Willoughby by-election, 2022

Cause of by-election
Sitting Liberal MP Gladys Berejiklian resigned as NSW premier and flagged her upcoming resignation from parliament on 1 October 2021 after the Independent Commission Against Corruption announced an investigation into her.

MarginLIB 21.0%

Geography
Lower North Shore of Sydney. The seat covers most of the City of Willoughby and small parts of North Sydney local government area. The seat covers the suburbs of Chatswood, Willoughby, Middle Cove, Northbridge, Naremburn, Crows Nest and Cammeray.

History

The seat of Willoughby was first created in 1894. It was abolished for three elections in the 1920s and again for the 1988 election, but has existed at every other election. The seat has been dominated by the Liberal Party and its predecessors.

The seat was won in 1927 by Edward Sanders, an independent Nationalist. He joined the Nationalist Party and then the United Australia Party, and held the seat until his death in 1943.

The 1943 by-election was won by George Brain. He held the seat until his retirement in 1968.

Laurie McGinty won Willoughby for the Liberal Party in 1968. He served as a minister from 1973 to 1976. McGinty was defeated for preselection in 1978 by Nick Greiner. McGinty ran as an independent, and directed preferences to the ALP. The seat was won by Labor candidate Eddie Britt.

Britt was defeated in 1981 by the Liberal Party’s Peter Collins. He was re-elected in 1984. In 1988, Willoughby was renamed “Middle Harbour”, and Collins won the renamed seat. He became a minister following the 1988 election, moving up in the ranks to become Treasurer in 1993. In 1991, Middle Harbour was renamed Willoughby again.

When the Coalition lost power in 1995, Collins was elected Leader of the Opposition. He did not lead his party to an election, being replaced by Kerry Chikarovski in December 1998. He was re-elected to Willoughby in 1999 and retired in 2003.

Willoughby was won in 2003 by Gladys Berejiklian. She defeated independent Willoughby mayor Pat Reilly by only 144 votes. She was re-elected in 2007, 2011 and 2015.

Berejiklian became Transport Minister when the Coalition took power in 2011. She became deputy Liberal leader in 2014, and Treasurer in 2015.

Berejiklian became Premier and Liberal leader in January 2017. She led the government to a third term in 2019 and continued in her role until October 2021.

Candidates
No information.

Assessment
Willoughby is not a competitive seat when it comes to Liberal vs Labor contests. It is a relatively strong area for the Greens, who could come second, but won’t be in a position to win. A strong independent could potentially challenge here, but that candidate has not yet emerged.

2019 result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Gladys BerejiklianLiberal27,29257.0-6.5
Justin ReissLabor6,87514.4-1.5
Daniel KeoghGreens5,34211.2-4.7
Larissa PennIndependent4,7429.9+9.9
Tom CrowleyKeep Sydney Open1,4032.9+2.9
Emma BennettAnimal Justice1,0402.2+2.2
Greg GrahamSustainable Australia7791.6+1.6
Meow-Ludo Meow-MeowFlux3840.8+0.8
Informal9341.9

2019 two-party-preferred result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Gladys BerejiklianLiberal29,14271.0-3.4
Justin ReissLabor11,88529.0+3.4

Booth breakdown

Booths in Willoughby have been split into three parts: north-east, south-east and west.

The Liberal Party won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in all three areas, ranging from 70.4% in the west to 73.6% in the north-east.

Voter groupGRN primIND primLIB 2PPTotal votes% of votes
South-East10.416.470.613,61828.5
West13.16.770.49,14219.1
North-East10.98.773.68,68718.2
Pre-poll8.97.672.95,09810.7
Other votes11.76.769.111,31223.6

Election results in Willoughby at the 2019 NSW state election
Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and primary votes for the Liberal Party, Labor, the Greens and independent candidate Larissa Penn.

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71 COMMENTS

  1. Depends on whether the beaches tunnel goes ahead (apparently the new premier is not a fan). If it does, then Larissa Penn will run again and probably poll very well, at least in the bottom half of the seat. Hard to see what independent could challenge the Libs without that issue.

  2. Frontrunner for Liberal preselection is the Mayor of Willoughby Council, who’s also relatively popular. If she’s pre-selected she’ll win very comfortably in this safe Liberal seat.

