Western Victoria – Victoria 2018

Incumbent MLCs

  • Josh Morris (Liberal), since 2014
  • Jaala Pulford (Labor), since 2006
  • James Purcell (Local Jobs), since 2014
  • Simon Ramsay (Liberal), since 2010
  • Gayle Tierney (Labor), since 2006


Electorate Margin Electorate Margin Electorate Margin
Bellarine ALP 4.8% Lowan NAT 21.3% South Barwon LIB 2.9%
Buninyong ALP 6.4% Melton ALP 11.2% South-West Coast LIB 11.0%
Geelong ALP 6.0% Polwarth LIB 10.6% Wendouree ALP 5.8%
Lara ALP 17.1% Ripon LIB 0.8%

Western Victoria covers the greater Geelong region and stretches west to the South Australian border. In addition to Geelong, the region covers Ballarat, Warrnambool, Horsham, Colac, Bacchus Marsh, Melton and Torquay.

Six of the seats in the region are held by Labor, four are held by the Liberal Party, and one is held by the Nationals.

The Western Victoria region was created in 2006, when proportional representation was introduced.

At the 2006 election, the Liberal Party and Labor each won two seats, and the fifth seat was won by the Democratic Labor Party’s Peter Kavanagh. The Nationals ran a separate ticket from the Liberal Party, which was unsuccessful.

In 2010, Kavanagh lost his seat to Nationals candidate David O’Brien, who was running on a joint ticket with the Liberal Party.

O’Brien lost in 2014 to James Purcell, running on the Vote 1 Local Jobs ticket.

2014 result

Party Votes % Swing Quota
Liberal/Nationals 161,755 37.0 -7.4 2.2176
Labor 149,033 34.1 -3.5 2.0432
Greens 40,235 9.2 -0.6 0.5516
Palmer United Party 11,704 2.7 +2.7 0.1605
Liberal Democrats 11,321 2.6 +2.6 0.1552
Sex Party 10,925 2.5 +2.5 0.1498
Shooters and Fishers 10,028 2.3 +2.3 0.1375
Family First 8,513 1.9 -1.3 0.1167
Animal Justice 7,346 1.7 +1.7 0.1007
Democratic Labour Party 6,694 1.5 +1.5 0.0918
Vote 1 Local Jobs 5,621 1.3 +1.3 0.0771
Country Alliance 4,341 1.0 +1.0 0.0595
Australian Christians 3,719 0.8 +0.9 0.0510
Others 6,402 1.5
Informal 13,388 3.0

Preference flows
Labor and Liberal each won two seats on primary votes.

We can fast forward to the last nine candidates running for the last seat:

  • Lloyd Davies (GRN) – 0.5951 quotas
  • Jayden Millard (SXP) – 0.2497
  • David O’Brien (NAT) – 0.2152
  • Mark Farrell (DLP) – 0.1977
  • Catriona Thoolen (LDP) – 0.1602
  • Mark Thompson (VFW) – 0.1589
  • Nicole Bourman (SFP) – 0.1422
  • James Purcell (VLJ) – 0.1335
  • Barry Newton (FF) – 0.1246

Family First preferences flowed to James Purcell of Vote 1 Local Jobs, pushing him from next in line for exclusion to third:

  • Davies (GRN) – 0.5959
  • Millard (SXP) – 0.2506
  • Purcell (VLJ) – 0.2396
  • O’Brien (NAT) – 0.2189
  • Farrell (DLP) – 0.1997
  • Thoolen (LDP) – 0.1616
  • Thompson (VFW) – 0.1599
  • Bourman (SFP) – 0.1430

Shooters and Fishers preferences pushed the LDP ahead of most of the pack:

  • Davies (GRN) – 0.5965
  • Thoolen (LDP) – 0.2916
  • Millard (SXP) – 0.2527
  • Purcell (VLJ) – 0.2413
  • O’Brien (NAT) – 0.2208
  • Farrell (DLP) – 0.2005
  • Thompson (VFW) – 0.1608

