Victorian election: photo finishes

A closer look at the yet-to-be-decided seats for the Victorian election.

A full display of the election results, with complete booth figures, swings and probability estimates, can be found here. This will be updated with the latest figures at irregular intervals.

Tuesday afternoon

4pm. Ali Cupper has reportedly emerged the winner in Mildura after distribution of preferences by 254 votes.

2pm. No official figures available, but the preference count in Prahran has established that Greens incumbent Sam Hibbins has prevailed over Labor’s Neil Pharaoh, apparently by around 200 votes, with the latter conceding defeat on social media. So the Greens have maintained their lower house status quo of three seats, losing Northcote but gaining Brunswick, although they stand to be gutted in the upper house, where they went in with five and will come out with one or two.

Tuesday morning

Preference distributions will apparently start being conducted today, and it doesn’t seem there are more than tiny handfuls of votes remaining to be cleared up in the primary and two-party counts. So unless the preference distribution process turns up a misplaced bundle, it would seem Labor has won Bayswater and Hawthorn, the Liberals have held on in Caulfield and Ripon, and independent Ali Cupper has scraped home in Mildura. The only significant action in the close seat counts yesterday was in Caulfield, where postals continued to save the day for David Southwick, the latest batch favouring him 145-61 and extending his lead from 338 to 410.

Monday morning

The most interesting development over the weekend from my perch was that 525 postals were added in Mildura, which cut Ali Cupper’s lead from 252 to 189. With the dealine for postals to arrive being tomorrow at 5pm, there will presumably be only one more, smaller batch to go, and very little chance that it will overturn Cupper’s lead. Tiny additions to the vote in Hawthorn and Ripon made no appreciable difference to the situation there, as related in the previous entry. Kevin Bonham has been doing good work following the count in Prahran, where only scrutineers’ reports offer any guidance as to the flow of preferences between the Greens and Labor, which stands to decide the result. Suffice to say that it’s going to be very close. The other potential wild cards when preferences are distributed are Melton and Benambra, which Labor and Liberal respectively have at least some chance of losing to independents. Then there’s the upper house …

Friday evening

Just as my interest in the count was winding down, along comes Caulfield — Liberal member David Southwick led by 1101 yesterday, and trails by 118 today. Southwick is one of three Liberals on very narrow deficits, hoping they might be overturned on the final batch of postals. The damage to Southwick was done on absents — not so much due to the swing, which was actually modest (3.6% to Labor, compared with 7.0% of ordinary votes), but the surprisingly high number cast (5692 as compared with 3130 in 2014). Labor scored over 60%, for a split of 3439-2253. Postal votes have been overwhelmingly favouring Southwick — 2682 to 1030, or 72.3-27.7 — so it will only take a small number of late arrivals behaving according to form to get his nose back in front. But there will very little in it either way.

Provisionals and a handful of pre-polls have made next to no difference in Hawthorn, where the Labor lead goes from 156 to 163. A big day of counting in Ripon (or maybe two — I don’t think I looked closely at the numbers yesterday) has failed to settle the matter — Labor has moved to a razor-thin 73 vote lead due to the latest pre-polls, which they won 2211-2059. There was nothing in it on absents (1296 to Labor and 1289 to Liberal), and Labor made their usual small gain on provisionals (147 to 124).

In Mildura, independent Ali Cupper got a handy 195-144 break on provisionals, cancelling out a 41-22 loss on pre-polls and 20-10 on absents in a race where every vote counts. She now leads by 303 votes, which will presumably be enough.

Friday morning

As the count dries up, the in doubt seats are increasingly looking less so. Labor’s lead in Hawthorn grew from 47 to 156 yesterday, as they gained the edge on absents (281-207), postals (109-86) and pre-polls (27-15). They should gain a bit more when provisionals are added, leaving John Pesutto needing something pretty extraordinary on late postals. Labor’s lead nudged from 236 to 266 in Bayswater, after provisionals broke 120-88 their way and postals went 69-67 to the Liberals. The Greens’ lead in Brunswick grew from 353 to 414 with small additions of absents, postals and pre-polls, at which point you would be pretty much calling it. It no longer seems necessary to continue following Nepean, where Labor leads by 794, or Sandringham, where the Liberals lead by 451. No progress today in Mildura, where independent Ali Cupper leads the Nationals by 281.

