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This website is in imminent danger of being shut down. It has been online since 1995, but the personal circumstances of the owner, Malcolm Farnsworth, are such that economies have to be made. Server costs and suchlike have become prohibitive. At the urging of people online, I have agreed to see if Patreon provides a solution. More information is available at the Patreon website. If you are able to contribute even $1.00/month to keep the site running, please click the Patreon button below.


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Update On Undecided Seats – Hung Parliament Looks Most Likely

11.39pm – Today I have removed 4 seats from the list of undecideds.

The 4 seats no longer considered undecided are: Robertson, Batman, La Trobe and Petrie.

Their removal means that the Coalition now has 68 seats, the ALP 66, and Others 5.

Of the 11 remaining seats in doubt, the Coalition is ahead in 5 and the ALP is ahead in 6. If these seats were to stay that way, the Coalition would finish with 73 seats, the ALP 72, and Others 5. The government would be three seats short of an absolute majority and we would have a hung Parliament.

Many media reports say there are only 8 or 9 doubtful seats. I have included Barker and Grey because the Australian Electoral Commission has not finished the reordering of two-party-preferred votes (Labor v. Liberal) to two-candidate-preferred (Liberal v. Xenophon). Both seats are likely to remain with the Liberals.

I have also included Melbourne Ports in the list of doubtful seats. There is a possibility that the full distribution of preferences could see the Greens overtake the ALP and move into second place. ALP preferences could then elect either the Green or Liberal candidate. The incumbent Labor MP, Michael Danby, issued a how-to-vote card that placed the Liberal candidate ahead of the Green. This adds an extra complication to predictions for this seat.

Ten seats in the table all have a margin of close-to or less than 1000 votes. Most have a margin of less than 1%. Experience shows that a margin of 1000 votes is unlikely to be reversed by postal, absent and declaration votes, although this varies widely between electorates.

There is a case to be made that Forde is the only doubtful seat left, but such a judgment is somewhat premature. The picture should be clearer by the end of Wednesday, July 6, after the counting of more postal votes.
[Read more…]


House Of Representatives Undecided Seats: Latest Figures

These are the latest figures for seats that remain undecided in the House of Representatives.

The 15 seats in the table all have a margin of close-to or less than 1000 votes. Most have a margin of less than 1%. Experience shows that a margin of 1000 votes is unlikely to be reversed by postal, absent and declaration votes.

Of the 15 seats, the Coalition is ahead in 7, the ALP is ahead in 7 and the Nick Xenophon Team leads in 1.

On current counting, the Coalition and ALP each have a definite 65 seats, although estimates vary. If the Coalition were to maintain its lead in the 7 seats it is ahead in, it would have 72 seats, four short of an absolute majority of 76. If the ALP were to maintain its lead in the other 7 seats, it would have 72 seats, four short of an absolute majority. A government victory with 76 seats is possible, but the coalition will need to capture 11 seats from the list below. It cannot win Batman.

The seats of Batman, La Trobe and Melbourne Ports, in Victoria, and Robertson, in NSW, are not seriously in doubt. In Queensland, it is unlikely that Capricornia, Herbert and Petrie will change. In South Australia, it is not expected that NXT will win Barker, but very few votes have been posted as yet. Given the large number of pre-poll and postal votes, I have adopted an ultra-cautious approach to the list but I expect to be able to remove seats from this list in the next couple of days.

Significant new figures will not be available until Tuesday, July 5, when the counting of postal votes begins.

The table will be updated each day until all seats are decided. [Read more…]


Laura Smyth (ALP-La Trobe) – Maiden Speech

This is the maiden speech of Laura Smyth, the ALP member for La Trobe, in the House of Representatives.

Smyth is the first Labor member for La Trobe since 1990, when Peter Milton was defeated after serving for 10 years and 4 terms. The electorate includes outer eastern and south-eastern suburbs of Melbourne, including Boronia, Ferntree Gully, Cockatoo, Narre Warren, Pakenham Upper, Tecoma and Upwey.

A swing of 1.42% delivered La Trobe to Smyth, who secured 50.91% of the two-party-preferred vote.

Smyth, 33, is a lawyer. She was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland. [Read more…]


Day 32: Look, They’re Voting

Julia Gillard launched her election campaign on Monday but people have been voting for the past two weeks. By the time Saturday dawns, up to two million voters will already have cast their votes.

As the party leaders and the media embrace each other in an orgy of events, pretend debates and a welter of press conferences, out in the 150 House of Representatives seats an election is taking place.

In the 2007 elections, 1,062,339 people cast their votes before election day. They turned up to an Australian Electoral Commission office, most likely took a how-to-vote card from party campaign workers, and voted. Another 706,466 people submitted a postal vote. In all, 13.68% of the electorate voted before the official polling day. [Read more…]


Day 5: In The Arena

As I prepare to leave home to drive to Boronia, the Labor leaning northern part of the marginal electorate of La Trobe, in Melbourne’s south-east, Julia Gillard is speaking to nurses in Sydney. Without warning, Sky News switches to a Brisbane school where Kevin Rudd is surrounded by cameras and engaged in a detailed conversation with the Principal about the stimulus spending which has delivered a new assembly hall.

Rudd’s return excites the commentators but it seems a long way from the concerns of people at The Alchester Village, a nondescript shopping centre which derives its name from the junction of Albert and Colchester Roads in Boronia Heights, nestled at the foothills of the Dandenongs. Internal political party rivalries rate poorly here against the concerns of local traders, small business and suburban home-owners. [Read more…]


Day 4: On Message

In Papua-New Guinea yesterday, armed police patrolled Parliament House. There was talk of the Prime Minister being toppled. The Parliament met, but the Opposition lacked the numbers and 74-year-old Michael Somare remained in control. There was much activity but nothing much happened. The old pro who first became Prime Minister in 1975 lived to fight another day.

On Day 4 of the 2010 Australian election campaign, it was much the same: lots of activity but a sense that the real events were taking place elsewhere.

For Gillard and Abbott, it was time to focus on bread and butter issues. Time to shake off the distractions and target the message. Time to ready for the grind that is coming.

Abbott began and ended the day well. On Channel 7’s Sunrise, in an interview that lacked the danger of Monday’s encounters with the media, he once again killed, buried and cremated WorkChoices. The Channel 9 evening news in Melbourne led with Abbott cycling the streets and announcing expenditure savings.

Julia Gillard also appeared on Sunrise, her lines now perfected and rolling forth in a torrent. “I don’t want to see a big Australia … I want to see a sustainable Australia… we’ve announced a modest measure to take a bit of pressure off … Tony Abbott is strongly supportive of WorkChoices…” [Read more…]


Labor Lead Dwindling; Majority Of 16 Likely; 8 Seats Still Undecided

Nearly two weeks after polling day, counting continues for all electorates in the House of Representatives, with absentee, postal and declaration votes trickling in.

The Australian Electoral Commission now has the ALP on 80 seats, the Liberals 50, The Nationals 10, and independents 2.

There are 8 seats still in doubt.

La Trobe is no longer regarded as doubtful, retained by the Liberal member, Jason Wood, by 889 votes. [Read more…]