Gippsland by-election live

Vote Swing 2PP
Darren Chester (Nationals) 24,184
12.2% 66.2% 7.2%
Darren McCubbin (Labor) 16,147
-9.3% 33.8% -7.2%
Rohan Fitzgerald (Liberal) 12,369
Malcolm McKelvie (Greens) 4,430
Ben Buckley (LDP) 2,731

8.38pm. Hooray! The AEC finally adds booth results.

8.14pm. The final booth has given the Nationals a big boost, pushing the swing to a headline-grabbing 7.25 per cent on the AEC figures. However, Antony Green’s booth-on-booth comparison (which I can’t do because the AEC doesn’t have booth-level figures on its website – the above is based on my earlier guess of how preferences would go) has it at 6.2 per cent.

7.49pm. All booths now in. My preference projection has the swing at 7.2 per cent, but the AEC notional count with three booths outstanding has it at 6.3 per cent.

7.35pm. Yet more good news for the Nationals with the addition of two Traralgon booths and Bairnsdale East – boosting the swing to 7.3 per cent on my figures. However, I’m still using my old preference guess, and these evidently flatter the Nationals a little. The ABC site, which is using the actual notional counts, has it at 6.6 per cent, although my figures are slightly more recent.

7.31pm. Bruthen and Glengarry added; the swing continues to bounce around in a narrow range around 6.5 per cent.

7.27pm. Devon North and Sale North added.

7.24pm. Six more booths added, including Lakes Entrance and Paynesville, adding a further 0.2 per cent to the swing.

7.17pm. Now 70 booths in and 45.7 per cent counted, 17 to come. The Nationals are obviously on the receiving end of a handsome swing, currently of 6.5 per cent.

7.11pm. Nine more booths, including Maffra and one each from Traralgon and Sale, have pushed the Nationals swing up to 6.8 per cent. 37.9 per cent counted.

7.05pm. Five more booths, including Traralgon East and Orbost, and the results are still better for the Nationals, with the swing sticking at 5.3 per cent. 24.5 per cent counted.

7.01pm. I’ve corrected an error that made the ALP primary vote swing come up as 0.0%. These primary booth swings, like the 2PP swing, are comparing like booths with like.

6.59pm. 50 booths now in, with two of the new ones from Morwell, bringing the swing back down a little.

6.55pm. Seven more booths in, all small rural ones, but they have boosted the Nationals swing still further.

6.50pm. 35 booths in, including Hazelwood North and Lakes Entrance East, adding up to 11.32 per cent counted, and the swing has increased further – now 5.7 per cent.

6.45pm. Antony Green has apparently called it for the Nationals.

6.44pm. By the way, the primary vote swing recorded above for the Nationals is really for the Coalition as a whole – i.e. I have added the Nationals and Liberal vote and compared it to the Nationals vote last time.

6.41pm. 23 booths now in, still a swing to the Nationals showing across the rural booths.

6.37pm. Fifteen booths now in in the above table, and the swing to the Nationals is still holding – though this is only 2.4 per cent of enrolled voters. All the booths are rural bar one – Morwell North. Love to give you a result there, but I don’t think the AEC is providing them.

6.30pm. The above table is based on the first eight booths; there are now 15 in. I usually have teething problems with my tables early on, so don’t quote me on the above quite yet.

6.21pm. Five small booths in. Do I have this right – the AEC isn’t going to let us see individual booth results, but just give a tick to indicate that the booth is in?

6.00pm. Polls close. I will be providing booth-adjusted results on a table soon to be added at the top of the post. I will be doing this manually and thus will not be quite as quick off the mark as those provided by Antony Green and the AEC. Antony will also be live blogging. You can also listen to two hours of live coverage at ABC Gippsland Radio.

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.

103 comments on “Gippsland by-election live”

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  1. what does this byelection prove?
    probably not very much…… labor was never going to win short of a miracle
    maybe some lessons can be learned such as the local alp branches must be able
    to choose the candidate and there is a need to mend their problems internally in the La Trobe valley
    next redistribution will probably place ALL the La Trobe valley in this seat so maybe it will be a closer contest

  2. It does however raise serious questions about the climate change issue. Seems keeping it vague will allow the Libs to fill in the gaps. Labor will need to put its cards on the table on emissions trading – treacherous ground.

