North West Central by-election, 2022

Cause of by-election
Sitting Nationals MP Vince Catania announced his plans to resign from parliament in June 2022.

MarginNAT 1.7%

Geography
North West Central covers northern parts of Western Australia, south of the Pilbara region. The largest town is Carnarvon, and the seat also covers Denham, Exmouth, Meekatharra, Paraburdoo and Tom Price.

History
Seats in the north west of the state have changed names and boundaries and it is difficult to identify a single predecessor to North West Central.

The current seat was formed in 2005 as North West Coastal from parts of the abolished seats of Burrup and Ningaloo. Both seats had existed since 1996.

Burrup was held over those nine years by the ALP’s Fred Riebeling, and Ningaloo was held by Rod Sweetman for the Liberal Party.

In 2005, Riebeling ran for the ALP in North West Coastal while Sweetman was unsuccessful in finding a seat elsewhere for either the Liberal Party or Family First. Riebeling won the seat despite a small swing to the Liberal Party.

In 2008, Riebeling retired and the ALP ran Vince Catania, who had served one term in the Legislative Council. Sweetman returned to run for the Liberals. The seat was renamed to North West after more areas further from the coast were added to the seat.

Catania won with no swing against him, despite only polling 36% of the vote, and the combined vote for the Liberal and National candidates almost reaching 49%. The Liberal candidate came second, with the Nationals a close third.

Catania resigned from the ALP and joined the Nationals in 2009, and he was re-elected to represent the renamed seat of North West Central in 2013, 2017 and 2021.

Candidates
No information.

Assessment
North West Central is just one of six seats currently held by opposition parties in the WA Legislative Assembly. The seat is very marginal, and could be vulnerable to Labor in the absence of the sitting member, who had been a Labor member when he first won the seat. On the other hand, it wouldn’t be surprising if local voters decided not to add yet another seat to the Labor supermajority.

2022 result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Cherie Sibosado Labor 3,11440.2+13.5
Vince CataniaNationals 3,07539.7+3.6
Alys McKeough Liberal6117.9-7.9
Sandy BurtGreens 3184.1-1.5
Stefan ColagiuriShooters, Fishers & Farmers2333.0+2.6
Robert TonkinOne Nation2323.0-8.4
A AgyputriNo Mandatory Vaccination811.0+1.0
Henry SeddonIndependent400.5+0.5
Brendan McKayWAxit370.5+0.2
Informal3674.5

2022 two-party-preferred result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Vince CataniaNationals3,99751.7-8.4
Cherie Sibosado Labor 3,73848.3+8.4

Booth breakdown

Booths have been divided into four parts. Polling places in the town of Carnarvon have been grouped together, with the remainder divided between east, north and south.

The Nationals won a majority of the two-candidate-preferred vote in three out of four areas, ranging from 51.2% in the east to 65.5% in Carnarvon. Labor polled 59.9% in the north, which covers a majority of the population.

Voter groupNAT 2PPTotal votes% of votes
North40.12,05726.6
East51.284510.9
Carnarvon65.54125.3
South58.33484.5
Pre-poll57.92,22828.8
Other votes52.81,85123.9

Election results in North West Central at the 2021 Western Australian state election
Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and primary votes for the Nationals, Labor and the Liberal Party.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. I would be surprised if Labor won here. The Liberals are planning of running and it isn’t inconceivable a Liberal wins instead of a National but it’s unlikely given the state of the WA Liberal Party and the dominance of the National Party in regional WA compared the Liberal within the coalition.

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