Voice for the West preferences pushed the DLP into second place:

  • Davies (GRN) – 0.5973
  • Farrell (DLP) – 0.3528
  • Thoolen (LDP) – 0.2919
  • Millard (SXP) – 0.2533
  • Purcell (VLJ) – 0.2417
  • O’Brien (NAT) – 0.2222

Nationals preferences pushed Purcell back in front of the DLP and LDP:

  • Davies (GRN) – 0.5986
  • Purcell (VLJ) – 0.4376
  • Farrell (DLP) – 0.3556
  • Thoolen (LDP) – 0.2936
  • Millard (SXP) – 0.2546

Sex Party preferences split between the Greens and Vote 1 Local Jobs:

  • Davies (GRN) – 0.6993
  • Purcell (VLJ) – 0.5764
  • Farrell (DLP) – 0.3569
  • Thoolen (LDP) – 0.2959

LDP preferences split between the Greens and the DLP, but the DLP remained in last place:

  • Davies (GRN) – 0.8495
  • Purcell (VLJ) – 0.5792
  • Farrell (DLP) – 0.4874

DLP preferences overwhelmingly favoured Purcell over the Greens, electing him to the last seat:

  • Purcell (VLJ) – 1.0330
  • Davies (GRN) – 0.8516
  • Farrell (DLP) – 0.0229


  • A – Katrina Nugent (Voluntary Euthanasia)
  • B – Liberal/Nationals
    1. Beverley McArthur
    2. Joshua Morris
    3. Jo Armstrong
  • C – Michael Bell (Reason)
  • D – Geoff Collins (Shooters, Fishers & Farmers)
  • E – Nicholas Croker (Transport Matters)
  • F – Stuart Grimley (Derryn Hinch’s Justice)
  • G – Andy Meddick (Animal Justice)
  • H – Lachlan Christie (Liberal Democrats)
  • I – Tim Gooden (Socialists)
  • J – Lloyd Davies (Greens)
  • K – Sonja Ljavroska (Health Australia)
  • L – Labor
    1. Jaala Pulford
    2. Gayle Tierney
    3. Dylan Wight
  • M – Anthony Prelorenzo (Aussie Battler)
  • N – Frances Beaumont (Democratic Labour)
  • O – Kenneth Nicholls (Australian Liberty Alliance)
  • P – Robert Pascoe (Sustainable Australia)
  • Q – Sally Hudson (Hudson for Northern Victoria)
  • R – Costa Di Biase (Country Party)
  • Ungrouped
    • Karl Pongracic

James Purcell won the last seat thanks to a very fortuitous flow of preferences. It will be hard for this to happen again, so he’d likely need a big boost in primary votes to increase his chances.

Labor and the Coalition would both be aspiring to win a third seat at Purcell’s expense.

Regional breakdown
The Liberal/Nationals ticket topped the primary vote across the region, with Labor not far behind. The Coalition topped the poll in seven districts, while Labor topped the poll in the four most urban seats.

The Coalition generally did better in the more rural seats, while Labor did best in Geelong and in the semi-urban seats between Geelong and Melbourne.

Results of the 2014 Victorian upper house election in the Western Victoria region

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  1. Oh GTVs… you are so silly.

    If this was changed to the new federal senate rules the Coalition could be a decent shot at 3 seats here, by running as Nats and Libs separately of course.

    And no micro party with 1% of the vote would ever get elected ahead of the Greens, which probably makes for more advantageous LCs for Labor on average as well.

    So what’s the hold up?

  2. My heart wants Tim Gooden (Victorian Socialists) to win the final seat but of course, even if he does have a reasonably solid profile within the local trade union movement, something pretty spectacular would need to happen for such a feat to be pulled off. More than likely, the final seat will either return to the Coalition or be gained by another Right-wing minor party off fortunate preference flows. James Purcell is most definitely toast.

    The Greens have, or at least once had, ambitions of gaining the fifth seat here as well. They even had a good go at it on the ground in 2014.

