North Sydney by-election live

Live coverage of counting for the North Sydney by-election.

Primary vote

# % Proj. Swing
Lou Pollard (Arts Party) 1276 1.9%
William Bourke (Sustainable Population) 2032 3.0%
Sam Kennard (Liberal Democrats) 1395 2.1%
Kerry Bromson (Voluntary Euthanasia) 663 1.0%
James Jansson (Future Party) 474 0.7%
Arthur Chesterfield-Evans (Greens) 10883 16.1% 16.1% +0.8%
Maryann Beregi (Independent) 2416 3.6%
Silvana Nero (Christian Democratic) 1754 2.6% 2.6% +1.6%
Robert James Marks (Palmer United) 320 0.5% 0.5% -1.2%
Trent Zimmerman (Liberal) 32107 47.5% 47.4% -13.6%
Stephen Ruff (Independent) 12732 18.8%
Luke Freeman (Australian Cyclists) 717 1.1%
Tim Bohm (Bullet Train for Australia) 800 1.2%
Formal 67569
% of enrolled voters 64.8%
Booths returned (of 43) 39

1am. I’ve finally updated with final numbers for the night. The Liberals reportedly say they expect to win 58-42, which is at the high end of what I would have been expecting for them.

8.59pm. The AEC have stopped publishing the Liberal-versus-Greens results, in recognition that this is a Zimmerman-versus-Ruff contest.

8.30pm. Shellbell in comments points out the Palmer United candidate is coming last, with all of 199 votes.

8.16pm. For a point of comparison, Sophie Mirabella got 21% of preferences when she was defeated in Indi. If Zimmerman does about that well, his winning margin will be about 5%.

8.04pm. Now up to 26 booths on the primary vote. The situation there isn’t fundamentally changing, apart from a slight improvement in the Liberals’ position.

8.02pm. For what it’s worth, preferences are favouring the Greens over the Liberals by 59.5-40.5.

7.57pm. Sorry, wasn’t thinking in that last entry. The 2CP result in Liberal-versus-Greens, so it’s not surprising it’s heavily favouring the Liberals. What we need to know is the flow of preferences between Zimmerman and Ruff, which we won’t know this evening. Nonetheless, I’ve managed to fix up my table so the Liberal-versus-Greens 2PP is flowing through to it correctly.

7.51pm. There are, in fact, eight booths down as reporting on 2PP on the AEC site, and they suggest a clearer win for the Liberals than I’d thought – a 15.3% margin, although the early reporting booths were particularly strong ones from the Liberals.

7.43pm. Primary vote booth results continue to trickle in, bringing us up to 18 out of 43, but none of them are radically changing the outlook of a Liberal primary vote of around 46%-47%. In other words, a two-party booth result will be needed before there will be much of interest to add, unless some of the outstanding primary vote results throw up some surprises.

7.38pm. Now out to fourteen booths, and I’m still tracking the Liberal primary vote to come in at 45% or maybe a bit higher. Stephen Ruff’s lead over the third-placed Greens has narrowed a little, but I expect he’ll do better on preferences so still looks set to finish second. On current indications, he’d need 86% of preferences to win.

7.30pm. Eleven booths in now, and the primary vote swing against the Liberals is a more moderate but still imposing 14.7%. Zimmerman clearly headed for victory, but we’ll need some two-party results before we have a clear idea what the margin will look like.

7.26pm. A further two booths don’t change the situation on the primary vote. Still no two-party booth results yet, so no idea of preference flows.

7.17pm. Seven booths in now, and Zimmerman’s position has improved enough to suggest he should make it home. But with Ruff maintaining second place, he won’t have a hugely impressive margin after preferences.

7.10pm. Two booths in – St Leonards and Neutral Bay West – and they suggest a bigger drop in the Liberal primary vote than they’d feel comfortable with, particularly given that independent Stephen Ruff, who could presumably expect a pretty strong preference flow, has so far outpolled the Greens.

6pm. Voting has closed in the North Sydney by-election. Results should be a while coming, given that this is a city electorate with large booths, and there is a very large field of 13 candidates. This post will feature result projections and commentary as results start to roll in, which I’m guessing will be in a bit over an hour.

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.

67 comments on “North Sydney by-election live”

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  1. Airlines:

    It’s not very consistent is it? I get there isn’t much interest in North Sydney, but still. Why have a 24hr news channel it’s just going to show repeats of programs aired through the week!

  2. confessions:

    Agreed. ABC has iView for repeats anyway (which most everyone can access) so I don’t see why they couldn’t dedicate some time to this. Antony Green spent a minute or two at most between programs during Canning, so they could keep their reruns and provide coverage if they wanted.

  3. I much prefer doing by-elections on line on my website than on camera, especially at this by-election when I am doing my own processing of the data. I can provide much more in depth and I can provide updates as they happen rather than when they can get be into studio, and they don’t have to employ staff to do all the set up, processing and graphics for me. I’m doing a News 214 wrapping up the results at 9pm.

  4. I was about to say that online coverage would probably suit the Williams and Antonys better cause they can do it from the comfort of their own home. 🙂

  5. I do it from the office because you have to use a registered and fixed IP address to access the AEC ftp site, and from the office I am within the ABC firewall. I theory I can do it by VPN from home but there are technical settings you have to arrange, and the speed of publishing is slower from home than within the ABC’s bandwidth.

