ACT election live

11.15pm. A very strong performance by the Greens at the Lyneham booth in Molonglo (29.2 per cent) has been cancelled out by other late booths: the Greens (1.47) now trail the Liberals (2.49) in the hunt for the last quota.

11.07pm. I earlier said a third Labor seat in Ginninderra would go to Dave Peebles, but he now slightly trails Adina Cirson.

10.58pm. It’s also being said that Frank Pangallo can’t be written off in Molonglo, although it’s conceded that it’s unlikely.

10.56pm. Talk on the ABC is that independent Mark Parton is not out of the hunt in Ginninderra, depending on how independent preferences go. If successful the result there would be two Labor and one each for Liberal, Greens and independent. He has 6.6 per cent of the primary vote.

10.43pm. I’m back. Greens sounding slightly more hopeful of that second seat in Molonglo and Labor likewise of a third seat in Ginninderra, but both remain up in the air and if anything leaning slightly to the Liberals.

9.13pm. I’ll be taking a break shortly, so a recap. Brindabella: No doubt the result here is 2-2-1, little doubt Steve Doszpot has taken a Liberal seat from Steve Pratt, possible Joy Burch will take a Labor seat from Mick Gentleman. Ginninderra: Liberals seem to be recovering a little after the 3-1-1 scare, and looking better for 2-2-1, but a few big booths still to come. If it’s the former, Vicki Dunne will lose her seat to Labor’s Dave Peebles. Newcomer Alistair Coe has done very well to be a clear Liberal winner. Molonglo: Labor’s three incumbents looking good; two seat for the Liberals (Zed Seselja overwhelmingly dominating the vote, so unclear if the second will be second-placed Jeremy Hanson or third-placed Giulia Jones), one seat for the Greens (Shane Rattenbury), and the final seat a contest between a third Liberal and a second Greens (unclear if Caroline Le Couteur or Elena Kirschbaum). So Labor has lost its majority but might yet win eight seats out of 17, but more likely seven; Liberal between five and seven; Greens three or four.

9.10pm. What I might have missed in Molonglo is the 3 per cent vote for Richard Mulcahy which will presumably flow heavily to the Liberals (thanks to Oz in comments).

9.06pm. With the vote up from 42.3 to 57.6, the Liberals have recovered slightly in Ginninderra, up from 27.1 to 27.8 per cent. They would still seem more likely than not to win a second seat, but are by no means home and hosed. As far as I can see, the prospect of a second Greens seat in Molonglo looks higher than most are saying: they are on 1.45 quotas against 2.51 for the Liberals, and could surely close that 0.06 gap on preferences. There is a lot I could be missing though.

8.52pm. Situation in Molonglo is that Labor are sure for three, the Liberals for two and the Greens for one, with the final seat down to a third Liberal and a second Green.

8.50pm. Brindabella count up to 63.2 per cent, but the basic situation changed: Labor two (John Hargreaves returned, but Mick Gentleman not home against party newcomer Joy Burch), Liberal two (Brendan Smyth plus Steve Doszpot looking likely to defeat Steve Pratt), Greens one (Amanda Bresnan).

8.46pm. Talk on ABC of the Liberal vote continuing to fade in Ginninderra, putting their second seat at risk. That could mean a final outcome of Labor 8, Liberal 6, Greens 3. The Liberal casualty in Ginninderra would be incumbent Vicki Dunne, who is well behind newcomer Alistair Coe.

8.22pm. Vote count really ticking over now: up to 45.9 per cent in Brindabella, and Joy Burch has hit the lead over Mick Gentleman for the second Labor seat. Steve Pratt now trails Steve Doszpot 8.3 per cent to 6.3 per cent, which is just about lethal for Pratt.

8.20pm. I intimated earlier that Brendan Smyth’s preferences might help Pratt narrow the gap over Doszpot, but the very helpful Ben Raue points out that Smyth is himself some way short of a quota so won’t have preferences to give.

8.10pm. Ginninderra vote up from 16.8 to 20.9 and the Liberals have gone down further, from 1.71 quotas to 1.68.

8.08pm. The brains trust, and apparently the man himself, doesn’t think Pangallo is a chance.

8.05pm. Brindabella count up from 19.5 per cent to 24.3 per cent, and the gap between Doszpot and Pratt continues to widen.

