Central Wheatbelt – WA 2021

NAT 23.5% vs ALP

Incumbent MP
Mia Davies, since 2013. Previously member of the Legislative Council for the Agricultural region 2009-2013.

Geography
Central Wheatbelt covers a large area to the east of Perth, covering Ballidu, Beacon, Beverley, Meckering, Merredin, Narembeen, Northam, Westonia, Wongan Hills, Wundowie, Wyalkatchem and York. 

Redistribution
Central Wheatbelt shifted south, losing Dowerin, Goomalling and Wongan-Ballida council areas to Moore and gaining Cuballing, Kulin and Wickepin council areas from Roe. These changes increased the Nationals margin from 22.6% to 23.5%.

History
Central Wheatbelt was created for the 2008 election, after one-vote-one-value laws reduced the number of regional electorates. The seat was a merger of the previous seats of Avon and Merredin.

Merredin had been held by the Nationals since 1974, and Avon since 1986.

Max Trenorden had won the seat of Avon for the Nationals in 1986, succeeding Labor’s Ken McIvor. He held the seat until 2008, when he moved to the Legislative Council, representing the Agricultural region for one term until 2013.

The Nationals’ Hendy Cowan had represented Merredin since 1974 (the seat having a slightly different name in his first term), and retired in 2001. Cowan had served as leader of the Nationals from 1979 until 2001. He was succeeded at a by-election in 2001 by Brendon Grylls, who held the seat until its abolition in 2008. Grylls was elected leader of the Nationals in 2005.

Grylls won the new seat of Central Wheatbelt in 2008, and held it until 2013. He moved to the seat of Pilbara at the 2013 election. He stepped down as Nationals leader in late 2013 but returned to the job in 2016.

The Nationals’ Mia Davies won Central Wheatbelt in 2013. Davies had served one term representing the Agricultural region in the Legislative Council from 2009 until 2013. Davies became deputy leader of the Nationals in late 2013, and became the party’s leader after the 2017 election.

Candidates

  • Michelle Nelson (Labor)
  • Rob Forster (Liberal)
  • Estelle Gom (Waxit)
  • Mia Davies (Nationals)
  • Shaun Reid (One Nation)
  • Brendon Cahill (No Mandatory Vaccination)
  • Stuart Singleton (Shooters, Fishers and Farmers)
  • Annabelle Newbury (Greens)
  • Dennis Pease (Australian Christians)

Assessment
Central Wheatbelt is a very safe Nationals seat.

2017 result

CandidatePartyVotes%SwingRedist
Mia Davies Nationals 10,48947.1+2.646.1
Gary Templeman Labor 4,29719.3+2.319.6
Shaun ReidOne Nation2,57111.5+11.511.5
Bill Crabtree Liberal 2,49611.2-20.011.5
Diff ReyndersShooters, Fishers & Farmers1,1585.2+5.25.3
Audrey Foote Greens 6843.1-0.43.1
Dennis PeaseAustralian Christians4482.0+0.32.1
Estelle GomIndependent1500.7+0.70.7
Informal 9544.1

2017 two-candidate-preferred result

CandidatePartyVotes%SwingRedist
Mia Davies Nationals 16,16672.673.5
Gary Templeman Labor 6,11127.426.5

Booth breakdown

Booths have been divided into four parts: north-east, north-west, south-east, south-west.

The Nationals won large majorities of the two-candidate-preferred vote in all four areas, ranging from 62.4% in the north-west to 82.1% in the south-east.

Voter groupLIB prim %ON prim %NAT 2CP %Total votes% of votes
South-West12.410.471.24,89822.2
North-West10.411.962.44,14218.8
North-East8.810.777.92,23010.1
South-East12.89.282.12,1709.9
Pre-poll11.113.371.94,22619.2
Other votes12.912.572.94,35919.8

Election results in Central Wheatbelt at the 2017 WA state election
Toggle between two-candidate-preferred votes (Nationals vs Labor), Liberal primary votes and One Nation primary votes.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Central Wheatbelt is now so enormous it gets to have phantom voters from the Large District Allowance, which was originally designed for the remote outback seats. (Same thing happens with Roe.) When a farming seat gets over 100,000 sq km, it’s time to think about enlarging parliament.

    About the only interesting thing about this seat is the Mukinbudin booth, which for some reason has one of the highest CDP/AC votes anywhere (at both state and federal levels). They came second with 12.9% in 2017, with everyone else apart from the Nats in single figures, and they’ve gone up to 20% in the past.

    Weirdly, it was also the second-best booth for the Greens (5.4%), behind only Wundowie on the fringe of Perth. Not something you expect of a dusty outer wheatbelt town on the way to nowhere.

  2. There ya go – 16% for AC in Mukinbudin. Something in the water in that town.

    Libs got 22% in Wickepin, double what they got anywhere else except York (15%). Steve Martin (Lib candidate for Agricultural region) may have helped with that, as he’s from there.

    Labor won the booths of Bakers Hill and Wundowie (which have more in common with Swan Hills), but that’s it for them. Once upon a time Labor used to win the Northam booths. Even since 20 years ago, clearly that town’s changed. Labor won Avonvale Primary with 63.5% back in 2001 (possibly affected by One Nation, but still); this time around the two Northam booths were 48 and 45.

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