Kelvin Thomson, since 1996.
Northern Melbourne. Wills covers most of the City of Moreland and small parts of Moonee Valley and Yarra council areas. Key suburbs include Brunswick, Moreland, Coburg, Pascoe Vale, Oak Park, Glenroy, Hadfield and Fawkner.
Strathmore was transferred to Maribyrnong, and areas in southern Brunswick and northern Fitzroy were transferred from Melbourne. This increased the Labor margin from 22.6% to 23.5%.
Wills was created for the 1949 election as part of the expansion of the House of Representatives. Apart from a period in the early 1990s, it has always been held by the Labor Party.
Wills was first won in 1949 by the ALP’s Bill Bryson. He had previously held the seat of Bourke from 1943 to 1946. Bryson served as a member of the ALP until the split of 1955, when he joined the new Labor Party (Anti-Communist), which became the Democratic Labor Party. He lost the seat at the 1955 election.
The seat was won in 1955 by the ALP’s Gordon Bryant. Bryant served as a minister in the Whitlam government from 1972 to 1975, and retired in 1980.
Wills was won in 1980 by former President of the ACTU, Bob Hawke. Hawke was in the rare position of a politician who was already a significant national figure in his own right before entering Parliament, and he was immediately appointed to the Labor frontbench. Hawke failed in an attempt to replace Bill Hayden as Labor leader in 1982, but was successful in another attempt on the very day that Malcolm Fraser called the 1983 election, and he won that election, becoming Prime Minister.
Hawke won re-election at the 1984, 1987 and 1990 elections, but in 1991 he was defeated in a caucus leadership ballot by Paul Keating, and he resigned from Parliament in 1992.
The 1992 Wills by-election was a remarkable campaign, with 22 candidates standing. The seat was won by former footballer Phil Cleary on a hard-left socialist platform. Cleary’s victory was overturned in the High Court due to his status as a public school teacher on unpaid leave, shortly before the 1993 election. He was re-elected at the 1993 election, and held the seat until his defeat in 1996.
Wills was won back for the ALP in 1996 by Kelvin Thomson, a Victorian state MP since 1988. Thomson was appointed to the Federal Labor shadow ministry in 1997, and remained on the frontbench until early 2007. He was on the backbenches until he became a Parliamentary Secretary in February 2013.
- Dean O’Callaghan (Independent)
- Tim Read (Greens)
- Adrian Trajstman (Sex Party)
- Margarita Windisch (Socialist Alliance)
- Concetta Giglia (Family First)
- Anne Marie Murray-Dufoulon (Palmer United Party)
- Shilpa Hegde (Liberal)
- Kelvin Thomson (Labor)
On paper, Wills is a very safe seat. The Greens are only 3.2% behind the Liberal Party on primary votes – if the Greens were to overtake the Liberal Party they would likely come much closer to winning than the Liberal Party. That, however, is unlikely to take place in the 2013 election.
The Greens are the second-highest polling party in the southern half of the electorate, as indicated in the map on the right, but the Greens aren’t quite as strong as in Melbourne or Batman. If the Greens were to overtake the Liberal Party, the ALP would still have a substantial margin, depending on how the Liberal Party directs preferences.
2010 two-candidate-preferred result
Booths have been divided into three areas:
- North-East – Coburg, Fawkner and other suburbs.
- North-West – Glenroy, Pascoe Vale and other suburbs.
- South – Brunswick and other suburbs.
The ALP topped the poll in all three areas, varying from 45.9% in the south to 56.1% in the north-east.
The Liberal Party came second in the two northern areas, with the vote varying from 16.3% in the south to 27.4% in the north-west.
The Greens came second in the south with 34.2%, with the lowest Greens vote being 12.6% in the north-west.
|Voter group||GRN %||LIB %||ALP %||Total votes||% of ordinary votes|