8.02pm. With an extra 1.8 per cent counted (20.1 per cent), the Greens vote up slightly in Molonglo, where there support is unevenly spread. It might be that Frank Pangallo is in the hunt here: his group is on 0.38 quotas against 1.39 for the Greens.

7.58pm. An extra 2.5 per cent counted in Brindabella bears out what Adam said earlier: Labor up from 34.2 per cent to 34.9 per cent, Liberal down from 36.8 per cent to 36.1 per cent, Greens down from 13.6 per cent. The 2-2-1 outcome here is not in doubt, but it’s interesting to note that Steve Pratt has fallen further behind newcomer Liberal Steve Doszpot: from 7.7-7.1 to 7.7-6.8. However, as a sitting member and ally of Brendan Smyth, Pratt can presumably expect to do better on the latter’s preferences.

7.55pm. Ben Raue on the ground notes: “Of course it takes ages. First of all you’ve gotta unfold them, then sort them into columns, then sort them into individuals within columns when all different ballots have the candidates in a different order, then tally them. It takes a lot longer than a federal primary count.”

7.54pm. Count remains slow, but Liberal spokesman on ABC Radio doesn’t sound concerned about a second seat in Ginninderra despite only being on 1.7 quotas at present.

7.25pm. Count now proceeding slowly after initial excitement. Adam Carr notes in comments that the polls are doing better for Labor than the pre-polls. Greens hopes for a second seat in Molonglo seem to be fading.

7.11pm. ABC Radio commentators pretty much writing off Richard Mulcahy.

7.05pm. Big picture: 11 per cent swing against Labor, slight drop in the Liberals, big pick-up for the Greens – definitely good for three seats, maybe yet four. ABC computer still saying seven each for Labor and Liberal, three for the Greens. Kate Lundy still thinks Labor might win three seats in Ginninderra, but they’ll have to do better than their current 2.3 quotas.

6.52pm. More on Molonglo: Sometime NSW Greens candidate Ben Raue vaguely hopeful in comments of a second Greens seat, but early days with booth votes only just starting to come in. Katy Gallagher easily leading the Labor field; Andrew Barr not doing well for a presumed future leader, but still very likely to win a seat. Simon Corbell the poorest performing of the three Labor incumbents. Zed Seselja home and hosed, but Jacqui Burke in trouble, trailing two Liberal newcomers in Jeremy Hanson and Guilia Jones.

6.40pm. Molonglo: Labor looking good for three seats, the Liberals not certain of more than two, Shane Rattenbury home and hosed for the Greens.

6.38pm. Ginninderra: The Liberals are short of two quotas at the moment, but probably not by enough to stop them winning two seats. Vicki Dunne is trailing newcomer Alistair Coe; both should win seats unless they are indeed in danger of only winning one. Jon Stanhope and Mary Porter both set to be returned. Meredith Hunter to win a seat for the Greens.

6.35pm. Brindabella: on counting of pre-polls, Labor and Liberal are both just above two quotas and the Greens just below one, leaving no doubt as to the result if the trend continues. Intriguingly, Steve Doszpot narrowly leads Steve Pratt in the race for the second Liberal seat; Brendan Smyth is clearly not in trouble. John Hargreaves certain to win the first Labor seat, but Joy Burch perhaps an outside change to beat Mick Gentleman, although she is behind. Strong performances by the micro-parties, but not strong enough.

6.32pm. ABC computer predicting seven seats each to Labor and Liberal and three to the Greens.

6.26pm. That quick counting has indeed been down to electronic voting – all those results are pre-polls. I expect things will quieten down a little for a while now.

6.21pm. Presumably to rub salt into the wounds of the technical problems I have been having, the ACT Electoral Commission are conducting the count at breakneck speed – perhaps this has something to do with electronic voting. 12.9 per cent counted and those opinion polls are looking good – Labor down 10.7 per cent, Liberals down 2.9 per cent, Greens up 7.2 per cent.

6.20pm. Apologies for the delay in getting started. Oz in comments writes: “5% counted. 9.8% swing to The Greens in Brindabella. 12.1% counted, 7.4% swing to The Greens in Ginninderra. 11% counted in Molonglo, 7% swing to The Greens. Labor and Lib losing out, Independants also getting swings.”

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.

