Cook – Australia 2022

LIB 19.0%

Incumbent MP
Scott Morrison, since 2007.

Geography
Southern Sydney, Cook covers parts of the Sutherland Shire and the St George area. Suburbs in Sutherland include Cronulla, Sylvania, Miranda, Gymea, Caringbah and Taren Point. Suburbs in the St George area include Sans Souci, Ramsgate, Sandringham, Monterey, Beverley Park, Kogarah Bay, Kyle Bay and Blakehurst.

History

Cook was first created for the 1969 election. The suburbs around the current seat of Cook were first included in the seat of Illawarra from federation until the 1922 election, when it was transferred to Werriwa, when Werriwa was a large rural seat covering areas south of Sydney. The seat of Hughes was created in 1955, which was the first seat based in Sutherland. Cook was then created in 1969. This used the same name as an earlier seat based in inner Sydney, which had been a safe Labor seat before its abolition in 1955.

For the previous sixty years the seat covering Sutherland had been mostly held by the Labor Party, although Hughes was lost to Liberal candidate Don Dobie in 1966, and Cook has been held by the Liberals for most of its existence.

Dobie transferred to Cook in 1969, but was defeated by Labor’s Ray Thorburn in 1972. Thorburn was defeated by Dobie in 1975 and Dobie held the seat until his retirement in 1996.

Dobie was succeeded by Stephen Mutch, a member of the NSW upper house, in 1996, and Mutch was defeated for preselection by Bruce Baird in 1998. Baird had previously been a state MP and Minister for Transport from 1988 to 1995, as well as taking charge of Sydney’s Olympic big up to 1993.

Baird held the seat for nine years, during which time he developed a reputation as an independent-minded Liberal backbencher who was occasionally critical of the Howard government.

Baird announced his retirement at the 2007 election, and the Liberal preselection was originally won by Michael Towke. Towke’s preselection was overturned amid allegations of branch stacking in a controversial contest, and he was replaced by the former director of the NSW Liberal Party, Scott Morrison.

Morrison won the seat in 2007, and has been re-elected four times. Morrison served as a senior minister in the coalition government from 2013 until he became Prime Minister in 2018. He then led the government to victory at the 2019 election.

Candidates

  • Gaye Cameron (One Nation)
  • Catherine Dyson (Greens)
  • Scott Morrison (Liberal)
  • Jacqueline Guinane (United Australia)
  • Simon Earle (Labor)
  • Assessment
    Cook is a safe Liberal seat.

    2019 result

    CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
    Scott Morrison Liberal 59,89563.7+5.4
    Simon O’Brien Labor 21,71823.1-3.5
    Jon Doig Greens 6,4066.8+0.0
    Gaye CameronOne Nation3,2773.5+3.5
    John McSweynUnited Australia Party1,1351.2+1.2
    Roger BollingChristian Democratic Party1,0411.1-3.7
    Peter KellyConservative National Party5510.6+0.6
    Informal6,1416.1+1.0

    2019 two-party-preferred result

    CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
    Scott Morrison Liberal 64,89469.0+3.6
    Simon O’Brien Labor 29,12931.0-3.6

    Booth breakdown

    Booths have been divided into five parts named after key suburbs. All of the booths in the St George area have been grouped as “Sans Souci”. Those in the Sutherland Shire have been split between Sylvania in the north, Cronulla in the east, Gymea-Miranda in the south-west and Caringbah in the centre.

    The Liberal Party won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in all five areas, ranging from 64.9% in Sans Souci to 75% in Sylvania.

    Voter groupLIB 2PP %Total votes% of votes
    Sans Souci64.915,66016.7
    Caringbah73.113,13414.0
    Gymea-Miranda66.112,71213.5
    Cronulla69.611,64912.4
    Sylvania75.07,0687.5
    Pre-poll69.122,38523.8
    Other votes68.711,41512.1

    Election results in Cook at the 2019 federal election
    Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and primary votes for the Liberal Party and Labor.