Thursday morning

Another good day for Labor overall, who seem to be doing better from votes cast out-of-district, whether as absent votes or pre-polls, than the in-district pre-poll votes that were counted on election night. However, I’m not clear if absent votes are all being added in one hit per electorate, or if further additions can yet be anticipated where results have already appeared. I’m tending to think the latter — since absents are usually the best part of late counting for Labor, a fair bit hinges on this.

In Hawthorn, absent votes turned yesterday’s 235-vote Liberal lead into a Labor lead of 47. Labor got 56.8% out of 2498 absents, above the 53.0% I was projecting. I was also projecting there would be 3792 in total, so I am guessing there are another 1000 or so still out there. These will be decisive if so, but it can’t be said how they might behave — batches of absent votes can behave very differently depending where they were sourced from. The Liberals also got only 50.7% out of 4242 new pre-polls (2150 to 2092) added yesterday, compared with their 56.3% of the first 7148 counted.

Things continue to go Labor’s way in Bayswater, where their lead grew yesterday from 165 to 236. Labor got 55.2% of the absents added yesterday — exactly as I had anticipated, but they were 2705 in total rather than my projected 2054. It was also a good day for Labor in Nepean, where they won a batch of 3673 new pre-polls 1903-1770 — 51.8% compared with their 46.4% from the first 14,903. Labor now leads by 492, and most of the outstanding votes are likely to be absents, none of which have been added, so the balance would seem to be tipping their Labor. My lineball projection as of yesterday is now for a Labor winning margin of 0.5%.

One late counting bright spot for the Liberals is Sandringham, where 4464 new pre-polls behaved very much like the first 9424 in breaking 2489-1975 their way. Furthermore, absent votes were added and while they went 1139-884 to Labor, there were less of them than I was anticipating (2023 rather than a projected 2566). However, I’m not sure if this is all of them or not. In any case, the Liberal lead is now 497, and with only a few scraps still outstanding, this will be hard for Labor to rein in.

The Greens’ lead in Brunswick grew from 218 to 353, but they underperformed my projection out of 2653 absent votes counted in Brunswick, scoring 1475 to Labor’s 1178 — 55.6% compared with my projected 61.8%. However, that’s also about 1000 less than I was projecting, so there are presumably more of these to come. There would seem to be another 2000 of these as well. Labor will need about 56% of what’s to come.

The Nationals have come storming home in Mildura, being overwhelmingly dominant on the small number of absent votes (575 to independent Ali Cupper’s 227), and reversing earlier form to win a batch of pre-polls 870 to 640. This slashed Cupper’s lead from 859 to 281. My earlier judgement was that the number of votes outstanding here was too small for the Nationals to close the gap, and that probably still holds, as I believe there are only a few hundred postals still to come.

Nothing today from Ripon.

Wednesday morning

Labor solidly outperformed my projections yesterday in Bayswater, scoring almost exactly half of 4559 pre-polls added, where they only got 46.1% of the first 8383. They also won 52.1% of 674 postals, after scoring only 39.6% of the 2217 counted on election night, did about as well on absents as anticipated, winning 1132-922. That gives Labor a lead of 165, or 0.2% – with not much of the vote outstanding, my projection has it coming down to 0.1%, but Labor will more likely than not continue outperforming its assumptions.

Better news for the Liberals from Ripon, where 889 postals broke 535-354 to Liberal (60.2% compared with 58.0% in the first 3735) and pre-polls went 393-304 (56.4% compared with 51.0% of the first 3302). My Liberal projection has gone from 49.9% to 50.2%, but here too the number of postals received has exceeded my projection, so if anything it might be understating their chances. That said, the margin is narrow enough that a good pre-poll batch or better than expected show on absents for Labor could up-end it. Swings and roundabouts in Nepean, where the Liberals went below par on yesterday’s postals (360-297 in their favour, or 54.8% compared with 59.2% in the election night batch of 2341), but above par on pre-polls (587-357, 62.2% compared with 53.0% of the first 13,959). Before I was projecting a 134 vote win for Labor, now it’s 26 votes for Liberal.

