Wild west wash-up

Upper house results from the Western Australian election are coming through this afternoon, and we will also have Premier-elect Colin Barnett announce his new cabinet. The first upper house result comes from Mining and Pastoral, which has gone two Labor (Jon Ford and Helen Bullock), two Liberal (Norman Moore and Ken Baston), one Nationals (Wendy Duncan) and one Greens (Robin Chapple). Full preference distribution here. It earlier appeared possible that second Nationals candidate David Grills might win a seat at the expense of the Greens, but Chapple emerged 8168 to 7070 ahead at the final count.

This post will be progressively updated as information becomes available.

UPDATE (1.30pm): Cabinet announced. Included are three Nationals (Brendon Grylls in regional development, Terry Waldron in sport and recreation and Terry Redman in agriculture) along with independent Liz Constable, who takes education from Peter Collier, who instead gets energy and training. Constable is one of only three women out of 17, and the only one in the lower house. The others are Robyn McSweeney as Child Protection and Community Services Minister and Donna Faragher as Environment Minister, the latter a surprise inclusion at the expense of former Shadow Women’s Affairs Minister Helen Morton.

UPDATE (3.30pm): North Metropolitan, East Metropolitan and South Metropolitan have all gone Liberal three, Labor two and Greens one. Still to come are Agricultural (likely result Nationals three, Liberals two and Labor one, although the third Nationals seat might go to Liberal-turned-Family First member Anthony Fels) and South West (looking like three Liberal, two Labor and one Nationals).

UPDATE (3.40pm): Three Liberal, two Labor and one Nationals in South West.

UPDATE (4.50pm): Three Nationals, two Liberals and one Labor in Agricultural. Final result: 16 Liberal, 11 Labor, five Nationals, four Greens.

UPDATE (Saturday): Full preference distributions:

North Metropolitan
East Metropolitan
South Metropolitan
South West
Mining and Pastoral

Listed below are close-ish results at the final counts. There were no tremendously close calls earlier in the counts that might have proved decisive, such as Family First or CDP candidates getting ahead of Liberal or Nationals candidates in South West or Agricultural.

Greens #1: 41489 (15.0%) ELECTED
Labor #3: 37106 (13.5%)

Greens #1: 43516 (15.5%) ELECTED
Liberal #3: 40174 (14.3%) ELECTED
Labor #3: 34640 (12.4%)

Liberal #3: 22124 (14.4%) ELECTED
Greens #1: 20992 (13.6%)

Nationals #3: 11096 (15.2%) ELECTED
Labor #2: 8971 (12.3%)

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.

228 comments on “Wild west wash-up”

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  1. I don’t blame the Greens for putting the Libs in, that was all our own work, I quite agree. But if the Council had been elected by statewide PR, as I calculated earlier, the results would have been Lib 14, Nat 2, ALP 12, Green 4, so that the Lib-Nats would have had to negotiate their bills through the Council. As it is they have open slather. I do blame the Greens for that.

  2. It seems the ALP are going for a recount of Riverton:

    [On election night, they (the votes) were just quickly counted by … amateurs, to put it bluntly people who only do it once every four years,” ALP State Secretary Simon Mead said today.]

    You mean there’s a crack group of professional vote counters somewhere who do it week in week out??? “We’re just taking it one vote at a time…”

  3. The Nationals have secured five seats in the WAs Legislative Council one more then the so called third force in Australian politics the Greens. This result confirms that the Nationals will have this role all over Australia including the Senate where they had it last term holding the balance of power new Senate leader Barnaby Joyce is more than a match for the hapless Bob Brown.

  4. Dario: the ALP never does well out of recounts, I wouldn’t put too much faith in the Riverton result being reversed!
    Ripper announces his shadow ministry today?

  5. I realise Mark McGowan isn’t flavour of the month at the moment, but I’m at a loss to understand why you’d drop him from the front bench. Would love to know what happened there.

    Paul, the Greens got over twice as many votes than the Nationals. The reason this converted into fewer seats is their own insistence on maintaining rural vote weighting, but let’s not go back there.