    I recall the Greens being so outraged in 2014 after missing out, blaming the Sex Party for directing preferences to V1LJ when in reality, their preferences made little to no difference to the final outcome. DLP and LDP prefs were never going to favour the Greens.

    Lloyd Davies is the Greens lead candidate again but in stark contrast to this time in 2014, it’s almost complete radio silence from them. No local policy announcements, no local media appearances, no local public appearances, not even any social media. Even the very few placards going up on fences are just generic “Vote 1 Greens” and Samantha Ratnam and Richard Di Natale – none of any actual local Greens candidates.

    They are not putting in any effort at all here and sure, that may change at the last minute but I suspect it’ll remain thoroughly empty bucket as their resources go into the inner city contests and into sandbagging the legislative council regions where they already hold seats by tenuous margins.

  3. I think whoever wins the election will probably win the 3rd seat if James Purcell falls short, But it will be a very tough contest

  4. Matt you are quite right that DLP and LDP preferences will never go to Australian Greens.
    All DLP voters I have ever spoken to regard Greens as socially immoral coms and speaking to DLP representatives T draw for Longman by-election their was even discussion about where to place ex Nazi members in relation to Greens. The DLP was the first party to advocate an end to White Australia Party and courageously have come out against Senator Anning’s support for a White Australia Party. In coming out in support for DLP statement on Anning this is the first time I have publically disagreed with Bob Katter.Be assured that all DLP. That I have spoken to will place Greens below Major Parties and it will take a neo-fascist or overt Marxist to result in them being anywhere other than at the bottom of the Ballot paper. The DLP and up to now KAP differ from One Nation over the issue of race.

  5. IIRC Shooters Fishers Farmers had very good preferences last time, but where outdone by Purcell.

    Purcell has had the balance of power, and we got a lot more attention then we normally get, he has lifted his profile significantly.

    Specific items that come to mind for me during the cycle where the CFA dispute (he sided against unions) and he opposed a mobile tower near Tower Hill (was near a school), but he was pretty balanced on some other issues (which i cant think of right now)

    Jobs where a big election issue for Labor last election, so his campaign benefited from that, and it will be harder for him to negotiate good preference deals now as the minor parties will see him as a threat.

    My guess is that it will see SFF vs GRN this time.

  6. The real story in Western Victoria is the division within the National Party as a result of Nationals elites overturning the result of the pre-selection and giving top spot on the ticket to Ararat Councillor Jo Armstrong, who only joined the party on the last day before nominations closed and actually lost the pre-selection vote by a large margin to Party Vice President Andrew Black:


    The idea that the Victorian Nationals remain a democratic grassroots party has been shattered forever by Peter Walsh and his factional henchmen.

  7. Why would DLP HTV show Liberal Democrats ahead of Aussie Battler Party. Apart from the Party Name being a bit down market the party platform and policies are virtually identical to DLP’s. In fact as the party was originally known as Civil Society and Mutual Party it reflects the DLP policy exactly. ITs founder was like me once a member of the DLP. Liberal Democrats are a libertarian party economically who are extremists With no moral policies whatsoever. It would appear that DLP have moved a long way from the Party of the 1970’s and contrary to the principles of the party founders the DLP are now prepared to sell principle down the drain to gain Parliamentary seats. Vince Gair, Condon Byrne and I suspect the Victorians Frank McManus and Jack Little would be ashamed of current DLP action.

    Why would one place Liberal Democrats above National Party members?

    I may be from a different era but principle should take precedence over power.

    I suggest DLP voters read the Aussie Battler platform at http://www.aussiebattler.com.au and then go away and ignore the DLP how to vote, Vote below the line if you want to vote for Decentralisation and Social Justice, Follow the DLP HTV if you want to vote for unrestrained laissez faire capitalism with no principles of Social Justice.

    IF anyone would like a copy of the 1972 DLP Platform send me an e-mail and I will send it to you in Word form.

    Consorting with Libertarians is nearly as bad as consorting with Communists. They are both as far away from DLP Chester-Belloc Distributism as you can get.

    Andrew Jackson



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