293 comments on “ACT election live”

  1. Libs would have to do well at Campbell or they should pack up – at a recent Fed election wasn’t it one of only four out of 75 ACT booths to vote Liberal (others if I recall were Deakin, Hall, & Tharwa)?

  2. Comment at The-RiotACT:

    [Overheard today:

    “You have to number them one to five.”
    “What, up and down or across?”
    “I don’t think it matters – you can go either way.”
    “But this column’s only got two down.”
    “Go across then, like me.”
    “OK.”

    Couldn’t get over how many people standing around the sausage stall found it confusing. Some other pearlers:

    “How many squares did you fill in?”
    “All of them. I only wanted to do six, but once you’ve gone over five you have to do them all.”

    “I asked for another ballot because Val Jeffery wasn’t in the right position.”]

  3. I think I’m a bit more optimistic than Oz. The AMP and Mulcahy votes will go to Libs, but I still think some of the Community Alliance vote could leak due to Norvan Vogt being known as a Democrat. I also think they could probably be hopeful of a decent amount of preferences from Pangallo voters; I suspect a fair few people disgruntled with the government will put him first due to his profile and then go Green (hell, I nearly did until RiotACT let out at the last minute that he was endorsed by Right to Life).

  4. I’d say that based on the way the preferences flowed in the trial distribution using votes cast electronically today and at pre-poll, there is a very good chance the Greens wil get the last seat in Molonglo rather than the Libs. You can look a the trial distribution here. With a primary vote of 2.66 quotas for the Libs vs 1.36 for the Greens in that count, Jones beats Le Couteur by .08 of a quota.

    Compare to that count, the relative primary vote position of the Greens vis-s-vis the Libs has improved by 0.3 of a quota as a result of counting paper ballots this evening.

    It will be interesting to watch in the next couple of days as the paper ballot preferences are entered.

  5. Rebecca it’s also worth looking at the trial distribution I linked above to get answers to your questions at #256. Mulcahy’s preferences went 41% to Libs, 23% Pangallo, ALP 19% and Greens 17%. Motorists’ were scattered pretty evenly over surviving parties.

    Pangallo’s preferences were very close to one quarter each for ALP, Lib, Greens and exhausted.

  6. Canberra boy, if that’s the case, The Greens are going to have to rely on Labor preferences. Lets see if William’s theory holds up and there’s a flow from Gallagher.

  7. The problem for the 2nd Green in Molongolo is that while the Green vote overall is higher than the electronic (surprising given what Antony Green said) its also skewed quite differently. Rattenbury’s share is much higher now than electronicly, while Le Coutier is down a fair way with a smaller fall for Kirshbaum. Goodness knows why electronic Green voters spread their votes amongst the candidates while those voting on paper go for the lead, but it seems that’s the case at least here.

    That could make it tough. That said, I haven’t looked at how the Liberal votes have shifted between the electronic and the paper.

  8. No flow from Gallagher, Oz. Her surplus amongst the electronic votes went about 2% each to the three Greens and a few stray votes elsewhere, but the overwhelming majority to Labor candidates. Corbell got more than Barr – Labor voters obviously know Barr is in the wrong faction…

  9. So Canberra Boy, I’m struggling to see how The Greens could have made up that gap in quota’s. Motorists and Pangallo are split evenly and Mulcahy goes to Libs over Greens by more than 2-1, as expected.

    That means that The Greens got the lions share from the ungrouped and CAP?

  10. Yes – Greens did do quite well out of CAP – about as much as Lib-ALP combined. Pangallo & Mulcahy were still in the count at that point and also benefited. Most of the Ungrouped votes were for Helen Cross, and Greens got more than Libs of these, too. You really should download the second spreadsheet at the linked page and have a trawl through the numbers with a calculator!

  11. HA! Took a four hour beer break, return to discover the swing against the Libs had lept from -2.2 to -3.7%!

    How do they do it as non-incumbents? Its astounding!

  12. It’s a special talent lefty

    Basically the conclusion is that the ALP are no longer left enough for Canberra.

    socialism. its coming back.