The Liberal lead in Hawthorn increased yesterday from 53 to 235, but only postals were added, and these were slightly less favourable to the Liberals than those counted on election night, bringing my projected final Liberal margin down from 1.1% to 0.8%. The election night postals went Liberal 1104 (60.4%) and Labor 725 (39.6%), but yesterday’s batch went Labor 1115 (54.3%) and Liberal 937 (45.7%). No further pre-polls have been added, and the outstanding ones may yet surprise in either direction. Then there are absents, which I am projecting Labor to do well on, though evidently not well enough.

The Greens are firming in Brunswick: they won a second batch of postals 442-426, after losing the election night count 950-699, and they won a batch of absents 811-537, exactly the proportion anticipated when I projected them to win by 1.0%.

Tuesday afternoon

Labor leads on the raw count with about a third done in Morwell, but my projection is that this will flip when the outstanding votes are in — Northe is on track to receive about 70% of preferences, in which case he wins 52-48 (I conducted a regression analysis to test whether the existing preference count was representative of the whole, and found that it was). Better news for Labor in Geelong, where Christine Couzens leads Darryn Lyons, and Pascoe Vale, where Lizzie Blandthorn leads Oscar Yildiz 59.0-41.0. In Shepparton, Suzanna Sheed looks seat to emerge with 54% to 55% against the Liberal candidate.

Tuesday morning

With very little counting done yesterday, the chief news is that the Victorian Electoral Commission announced it is conducting new preference throws to indicate the likely winners Morwell (independent versus Labor), Geelong (Labor versus independent), Pascoe Vale (Labor versus independent) and Shepparton (independent versus Liberal), and will publish the results later today. The removal of the two-party numbers from the media feed caused my results reporting facility to conk out, so the figures it show remain those from Sunday.

The only thing I know so far about the new preference throws is that the Pascoe Vale pre-poll count has broken 6059-6008 for Labor’s Lizzie Bladthorn over independent Oscar Yildiz, as related by Richard Willingham of The Age. This suggests the advantage to Yildiz on preferences is only 53-47, in which case Blandthorn would win handily with between 54% and 55%. Independents Russell Northe and Darryn Lyons will respectively need around 72% and 66% of preferences in Morwell and Geelong. The deal in Shepparton is that it’s the Liberals rather than the Nationals who finished second, but unless I’m missing something, it would seem to me that Suzanna Sheed is home and hosed in either case.

The only change in the seven seats where I felt the existing notional counts were following was in Ripon, where a batch of pre-polls broke 587-357 to the Liberals – 63% compared with their earlier 53%. This means my projection has gone from 0.1% in favour of Labor to 0.1% in favour of Liberal. The votes counted totals for the upper house have edged up from the forties to the fifties, but I’m still holding off looking into them in detail.

Sunday night

If you want real detail on the likely course of the late count, Kevin Bonham is your man. For starters, I will content myself with the following projections of how the undecided seats where the correct two candidates have been picked for the notional preference count stand to play out. As explained below, there are methodogical details that one might well think imperfect, but if nothing else, consider it a conversation starter.

This assumes that a) outstanding pre-polls will break the same way as those already counted, and the number outstanding is as indicated by the relevant figures from the Victorian Electoral Commission; b) postals will break the same way as those already counted, with the total number to be counted equal to the total in 2014 adjusted in proportion to the growth in enrolment since that time; c) absent votes will differ from non-absent votes in the same way they did in 2014, with the total number determined the same way as for postals. No account is made for provisionals, which should throw a handful of extra votes Labor’s way.

This makes it clear enough that the Liberals should get home in Hawthorn, Sandringham and probably Bayswater, but Nepean and Ripon will go right down to the wire. The Greens’ traditionally strong showing on absent votes should see them home in Brunswick, and it seems likely independent Ali Cupper will gain Mildura from the Nationals. I was circumspect about this in my post last night, as I expected the Nationals would do well on postals – but it turns out that, for whatever reason, very few postals are cast in Mildura. Indeed, it ranks last in the state for number of postal votes received, according to the VEC’s figures.

Then there are the in doubt seats for which the two-party count doesn’t offer an insight. Prahran will be won by whoever out of Greens incumbent Sam Hibbins and Labor’s Neil Pharoah survives the second last exclusion on preferences, which will be absolutely touch and go. Then there is my watch list of five seats (not counting Mildura) that could potentially be won by independents, as discussed in my previous post. Morwell could stay with Nationals-turned-independent member Russell Northe, and will go to Labor if it doesn’t; the Liberals might lose Benambra; Labor might lose Geelong, Melton and Pascoe Vale.

