Redistribution latest

Apologies for the inactivity – been a bit busy lately. Those who are interested will already be aware that Malcolm Mackerras has published his calculations of post-redistribution margins, answering (more or less) many queries raised on this site’s comments threads when the proposals were first made public. His figures offer a few surprises: Labor’s newly acquired seat of Parramatta has moved back into the Liberal column; John Howard has only lost 0.3 per cent from his margin in Bennelong; and Mackerras gives the Nationals a margin of 7.9 per cent in the new Queensland seat of Wright, whereas my own calculation (and reportedly that of the Nationals) had it at about 5.5 per cent. The following tables indicate which seats have shifted in which direction and by how much.

Coalition seats NEW OLD SHIFT MEMBER
Parramatta 1.1 0.7 1.8 Julie Owens
Wentworth 2.6 5.6 3.0 Malcolm Turnbull
Lindsay 2.9 5.3 2.4 Jackie Kelly
Eden-Monaro 3.3 2.2 1.1 Gary Nairn
Bennelong 4.0 4.3 0.3 John Howard
Dobell 4.8 5.9 1.1 Ken Ticehurst
Page 5.5 4.2 1.3 Ian Causley
Cowper 6.6 6.4 0.2 Luke Hartsuyker
Paterson 6.8 7.0 0.2 Bob Baldwin
Robertson 6.9 6.8 0.1 Jim Lloyd
Hughes 8.8 11.0 2.2 Danna Vale
Gilmore 9.5 10.0 0.5 Joanna Gash
North Sydney 10.1 10.0 0.1 Joe Hockey
Greenway 11.0 0.6 10.4 Louise Markus
Macarthur 11.1 9.5 1.6 Pat Farmer
Warringah 11.3 10.0 1.3 Tony Abbott
Hume 12.9 14.1 1.2 Alby Schultz
Berowra 13.1 12.3 0.8 Philip Ruddock
Cook 13.7 13.8 0.1 Bruce Baird
Lyne 14.1 13.0 1.1 Mark Vaile
New England 14.2 13.2 1.0 Tony Windsor
Farrer 15.4 19.9 4.5 Sussan Ley
Mackellar 15.5 15.9 0.4 Bronwyn Bishop
Bradfield 17.5 18.7 1.2 Brendan Nelson
Parkes 18.8 14.4 4.4 John Cobb
Riverina 20.7 20.7 0.0 Kay Hull
Mitchell 20.7 20.6 0.1 Alan Cadman
Macquarie 0.5 8.9 9.4 Kerry Bartlett
Richmond 1.5 0.2 1.3 Justine Elliot
Lowe 3.1 3.3 0.2 John Murphy
Banks 3.3 1.1 2.2 Daryl Melham
Prospect 6.9 7.1 0.2 Chris Bowen
Werriwa 7.1 9.3 2.2 Chris Hayes
Barton 7.6 7.5 0.1 Robert McClelland
Calare 7.9 21.2 13.3 Peter Andren
Charlton 8.4 8.0 0.4 Kelly Hoare
Kingsford-Smith 8.6 8.9 0.3 Peter Garrett
Newcastle 8.7 10.0 1.3 Sharon Grierson
Shortland 9.3 9.5 0.2 Jill Hall
Hunter 11.2 13.8 2.6 Joel Fitzgibbon
Cunningham 11.7 11.5 0.2 Sharon Bird
Reid 12.0 12.8 0.8 Laurie Ferguson
Chifley 12.1 13.0 0.9 Roger Price
Fowler 13.5 21.4 7.9 Julia Irwin
Throsby 13.9 15.0 1.1 Jennie George
Watson 14.6 15.1 0.5 Tony Burke
Blaxland 15.3 12.9 2.4 Michael Hatton
Sydney 17.3 16.4 0.9 Tanya Plibersek
Grayndler 21.3 22.6 1.3 Anthony Albanese

