Monaro – NSW 2019

NAT 2.5%

Incumbent MP
John Barilaro, since 2011.

Southeastern NSW. Monaro covers inland parts of southeastern NSW to the south and east of the ACT. The seat includes Queanbeyan, Cooma and the Snowy Mountains. It covers the Snowy Monaro and Queanbeyan-Palerang council areas.

The seat of Monaro was first creating in 1858, and apart from three terms in the 1920s, Monaro has existed as an electoral district ever since.

The seat was abolished in 1920 when proportional representation was introduced, and Monaro was included in the three-member Goulburn district.

When Monaro was introduced in 1927 it was won by the Country Party’s William Hedges. Hedges held the seat until 1941, when he lost to the ALP’s John Seiffert by 181 votes.

Prior to the 1950 election, Seiffert was disendorsed by the ALP after he voted against the party’s candidate for a Legislative Council vacancy. He was re-elected in Monaro without an official Labor opponent, and was eventually readmitted to the party. He continued to serve in Monaro until his retirement in 1965.

In 1965, Seiffert retired, and his son ran as the Labor candidate, losing to the Liberal candidate Steve Mauger in a three-cornered contest, with Country Party preferences electing the Liberal by only 268 votes. Mauger held the seat until his retirement in 1976, serving as a junior minister for the final year of his term.

In 1976, another three-cornered contest saw Labor candidate John Akister win despite the combined Country Party and Liberal Party vote adding up to a majority. Akister held the seat until 1988, serving as a minister from 1984 to 1988. In 1988, he lost his seat in the anti-Labor landslide to the National Party’s Peter Cochran.

Cochran held the seat until 1999, when he retired. He was succeeded by fellow National Peter Webb. Webb held the seat for one term, and lost to the ALP’s Steve Whan in 2003.

Whan was re-elected in 2007, and served as a minister in the Labor government from 2009 to 2011.

In 2011, Whan lost Monaro to Nationals candidate John Barilaro with an 8.4% swing. Whan was appointed to fill a vacancy in the Legislative Council in June 2011. Whan subsequently resigned from his upper house seat to recontest Monaro in 2015, but again lost to Barilaro.

Barilaro was appointed to the ministry in 2014, and he was elected Nationals leader (and deputy premier) in 2016.


Monaro is a very marginal seat. Barilaro may benefit from a higher profile as party leader.

2015 result

John Barilaro Nationals 22,51848.7+1.7
Steve Whan Labor 18,76140.6-0.5
Peter Marshall Greens 3,6207.8+0.1
Leslie DinhamNo Land Tax6911.5+1.5
Joy HortonChristian Democrats6131.30.0

2015 two-party-preferred result

John Barilaro Nationals 23,31452.5+0.5
Steve Whan Labor 21,07147.5-0.5

Booth breakdown

Booths in Monaro have been split into four areas. Polling places in the former Queanbeyan, Palerang and Cooma-Monaro council areas have been grouped together. Polling places in the former Bombala and Snowy River council areas have been grouped as “South”. A majority of the seat’s population lives in the former City of Queanbeyan.

The Nationals won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in three out of four areas, ranging from 51.9% in Palerang to 63.3% in the south.

Labor won a slim 51.4% majority in the populous Queanbeyan area.

Voter groupNAT 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Other votes54.77,78316.8

Two-party-preferred votes in Monaro at the 2015 NSW state election

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  1. This will be close but I think it will be a Nationals Hold for a couple of reasons:
    *Steve Whan no-longer running means that his personal vote is now effectively gone
    *John Barilaro, as Deputy Premier, increases his profile in the seat even further

  2. Profile doesn’t matter, this is a must gain for a labor win, they will throw everything at it, this is in Eden- monaro, Labor gain

  3. Profile certainly matters. You only need to look at the impact of the sophomore surge to see how important personality and personal votes are.

    On top of that, being a Premier or Deputy Premier can often add an extra 1-2% on top.

  4. Queanbeyan makes up half the population of the electorate, and I haven’t seen much evidence in Queanbeyan that anyone is aware there’s even an election coming up.

  5. Have little doubt that this seat will be in play but realistically could go either way. Whilst the current state govt’s popularity is less than stellar and the Nats collectively “on the nose” in much of the state; Moderate is correct in inferring that this is more pronounced in other areas of the state. Queanbeyan IS the dominant vote centre in the electorate but whilst traditionally LAB leaning; one would have to think that LAB will really need to rack up much larger surpluses in the Queanbeyan booths to offset the stark reality that most of the remainder of the seat is “tiger country”.

  6. Usual story.. its less than 3 weeks to the election, and a week from Pre-poll and my name is left off this website *again*.. happened in every other election (2013, 2015, 2016).

    Why is this please Tally Room people? 4 times is definitely a trend.

  7. It’s pretty simple. I didn’t know you were a candidate. Anyone who posts a comment saying they are running gets added to the list at the next opportunity. If you don’t tell people you are running I don’t know what you expect!

    I won’t be making any more updates until after nominations close, then the final list will be posted.

  8. Thanks *again* Ben, for making my name link to a 404 Error.. instead of my Web page.

    EVERY election the Tally room always seems to *magically* get something wrong in my details. are you funded by the Labor party or something?

    my website is and the .com version links to the automatially

  9. Sorry for the mistake Andrew! It turns out that a bunch of links had the http:// left off and thus have a problem. Thanks for discovering it, I’ll get them corrected tonight. I’m sure you can see that you’re not the only one affected.

    I’d appreciate an apology for your conspiracy theorising.

  10. This seat will come down to how well the ALP do in Jerrambombera. Given that’s Barilaro’s heartmand I don’t think they can do too much. I think they’ve squeezed every possible ALP vote out of Cooma last election, but I may be wrong.

    I lived in this seat for ten years in three different spells and my family was here from the 1840s, but even I couldn’t pick how it would go.

    Hey Thaler, what was the explosive inside info you had on Clive Palmer during the 2016 election? You never did get around to revealing it. It was at the Queanbeyan candidates forum for Eden-Monaro if you recall? The one where you sat on the floor up the front.

  11. I see this as a National retain with a negligible swing against Barilaro for two factors, one for that he is now Nats state leader and publicly telling his federal counterparts amid their leadership tussle to shut up, the other is the loss of Steve Whan’s personal vote as he is not contesting this time and the Labor candidate is quite unknown. Probably one of the only areas where the National Party will do well this election as I can see the federal problems, threats from SFF, Labor, One Nation, retiring sitting members and environmental issues surrounding the Darling River will hurt them in other seats esp. on the North Coast.

  12. Suggestions that this seat will be retained despite a 5% general swing to the alp and troubles in seats with much bigger margins that are more rural…. is counter intuitive

  13. Barilaro has been pork barrelling for all he is worth and sadly it may pay dividends. The $5m grant to the Wamboin Communications Group is a $4,000/head bribe and taking credit for the Bungendore School before negotiations were complete for the land will result in a significant additional cost to the tax payer. Hopefully ICAC will investigate.

  14. Monaro tends to favour incumbents, like Steve Whan 2003-11, and Mike Kelly at the federal level, so Barilaro has that on his side. Possible National hold, especially with Barilaro being National leader.

  15. Barilaro has increased his margin substantially, he is retiring the next election though and it has a history of large swings when an incumbent retires similar to what happened in 1999 where there was a 16% swing to ALP.

  16. Does anyone know the vote here in the Eden Monaro by election….. suspect at worst 45/55 lnp way


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