  6. Glad they’re going with the Greens vs Liberals 2PP even though it will probably be overturned later, gives us all a chance to see how people place the Greens on their ballots relative to Liberals.

  7. Interesting that Ruff is doing so well on early booths when one of these is Hunters Hill West (normally the Libs second safest booth) and to the west of the electorate and out of the area that Ted Mack (who has endorsed Ruff) represented.

  8. Interesting watch. Definite swing, if the Libs lost the seat the reaction would be interesting. But very unlikely.

    Elections are my footy.

  9. This vote is a disaster for Greens.

    Once again, when given the opportunity to shine without a Labor candidate, they come up severely short.

  10. @16 – This seat and this area has a long history of Independents, it’s not that surprising that the GRN vote hasn’t grown with a strong Ind candidate in the mix.

  11. Antony Green as he said is on ABC24. Says the Green vote hasn’t changed since the last election, while the Lib vote has gone backwards.

  12. Pathetic result for the Greens. Ok for Libs think will finish around 48% after prepoll & postals with so many candidates including wellish known independant . No skin off Malcolm’s back in this result but no congratulations either

  13. Liberals expecting 58:42.

    I often bucket the Greens for poor results but I don’t think this one is actually bad. The indie and the micros would have much more effectively competed for their core vote than Labor would have in 2013 so for their vote to go nowhere is no disaster.

  14. So Ruff ran in the state election in the North Shore electorate and got 10% and this time he got 19%. How much is Labor that couldn’t go anywhere else and how much is increased following.

    It seems he has done much better in terms of increase compared to Greens.

  15. Kenneth Morehouse

    1 hr ·

    the liberal candidate is claiming victory even though he only has 47% of the primary votes and he doesn’t mention that the very popular turnbull government has lost over 13% of the primary vote. if it really was popular then people would be voting for the liberal party and they didn’t. the popularity polls put out by MURDOCH and his influential friends said Zimmerman would lose aboutt 6% at the most because of Joe’s popularity but in fact the real poll without distortions and lies have them losing more than 13% the modern day polling has no credibility. you cannot believe a thing that they publish

  16. Ken Morehouse@39

    the popularity polls put out by MURDOCH and his influential friends said Zimmerman would lose aboutt 6% at the most because of Joe’s popularity but in fact the real poll without distortions and lies have them losing more than 13% the modern day polling has no credibility. you cannot believe a thing that they publish

    No polls were commissioned by MURDOCH. Two polls commissioned by the Australia Institute and the Save Our Councils Coalition were reported in some press outlets including the Murdoch press, but the Murdoch press had nothing to do with them being conducted.

    If you redistribute the undecided proportionally from the ReachTEL polls then yes you would have got the Coalition on 55%. I believe there was a special reason not to distribute the undecided in that way at this specific by-election since a lot of the “undecided” voters would be people who were normally Labor voters. So this has nothing to do with whether polls generally are accurate these days or not, and we have known that seat polls are not that reliable for some time.

    That said both ReachTELs had the Greens too high, at over 20 even with undecided included.

  17. A disaster for the Greens – no ALP candidate plus the COP21 Climate Catastrophe media deluge for the past month – and yet they went backwards.

    A kick in the teeth for Turnbull as well – didn’t win on FP when they should have with the ALP hiding in disgrace.

  18. If we add Ruff and Beregi’s votes together they slightly exceeded Labor’s at the federal election.

    Greens also slightly up.

    Liberals down by 13.6%, well above the normal swing. Of this 2.1% went to the Liberal Democrats, CDP/Palmer swings roughly balance, so the net swing against the right was 11-12% depending on whether you think the DLP voters last time were actual conservatives of confused Labor voters.

    There was 4.7% of the vote for small parties running on issues strongly associated with the Greens, plus 4.2% for those that would have some appeal to Green voters. None of these ran at the general, but of that 8.9% very few would have voted Liberal in 2013 – these would have been a mix of Green and Labor voters then.

    So it looks like the Greens more than made up whatever they lost to the micros from Labor voters who preferred them to either independent, or from Liberal voters.

    That looks like a pretty good Green outcome to me, unless you believe the independents were very weak candidates and the Greens should have been the natural home for Labor voters instead of them. Given that both had a local profile and one had Mack’s backing I can’t see why most normally Labor votes wouldn’t have gone there.

    Similarly, whatever Labor 2013 votes went to the micro parties were more than made up for by the independents in votes pulled away from the Liberals. Not a bad achievement, unless one thinks the independents were particularly strong and should have pulled more Liberal votes (as would presumably have happened if Mack himself had been fired up enough to run).

  19. [Liberals down by 13.6%]

    If a columnist really wanted to spin it as bad result for the libs they could say the primary vote was down by over 36%, 32,000 V 54,000 at 2013.

    The 22,000 who didn’t bother to turn could be spun as a rejection of Malcolm 🙂

  20. Booth by booth reallocation to Zimmerman vs Ruff has begun, taking booths in alphabetical order.

    Zimmerman’s share of preferences is running at between 30 and 46%. He’s currently at 61:39 and I project this to drop only slightly. It’s actually a very comfortable win.

  21. Yeah based on what we know about the preferences now it looks a much better result than it did last night. Simplistic analysis of the primary vote swing aside, there isn’t much to see here.

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