Welcome to the Tally Room guide to the 2014 South Australian state election. This guide includes comprehensive coverage of each seat’s history, geography, political situation and results of the 2010 election, as well as maps and tables showing those results.
Seat profiles have been produced for all 47 House of Assembly electorates. You can use the following pages to find your way to each seat’s profile.
Click below to click through to individual electorate profiles.
South Australian political history since the beginning of the 20th Century can be divided into a number of periods.
From the first Labor Party victory in 1905 and the formation of the first official Liberal party in 1906 until 1933, most governments lasted one term, and no governments lasted more than two terms.
The Liberal and Country League won power in 1933, and held it continuously until 1965, with Thomas Playford IV serving as Premier for over 26 years. The LCL held power for an extended period of time thanks to an extreme rural malapportionment known as the Playmander, despite the ALP winning a majority of the vote in a number of elections.
The ALP won power finally in 1965, and over the next 28 years won eight out of ten elections, serving in government apart from 1968-1970 and 1979-1982. This period was dominated by Don Dunstan, who served as Premier from 1967-1968 and from 1970 to 1979, and John Bannon, who served as Premier from 1982 to 1992.
The Liberal Party regained power in a landslide victory in 1993, and held on narrowly to a second term in 1997. In 2002, the Rann Labor government took power in a second consecutive hung parliament thanks to support from a conservative independent. The Rann and then Weatherill Labor governments have held power for three full terms.
Both major parties have suffered recently from leadership upheaval over the last terms, as Labor’s vote dropped in the polls, before recovering most of that ground.
Over the last two parliamentary terms, the Liberal Party has seen at least five contested leadership contests and numerous changes in the deputy leadership.
Also in the last term, the ALP moved on from Mike Rann to current Premier Jay Weatherill.
The ALP holds eleven seats by margins of less than 5%, most of which will be vulnerable at the upcoming election. These seats include a block of five seats at the southern edge of Adelaide, and four seats in northern Adelaide.
The Liberal Party holds four seats by a margin of less than 5%, all four of which were won by the party in 2010.
South Australia is alone amongst Australian states in requiring the electoral commissioners to consider the political ‘fairness’ of the electoral boundaries when drawing them. This failed to produce a ‘fair’ result in 2010, when differential swings in marginal and safe seats saw the ALP win a solid majority of seats despite not winning a majority of the two-party-preferred vote.
The Electoral Districts Boundaries Commission has decided that their previous boundaries were ‘fair’, and has decided not to undertake any radical changes to ensure a Liberal majority on notional boundaries.
The Legislative Council election in 2006 saw Nick Xenophon’s ticket elect two members, along with a Green and Family First. Xenophon will be supporting his colleague John Darley in 2014, and Darley, the Greens and Family First will be competing with the major parties and other minor parties over a small number of seats.
This profile covers the history of the Legislative Council since 1975, the incumbent MLCs, the last election result, currently-known candidates and the prospects for the upcoming election.