That leaves Labor with 49 seats nailed down, on top of which they might keep Geelong, Melton and Pascoe Vale, and gain Prahran, Nepean, Ripon and Morwell. The Coalition have 27 seats in the bag, including Hawthorn, Sandringham and (perhaps generously) Bayswater, on top of which they might keep Nepean, Ripon and Benambra. I’m pretty sure the Greens will have Brunswick in addition to Melbourne, and are lineball to keep Prahran. I’m giving Mildura as well as Shepparton to independents, to which it’s at least possible to add another five.

As for the upper house, we’re still at too early a stage in the count for me to be bothered putting my oar in – only election day votes have thus far been counted, and an increasing number of voters have finally got the message about the advisability of voting below the line (requiring the numbering of only five boxes in the case of Victorian state elections). However, it looks fairly clear that there will indeed be a spectacular array of micro-parties on the cross bench, and that the principal casualty of this phenomenon is the Greens.

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.

457 comments on “Victorian election: photo finishes”

  1. Wiiliam

    That is interesting that Mildura ranks last for postals. My guess would be that it is because that area extending down to the Mallee is actually perhaps the most socially disadvantaged region in the state, and therefore has the fewest people who would ever be away on holiday from their electorate.

    Certainly most farmers in the Mallee would just about never go away, though that is not dissimilar to other rural areas. Up in the Sunraysia area around Mildura there are many many small landholders in the irrigation zones so maybe overall there are more people actively involved with agriculture (or viticulture, or horticulture) than most other rural areas.

  2. Also, in the Mildura electorate, most of the farms are relatively close to town so you don’t have many farms which are tens of kilometres from the nearest booth on the day (which are a large potential source of postal votes in other rural seats, as anyone who’s ever followed a postcount in Queensland seats will know). A lot of the area of the electorate is completely uninhabited national park or similar.

    Picking up on a comment in the last thread – I helped out a bit with the Box Hill Labor campaign (such as it was). It didn’t have a lot of resources – mostly just the local party members (not many in that part of the world), family and friends. I don’t think there was any electorate-wide mailout but there was a leaflet drop at the western end of the electorate about the planned removal of the level crossings there. Obviously a bit of doorknocking too but there’s only so many places a candidate can get to. Don’t know what the total budget of the campaign was but I’d be surprised if it was over $10,000. I’m not aware of any specific attempt to target Chinese-language media or social media (something the Liberals apparently did with some success in the Chisholm campaign last time, so expect to see more of that next year).

  3. I have no idea why the ABC has decided to go Lib/Ind with their 2PP tally in Benambra. The VEC hasn’t, and shows virtually no move in the Liberal 2PP.

    When you go to the ABC Benambra site, it shows Hawkins on 29% – but when you go to ‘all candidates’, she drops to 17.

    The assumption clearly is that there is 100% transfer of votes from one indie to another. I’m not sure that is a sound one, particularly as O’Connor is the former Green candidate. In past elections locally, despite the Greens running an open ticket, you could simply add the Green vote to the Labor vote to get the ALP result. Given that at least some of the O’Connor voters will have come to her from the Greens, I would expect a reasonable numbers of those will continue to follow the habits of a lifetime.

    If you are voting indie, by definition you are voting largely on personalities. Voting for one indie thus does not automatically mean you’re preferencing the other.

  4. VEC

    Verified account

    38m38 minutes ago
    The VEC will adjust 2CP candidates for Shepparton, Morwell, Pascoe Vale and Geelong districts. Results at will reflect the adjusted candidate selections from Tuesday 26 November #VicVotes #VictoriaVotes

  5. I’m pretty sure the independent vote being rolled into Hawkins in that display is a bug rather than a feature. Antony Green will have decided at some point that the VEC’s notional preference count (which they can’t just change, as Antony can by flicking the switch from a real-world vote tally to a preference guesstimate involving a different two candidates) was neither here nor there, as it would not be Liberal versus Labor at the final count. I’m sure he’s right about this — the key point is whether he’s also right, or almost right, about his preference guesstimate. That remains to be seen.

