This post will progressively follow the count for the Western Australian Legislative Council.
Wednesday 1pm. In response to a reader’s inquiry I have written a more detailed assessment of South West, which runs as follows. South West is on the cusp of a three-all and four-right two-left result. On the right, the Liberals have won two seats and the remaining one or two is a contest between Nationals candidate Colin Holt, Dan Sullivan of Family First and third Liberal Barry House. Labor and the Greens add up to three quotas, but only just. The Greens candidate runs the risk of being stranded after Labor’s exclusion with Liberal, the Nationals and Family First left in the count, none of whose preferences would go to the Greens when they were excluded. The result would be 3 Liberal, 2 Labor and one to either Family First or the Nationals. This my “four-right two-left” scenario. The next count is a close race between the Nationals and Family First for exclusion, with Family First currently having their nose just in front. Family First’s exclusion would unlock preferences from various right-wing candidates that would overwhelmingly go to the Nationals, giving them the last seat ahead of the Liberals. So while the current figures point to 2 Liberal, 2 Labor, 1 Greens, 1 FF, we could also get 3 Liberal, 2 Labor, 1 FF; 3 Liberal, 2 Labor, 1 Nationals; 2 Liberal, 2 Labor, 1 Nationals, 1 Greens. Having said all that, I don’t know where the remaining votes are coming from.
Monday 11pm. Counts starting to reach useable levels of around 50 per cent of enrolment, except in Mining and Pastoral. South West is on the cusp of a three-all and four-right two-left result. On the right, the Liberals have won two seats and the remaining one or two is a contest between Nationals candidate Colin Holt, Dan Sullivan of Family First and third Liberal Barry House. In Agricultural the Nationals vote is waning slightly as the count progresses and while their candidate is still on target to win the final seat, it might equally go to Family First or Labor’s number two. The first five seats are likely to go two Nationals, two Liberal and one Labor. North Metro a clear-cut 3 Liberal, 2 Labor, 1 Greens. East Metro still looking good for the third Liberal, and lineball between Labor and the Greens for the final seat. South Metro looking like 3 Liberal, 2 Labor, 1 Greens. Both the latter very good results for Liberal and very poor for Labor.
Sunday 8pm. I have no doubt that the upper house count has many surprises in store, but the following describes the situation as best as I am able to see it. About a quarter of the votes are counted but we don’t know where they’re from, so I have considered scenarios based on unscientific extrapolations from lower house votes. The result is likely to be another triumph for the Nationals, who will certainly hold the balance of power and can fantasise about as many as six seats. In the four seats that make up the grotesquely over-represented Agricultural region, the party has 41.1 per cent of the vote, less than 2 per cent shy of three quotas without taking preferences into account. However, there remains a very wide range of possible results, the only certainty being a right majority: 14 to 17 seats for the left against 19 to 22 for the right. Between one and five of the left seats will be held by the Greens: on the basis of my own limited information, I think Giz Watson in North Metropolitan their one certain winner. I can see 16 seats for the Liberals, no more and no less; three to six for the Nationals; zero to one each for Family First and the CDP. I arrived at these conclusions before looking at Andrew Bartlett, who seems to disagree with me only in that he doesn’t rate Family First in South West. This might be because I’m pumping up the Family First vote a little due to the personal vote of their candidate Dan Sullivan, former deputy Liberal leader and member for the local lower house seat of Leschenault.
AGRICULTURAL. Labor has done badly enough here that it is in danger of winning only one seat. The Nationals have clearly won two seats and maybe even three, with the Liberals on two and possibly one for the CDP.
EAST METROPOLITAN. Labor’s primary vote collapse is such that the Liberals stand poised to take their third seat, something they will not often achieve in this region. However, Labor might still win a third seat at the expense of the Greens.
MINING AND PASTORAL Labor and Liberal will each win two and the Nationals one. The last could either go to the Greens, Labor and even the second Nationals.
NORTH METROPOLITAN. Likely to be the anticipated result of three Liberal, two Labor and one Greens.
SOUTH METROPOLITAN. Labor are in danger of not winning the third seat to which they are accustomed here, and if they do win it will be at the expense of the Greens. Preferences should push the Liberals to a third quota.
SOUTH WEST. Three seats for the Liberals and two for Labor, with Family First starting favourite for the final seat in a race with the Greens and the Nationals.