Coalition seats NEW OLD SHIFT MEMBER
Bonner 0.6 No change Ross Vasta
Moreton 2.8 4.2 1.4 Gary Hardgrave
Blair 5.7 11.2 5.5 Cameron Thompson
Herbert 6.1 6.2 0.1 Peter Lindsay
Longman 6.6 7.7 1.1 Mal Brough
Wright 7.9 New electorate
Petrie 7.9 7.9 0.0 Teresa Gambaro
Hinkler 8.8 4.8 4.0 Paul Neville
Bowman 8.9 9.1 0.2 Andrew Laming
Dickson 9.1 7.8 1.3 Peter Dutton
Dawson 10.2 10.4 0.2 De-Anne Kelly
Leichhardt 10.3 10.0 0.3 Warren Entsch
Ryan 10.4 No change Michael Johnson
Kennedy 10.5 9.0 1.5 Bob Katter
Wide Bay 12.2 12.9 0.7 Warren Truss
Fisher 13.0 13.0 0.0 Peter Slipper
Forde 13.0 13.0 0.0 Kay Elson
Fairfax 13.3 11.1 2.2 Alex Somlyay
McPherson 14.0 13.9 0.1 Margaret May
Fadden 15.3 15.3 0.0 David Jull
Groom 19.0 19.0 0.0 Ian Macfarlane
Moncrieff 19.9 20.1 0.2 Steven Ciobo
Maranoa 21.0 20.8 0.2 Bruce Scott
Rankin 3.0 3.3 0.3 Craig Emerson
Capricornia 3.8 5.1 1.3 Kirsten Livermore
Brisbane 4.0 3.9 0.1 Arch Bevis
Lilley 5.4 5.3 0.1 Wayne Swan
Oxley 7.2 9.7 2.5 Bernie Ripoll
Griffith 8.5 8.6 0.1 Kevin Rudd

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

19 comments on “Redistribution latest”

  1. It is interesting that you show Peter Andren as holding a labor seat. Perhaps if more of his electorate knew his sympathies he would have greater trouble holding the seat of Calare. I have read that he is still undecided about which seat (Calare or Macquarie) to stand in (link)

    I think it is unlikely he would stand in Macquarie (although his electorate office is in Bathurst, he is from the Orange end of the electorate). If he did stand in Macquarie, the coalition will win Calare and Macquarie would be anyone’s guess.

  2. Stuart, I have Calare in the Labor table purely because Malcolm Mackerras does. He explains this decision as follows (referring to himself in the third person):

    Calare, however, is shown as though it were a Labor seat with the swing figure being that needed by the National Party to take the seat from the sitting Independent member, Peter Andren. Why, therefore, does Mackerras treat Calare differently from all the others?

    Mackerras admits that, where seats in New South Wales, Queensland and the ACT have had their boundaries changed, the swing required to lose is based on his estimate. In the case of Calare, however, the figure of 7.9 per cent needed by The Nationals to take Calare from Andren is really a “guesstimate”. That, however, does not answer the basic question: why does he treat Calare differently from the other two seats held by Independents, namely Kennedy and New England?

    The first explanation is that, since Peter Andren was initially elected for Calare in 1996 (a seat he took from Labor) Mackerras has always shown the seat in this way for the simple reason that its two-party preferred percentage has always placed Calare on the Labor side of the median seat. In that respect it has differed from other Independent seats which have been natural Liberal Party or National Party seats. Secondly, by treating Calare in this way it is possible to show a uniform swing needed for a Labor government.

  3. I don’t know how Malcolm calculated the Wentworth margin. I agreed with his initial 2.9% margin for the libs (assuming that the fact Peter King ran had no impact on the 2PP preferred vote) – this looks like the booth votes. But perhaps he’s done some calculations with the votes from the Sydney Town Hall booth and the non-booths. But I’d be surprised if it came down to 2.6% – I’d say it would most likely be 2.8%.

    But these calculated margins don’t matter anyway.

  4. The distribution report says there’s no change to Ryan’s boundaries. There’s an extra 3500 projected enrolments but that doesn’t strike me as a good indicator of anything.

    That level of precision is also a bit silly, isn’t it? 0.1% is only an extra 90 votes.