  6. Typed that before I saw William’s post – much as I hate to disagree with Antony, both the VEC and I seem to disagree with him! (I obviously think I’m more relevant than the VEC….)

  7. @zoomster

    I’d think that the VEC is waiting till the final throw, as with the greens preferencing o’Connor you can’t even be sure which independent will get up, not that they actually think the ALP will last till TPP.

  8. zoomster

    they normally only do a full throw of preferences once everything is in and has been double checked. Often a week or more after the election. Before that they just guess the two lead candidates and do a TCP count based on that.

  9. Areaman

    I’m lousy at predicting election results, but – at least locally – I’m good once I have numbers in front of me (predicted that Cathy McGowan would win, and by how much, within days of the election).

    Don’t see a path to victory for either independent, for reasons outlined above: voting for O’Connor does not mean an automatic preference for Hawkins, and vice versa. At least a small percentage will peel off and go back to the party they usually support.

  10. …and to get back to my main point, the VEC has already decided to change their 2PP count on a number of seats. Benambra isn’t one of them.

  11. When the Coalition lost in 2014 I thought they were going to make the mistake of making Michael O’Brien leader (as Treasurer he was the signatory of the very-late East-West Link contracts wasn’t he?). Instead they are apparently going to do it this time around.

    I note he was born in Dublin. Citizenship all sorted?

  12. BT

    Thanks for your insight re Box Hill. It was definitely a surprise result and there had been very little campaigning.
    I am wondering if the Libs were really hurt by a lot of the normal helpers, HTVers etc. saying NO to helping out after all of the Canberra shenanigans. Having resources on the ground does help. At a federal level, there have been a lot of issues in the Eastern Suburbs – can’t see too many Julia Banks supporters being inclined to help – or Lib people being pissed off by Michael Sukkar’s antic vis a vis Turnbull.
    This could have been an issue in Hawthorn, Nepean and Brighton as well.

  13. Merri Creak

    I was thinking about that on the weekend. Has to be one of the most extraordinary stuff ups ever. I actually felt a bit sorry for him at the time because I believe he was dealing with some difficult personal issues.

    I had forgotten that they had been able to parachute an upper house guy into the candidature, who then lost anyway.

    I knew there was a famous example of a politician (NSW Health Minister, no less!) forgetting to re-nominate, and find there were two. Parties are now allowed to do a central “group nomination” to stop this happening again.

  14. Re Benambra, the VEC has not decided to change the 2CP because Hawkins is currently in third by 1%. They may decide to change the 2CP later or they could just wait for the distribution of preferences. They have also not yet decided to change it in Werribee where Joe Garra is currently second on primaries and will be second after preferences, perhaps because there is no realistic doubt about who will win that seat.

    My view is the final 2CP in Benambra will very probably be Tilley vs Hawkins as Greens preferences will tend to flow to Hawkins over Labor, and O’Connor preferences (a fellow female independent) will also tend to do so even though she issued an open card. Shooters preferences will flow to Labor but are also splitting with Tilley. The ABC was right to change it especially as the 2PP count is uncompetitive. However Tilley is quite likely to win anyway in view of the preference share required by Hawkins being too large given the hostile Shooters preferences.

    My page on Benambra is here:

  15. Rocket Rocket @ 12:44 pm
    When the Coalition lost in 2014 I thought they were going to make the mistake of making Michael O’Brien leader (as Treasurer he was the signatory of the very-late East-West Link contracts wasn’t he?)

    Michael O’Brien was responsible for the infamous “side letter” which required that huge compensation be paid to the east-west toll road consortium if the scheme was cancelled.

    Labor had just come out against the road and there was panic the Napthine government because the consortium said that, without a guarantee, it would not sign the contracts by the looming deadline.

    It was part of the crude attempt to wedge Labor regarding the scheme, and went very badly for the state of Victoria.

  16. Please clarify your statistics for the Ringwood district Greens percentage increase.
    In 2014, the Greens polled 10.76% and a total of 3,903.
    As of last weekend the Greens had polled 12.9% and a progressive total of 3,773.
    Comparison of the two figures by my calculation says the Greens vote in Ringwood is up by 2.23% over 2014.

