 2007. A seat significantly impacted by changing demographics, McArthur’s 44.70% was the lowest primary vote for the conservative major party in the seat since 1934.

The Liberal vote barely rebounded in 2010. A swing of 0.44% to the Liberal Party halved Cheeseman’s margin, and made Corangamite the most marginal seat in the country.

Candidates

  • Lloyd Davies (Greens)
  • Helen Rashleigh (Rise Up Australia)
  • Alan Barron (Australian Christians)
  • Adrian Whitehead (Independent)
  • Darren Cheeseman (Labor)
  • Peter Wray (Family First)
  • Jayden Millard (Sex Party)
  • Warren Jackman (Country Alliance)
  • Buddy Rojek (Palmer United Party)
  • Andrew Black (Nationals)
  • Sarah Henderson (Liberal)
  • Nick Steel (Australian Protectionist Party)

Assessment
Corangamite is a very marginal Labor seat, and Labor will struggle to maintain it in the current political environment.

2010 result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Sarah HendersonLIB42,15544.99+0.29
Darren CheesemanALP37,04339.53-2.38
Mike LawrenceGRN10,71311.43+3.46
Ann WojczukFF1,8501.97-1.59
Sally-Anne BrownIND1,4181.51+1.51
Nathan TimminsLDP5290.55+0.36

2010 two-candidate-preferred result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Darren CheesemanALP47,23550.41-0.44
Sarah HendersonLIB46,46449.59+0.44
Polling booths in Corangamite at the 2010 federal election. Geelong in red, Golden Plains in yellow, Surf Coast in green, Colac Otway in blue, Ocean Grove in purple. Click to enlarge.
Polling booths in Corangamite at the 2010 federal election. Geelong in red, Golden Plains in yellow, Surf Coast in green, Colac Otway in blue, Ocean Grove in purple. Click to enlarge.

Booth breakdown
Booths have been divided into five areas. Booths in the Surf Coast, Colac Otway and Golden Plains local government areas have been grouped by LGA. Booths in the Greater Geelong and Queenscliff local government areas have been split into two parts. Booths in the Geelong urban area have been grouped as Geelong. Booths on the Bellarine peninsula (including Queenscliff) have been grouped as Ocean Grove.

The ALP won majorities in four out of five areas, varying from 51.8% in Geelong to 54.7% in Surf Coast. The Liberal Party won over 54% of the two-party vote in Colac Otway. The Greens vote peaked at 16% in the Surf Coast area.

Voter groupGRN %ALP 2PP %Total votes% of ordinary votes
Geelong10.3351.8424,71139.25
Surf Coast16.0454.7011,74518.66
Ocean Grove14.5353.1510,69616.99
Colac Otway7.3845.429,23714.67
Golden Plains9.0254.096,56310.43
Other votes11.5946.4827,196
Two-party-preferred votes in Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in southeastern parts of Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in southeastern parts of Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in southeastern parts of Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in southeastern parts of Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in the Geelong part of Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in the Geelong part of Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in the Geelong part of Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in the Geelong part of Corangamite at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in Colac at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in Colac at the 2010 federal election.

75 COMMENTS

  1. No worries Yappo… This election a bit different though, we have had a 6 month campaign.. We are at the VERY end. This campaign has gone on since February and we all knew we were voting in Sept (date just a week out) Nothing like being decisive when you are sure…..Its a good policy in life and always gets a reaction…………….

  2. No Cyril, you will find that polls fluctuate the most during the campaign so you can’t really use the past 6 months especially when Rudd wasn’t serving during that period. Most people decide closer to the date and don’t react at all 6 months out from the election

  3. Reckon Observer you’ll find its sits around 80/20 already decided. (give or take a few %) Saw a couple of recent polls with that figure. People are more likely to turn there mind to it this time though with the announcement so early…..The leadership change was designed to win people back who had already decided in order to save seats and if you are a real optimist perhaps a Labor win. For a seat like Corangamite I reckon the damage was already done……..

  4. Well Yappo now you mention it……….I did have a little wager on Ms HENDERSON some time ago (not the house) with Sports bet at quite juicy odds when you look at the $1.08 on offer now….. Actually these guys are probably the real judges as they have to be accurate…. I certainly will have a little smile on my face on election night if she salutes…………..(Hope she doesn’t weigh in light)………….