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    72 COMMENTS

    1. Some of your points mentioned seems to be replicating Vic Libs. Matthew Guy like Erin O’Toole is on paper on the moderate faction of the party but they use the same right-wing language and campaigns. Days before O’Toole was removed as a leader, he made a video blaming Trudeau for truckie movements and was sympathetic to the movement even their ideology. The Conservative Party member even spoke at their rallies for their support. It’s only after they got so bad that the Conservatives had to moderate their stance.Sound similar, Vic Libs were blaming Andrews for the civil unrest in September 2021 even though it was anti-vax groups and their ideologies that was caused it. Two months later when the pandemic bill was put into parliament, Vic Libs oppose it on the ideological stance as mentioned previously. the same group rallied and incited violence like bringing nooses. Like the Conservatives, a large proportion of Vic Libs members did the same on speaking at their rallies and denied their extremism. This even led their federal counterparts to distance themselves from attendance. During that period, Vic Libs’ social media even promoted people to fight against the bill. Only when it got so bad and public outrage that Matthew Guy partly retreated and told people not to attend their extremist parts of the rally. I won’t go through the Canadian Conservative party’s history and their political system besides that I think the truckies actually hurt Conservative opinion polls and something is similar in Victoria with LNP has shown a drop of support in the polls just after the November rallies

    2. Now Scott has a reputation as at least some one who is loose with the truth. It will be impossible for him to run a scare campaign. the aim of the budget was to boost the liberals stocks but they are not getting clear air.. because of his troubles with his only side.. free unfavourable character assessments concerns over the 2007 preselection.etc what ever he touches turns to s…t… and there’s is an air of desperation… maybe the by-election here

    3. Mention of the Peter Principle.. in an organisation with a clear hierarchy…everyone gets promoted till they reach their level of incompetence..there they stay and proceed to stuff up the organisation..when all reach that level the organisation collapses.. liberal party.. national party and their senior leaders

    4. 100% MQ. The Peter Principle wrt this Prime Minister has been a regular discussion in my office lately. I wonder whether the intrigues of the preselection for the 2022 Cook by-election will be as juicy as the 2007 version. There’s got to be a few campaigns in the works already.

    5. Well, Mr. Morrison has won his court case against his own party. A victory to be celebrated, to be sure. But by whom, it remains to be seen.

      Hawke must control of the 33% of the FPLP that doesn’t want to tear Morrison limb from limb, because I see no reason for Morrison to take this action otherwise. For all the “ruthlessness” we’ve heard of lately, surely this case damages the one thing he holds most dear (retaining power) by alienating local rank-and-file (of course, it’s well known he has no regard for a preselection 🤣🤣). Regardless of whether it’s friendship, religion or necessity that caused Morrison to override local party members, this will hurt his chances across NSW (where he needs to retain and in fact gain seats), not only because it will piss off local members who will be less likely to hand out HTVs and help the campaign on the ground, but it means more “Fierravanti-Wells incidents” will be occurring in the lead-up to and during the campaign. Just today, there was Catherine Cusack repeating her condemnation of the PM and the “ruined” party he leads (the party she is a member of). So, we can expect more leaks, more character assessments, and more “I don’t care” responses from the PM.

      This has brought up, in some circles, the question of a split. It’s gradually appearing more clear that the “broad church” has problems and grievances. In my opinion, the moderates are so pathetically uncommitted to their values (see Sharma only crossing the floor on RDA after the vote was already lost) that they will probably just sit at watch as their seats are consumed by Voices candidates. The capital-c Conservatives of the Liberal party (and perhaps elements of the Nationals) have demonstrated their ability to call out the behaviour of Morrison, if only to work towards a Dutton reign, as well as not toeing the party line more generally (the Member for Manila). These types are under less threat from right/far-right parties, and thus have more wriggle room, but they are making it clear that they aren’t happy.

      Anyway, on the topic of the court case, it seemed a bad outcome either way, as winning puts off your local members, and losing leaves you open to attack (“His own party doesn’t want to listen to him”/”Who’s really in charge”). Would love thoughts on influence of this case on NSW prospects, what it puts in play.

    6. douglas – I don’t think it matters. Morrison’s trying to stop Dutton succeeding him after the election. His thinking is that every democratic preselection that goes ahead is a sure vote for Dutton in the party room. He’s raking leaves on a windy day, and a couple pet stooges here and there aren’t going to change the outcome. Dutton already has the numbers and the moderates, whom Frydenberg would rely on in a leadership race, are headed for a wipeout.

      The fate of the Liberal Party really depends on the fate of Dickson. If Dutton hangs on, the head office oligarchs will be broken and the Libs shift dramatically and permanently to the right. If he loses then the Right might have trouble coming up with a credible candidate to rally behind, and the soap opera continues for a few more years.