  3. Honestly if I was a liberal supporter with political aspirations living there I would go for it…safe seat and has great potential for anyone thinking of entering politics

  4. Long time Ex- Mayor Pat Reilley (1998-2014) was an independent and Gladys lost to him on first count when she was first elected in 2003. She only won on preference from others. Anyone that can be challenging to Liberal would need to have similiar profile as Pat Reilly.

  5. This will be very close against a high-profile independent. Why do they keep choosing intolerant right-wing Christian folks who have no respect for people who don’t believe in god or people who want power over their own bodies? I blame the premier for this result, He clearly wanted James to win to spread his unorthodox far-right Lauren Boebert/Trump style Christian propaganda. It won’t play well here but if nobody is brave enough to stand here that is a credible alternative, then I not only fear for the people of northern Sydney but the people of NSW as a whole.

    This is Australia, Not the united states, we are not THAT conservative. The liberal party was never meant to be a conservative party, It was meant to be a classic liberal (small L slightly right of centre moderate party) that was founded by Sir Robert Menzies, I can guarantee he would not approve of the Perrottet/Dutton wing of the party.

    I can think of loads of names who could run here as a Independent/Liberal independent but most live outside of the seat. Does Tim James even live in this seat?

    Gladys would probably privately appreciate if the Libs lost this but she would never publicly say this (Same with Turnbull) Bet she is regretting the resignation now.

  6. @Nicholas if Menzies could hardly recognise the Liberal party today, imagine what he would of thought of the current state of the UAP.
    Menzies was a very deliberate and calculating figure especially when it came to the establishment of the Liberal Party. Listening to some old interviews between Paul Keating and Kerry O’Brien, Keating would refer to him as a dandy and a bounder- a pretender of sorts.
    Menzies felt at the time, in referring to the British political scene, that exporting or establishing a new party needed to be encompassing and somewhat generic. “Liberal” was chosen over “Conservative”.
    I wonder if the naming had been different all those years ago whether the same argument about how the Liberal party does not share the same values as it used to would apply.
    The problem for Menzies was he tried to create a party in the form of a Canadian or British Liberal Party but without the presence of a Conservative Party (Nationals were socially conservative but not economically liberal at the time, and also were only competing in rural/regional Australia), and therefore with this absence the modern Australian Liberal Party could never be purely centrist; yet they probably would not have been in government for long either.

  7. @Daniel – Do us a favour. Unless you are going to talk to the statistics and impacts of policies, it’s best you probably stop commenting. We are really growing tiresome of your ramblings which go beyond the pale of simply being somewhat partisan. You haven’t acknowledged once the criticism you are receiving in terms of your posts, which suggests to me that you are a party hack. It is one thing to have political allegiances. But you have clearly demonstrated that you are incapable of putting that aside for the benefit of a civil conversation.

    Now that I got that out of the way, to the situation at hand. Tim James being pre-selected as the Liberal Party Candidate for Willoughby is a fascinating situation, given two reasons:
    1. His base is in Mosman, which would normally make him better suited for either Warringah (federally) or North Shore (State). However, I do believe that he lives right on the cusp of the border between North Shore and Willoughby so he can be forgiven for that.
    2. Willoughby had been a Liberal-Left seat for years, originally under Peter Collins and then under Gladys. I imagine that this is a trade off, given the fact that Tim James lost by 1 for Pre-selection for North Shore to Felicity Wilson, driven by the accusation that she lied on a Stat Dec to complete her nomination form for Pre-selection (FYI, it was around her claiming to be domicile in Kirribilli, despite her, at the time, living in Epping). This also ensure no future shenanigans with the Pre-selection for Warringah.

    Tim’s challenge will be the demographics within the seat and that he is following on from someone who was incredibly popular in the seat. This seat has some characteristics similar to Epping, in that there is a large Asian community (especially around Chatswood, Artarmon and Castle Cove) that is aspirational and conservative (flying in the face of everything that Daniel has, once again, spewed out). This is a demographic that Gladys carried very strongly. Tim will need to win this demographic to ensure that there isn’t a repeat of 2003, when Gladys just held on in a by-election, following the resignation of Peter Collins

  8. I really hope Gail Giles-Gidney considers standing as an Independent

    As I understand it, Gladys supported her pre-selection, but the new deadwood in the Liberal Party chose to cynically parachute in a party machine factional mate instead, it seems.