  5. Well done Sacha and Darryl, you have uncovered a tiny error in Mackerras’s paper. Ryan has indeed not changed, but in one of his two tables he has incorrectly identified the margin as 10.5 per cent rather than 10.4 per cent. My table has been corrected.

  6. Blair remains of interest. The commission may not be done cutting down the Liberal margin.

    Both John Cherry and, unsurprisingly, Labor object to the inclusion of Boonah LGA and instead suggest expanding Blair into Ipswich East.

    The political effects are straight forward. Boonah LGA contains 6000 registered voters. I haven’t fully figured out all the polling booths belonging to the shire, but it looks like they voted Liberal roughly in the order of 70-75% in 2004. Whilst Redbank & Redbank Plains in Ipswich East voted Labor roughly 60%. Curiously, Cherry adds more voters here than Labor does, 4800 vs 3600.

    On the face of it, the suggestion appears to have a fair bit of merit. Why does Blair shed rural territory to the north only to gain rural territory to the south? A seat even more centred on urban Ipswich makes sense. As does retaining Boonah in the predominately rural Forde.

    The real test is whether the changes are outweighed by less than ideal knock-on effects to other seats.

  7. From a previous comment of mine:

    Here are the 2 party preferred votes in the booths in the 2004 election for the proposed Blair eletorate:

    from Oxley: 7240 ALP, 4460 Lib
    from Forde: 1330 ALP, 3749 Lib (including 1/2 of Flagstone)
    from Blair: 19067 ALP, 27527 Lib

    The part from Forde is Boonah shire with perhaps some extra bits, so you can see why the ALP wants Boonah shire to stay in Forde.

  8. I’m sure even Malcolm and Antony would be the first to admit that recalculating TPPs for redistributed electorates can be a bit iffy. Having done so myself, I would think that it’s so iffy that, in most cases, it’s probably not worth the effort- which is very considerable. There are all sorts of issues to do with the population of booths within an electorate, how they may change from election to election, what their “catchment” is and how to split up their votes when their existing catchment partly changes from one electorate to another. These problems loom particularly large in the border areas between two urban seats which are being redistributed. There is also the problem that the people who vote at a particular booth, although they are presumably of the same demographic, vote differently according to which electorate they are in. You can see this in places like Dee Why, where the main booth services both Warringah and Mackellar (both fairly blue-ribbon-ish Liberal). The TPP at this booth can differ significantly depending on whether the voters vote in a Warringah or a Mackellar cubicle.

    When we get down to splitting hairs at the less than 1% change level (as in Bennelong), we really are wasting our time starting the whole process. This doesn’t mean that I don’t take advantage of Malcolm’s hard work in doing my own tea-leaf reading prior to an election, but I don’t think I could show an increased prediction performance on the basis of it.

    Geoff Lambert

  9. Just to expand on the point about shared booths…

    There were about 230 of these at the 2004 election (not counting the CBD booths which serve ALL electorates). The average absolute difference in the TPP for the two (it’s nearly always only 2) electorates shared by these booths was 6.1%, the smallest difference was 0.01% and the largest was 40% (!)

  10. Sorry about this, but I overlooked the peculiar case of the booth at Rottnest Island- you can vote in any WA Federal Electorate at Rottnest. If you take Rottnest out, the above numbers become 5.6%, 0.01% and 24%.

  11. Geoff: perhaps results in booths shared by neighbouring electorates could be used to look at candidate effects on how people vote.

    It might be interesting to look at this in areas that are pretty homogeneous.

  12. Interesting Geoff. But I wonder if the large % discrepancies are as significant as you make them out to be. Or whether they’re simply exaggerated by the small-ish sizes involved.

    For instance, to use the Dee Why Central example:
    The 481 Mackellar voters went 58.4% Liberal
    The 1546 Warringah voters went 52.8% Liberal

    A difference of 5.6% may seem large. But 5.6% only amounts to 27 voters for Mackellar.

    Or to look at it another way, the 2027 Dee Why Central voters went 54.1% Liberal in total. If you split that between the two electorates as per the 481:1546 ratio above, you get a result that’s only 21 voters off either side.

    A drop in the ocean in electorates of 80,000+ voters.

Comments are closed.