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Coalition Edging Towards 90 Seats As Election Counting Continues

It now appears likely that the Liberal-Nationals coalition will hold 90 seats in the House of Representatives, as Labor’s position deteriorates in several undecided electorates.

The ALP’s position in Barton, Eden-Monaro and McEwen has worsened over the past two days of counting. The ALP is behind by 643 votes in Barton, 591 votes in Eden-Monaro and 116 votes in McEwen.

However, in the Queensland seat of Capricornia, the ALP remains ahead and has stretched its lead to 268 votes. Capricornia and McEwen are now the only results in serious doubt.

In Reid, the ALP’s position has worsened since Monday and it is now 928 votes behind. It is 722 votes behind in Dobell. Both seats are now presumed to be Liberal gains.

The ALP began the election with 72 seats. It has lost 14 seats so far: Bass, Braddon, Lyons, Deakin, La Trobe, Corangamite, Hindmarsh, Petrie, Dobell, Robertson, Page, Lindsay, Banks and Reid. If it holds Capricornia but loses Barton, Eden-Monaro and McEwen it will finish up with 55 seats in the House of Representatives, or 36.66% of the total.

This would constitute the ALP’s 10th worst defeat in the 41 federal elections held since 1910. It did worse in terms of seats at the elections of 1934, 1919, 1996, 1966, 1925, 1977, 1917, 1975 and 1931.

The interest on the Coalition side now centres on Indi and Fairfax. Clive Palmer is now 1,411 votes ahead of his LNP rival in Fairfax. His lead has been quite stable since Monday and he now seems certain to win.

In Indi, the independent Cathy McGowan is 1,449 votes ahead and now seems assured of victory. Her lead was consolidated yesterday after the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) corrected a clerical error which had seen 1000 votes incorrectly given to the Liberal incumbent, Sophie Mirabella.

Whilst the clerical error may seem like sloppy work on the part of the AEC, its rectification is in fact a tribute to the fail-safe measures the Commission has in place. By reconciling the number of ballot papers issued with those returned and monitoring Senate numbers, clerical errors are quickly identified.

The Coalition began with 73 seats. It has gained the 14 seats listed above, plus the formerly independent electorates of New England and Lyne. If we assume it has lost Fairfax and Indi, but won Barton, Eden-Monaro and McEwen, it will have 90 seats in the new House.

Sophie Mirabella will have the dubious distinction of being the only incumbent Coalition MP to be defeated.

There will be one Green (Adam Bandt in Melbourne), one Palmer United Party (Clive Palmer in Fairfax) and three independents (Bob Katter in Kennedy, Andrew Wilkie in Denison and Cathy McGowan in Indi).

Counting will continue today.

2013 Federal Election: House of Representatives Seats
No. Seat Incumbent Challenger Status
NEW SOUTH WALES
1.
BANKS
Daryl Melham
ALP
David Coleman
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
2.
BARTON
Steve McMahon
ALP
Nickolas Varvaris
Liberal
Liberal 643 votes ahead
3.
DOBELL
Craig Thomson
IND/ALP
Karen McNamara
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
4.
EDEN-MONARO
Mike Kelly
ALP
Peter Hendy
Liberal
Liberal 591 votes ahead
5.
LINDSAY
David Bradbury
ALP
Fiona Scott
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
6.
LYNE
Rob Oakeshott
IND (ret)
David Gillespie
The Nationals
THE NATIONALS GAIN
7.
NEW ENGLAND
Tony Windsor
IND (ret)
Barnaby Joyce
The Nationals
THE NATIONALS GAIN
8.
PAGE
Janelle Saffin
ALP
Kevin Hogan
The Nationals
THE NATIONALS GAIN
9.
REID
John Murphy
ALP
Craig Laundy
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
10.
ROBERTSON
Deborah O’Neill
ALP
Lucy Wicks
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
VICTORIA
1.
CORANGAMITE
Darren Cheeseman
ALP
Sarah Henderson
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
2.
DEAKIN
Mike Symon
ALP
Michael Sukkar
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
3.
INDI
Sophie Mirabella
Liberal
Cathy McGowan
Independent
Independent 1,449 votes ahead
4.
LA TROBE
Laura Smyth
ALP
Jason Wood
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
5.
McEWEN
Rob Mitchell
ALP
Donna Petrovich
Liberal
Liberal 116 votes ahead
QUEENSLAND
1.
CAPRICORNIA
Peter Freeleagus
ALP
Michelle Landry
Liberal National
ALP 268 votes ahead
2.
FAIRFAX
Ted O’Brien
Liberal National
Clive Palmer
Palmer United Party
PUP 1,411 votes ahead
3.
PETRIE
Yvette D’Ath
ALP
Luke Howarth
Liberal National
LIBERAL GAIN
WESTERN AUSTRALIA
1.
O’CONNOR
Chub Witham
The Nationals
Rick Wilson
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
SOUTH AUSTRALIA
1.
HINDMARSH
Steve Georganas
ALP
Matt Williams
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
TASMANIA
1.
BASS
Geoff Lyons
ALP
Andrew Nikolic
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
2.
BRADDON
Sid Sidebottom
ALP
Brett Whiteley
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN
3.
LYONS
Dick Adams
ALP
Eric Hutchinson
Liberal
LIBERAL GAIN


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