    Why they are not aiming for more women in Parliament at this time, only they would know.

    In the electorate, and I have lived here 30 years, I sense there is very wide disenchantment at what happened to Gladys, and a popular and well-known local, endorsed by her, competing with a no name party hack choice, who does not even live in the Electorate, would give them a VERY nasty shock I feel sure.

    A ”BLUE RIBBON” seat does not remain so with a decent independent against a total no-name opponent.

    As many recall, Gladys only sneaked in to power 2003 by 114 votes, over another very popular mayor Pat Reilly who was running as an Independent. So a solid precedent. An Independent can certainly give it a shake.

    Gail has a strong groundswell of social media support on ‘Willoughby Living’ etc, and a new male MP living in Mosman is NOT what anyone wants to see replace Gladys I am sure.

    She did a great job as Mayor for 5 years, was a recent worthy recipient of Emeritus Mayor honour, and seems well respected for that, and has a pretty well-oiled nucleus I am guessing, of support staff from past Council Campaigns, should she choose to make the move.

  9. Honest question – is it too late for someone to nominate as an Independent, should they choose to?

    As far as I could see State election date is not set in stone yet, and some reports are Feb, and others March.

    So there is no firm date even now?

    Glen

  10. So my response was approved by moderators, I was told to clam down as that was the process, and THEN removed again?

    A very Chinese/Russian version of open speech!

  11. This assumption that the Chinese community (which make up 16% of the Willoughby electorate) votes as a bloc en masse and would favour a candidate like Tim James who is on the Right of the Liberal Party is quite frankly ridiculous.

    This bloke is from the same faction of the party as Dutton, whose hot, angry and shrill language against China will not go down well with the Chinese community, including calling for an independent international inquiry into the origins of covid, where to them saving face is paramount. A more nuanced approach and less shrill rhetoric with dealing with China like seen during the Howard years would resonate better with voters with Chinese ancestry.

    Over the 18 years that Gladys Berejiklian had represented the electorate from just scraping through in 2003 to her win in 2019, she had forged strong ties with the Chinese community, who share a lot of common ground with her being from migrant background, also coming from the Moderate faction of the party, being naturally more accepting of multiculturalism and less tempted into descending into identity politics. The same can be said for Gail Giles-Gidney, judging by her Facebook page, as Mayor of Willoughby as she too is well known to the Chinese community.

    That said, Tim James is an appalling fit for an electorate that has been a Moderate faction bastion for over 40 years and one wonders if Gladys or Trent Zimmerman would even bother campaigning for Tim at all. Pigs might fly. If Gail Giles-Gidney runs as an independent Liberal, Tim James can kiss his Ralph Lauren tucus goodbye.

  12. What a BS site– leave a civil comment, and they are removed immediately by this dictator owner.

    This is the China/Russia concept of Free Speech. Pathetic.

    I’ll leave a google review.

  13. I think some people need to get over the Daniel thing, pretty quickly – it’s becoming tiresome.

    @Hawkeye_au. I’m not sure a 58-52 results supports your trade off theory – pretty finely balanced that just went against the widely predicted outcome. Are you suggesting a few moderates agreed something or other with the conservatives and this agreement will flow on to Warringah – plus be backdated to North Shore by election??!

    There may have been more party shenanigans going on with the North Shore pre-selection those few years ago, that has backfired now.

    On your last point, yes, there is indeed a large Asian community – I live on the Castle Cove side of Chatswood, so I know this. But it’s not like everyone in the electorate is of asian descent. The southern end is increasing learning progressive – the Labor vote is also reasonable in parts of Artarmon and Lane Cove North.

    Social media has been red hot today on the pre-selection outcome. It will be very interesting to see what happens from here.

  14. When you’re talking about psephology by definition you’re dealing in generalities. The Chinese community, particularly 1st generation immigrants, and particularly older ones, are /mostly/ socially conservative and (these days) wealthier, and have shown more loyalty to the Liberal Party lately than did, say, 30-40 years ago. I don’t think the vast majority of voters tend to pay much attention to party factions but certain politicians do form personal relationships with those communities outside of general political trends. Maybe Gladys is particularly popular among the Chinese community for reasons particular to her, I honestly don’t know. But I doubt it has much to do with being a ‘moderate’.

