Rob Oakeshott, since 2008.
North coast of NSW. Lyne covers the coast of New South Wales from Taree to Crescent Head. It covers all of Port Macquarie-Hastings, Greater Taree and Gloucester council areas, as well as parts of Kempsey LGA, although it does not cover the town of Kempsey itself.
Lyne was extended south to take in Gloucester council area, which was previously included in the seat of Paterson.
Lyne was created as part of the expansion of the House of Representatives at the 1949 election. It was won by the Country/National Party at every election from its creation until the 2007 election, although it has since been lost to an independent at a 2008 by-election.
The seat was first won in 1949 by Country Party candidate James Eggins. Four Country candidates stood for Lyne in 1949, with Eggins polling first on primary votes, followed by the ALP candidate, and he comfortably won the seat on the preferences from his Country Party colleagues. He was re-elected in 1951, but died in 1952, triggering a by-election.
The 1952 Lyne by-election was won by the Country Party’s Philip Lucock. Lucock was the second-highest polling Country Party candidate at the 1949 election. Two Country Party candidates stood in 1952, one polling 30.2% and the other 29.2%, and Lucock overtook the Labor candidate on preferences.
Lucock served as Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives under the Menzies, Holt, Gorton, McMahon and Fraser government, but never achieved ministerial office before he retired at the 1980 election.
The seat was won in 1980 by the National Country Party’s Bruce Cowan. Cowan had held the state seat of Oxley since 1965 and served as a minister in the last year of the Coalition state government from 1975 to 1976. Cowan held Lyne until 1993, and is the father-in-law of NSW Liberal leader Barry O’Farrell.
In 1993, the seat was won by Nationals candidate Mark Vaile, a Greater Taree councillor and former Deputy Mayor. Vaile joined the Howard government’s ministry in 1997 as Minister for Transport, adding a role as Minister for Agriculture in 1998 and became Minister for Trade in 1999. He became Deputy Prime Minister in 2005 upon the retirement of John Anderson, and continued in the Howard government’s cabinet until its defeat.
Vaile moved to the backbench upon the Howard government’s defeat in 2007, before retiring from Parliament in 2008, triggering a by-election.
The by-election was won by independent candidate Rob Oakeshott with a massive majority, winning almost 74% of the two-candidate-preferred vote. Oakeshott had previously held the state seat of Port Macquarie since 1996. He had originally been elected for the National Party at a 1996 by-election and was re-elected in 1999. During his second term he became disenchanted with the Nationals and resigned from the party in 2002. He managed to win re-election to Port Macquarie as an independent at the 2003 and 2007 state elections.
- Rob Oakeshott (Independent) – Member for Lyne since 2008, previously Member for the state seat of Port Macquarie 1996-2008.
- Frederick Lips (Labor)
- David Gillespie (Nationals)
- Barry Wright (Independent)
- Ian Oxenford (Greens)
Oakeshott has proven to be very popular in both the state seat of Port Macquarie and in the larger federal seat of Lyne at the 2008 by-election. It seems highly improbable he could lose the seat in the near future.
2007 two-candidate-preferred result
Results do not take into consideration effects of the redistribution.
2008 by-election result
2008 two-candidate-preferred result
Lyne covers three local government areas and parts of a fourth. The following charts show a breakdown for both the 2007 election results and the 2008 by-election.
The redistribution added Gloucester council area. The 2007 results include the figures in Gloucester, whereas the 2008 by-election results do not. The Port Macquarie area makes up a majority of the seat, with Taree making up most of the remainder.
In 2007, the Coalition polled best in Gloucester (where the Liberals were standing), winning over 67%. In Port Macquarie and Taree the Nationals polled in the high 50s, while the ALP won in the small part of Kempsey contained in Lyne.
in 2008, Rob Oakeshott won solid victories in all parts of the seat. He won over 76% in Port Macquarie area and about 71-2% in Taree and Kempsey areas. At both elections the Greens polled most strongly in the Kempsey area.
2007 election breakdown
|Voter group||GRN %||LNP 2CP %||Total votes||% of ordinary votes|
2008 by-election breakdown
|Voter group||GRN %||IND 2CP %||Total votes||% of votes|