  6. [I realise Mark McGowan isn’t flavour of the month at the moment, but I’m at a loss to understand why you’d drop him from the front bench. Would love to know what happened there.]

    THe Alleged Brian Burke link re emails sent from his wife’s email acount ? Though I think McGowan was being tactful in telling him to piss off in those replies – you have to be VERY careful when dealing with people like that in rejecting them in case it goes pear shaped.

  7. ABC news last night mentioned McGowan in particular, along with Ravlich and Papalia… sounds like someone’s stuffed up at Perthnow. 😉

  8. Our William has made the Perth Now comments 🙂


    Looks like the Mark McGowan thing was a false alarm. Note the article has been changed.

    Posted by: William Bowe of 3:04pm today
    Comment 3 of 5]

  9. I always love the PN comments… who says Mark ‘Sneakers’ McGowan, anyway?

    Also, this:

    [ In fact, McGinty almost lost the safest Labor seat in Australia to the Greens – Fremantle! ]

    Hmm. Lakemba, Ramsay, Broadmeadows, Lalor, Girrawheen, Nollamara… etc. Not sure where Bob of Perth gets his stuff from, but I think it’s time to change dealers. 😛

  10. Besides which, a “safe” seat is one that’s safe from the other major party. These seats are actually the ones that are most at threat from non-major predators: witness Churchlands, Alfred Cove and very nearly Kwinana. If Fremantle had nearly fallen to the Liberals, then “Bob of Perth” would have a point.

  11. Good post William, but somehow you’ll b e accused of being an ALP Stooge and/or Staffer 🙂

    [Bob, a “safe” seat is one that’s safe from the other major party. These seats are actually the ones that are most at threat from non-major party predators: witness Churchlands, Alfred Cove and very nearly Kwinana. If Fremantle had nearly fallen to the Liberals, then you’d have a point.

    Posted by: William Bowe of 4:41pm today
    Comment 7 of 7]

  12. I note they’ve updated the WA Govt website to include the new Ministry and note the formality of the email addresses.


    eg:e-Mail: Minister.Hames@dpc.wa.gov.au

    I’m pretty sure the previous government had first name.surname@dpc.wa.gov.au

    Yep, the email guidelines of Department of Premiewr & Cabinet do favour the previous govt’s standard.


    Talk about changing of the guard.

  13. Just noticed that after the final distribution of preferences the Nats came a close second in three lower house seats in the Mining and Pastoral district.

    Independent (Bowler) won Kalgoorlie ahead of Nats by 3.59%. Did anyone else pick Labor and Liberal to finish out of the top two in that seat?

    Liberal (Jacobs) won Eyre by 3.64% ahead of the Nats and Labor (Stephens) won Pilbara from the Nats by 3.55%.

    By any measure the campaign tactics of Brendon Grylls were a remarkable success and he led the Nats close to winning eight lower house seats.

  14. Ooo, interesting. I picked Kalgoorlie to be either ALP/Ind or Lib/Ind, with Bowler maybe winning – didn’t pick the Nat. Makes it doubly impossible to figure out a swing… it’s gone from Lib/ALP to Ind/Nat, both parties changing. When’s the last time that happened?

    By the way, the ABC site’s gone bung for Alfred Cove. Apparently, Woollard had a 38.8% swing, to end up with 92.8% 2PP. 7.2% for the Liberal… a bit rough considering he got 43% of the vote. The Greens must’ve been doing very funky things with preferences… 😛

  15. The new strength for the WA Nats will make both federal Kalgoorlie and O’Connor interesting in 2010 (or maybe 2009). Tuckey will presumably be made to retire (he looked quite senile this week with his angry points of order), and Haase may go as well. The Nats haven’t won a Reps seat in WA since 1972 but this will be their best chance for a long time.

  16. Adam (226), most people thought the redistribution made it impossible for the Nats to win a WA federal seat, but based on the state performance I think you’re right.

    Even if Tuckey and Haase stay on, they’ll have to face new electorates and they won’t find it easy.

    Tuckey would rather retire than be beaten by a Nat.

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