    Gladys Liu and Ian Goodenough, two of the most senior current federal Liberal MPs with Chinese heritage, are part of Dutton’s hard right faction, so anti-Chinese sentiment and racism in general, which I agree seems to be pretty common among that mob, doesn’t mean that they find strange bedfellows. Marcus Bastiaan, a far-right power broker in the Victorian Liberals and absolutely massively racist and bigoted cunt, had a very deliberate policy of recruiting branch members from South and East Asian communities as part of his branch stacking activities. On the other hand, John Howard, certainly part of the conservative wing if not the hard right, owed a great part of his demise to the the growing Chinese constituency in Bennelong, who felt he personally, among other things, didn’t do enough to repudiate Pauline Hanson when she was on her anti-Asian immigration bender.

  15. What are you talking about, Glen? None of your comments have been deleted.

    To answer your question, the by-election date has not been set. Nominations have not yet opened, let alone closed, and so far only one candidate (the Liberal candidate) has been announced, so there is absolutely time.

    Joh, I haven’t removed any comments on this thread.

  16. @Joh Ben works his guts out to deliver political analysis on this website daily, the last thing he needs is you

  17. Thanks for info … sorry for extra post above.

    OK not too late for Gail Giles-Gidney, Willoughby Major for last 5 years, and Councillor for 10. to nominate as an Independent, if she so chooses.

    Hope she does. STRONG local following, well liked, member of every Community group that exists, no scandals, and one presumes will get preferences from both Labor and Greens etc. I’d guess she would get 10,000 votes, leaving Tim James with 15,000 or so as he is not known or popular, so with preferences it will be interesting. Last election even Gladys had a large swing against her –

    Gladys Berejiklian Liberal 27,292 57.0 -6.5
    Justin Reiss Labor 6,875 14.4 -1.5
    Daniel Keogh Greens 5,342 11.2 -4.7

    Dominic Parrot might rue sidelining and snubbing Gail, if she nominates. Clearly he is so arrogant (and/or clueless) he assumes Willoughby is a walkover, no latter what faceless factional buddy he pushes forward.

    If they lose Willoughby, numbers in the house will be precarious, and that is assuming no other losses occur.

    Sent her an email today hoping and urging that she chooses to do that. A zero profile, non-local resident, will not count for much here.

    We shall see. 🙂

  18. Joh and Glen, I found the site may not always publish your comments straight away. You may need to refresh your internet browser to see your latest comments.

  19. WestSydPol
    Hear, Hear !!.
    Ben mentioned paranoia . I’ll be “third man in” & suggest hysteria !
    Message yo blow ins
    JUST GROW UP, or just grow some. This is a site for adults.

  20. Glen, in 2019 an IND, Larissa Penn, got 10% and assorted others got approx 7% – there was certain to be a PV swing against all the majors. However, you are correct in your statement that Gladys got a swing against her on TPP – 3.4% with ALP coming 2nd, not the Greens. I read somewhere at the time that this was the first instance of a sitting Premier having a swing against then in their own electorate in their first election as Premier, which may have just reflected the large margin of the starting point – but it was a bit odd, and doesn’t really fit with the St. Gladys narrative that many think must dominate the electorate.

    On other matter – good comment WestSydPol. This thread seems to have dragged out a few oddballs – maybe its reflective of the coming by-election.

  21. Labor won once in 1978 here Greiner won pre-election over the sitting mp.. he in turn stood and directed his preference to the alp candidate.. who narrowly won. Next election 1981 Peter Collins won by about 3%. Since then most times safe liberal…. now looking at the booths I see one bad booth for the liberals 64%. May be a big swing greater than 10% but easy liberal retain

  22. @Mick Quinlivan

    1978 was also the first Wranslide, a smaller precursor to McGowan’s 2021 landslide in WA, but with similarities (1978 and 1981 saw both Liberal leaders lose their seats). Wran and McGowan are also similar in my book as politicians.

    So, no surprise Willoughby went ALP in ’78

  23. I am a local Liberal Party member in this electorate. My comments are intended to explain what is going on internally. This selection has prompted a lot of external comment which appears incorrect.

    The true significance of this ballot is that it is the first major preselection in the NSW Liberals under the new rules, which are essentially plebiscites of local branch members, with a central component.

