Solomon – Australia 2022

ALP 3.0%

Incumbent MP
Luke Gosling, since 2016.

Solomon covers the Darwin metropolitan area, as well as the nearby city of Palmerston.

The Northern Territory first elected a Member of the House of Representatives in 1922, but this person was only given full voting rights in 1968.

The seat was held by the Country Party and then the Country Liberal Party from then until 1983

Labor and then the CLP each held the seat for one term from 1983 to 1987, before Warren Snowdon won the seat for the ALP in 1987.

Snowdon lost the seat for one term in 1996 before being returned for one more term in 1998.

The 2000 redistribution saw the Northern Territory gain a second seat for the first time, and the seats of Solomon, covering Darwin and Palmerston, and Lingiari, covering the rest of the territory, were created.

In 2001, Country Liberal candidate Dave Tollner won the seat by only 88 votes. In 2004, he increased his margin to 2.8%. The 2007 election saw Tollner lose his seat to the ALP’s Damian Hale, by a slim 0.3% margin.

In 2010, Hale lost his seat to Palmerston alderman Natasha Griggs, running for the Country Liberal Party. In 2013, Griggs won a second term, despite a 0.35% swing back to Labor.

Griggs lost in 2016 to Labor candidate Luke Gosling, who was re-elected in 2019.


  • Kylie Bonanni (Liberal Democrats)
  • Aiya Goodrich Carttling (Greens)
  • Luke Gosling (Labor)
  • Tina MacFarlane (Country Liberal)
  • Emily Lohse (One Nation)
  • Tayla Selfe (United Australia)
  • Assessment
    Solomon is a marginal Labor seat.

    2019 result

    Luke Gosling Labor 22,05740.0-0.9
    Kathy Ganley Country Liberal 20,96238.1+3.6
    Timothy Parish Greens 6,52111.8+1.6
    Sue Fraser-AdamsIndependent2,6844.9+4.9
    Raj Samson RajwinUnited Australia Party1,5832.9+2.9
    Lorraine GiminiRise Up Australia1,2772.3+0.5

    2019 two-party-preferred result

    Luke Gosling Labor 29,24053.1-3.0
    Kathy Ganley Country Liberal 25,84446.9+3.0

    Booth breakdown

    Booths have been divided into three clear parts. The town of Palmerston stands apart from the City of Darwin. Within Darwin, there is a clear divide between the south and the north of Darwin.

    There was a wide variation in Labor’s two-party-preferred vote, ranging from less than 50% in Palmerston to over 60% in northern Darwin.

    The Greens polled over 14% in north and south Darwin and just over 10% in Palmerston.

    Voter groupGRN prim %ALP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
    North Darwin14.160.313,63124.7
    South Darwin14.853.56,54811.9
    Other votes11.349.23,5976.5

    Election results in Solomon at the 2019 federal election
    Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and primary votes for Labor, the Country Liberal Party and the Greens.

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    1. No clue why the CLP is running the same failed candidate for Lingiari, She was supposed to beat Snowden in 2013 all polls were pointing to it and even the exit poll predicted Snowden would lose yet she didn’t manage to beat the weak incumbent. Fast forward to 2016 she got a swing against her.

      Candidates who lose twice or more are extremely unlikely to win, Just ask Matthew Fraser, Kerri-Anne Dooley, Fiona McNamara and many more but I’m not going to make an entire list. But the point is running the same candidate almost never leads to success for the party in the seat they run in. The 3 example I listed all targeted marginal seats and yet in some cases there were swings against them the last time they ran (Even Matthew Fraser had a swing against him against the national trend last time)

      ALP hold with an increased margin. the CLP have a better chance at Lingiari.

    2. the political climate points to the exact opposite thing happening, given the NT government lost support at the territory election (less so in Darwin) so the ALP will probably still hold albeit with a slightly decreased margin, if indeed anything
      Why does it work for the Greens then? Amy MacMahon, Kirsten Lovejoy, Michael Berkman, Jono Sri, Caroline Perks, Dorinda Cox, Alex Bhathal (albeit no longer) and Tim Hollo have all had continuous improvement in the party’s vote over time, getting them very close/ actually winning the seat on many an occasion.

    3. I agree with David’s comment, the 2016 result with swing to Labor is due to Labor support in Northern Territory being strong coming off a landslide state/territory election win held just a few months before the federal election.

    4. The Greens have had plenty of serial candidates (shout out to Richard Nielsen who contested Brisbane Central for four elections in a row). I think it’s a bit of an expectations thing. It’s still quite rare that a Greens candidate is actually expected to win. A close loss – provided the vote total does go up – is still seen as an improvement to be built on.

      Whereas the majors are a bit more win-or-nothing. It’s either a target seat or a paper candidate. Paper candidates come and go. Target seat candidates are, y’know, expected to win.

    5. It’s important not to confuse State and Federal polling patterns. Queensland is a good example of this dichotomy. Labor will retain both seats, but with a smaller margin in Lingiari.

    6. For all this talk of Liberals splitting into two parties, it’s the CLP that’s led the way in this break-up. Jed Hansen is no longer running as an IND here but is now no.2 on the Lib Dems Senate ticket in the NT. To quote from his LDP profile page… “… frustrated and disillusioned with internal party disunity and a loss of core conservative values Jed resigned from the CLP, moving to independent before siding with other former CLP members and joining the LDP for the 2022 Federal Election with future plans to grow the LDP branch in the NT.” Personally still think it’s more opportunists leading this small split, but would be interesting to see how it effects the CLP vote (and we all know how Territory Alliance went). With LDP making a play for CLP’s vote, it’s just made it easier for Labor in the NT.

      Prediction: ALP Retain

    7. Most likely alp retain unless they can replicate 2019 swing with a bit extra. Reduced alp margin to within 1% my guess.

    8. Jed Hansen, Kylie Bonnani and Sam McMahon left the CLP. No one else. The CLP is much stronger without them.

      The CLP may pick up Solomon despite a terrible local campaign and a terrible candidate. It would be crazy, and all fingers would have to be pointed at the NT Labor government.

    9. Granted I don’t have first-hand experience, but from what I’ve seen Gos is a good guy, with a strong local presence. Actually goes out and talks to people. I’d be very surprised if he lost the seat.


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