    7. I have voted Liberals for 42 years, there is just no way I can even give Scott Morrison 2nd last on the ticket, he will be dead last. The only true conservative and real Lady in this race for Cook, is One Nation’s ticket holder, Gaye Cameron. She is genuine, is easy to chat to, and has more experiences in life than Morrison. Labor, who IS running for Labor they haven’t even been seen in the electorate.

    8. My question is who the liberals run for the by-elections……Deves? I thought if Coleman loses in Banks he would be a good choice here.

    9. There will always be some ambitious suit swimming around for a safe seat preselection. Can’t see why they’d parachute in someone from another seat.

    10. @Max Shillings, I am left leaning but respect your sincerity and you standing by your conservative principles. You are able to know a dud when you see one and adjust your vote accordingly. Respect.

    11. Imagine being a first-time voter or unsavvy voter in Cook and looking at the ballot paper and asking “Where the heck is Anthony Albanese?”. Conversely, voting in Grayndler and asking “Where the heck is Scott Morrison on this ballot paper?”. It’s just a random thought.

    12. That happens occasionally. People come out confused that neither Morrison nor Albanese was on the green slip. But you’re right that it might be slightly more confusing in Cook and Grayndler.

      And every election there’s the urban legend of someone at a booth screaming that it’s a conspiracy that Pauline wasn’t even on the ballot, they’re silencing us etc. Probably hasn’t happened, but it’s an amusing thought.

    13. Why The winer of election 2022 its being informed with great joy by official channels an not communicated officially from EAC website?
      Why already party winner is allowed to declare the victory, without the counting ( including the recounting of second and third preferences ) and the quota calculations.
      from at at least majority of all votes??

    14. I wonder what Mr Morrison will do next. Be a backbencher? Join the shadow cabinet? Resign and trigger a by-election?

      I don’t know the electoral history of Prime Ministers that well but Gough Whitlam was probably the last ousted Prime Minister to sit in opposition for an entire term. Since then, Tony Abbott is the only ex-Prime Minister to sit in parliament for an entire term (as an ex-Prime Minister) after losing his job.

      If there is a by-election, the preselection could be hotly contested as this is a safe Liberal seat and there are several defeated MPs and candidates who may want to throw their hat into the ring.

    15. I’m not familiar with Sydney as a whole, but I know even less about the area this electorate encompasses. The only thing I can really think of is the infamous Cronulla Riots. What contributes to the fact that this is the safest Liberal seat in a capital city in the country? I’m sure demographics and the like are part of the picture but aside from that I’ve checked the place out a little and can’t really discern why.

    16. It’s quite a white area by Sydney standards with decently high income. Beyond that, it’s mostly well established suburbs in which residents have paid out their mortgages, their kids are moving out either to inner suburbs or new growth areas and thus you’re left with an increasingly older and more settled population. That mostly explains the strengthening for the Liberals over the last few decades. Then it tipped over the mark of becoming the safest seat in Sydney upon Morrison’s prime ministership.

    17. Ironically, Cook has a safe Labor seat to the north and to the south.

      The Royal National Park separates two councils – Wollongong and Sutherland. It’s pretty much the southern end of Sydney. Sutherland Shire, where most of Cook is, is middle-class but more upper-class towards the waterfront and the beaches of Cronulla. You’ll find nuclear families, retirees and empty nesters. Lots of anchored yachts and boats too. The population is more Australian-born and/or of Anglo or European descent than most of Sydney.

      San Souci and Ramsgate has older Greek and Balkan migrants. The areas are gentrifying and becoming more affluent as it’s near the beaches and attracting families for the lifestyle.

    18. I just found out, Barton is the only neighbouring safe Labor seat. Hughes and Banks are Liberal seats.

    19. Agree with the Comments of Adda and Votante. The electorate of Cook used to be a marginal seat and was pivotal to the election of the Whitlam government even in the landslide defeat of 1975 it was still a close result and Labor narrowly missed out in 1983. This area shows how an area has changed from mortgage belt to established. It is much more Anglo than for example Mitchell or Berowa. Regarding the St George component of this seat. The Southern part of the St George District is more Liberal leaning especially areas such as Kyle Bay etc, now that Labor no longer campaigns in areas like Ramsgate the Liberals have improved. If Barton goes South again there is a chance that Labor can win some of the booths back.

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