    This means that deals, factions and being selected as delegates no longer matter anywhere near as much as they did. Berejiklian, Collins, Hockey and Zimmerman were all masters of gaming that process and so the local party looked considerably socially liberal (via their holding office) than it actually was. The moment that skill set was no longer useful, the candidate was always likely to be more like the local party, ie more personally conservative. This lesson has sent shockwaves through the Libs, because many of their MPs represent areas where their members are naturally more conservative than the MPs are.

    That said, Tim is not particularly right-wing. He won’t lead a charge on hot button personal morality issues, he’s a team player and will adjust to the partyroom consensus on Macquarie Street. I think people are confusing Tim the man with a factional label assigned to part of the Right that did not want a deal with the moderates about 10-15 years ago. They became known as the “hard Right” as opposed to the “soft Right” that did the deal. All three contain members with a wide range of views on a wide range of issues. Thirty something DINKS in Naremburn renovating a duplex don’t need to worry about Tim ending no-fault divorce.

    The real conflict here is personal. Gail Giles-Gidney was Trent Zimmerman’s proxy in this contest, and he and Tim have been opponents in the party for 25 years. They are unyielding opponents and now they are hand in glove. Liberals lack the internal mechanisms Labor has that force combatants like these to work together. Zimmerman will be taking this defeat very personally and very, very, badly.

    Finally, I’d be surprised if Giles-Gidney runs as an independent. She is the president of the North Sydney conference of branches in the Liberal Party. Her problem was that her own roots weren’t deep enough inside the party.

  24. @High Street – Unfortuantely, Daniel is a repeat offender and doesn’t seem to learn. At some point, the penny has to drop with him.

    @Glen and @Joh – I’ll tell you the same thing I’ve told others here. This is a well-run site, free (for most part) from partisan hackery and your comments do nothing but expose you as an individual and not in a positive light either. Get with the program or don’t post. It’s that simple. In particular, the idea that he was parachuted in is stupid, given that he lives within the general area and, as I said before, may even sneak into the seat by a block or two. I don’t know for certain but the idea that you call him a parachute when he, at worst, lives in an adjoining state seat, is stupid and reflects negatively on you.

    @Hughie – Thanks for the post and a great insight. I wasn’t sure if they ran this as an internal plebiscite (for the benefit, it pretty much reflect a US-Style Closed Caucus.). I also agree that Tim James is not that idealogically placed that he poses a threat individually. He is conservative but far from a hard-line conservative that people have attempted to paint him here. It would make sense as well with Gail Giles-Gidney running as a proxy from Zimmerman, as she was also very closely aligned with Gladys who is from the same camp.

  25. Thankfully our prayers have been answered and we have a rich middle-aged white man as our liberal candidate.

  26. FWIW, Tim was the youngest candidate of the three, and probably also has the least assets of the three. No one seems to mention the fact that another female candidate is married to a very senior investment banker, but that doesn’t fit the narrative. The original sins of his sex and ethnicity are things I cannot address, however.

  27. Ben Raue
    I’D like to make a general comment.
    There is a lot of sectarian prejudice being thrown about on this thread.
    I’m not in any way religious, & am the world’s most reluctant believer, only because the alternative is being a dumb hypocrite

    Nevertheless all the secular prejudice is really tedious, boring & stupid. Would everyone mind just STOPPING.
    Unless anyone seriously thinks that a person’s faith is the ONLY thing that defines them, in which case just SHUT UP because you are a complete fool.

  28. “Get with the program or don’t post. It’s that simple. In particular, the idea that he was parachuted in is stupid, given that he lives within the general area and, as I said before, may even sneak into the seat by a block or two. ”

    My humble apologies — had no idea all posts needed to comply with your own personal views. Mea Culpa.

    I live here, and I am sure you do not, if you feel Tim James actually lives in the Willoughby Electorate.

    Tim James **FAILED** in preselection for Warringah and North Sydney – correct?

    So Domenic Parrothead parachuted him into alleged super safe seat Willoughby – pure and simple.

    It was a very close vote to be pre-selected.

    No one in the electorate has ever heard of him.

    Gail Giles-Gidney has been Major for 5 years here, resigned that job so she could run for the seat, and is well known, well liked, members of every community group you can name, LIVES HERE, and was very heavily endorsed by Gladys.