  13. I think the summary the other day was OK: The ACT liberals are a rabble; nimbies and yimbies were upset at the lack of ‘real’ consultation (I meant that they were not getting what they wanted and were squeaking about it); and labour was too pro-development. this equates to a mild kick in the pants for labour, a further kick in the pants for the libs and a significant boost for the greens.
    On the governance threads and, self definitely not being a driven Canberra basher:
    1. having separate state governments for the NT, Tas and the ACT is sooo wasteful. They do not all need departments of health, education and so on, and so on. Jobs for the boys and the girls with precious little added value anywhere in sight. In fact the opposite. Pure duplication. ACT could get all that from NSW, the NT could get it from QLD or WA and Tas could get it from Victoria.
    3. That is if we can really continue to afford a multiplicity of state governments at all. Basically they are accidents of colonial history, formed by means of communication, notions of governance and by technologies that are long, long gone. If it was Egypt, and using the same sort of logic, we would be running the place with Pharaohs. The set of states and territories constitutes a powerful drag on our economy because of all the duplication, the multiplicity of laws and the distortion of markets as they set out to compete with one another by bribing business to shift to some silly place or another. Why on earth would anyone seriously want to build submarines in Adelaide – a city at the edge of an increasingly dry desert? Crikey. Then, of course, there are all the snouts in the trough. Imagine the squeals of the porkers if they are ever denied their easy-access troughs! Increasingly Australia’s main problems are not regional or state-based – they are national or international.
    3. Having states dissipates what little political talent we have. What a wasteland of politicians we have in Australia! Talk about spreading the vegemite thin! If you could pick the eyes out of them you might get one decent government and one decent opposition at national level.
    4. There should be one national government, with the pollies being paid about what they should be worth, that is to say, about 10 times what they are getting now and no whinging about it, either. Closing the state governments could easily cover this additional cost.
    5. garbage, some social amenity, some local social security and emergency housing could be run by truly local councils. The rest should be left to a proper national government.

  14. Fortunately for those of us from the smaller states that will never happen. Try telling Tasmanians that they don’t deserve self government and see where that gets you.

  15. And I don’t think those of us in the ACT with functioning health and education systems really want to have them ruined by the NSW govt.

    Just sayin….

  16. Oz 277 – I wouldn’t have thought that that was all that rare actually. Both major parties dropping in their primary vote on the other hand would be rare.

  17. Gary Bruce – Until The Greens rocked up, who else would they lose them too? Independents?

    But I suppose this question only applies to Tasmania and the ACT with their PR system giving parties other than Labor and Libs a decent chance.

  18. The ACT Libs haven’t lost any seats, not yet anyway. If the hold their seats in Ginninderra from Labor and in Molonglo from the Greens, they will have 7, as they did before the election.

    Does the re-election of Labor mean that the ACT Assembly will now be enlarged from 5+5+7=17 to 7×3=21, as I think Stanhope said? That will be good news for the Greens. They will have three seats more or less permanently, with a chance at more if they can get to 2 quotas (25%)

  19. To put this election, and the benefits of multi-member electorates in context, on almost any reading of the figures the ALP would have won 17 nil in single single member electorates with the usual 2pp method of counting.

  20. 279 – Oz let me revisit what you said at 277 and how I interpreted it. You said –
    “I wonder how many State elections there have been where both major parties have actually lost seats?”
    That to me says that both Labor and Liberal have lost seats to someone at the same election. I would imagine both parties exchanged seats at a few elections ie Labor won some off the Libs and the Libs won some off Labor. Surely that is still both parties losing seats.

  21. Most elections have both parties swapping a few seats.

    The question would be about a net loss of seats by both parties.

  22. Right sorry, that’s what I meant. I was referring to a net loss of seats of both major parties. Of course that has not occurred yet in the ACT, but it is the chance the Libs may lose one that sparked the question.

  23. Michael, that is of course why the ACT has the electoral system it has. There was a poll done at the time of self-government which showed that ACT voters overwhelmingly wanted single-member seats. But it was realised that, because Canberra has been deliberately designed as a socially homogenous city, and because of its social composition, if the ACT Assembly was to be elected from single-member seats, Labor would win all of them. So you have been stuck first with d’Hondt and now with Hare-Clark.

  24. Actually Adam, whatever a poll at the time said, there was a referendum over single member electorates vs Hare Clark in 1995. Hare Clark got 60%, probably because people had realised that without it they wouldn’t have an opposition. I think its the only place in Australia where the electoral system has the authority of having been voted on.

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