  17. So Corio do you drive the Monash Freeway every day. Do you drive Alexandra Ave and Elliot Ave every second day. Do you realise Melbourne is growing by 130,000 people per year. And now you tell me its a good thing to cancel road projects where 1.3 billion has already spent on the project. Andrews stated quite clearly cancelling the contract would cost nothing. The Auditor General stated when the cost of cancelling the project was known, the project should have proceeded. The side letter did not come into play. Because why, Andrew’s expensive lawyers found the contract to be valid. Andrews only announced he will rip up the contract on the eve of the awarding of the project. Andrews is solely responseable for this waste. Plus, you don’t have 10 lane freeways ending at T-intersections in the middle of the city. Its sometimes smart to connect up your freeways which is exactly what the NE Link does as well.

  18. And now you tell me its a good thing to cancel road projects where 1.3 billion has already spent on the project

    There are so many things wrong with your post, with this herald-sun number of 1.3 billion being a good jumping off point. The actual cost was slightly over 1 billion, but that included purchasing a number of houses in the inner north, which have since been sold off, lowering the cost to around $700 million. This is obviously way less than the 21 billion the road would have cost over the entire length of the contract.

  19. areaman,

    And as Andrews said this morning although he’d spent a billion, he saved another $20 bill which meant he could deliver on his infrastructure program that has been overwhelmingly endorsed. He campaigned on not doing the EW link. So, I doubt it was a difficult decision for Andrews to make.

    The Libs should not have entered in to the contracts that close to the election.

    With the NE Link Andrews insisted that the project go ahead was dependent upon voters agreeing to it at last Saturday’s election. Andrew’s launched the EOI process this morning in Greensborough.

  20. Areaman, name everything incorrect in my post and we can have an argument. I’ve done this heaps of times.
    My first point is what is the difference between the E-W link and the NE Link. Both projects are just connecting up the freeway systems. Thats what any sane government attempts to do.
    Andrews saved 1 billion dollars so he could build 15.8 billion tollway in a different direction. That makes sense. The WG Tunnel project is an inferior version of the western section of the E-W Link costing what 7 billion dollars. What happens to the WG Tunnel traffic when reaches Citylink and wants to head further east. Complete congestion thats what happens. So it makes sense for Andrews to cancel the eastern section of the E-W Link which would actually give the WG Tunnel traffic somewhere to go instead of rat-running through the CBD. Obviously, I am dealing with the left who don’t understand traffic flow so don’t expect an intelligent response.

  21. michael @ 4:03 pm

    You clearly have little idea about the history of the east-west toll road scheme. Michael O’Brien signed the side letter guaranteeing compensation to the consortium before any major expenditure had been incurred. It was that action alone which required the spending of over a billion dollars to extricate the state from the scheme.

    The Napthine Coalition government was desperate to wedge Labor by locking them in to supporting the plan, thereby losing votes to The Greens in inner Melbourne suburbs. Labor came out against the scheme and, with the deadline for signing the contracts looming, the Coalition panicked when the consortium said it wouldn’t sign the contracts unless it was compensated in the event of cancellation. Hence the side letter.

    You also seem to have the naive belief that building more motorways reduces traffic congestion. In fact, providing more road space only increases the amount of traffic.

  22. Areaman, you can also discount your $700m by another $80m because I believe that was the cost of keeping the money facility open. This facility was used on other projects, so wasn’t wasted.

  23. Remember how Skyrail on the Frankston line was a disaster for Labor? The voters weren’t listening.

    Swings in Bentleigh 12% to Labor, Mordialloc 12% to Labor, Carrum 12% to Labor, Frankston 10% to Labor.

  24. What a load of rubbish Corio. The bulk of the 1 billion spent on the E-W link was spent on the planning, procurement and pre-construction activities such as drilling, plus compensation to the contractor. One billion dollars was not spent getting Andrews out of the deal, money had already been spent.
    Of course you admit Andrews cancelling the project due to political reasons such as the Greens. Don’t worry about the enormous waste of taxpayer funds, making Andrews job as remaining Premier as easy as possible is far more important. Guy could have blocked the sale of the Port of Melb and completely stuffed Andrew’s level crossing projects and other projects but he let the sale through as it was the best thing for the state of Victoria, but by blocking would have definitely help him politically as Andrews would have got nothing done. Labor would never do that as evidenced by the E-W Waste.
    As for usual green crap about roads, you must continually improve all forms of transport whether it be road, rail, trams , cycling and walking. Its not one or the other. If you stop spending on roads with Melbourne’s population growing by 130,000 per year that will be an absolute congestion nightmare. Not everyone lives in the CBD like the Green voters, in the outer suburbs a lot of places have virtually no public transport and the car is the only option. We are not Tokyo or Shanghai with major population density, we have a huge urban sprawl in Melbourne and will always have a heavy reliance on our road system. Its uneconomic to build rail-lines everywhere with such low population density.