    If she runs she will get a large slice of Gladys last vote number AND probably Green and Labour preferences. Unlike the Liberals they can COUNT the precarious numbers in the house!

    Better a Liberal leaning Independent (who will doubtless have a grudge at being shoved aside) than a rusted on Liberal party machine parachute. Independents might even control the balance of power. Hmmmmm.

    And surprise, surprise, is a woman. Not a bad idea in 2022 to most savvy minds.

  29. Glen it’s great to have another from the Willoughby community commenting here.

    Tim narrowly lost preselection for the byelection in the state seat of North Shore in 2017. He stood for preselection again in the seat before the 2019 state election, and was again defeated. To my knowledge he has never sought Liberal preselection for a federal seat, but the state seat of North Shore overlaps both the federal seats of Warringah and North Sydney, so you may be thinking of that.

    Tim doesn’t currently live in the electorate (although he grew up in Artarmon and was active the progress association there). But I don’t think there’s a dramatic socio-economic difference between the two, and nor is there a big distance – they are adjoining. Most of Mosman Council is no more than half a dozen blocks outside the seat, as a big slice of Willoughby electorate reaches into Cremorne and goes up to Macpherson Street (the Mosman Council border). The Orpheum theatre on Military Road is actually in the Willoughby electorate.

    I don’t think it’s right to say the Premier “parachuted” Tim into the seat at all. During the lead-up to the vote, Tim was seen like Kellie Sloane as an underdog. Premiers don’t “parachute” in underdogs. Also, the ballot was a plebiscite of eligible local party members, not delegates. It was a ballot with the outcome wide open in a way that the party hasn’t seen for decades. This is the new normal internally for Liberal preselections, and it looks like it will have a meaningful change to outcomes. One outcome will be that the moderates will no longer have a lock on preselections on the north shore, and that is the real shock to a lot of people. It certainly has been within the Liberal Party.

    Gail was a strong mayor with an impressive track record and a great community profile. But the contest was for the Liberal nomination, not a generic “community” role like the mayoralty in a non-party contest.
    Yes, she was endorsed by Gladys Berejiklian. And, in turn, Tim was endorsed by Gladys’ predecessor, Peter Collins, who was also an active member of the moderates’ faction as the MP. Similarly, former local federal MP Joe Hockey, who like Gladys was a factional moderate that was blooded in the Young Liberal factional fights in the 1980s and 1990s, endorsed the third candidate, Kellie Sloane.

    Finally, it is not uncommon for parliamentary aspirants to run in several seats before being selected. To take a few recent examples, Kristina Keneally was Labor’s candidate for Bennelong before she was endorsed to run in Fowler next time (and of course before her senate seat and state parliamentary career). Julian Leeser ran for Liberal preselection in Bradfield before being selected for Berowra. David Coleman similarly ran and lost in the same preselection for Bradfield as Julian Leeser before being selected to run in Banks. With that as context, the fact that Tim James has sought preselection for two adjacent, comparable state seats that both fall within the same federal electorate, is pretty unremarkable.

    Like a lot of inner-urban, high-income seats, Willoughby has a section of the community that is vocal, active and motivated on issues and representation. That’s certainly become obvious with this vacancy – the question will be what effect it has on the by-election outcome. I expect a big swing against away from the Liberals, but probably not enough to cost them the seat.

  30. I agree with you Hughie, along with Winediamond and Hawkeye, that this preselection contest is overblown somewhat. Having a high profile endorsement before a preselection/primary contest does not always play out well.

    For example, in the US there are examples of Republican candidates who were ‘endorsed’ by Trump but then lost primary elections. In fact, this contest is very similar to a primary for a national House seat by election in Texas, which saw Jake Elzey and Susan Wright battle for Republican nomination. Wright, the wife of the former (deceased) member was favoured to win and topped the vote at the initial (open) primary but then lost the runoff election to Elzey, who was serving as a State MP equivalent. Both had similar conservative credentials (although Elzey was the more ‘moderate’ of the two) and Wright accepted the defeat quite gracefully.

  31. Perhaps Willoughby will play out in the same way, with Tim James the slightly more ‘conservative’ of the two winning and Gail accepting defeat and not attempt to run as an independent.

