Pembroke and Nelson live

Allison Ritchie 7425 43.3 57.8
Richard James 3120 18.2 42.2
Neil Smith 2277 13.3 30.1
David Jackson 720 4.2 36.1
John Peers 1578 9.2 38.3
Marti Zucco 2047 11.9 34.8

7.53pm. All booths in from Nelson; Wilkinson’s lead widened in late counting, to 10,019 to 6391.

7.50pm. The final booth from Pembroke, Bellerive, has taken a small amount of gloss of Allison Ritchie’s performance with a 17.8 per cent drop in the Labor primary vote.

7.37pm. Lindisfarne in; Labor primary vote down 15.8 per cent.

7.31pm. Four more Pembroke booths make for little change to the overall trend.

7.25pm. Big round of applause for the Tasmanian Electoral Commission. Booth results have been coming in one booth at a time; mainland commissions usually think it good enough to supply results in three or four spurts.

7.24pm. All but two booths in from Nelson; Wilkinson leads 6225 to 4658.

7.21pm. Montagu Bay and Wentworth Street now in; Labor primary vote respectively down 10.1 per cent and 17.8 per cent.

7.19pm. Good result for Labor at the very large Howrah booth, their primary vote down only 3.5 per cent. We can definitely call it for them now. Richard James still clear in second place; I have promoted him on the table.

7.14pm. The second substantial booth from Pembroke, Risdon Vale, is now in. Labor’s primary vote down a relatively mild 7.8 per cent. Independent Richard James looking the best-performing of the others.

7.11pm. Lots of booths now in from Nelson; Wilkinson’s lead of 5711 to 4096 is a bit narrower than I expected, but he’s still home and hosed.

7.10pm. Sixty-four votes in from the Hobart booth. For what it’s worth, Labor’s vote here is down 23.1 per cent from 2001.

7.08pm. Perhaps I spoke too soon with the no-boilover remark; Ritchie was down 10.1 per cent on the primary vote in Warrane. That’s still not enough to put her in real danger, but I should probably await a few more booths before calling it.

7.05pm. Also 199 votes from mobile booths.

7.03pm. The Warrane booth is in; only 6 per cent counted overall, but I think it’s already apparent we’re not looking at a boilover here.

7.01pm. Kevin Bonham notes in comments that the Agfest booth is comparable to the “Northern” booth in 2001, which I had written out of my equations. If so, Allison Ritchie is on track for a primary vote of 50 per cent – bearing in mind that this is from a tiny sample.

6.50pm. The first booth from Pembroke is the booth at Agfest; as there was no comparable booth in 2001, I do not have two-candidate calculations. Only 152 votes.

6.31pm. The first booth from Nelson, Sandfly, gives 47 votes to Wilkinson and 35 to Nilsson. I will move the Pembroke table to the top of the post when real figures come in – the ones there now are purely for test purposes.

5.30pm. Welcome to the Poll Bludger’s live coverage of today’s Tasmanian Legislative Council periodical elections for the seats of Pembroke and Nelson. Since Nelson is a foregone conclusion, independent incumbent Jim Wilkinson facing opposition only from Greens candidate Tom Nilsson, the focus of attention will be on Pembroke, where Labor’s Allison Ritchie faces at least a theoretical chance of defeat at the hands of either the Greens candidate, Neil Smith, or one of four independents: Marti Zucco, David Jackson, Richard James and John Peers. The accompanying table will show the primary vote in both numbers of votes and percentages, and an estimate of two-candidate preferred results based on comparison with equivalent booth results from 2001. These assume that preferences will split 57/33 in Labor’s favour if the Greens run second, or 33/55 if an independent runs second; a 10 per cent exhaustion rate is predicted, as voters are only compelled to fill three boxes. This is fairly arbitrary, and better informed readers (you there, Kevin?) are invited to suggest alternatives in comments. I will start with the assumption that the Greens will run second; two-candidate figures are also provided for the others in the event that I am wrong. If so, subtract the total from 100 to get the result for Labor. The first figures should be in at around 6.30pm – any figures you see before then will just be a test.

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.

25 comments on “Pembroke and Nelson live”

  1. I’m thinking Zucco’s preferences will heavily favour Labor over any opposition and particularly over the Greens (say three to one) as this is consistent with what happened when he ran for Wellington last time. James’ preferences could split fairly evenly between Labor and Green given his background but given the high profile of Ritchie compared to her opponent I expect her to be favoured. No idea about Peers or Jackson. I expect some flow between Jackson, Peers, James on account of the Clarence Council connection of all three, but doubt this will be a major factor.

  2. “Progressive results available from about 7pm” according to Electoral Office website. Hope it will be faster than that; it was 6:22 last time. But not too fast; I need to grab some dinner!

  3. Whoops, forgot to include that in my post too. Zucco is more or less universally hated by Greens so won’t get many in the unlikely case that he’s ahead of Smith. James might get something near an even split but I don’t see any independent getting many more than Ritchie off the Greens. Greens may be slightly less inclined to preference Labor than usual because of the pulp mill but Ritchie is female, progressive, left etc (all of which help attracting green preferences.)

  4. Action! Wilkinson wins Sandfly 47-35 (57.3:42.7%) The Greens polled 36.7% in Sandfly in the 2006 state poll so if that tiny sample holds up for the rest of the electorate then Nilsson is on for about 36%.

  5. Agfest is in from Pembroke – Ritchie 69 James 28 Smith 19 Zucco 19 Peers 11 Jackson 8. That’s 45% for Ritchie. She polled 48.7% at “Northern” last time which is probably comparable. If this, again tiny, sample holds up she is on for a primary of around 50%.