  25. michael @ 6:54 pm

    As your comments become longer they become less coherent. Of course its uneconomic to “build rail lines everywhere” Who is proposing that? It’s also uneconomic to build roads which take up huge amounts of valuable land, only to become clogged with more and more cars, requiring yet more expansion.

    You lack understanding of the alternatives to counter-productive major road expansion, and your acceptance of the “density myth” shows that you haven’t done even basic research into the problem.

  26. Interesting you won’t challenge certain comments I have made. They must be correct. Why do you think our roads are becoming more clogged. Its not because of more people choosing to drive. Its because 130,000 people are coming to Melbourne each year and some actually have to drive and you must cater for that. Are you saying we stop funding all new roads.
    I am totally in favour of all the rail projects Andrews is planning.
    Now as freeways carry 50% of all vehicular traffic, can you name all the freeways which should be built in the next 20 years. If you say none, I rest my case.
    Try to say something this time, instead of your usual green crap. Actually explain this density myth, because I don’t think you have a clue.

  27. Will be interesting to see how northern victoria finishes up. The below the line might help the national whereas you would think the absentees would pull it back labor’s way

    Come to think of it, the below the lines will probably push the Nat over. To a lesser extent the labor’s second could be some chance of getting over the line on btls

  28. The Greens and the LNP have been completely ripped off in the LC looking at the results. Labor have played it brilliantly, don’t know what the Greens and LNP have being doing about preference deals, they look clueless. Simple fact is, even though I am not a fan of the Greens, this joke of a voting system has to change.

  29. Remember how Skyrail on the Frankston line was a disaster for Labor? The voters weren’t listening.

    Swings in Bentleigh 12% to Labor, Mordialloc 12% to Labor, Carrum 12% to Labor, Frankston 10% to Labor.
    There has actually been minimal “Skyrail” with the Frankston line level crossing removals. With the exception of one section around Carrum (and yes the Liberals tried to beat it up and failed miserably) the removals have all been rail under. The real beat up on Skyrail was on the Dandy line – and those seats were never going to be problematic for the ALP. They certainly weren’t on Saturday. If Skyrail was ever a real problem on the Dandy line it seemed to have been pretty much forgotten once the level crossings were removed. It’s been such a great result. All things being equal, elevated rail would probably have been the better solution for most of the Frankston line level crossings, but having seen the Hun go to war on the issue with the Dandy line, the government wasn’t going to try elevated rail in those 4 ultra marginal seats.

  30. Michael

    My information comes from Treasury and the upper echelons of Treasury – a source with whom I lunch regularly at Strangers Corridor at Parliament House, which is an excellent luncheon venue

    You are wrong

  31. If Justice get up ahead of Labor in Northern Victoria it will be because of Green preferences

    As it is, I would think that with above the line preferencing the Greens would probably have ended up with southern metro and that’s it….so they have possibly been robbed of 1. The general problem for the Greens, in addition to their lower vote, is Labor’s high vote. This meant that Labor surpluses that may have got a Green over the line previously instead have in some cases been used to elect another Labor member

    In terms of the Coalition, I suspect they will end up with 13 anyway once BTL is factored. In northern metro particularly and western victoria, they are nudging up against quotas that could be met by favorable BTL preferences…I think this is in line with Kevin Bonham’s analysis

    The Libs likely would have done better with above the line preferencing

  32. And in regard the sale of Port of Melbourne, the Feds put pressure on State governments to privatise their assets leading to the sales we saw

    Including by offering bonus payments – which they then reneged on on the basis the Contract was not executed by a certain date

    After some “debate”, the bonus payment was received by Victoria

    Andrews called Turnbull out and the Liberals eventually folded

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