  32. In fact for the Texas example, Jake Ellzey lost an earlier primary in the same seat/district for the previous general election to Ron Wright, and then won against Susan Wright at the subsequent special/by election. Basically the same as Tim James who lost a preselection contest in the general election, then won the nomination for a by election.

  33. Word seems to be that GGG is not running. It’s a big call to run as an Independent. Easy for people to say on blogs that she should.

    There’s one IND who ran in 2019, and got a decent vote and might be able to make an impact, but doesn’t have a big profile outside of a small slice of electorate

  34. The independent you are referring to you High Street is Larissa Penn. She ran on a platform opposing the Northern Beaches Tunnel, which will have an impact on parts of the Willoughby electorate. If the Government intends to continue with the tunnel, then I expect Penn to run again both at the by-election and at the 2023 state election. If Penn does stand, I expect she will do particularly well in the part of the electorate that is south of Tunks Park.

  35. Hughie and Glen.

    Note the most famous Tallyroom poster of all – Wine Diamond – resides deep in the heart of the Willoughby electorate. As do I.

  36. 20%+ Margin will be very hard for any independent to overcome, let alone a split field.
    There is no stand out or high profile independent, this will cause negation of candidacy and relies heavily on a coordinated preferencing effort.
    Trying to get elected as a state independent is a lot harder than Local Government and even Federal Parliament primarily due to OPV. Council you can get elected because of small quotas and small wards (less ground to campaign), and Fed you can game the system like Wilkie did and just piggy back off preferences.
    Given this is also a by-election, voters are wanting to get in and out, and I think many will just mark “1” next to a name and be done with it. There’s also “the devil you know” aspect, and the reality is there are currently only 3 independents elected in the lower house NSW Parliament.
    Greenwich got elected because of Clover, Piper got elected because he was a long time Mayor, and McGirr got elected because the prior member resigned in disgrace.
    Gladys and the Liberal brand in general is not toxic in the North Shore, as many suggest. There may be bumps in the road but no more than Labor suffered in Western Sydney in 2011 State and 2013 Fed.
    Losing Willoughby to anyone other than a Lib, would be like Labor losing Lakemba or Mt Druitt. Statistically possible but virtually improbable.
    This whole “Voices of” movement that seems to be getting a lot of coverage will collapse before the finish in a lot of these seats. It would’ve been smarter to just create a new party- like the Democrats- and coordinate a more cohesive message.
    The biggest mistake the Libs made was not trying to court Stegall as soon as she beat Abbott. Half the problems they are having in this area is because they didn’t horse trade enough with her.

  37. Booth for Booth between March 2019 State and May 2019 Federal elections, the combined left vote was 10-12% lower in State than Federal. This shows either 1) St. Gladys personal vote is way higher than Zimmerman, which would not surprise and/or 2) Federal Labor just does better in these parts than State Labor. Either way, its a stark difference and would have to form some sort of baseline for considering what sort of swing might happen here.

  38. Or 3), voter exhaustion because many aren’t having to preference every candidate because of Optional Preferencing at a State level. I’d imagine the Greens/Left vote has become more inflated at a Federal level across many inner city seats because voters are forced into having to put a number against one of their candidates otherwise their vote doesn’t count.
    This is one of the problems with compulsory preferential voting, yes it stops voter exhaustion but it also mandates voters to give candidates and parties a ranking when they otherwise may not even consider them in their vote.
    If you’re a moderate Liberal voter in North Sydney, of course you’d be more inclined to vote Greens over Palmer, Sustainable Australia, CDP and an ambiguous independent due to pure name recognition. These were the options on the 2019 ballot. And for that matter some, not all, Greens voters who may have not wanted to give Labor any preference are forced to because of the lesser of 2 evils argument, and this inflates the Labor/left vote.
    This is a real problem with Compulsory Preferential because in reality it’s not the AEC’s responsibility or concern to worry if votes are exhausted or not. This is part of the democratic process.
    For many voters, putting a party last is not as powerful as not even acknowledging them on a ballot.
    For example, in a worse case scenario if you had multiple extreme ideological candidates on a ballot of half a dozen, you would still have to give at least 2 of them a preference/ranking of some kind for your vote to count.

  39. Agree with most of your points LJ Davidson, I’m not really keen on full preferential voting because I have to rank all candidates, even for the LNP and conservative parties who I would rather just ignore because I don’t support them.

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