  3. Given that Rudd and Labor will still be in power on Monday with no loss of seats, what can “Insiders” say? No change.

  4. 51 – Why does head office always seem to think that local government representives make good candidates? They don’t. Often you end up with a local issues becoming election issues.

  5. Kina is right! lets think about those who were angary about the Gun laws, GST where have they been the past few elections.

    It is just a by-election and it is a good result for the Nationals, it also shows they continue to do well in Gippsland.

  6. Erm…Edward St John…Bass was a safe Labor seat held by a Labor incumbent where there was a double digit swing to the Liberals. Gippsland is a National seat wbich has never beeh held by Labor where there appears to have been 3.3 per cent swing to the Nationals. I don’t exactly get the comparison. This result is probably similar to the Corangamite and Wannon by-elections during the early stages of the Hawke government.

    If you get your hopes up about trivial and inconsequential results like this, I fear that you’ll have many disappointments ahead of you

  7. BSF they missed their chance with Brenda and are are now stuck with him longterm. Tonight reaffirms the lost opportunity the Libs had when his polling was poorer.

  8. Red Ted and Dr Brendan have been vindicated. Brumby will loose the next state election and Rudds honeymoon period is well and truly over. Well done Les & Jenny in the west for an honourable campaign unlike the ALP’s Mugabe style tactics, particularly agains Les. In Gippsland the Nationals are not a spent force despite the bile of some chardonnay left journalists who try to brainwash us with their poison pens articles.

  9. William, the swing is 6.3% booth on booth, but 7.3% if you compare the booths to the overall result last time including postal, absent and pre-poll votes.

  10. Well, what did happen in Gippsland? Was it just local issues or was it that McGuaran was not a popular member.The biggest winner is the Libs, the Nats primary vote is down on last November’s election.

  11. Adrian Jackson

    It’s hard to know if you taking the piss out of the Australian or are serious.

    My take; the ways things are going there is a chance the national party can become the senior party. The voters now think the nationals are less right wing than the Liberals, who would have thought.

  12. If anything, this will at least push the Government into picking up their game. So far they really have left a lot to be desired. I don’t think they were particularly trying to win this seat and there was really no reason to vote Labor in Gippsland.

  13. The ALP’s primary vote in the last 10 elections has varied between 23% to 36.5% last year. So over all the ALP result is normal, although not good, at 27%. The Nats are down on last year at 48.4% to 40.4%.But as we all know it’s the TPP that matters and that is very bad compared to last year for the ALP, which varied from 31.4% in 1990 to 44.1% last year and 36.8% right now.

  14. 76 – If they were 100% confident of a chance of winning; Rudd and half the cabinet would have been down there every weekend. But the moment the dud candidate was announced, Rudd wisely left it alone. He did a token appearence but that was it.

  15. McEwan would be Interesting! I think the Liberals might hold it for the State Government is under Increasing pressure over the North-South pipeline combine this with the increase cost of living!

  16. Blair, I think Rudd was there 3 times – about a much as you could expect.

    But this is a very ordinary result for Labor.

    It’s hard to evaluate at this stage but I suspect that rather than a reflection of the Rudd Government it says more about the choice of candidate and the local campaigning.
    This is consistent with the misdirected strategies coming out of Vic Labor over the last couple of years. Questions need to be asked.

  17. Winston, you might be right as I hadn’t really noticed. I remember only one major national news story about Rudd being there. But was he there today? Truss was, I saw that much.

  18. Looking at the primary votes I’d say the Libs went reasonably close to stealing the seat, assuming that Labor prefs would have gone to Libs ahead of the incumbent Nats. The swing against Rudd and the coalition votes from the Nats weren’t quite enough to get them ahead of Labor but not far off.

    However now it will be a “Safe” Nats seat and so long as the coalition holds there won’t be a Lib candidate in Gippsland in the next election.

  19. [Winston, you might be right as I hadn’t really noticed. I remember only one major national news story about Rudd being there. But was he there today? Truss was, I saw that much.]

    Rudd was in Brisbane welcoming the Troops home from Iraq, as was Brenda.