  6. (Agfest is at Carrick. The notes from last time say “Northern polling places include Carrick, Latrobe, Launceston (electoral office) and Perth” and the total votes for Northern last time were 207 cf 158 for Agfest this time.)

  7. Ritchie’s primary in Warrane is down by 10.1 points so putting that and Agfest together she’s probably on for about 44% now. Not sure what “mobile” is comparable to in the previous election’s figures.

  8. Also to my surprise Nilsson has won Hobart South booth and tied Hobart electoral office. I was expecting him to only win Fern Tree (which he has duly done by around 2:1). He will probably now win Cascades as well.

  9. Interesting how with so much discussion of whether there would be a backlash against Ritchie over the pulp mill, Ritchie is doing fine and Wilkinson (who voterd against the pulp mill) appears to be the one who isn’t as dominant as he could have been. It may be that a lot of progressive voters preferred Nilsson given that some view Wilkinson as a closet Liberal.

    Nilsson has won Cascades as I expected. His vote should go down somewhat when Lower Sandy Bay which is a strong Liberal area is counted.

  10. Can’t let Kevin have all the comments.

    So much for a “crisis of trust” against the Labor government. If it exists, why haven’t the voters turfed Richie out on her ear?

  11. Pembroke’s done for the night except for prepolls which I don’t expect will change things greatly. On Tasmanian Times I initially estimated Ritchie 43, James 17, Smith 16, Peers 12, Zucco 9 and Jackson 3, then said I reckoned Ritchie would actually get more like 46 with one of the next three down a bit. I was really rather close with all that except that Zucco and Peers have swapped places (which is odd) and the votes Smith didn’t get have been picked up by James and Jackson rather than Ritchie.

    Not a good result for the Greens in this seat. Looks like, as I suspected, the pulp mill issue hardly resonates at all in the South and the relative closeness of Nelson can be put down largely to the relatively token campaign by the safe sitting member.

  12. Nelson’s done for the night too; it’s 61:39 and an easy record high Green vote for a Legislative Council seat. These two-candidate races are very tricky to predict and my pre-campaign guess of 69:31 is feeling pretty sorry for itself.

  13. I once looked through a number of Tasmanian LC counts, and didn’t find a single instance where someone caught the primary vote leader on preferences.

    There may have been instances, but I couldn’t find any.

    (It was a long time ago and late, so I could be really really wrong here)

  14. It’s not that common for primary vote leaders to lose but it does happen. By my count there have been six cases since 1980 where the primary vote leader didn’t win, and in one of these (Ross Ginn winning Newdegate in 1986) the winner was actually third on primaries. The most recent case was Russell Anderson overtaking Jacqui Murphy in Macquarie, 1998 and the one before that was Doug Parkinson overtaking Jean Moore in Hobart, 1994.

  15. Preliminary distribution of preferences shows votes of Jackson favouring James and Peers, and votes of Peers favouring James, and both favouring Ritchie, Zucco, Smith after that. Smith’s performance on preferences is sufficiently poor that he may be overtaken by Zucco in the cutup (Zucco currently leads that race by seven). Not at all a bad result for Zucco given he is off his home turf. As I predicted on TT we will not get a 2PP figure as Ritchie will be elected with James and either Smith or Zucco still remaining.

    If Smith is excluded the split of his preferences will be particularly useful information for the future.

  16. Kevin

    I take issue with your comment that “the relative closeness of Nelson can be put down largely to the relatively token campaign by the safe sitting member.”

    Jim Wilkinson certainly put in more than a token effore into his campaign. He had a very large number of posters up (probably more than me) and he had several fairly large advertisements in the newspaper. He also made sure he got a lot of media coverage (something which was far more difficult for me).

    Given Jim Wilkinson had all the advantages of incumbency and twelve years holding Nelson, while this was my first election campaign, I thought I did reasonable well. Perhaps, Kevin you could give me a little credit for my efforts, as well as the Tasmanian Greens.

  17. Tom Nilsson made an identical post on Tasmanian Times and I quote my reply from there:

    “Tom (#35), I didn’t see that many Wilkinson posters; in the parts of the electorate I passed through I thought he had marginally less than you (even though there were some common Green sites where you didn’t have posters). I didn’t see anything like as many posters from anyone as I remember seeing last time.

    I don’t see why you say I didn’t give you credit when I did! In post 28 I described your result as “rather good”. Both you and your party did well in this seat and should be pleased with your result. It’s not that easy to compare it to previous results in this seat as the Greens have never finished second in it before (in Queenborough 1995 Gerry Bates was second on primaries but was narrowly overtaken by Jane Goodluck on preferences and excluded while sitting in third with 28%). However in the adjacent seat of Wellington, the best Greens two-party preferred result was 40.5% in 2000 (Trish Moran) and last year Marette Corby’s 2PP result against Doug Parkinson was 37.4%. “

  18. There is some rather amusing media waffle going on involving the very close contest between Smith and Zucco to see who will be eliminated on preferences. (Whichever one is eliminated will then elect Ritchie leaving the other to come third without being distributed). At first Zucco led by seven votes and currently it is tied, with a further 50 or so votes to be added that may yet break the deadlock. If it is still tied I believe Zucco will be eliminated on countback as he was behind Smith at the previous exclusion.

  19. The gripping battle for third saw Smith outlast Zucco by a whopping two (2) votes following which Ritchie was elected during Zucco’s preferences. Ritchie finished with 51.46% to James’ 31.18 and Smith’s 17.36. We don’t know where Smith’s preferences went but assuming they may have gone slightly more to James than to Ritchie it might be that the 2PP result would have been around 58:42. If so that would be about a four-point swing to Ritchie, but one attributable in my view mainly to having lower-profile opponents than the sitting member she defeated last time.

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