  5. “A Labor source quoted in The Australian today describes the party’s position in its most marginal seat in the country, the Victorian electorate of Corangamite, as “irretreivable”. Kevin Rudd is accused of being “delusional” in the seats he is targeting in the state, namely the Liberal-held Melbourne seats of Aston and Dunkley. For the Liberals’ part, party sources are quoted saying they expect to win at least three seats in the state”. Source: Pollbludger.

  6. Grovedale (outer Geelong suburb) has exploded in development since 2010 and is now full of working middle class… I think this seat has the potential to buck the trend and move a little to the left.

  7. Thats even a bigger margin than I would have been expecting Observer. I was looking at 53/47 ish…. Interesting……..Armstrong Creek when fully occupied in 3 years time will certainly make it interesting……….Not sure if it will have as much impact this year….

  8. Corangamite Galaxy 20/08/2013 Sample 575 ALP 44% 2PP

    One would have to think this is gone in line with reports in The Australian yesterday from ‘internal Labor sources’. I think it’s gone too.

  9. Especially when you are looking at only 350 people changing their minds. (2PP) Libs should improve in all the Highton, Ocean Grove and Colac booths……Even if this is only marginal in all 3 areas it gets Henderson over the line. She can afford a small slip up in Grovedale (based on Scruffs analysis which I do agree with) even I think and still make it. If she improves in any of the sea change places like Barwon Heads, Torquay, Lorne etc then the swing is on big time and getting into your area of swing DB……..

  10. Cyril: “Sports bet at quite juicy odds when you look at the $1.08 on offer now”
    I won’t aks you what the odds were but I assume you bet just after Rudds return? Would have been good odds about 2 week thereafter…

  11. Yappo, no secrets between fellow politics watchers…. I got $1.85……….on July 3 during the sugar hit period ….. Its now $1.05. Unless you can find a staunch ALP supporter at your local who has had a few beers and will give you even money (I found one but will share it with him over a few pots) …….. I think it hovered around $1.10 or so during the previous PM’s later days….. If anyone thinks Cheeseman can win they are giving you $8.00… Not bad in a 2 horse race

  12. I chaired candidates’ forum in Colac last night with most candidates. Solid performances especially from the minors, except for Buddy who turned up 5 minutes before end & abused me when he wasn’t able to speak.

  13. I don’t think Labor know quite where to call at the moment Geoff. It seems to be mainly bad news in NSW, VIC and QLD.

  14. This suggests that the contest in this seat is closer than we thought, http://www.geelongadvertiser.com.au/article/2013/09/05/372190_news.html

    Tele poll of a very small sample 200 with Lib at 31%, ALP 28%, 7.8% minor (not sure why there is not a Greens figure?) and a third of those poll undecided.

    If this poll has credibility, it suggests that the talk in the last few weeks that this was an easy Lib gain may have been premature and that the contest is still there to be won. Note that todays ReachTEL recorded an improvement in the ALP vote in Vic.

  15. Any poll where Undecided scores better than both the major parties is pretty useless, I would have thought.

    If it really is 53-47 or 54-46, Labor won’t win Corangamite.

  16. I did see that one Yappo…… I wouldn’t be getting too carried away with it being from the ‘Addy.’ I am still happy to call it to Henderson……In saying that the Greens will poll okay given the Yuppie latte sipping areas like Torquay, Barwon Heads etc…. She will need to improve her primary vote in the urban centres like Grovedale and Belmont though to build on her lead from 2010.

  17. And by the way don’t frighten me like that Yappo. I had $500 on Henderson when she was $1.85. I won’t be able to afford a beer on Saturday night if she doesn’t win………

  18. lol I think that your bet still looks good as someone who also stated a month ago that this seems a likely Lib gain. I did question the credibility of the poll. However, it is info to add into the mix along with the reported slight rise in ALP vote in Vic. The undecided seems too high but does equate with the reported 2m voters still undecided. As I said a few weeks ago the Green vote should hold here and may even slightly increase.

    What I do fundamentally question and find bemusing is people being “certain” of calling close seats one way or the other, weeks out from an election. Plenty have done that in the past and ended up looking like fools.

    That being said, you should be able to procure a few boxes of imported beer after Sat night!

Comments are closed.