  20. You can bet Brenda and his supporters will run hard with this result. Brenda is desperate to keep his job and with no respectable alternatives he just might. But of course Abbott wants his shot at it.

    Either way two duds as potential leader, three if you include Turnbull. Rudd is lucky and has much to thank Howard for.

  21. Get ready for the MSM to run the line that this is a damaging setback for Rudd, mainly because of petrol prices!
    Did local issues impact at all? Wasn’t there a protest about a post office being closed in the electorate? I recall Nelson making a big deal out of this!

  22. Labor was never going to win this seat. It has been conservative held since 1922. The Alp only got a +1.7% swing at the last election, well below the national trend.

    The Libs and Nats will scream this result is the end of the honeymoon and they are on track to be returned at the next election, but I think that the voters in this electorate knew that the result would have absolutely no bearing on who the government will be.

  23. Yes – The Age says “the honeymoon may be over”. How predictable.

    But the main concern for Labor should be to review how the campaign was conducted and the choice of candidate. Remember that the campaign was run by the same people whose whose clever preference deals gave us Steven Fielding,

  24. The Brumby factor may be at play here.

    See the other by-election result in Victoria that seems to be neglected for some reason.

    State issues do influence such a result and there is an increasingly unpopular Premier in Victoria as well as N.S.W.

  25. I think when it comes to by-elections it’s very hard to judge the overall consequence to the rest of the nation.

    Particularly so, given the nature of the seat. Looking at the seat the questions would be:

    1) What has the Government done to persuade people to vote for them in a non-general election; and
    2) Would the interests of the electorate necessarily be better off in voting for the Government.

    The answer to these questions is of course the Government has done nothing that has benefited the people of Gippsland directly and it wouldn’t definitely benefit the people of Gippsland to have a Government member in Parliament.

    There is really no reason for a voter in that electorate to vote Labor.

  26. It is a great result for anti porkbarrelling activists. There is sure to be a lack of Pork sighted in Gippsland for the next decade or so now that the Gippsland locals have decided they do not want any part of getting government handouts and are quite prepared to see their taxes spent in other electorates with real need. Good on them, I applaud their inflation fighting qualities. Why they didn’t adopt such an altruistic attitude during the Howard era is what is hard to understand.

  27. [Yes – The Age says “the honeymoon may be over”. How predictable.]

    As was “Our ABC” TV News reports here in WA. The ONLY reasons, the Libs did well is because they ran a candidate, thus splitting the conservative vote.

  28. Yeah, if I was a resident of Gippsland, I’d think it’d make more sense for my electorate to be marginal, so the government of the day spent some money on it. Instead, they’ve got another useless National Party MP, who won’t do a thing for the seat, one hopes the protest over petrol prices was worth it!

  29. OK LTEP, that might explain the lack of a swing to Labor but there was a big swing to the Nats.

    So your questions should perhaps be –
    1. What has the government done to cause people to vote against them.
    2. Would the interests of the electorate be better off by not voting for the government.

    And I can’t think of an answer to that.

  30. Oh, for goodness sake. It’s a safe National seat. Always has been. What the hell do you think is going to happen in a seat like that, at an early election? Shrieks of “I want Mummy” can be heard in this part of the State.

  31. Winston, there are many reasons people in a country seat may have not been pleased with the Government. Perhaps spin on the Government being ‘city-centric’ hit home. Perhaps people there are upset about AWB (I don’t know how that plays out). The Budget didn’t have any apparent sweeteners in it for the people of Gippsland, nor really for people in the country that made the headlines.

    As for wanting a non-government presence in the Parliament. It always serves people for there to be more scrutiny of the Government. Government backbenchers are essentially a waste of space and given the result is not going to change who is in government it would appear to be a smarter decision to back the Opposition.

    It’s certainly not like the situation you would have with a general election, where people would be looking at both parties more generally and deciding which would be a better choice to run the country (for whatever reason). A by-election, particularly in a country seat, is more likely to have people thinking about who will serve the individual electorate better.

  32. But Monica, how can you be so dismissive? Eddy has stated that after this by election, Gippsland will be lauded as the new Bass. As well as a pseph-soothsayer a prediction or two short of actual credibility, Eddy is also a Trained Historian and posseses a great deal of “retrospective expertise ” in these matters.

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