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. I recall from the Wentworth byelection that te Libs won big on early postals but fared much worse on those received late, including some batches that Phelps won.

    Is it a possibility we’ll see the same again in seats like Hawthorn, Bayswater and Sandringham?

    I can’t think of why the on the day swings were so much better for Labor than the pre polls. Unlike the Wentworth campaign which descended into farce in the last week, the Liberal campaign was consistently mediocre throughout in Victoria.

  2. I’m still tipping a very close ALP win in Hawthorn. I think the Libs will hang on in Sandringham but only just, I think the absentee votes will tighten it back up a little more than most calculations predict.

    I also think the absentee results in Caulfield will heavily favour the ALP. The most conservative (and Liberal voting) Jewish population in Caulfield don’t drive on Saturdays and stay local to observe the Sabbath, which means they are unlikely to vote outside their district on the day. The 70-30 Liberal result on postals, of which there wouldn’t be many left to count, could be easily be contrasted by a 60-40 ALP result on absentees. Even in 2014 the absentee vote broke 57-43 in the ALP’s favour there, so even half of the election day swing (which was around 7% in Caulfield) would give the ALP a 60% 2PP on absentee votes.

    It still won’t be enough to claw back a 1.8% deficit so I’m agreeing with a Liberal retain, but it could definitely reduce the Liberal margin to <1% when counting is finished.

  3. 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.

    I had been lax in switching off booth-based projections after election night. Now that I have, I’ve got the Greens swing at 2.1%.

  4. I can’t for the life of me understand where $166million dollars is spent to remove 1 level crossing. I can’t find any accounting figures anywhere. Can anyone help? Even labor costs of 200 people at $4000 a week for 26 weeks comes to $20million. You could build 550 large houses or 1000 small ones for 1 level crossing!!

  5. Left of centre. There are a few things to add to your calculations.

    Charge out rates are very different to wage rates. Once you include super, sick and annual leave, accommodation costs for design staff etc. It adds up to a lot. I am mid range in this industry and whilst my wage is a lot less, my rate is closer to $1400/day or $7000/week. A level crossing project from start to finish also generally takes around 3 to 4 years.

    Secondly, as aforementioned, infrastructure projects are phenomenally more expensive in their design and project management components. All crossings are unique. It costs a fortune for example to understand whether to go road or rail over or road or rail under. This also requires specialist skills generally not required in house such as geotech specialist, geologists, rail signallers, permanent way engineers etc.
    Working in a live rail environments are also phenomenally expensive. Almost no houses have this requirement.

    Then the structure (up or down) also is far more expensive to construct and with far less margin for error than a house started from scratch.

  6. Thanks KJ but 166 million is still a lot to play with. I would like to see the cost break down, or in the case of skyrail nearly 1 billion

  7. ^^Maybe double that 😉

    Skyrail is the poster child for cost overruns.

    As far as the cost breakdowns, I think the biggest element missing from your costs are the 75 or so staff averaging about $7000 per week designing for approximately 150 weeks.

    I can’t really provide a detailed breakdown, however a good chunk of the costs go into making sure there are no unintended consequences.

    For example, transport planning. Making sure those common sense aspects like desire lines for cyclists, traffic modelling etc. are understood.

    Planning approvals are, whilst critical, also quite expensive. Dealing with environment and heritage. All costs that are significantly higher than a house.

    On-top of this, there are probably materials that would amount to 50 or more houses.

    I’ll see if I can find you a better breakdown of the process, however I think it might be hard to come by (in a step by step fashion)

  8. A level crossing project from start to finish also generally takes around 3 to 4 years

    But, the life of a parliament is 4 years

    So, the program commenced 4 years ago at the earliest

    Those level crossing removals I am aware of (including Station rebuilds and relocations) have been operational for a considerable period of time now and not just 12 months

    There are also the ancillary works such as bicycle paths

  9. Lol. I have voted for or preferenced Labor over Liberal for local, state and federal governments for more than a decade.

    The level crossing removal program is critical and needs to continue. I personally would have approached it differently if political need wasn’t a key stakeholder.

    Also, note the number of crossings completed prior to 2018 verse in 2018 😉

    Also, why would I want to discredit my own job?

    Edit: and why would trying to justify the expense of the projects equal discrediting them? Would trying to say the cost overruns and phenomenal for all of them and it shouldn’t cost that much be more discrediting?

  10. ^^The construction work, is, however their overheads may be lower as the site is their office. I don’t really know what their costs are to be honest.

  11. Can I ask why the ALP can savage the Greens whilst preferencing them over the Liberals? Similarly, why are the Liberals so intimidated by the left and most of the media that they they preference the ALP, the Greens and even the Victorian Socialists ahead of the Australian Liberty Alliance? It’s totally pathetic.

  12. Are you saying Labor doesn’t savage the Liberal Party?

    I think you probably know the answer to the rest of your question though that preferences are a combination about alignment and political benefit.

  13. “Can I ask why the ALP can savage the Greens whilst preferencing them over the Liberals? Similarly, why are the Liberals so intimidated by the left and most of the media that they they preference the ALP, the Greens and even the Victorian Socialists ahead of the Australian Liberty Alliance? It’s totally pathetic.”

    Uuum, they are political parties competing for power???

  14. The point is why is the ALP allowed to preference the Greens ahead of the Liberals but the Liberals are expected to preference the ALP over the Greens? The Liberals never say anything about this but meekly comply. Also, the ALA is no more ‘rightwing’ than the ALP/ Greens/Socialists are ‘leftwing’ so why the different attitude to them?
    Read my letter in today’s Herald Sun.

  15. ^^Who said they’re allowed or not allowed?

    Also, surely the Greens are closer to Labor than to the Liberals? This is probably why the Liberals take this approach.

    I think you’ll start an argument saying the ALA are no more right wing than the Greens are Left Wing (I put them closer to the Socialists), but political compasses are far more nuanced than left and right wing.

    There is a different attitude to certain parties that have less socially acceptable policies. Racist immigration policies and stances are hated far more than a nuanced discussion on immigration, and also hated far more by the public as a whole than many of the Greens policies.

    To be honest, to me this just says that the sooner we move to mandatory below the line voting the better. Then we can avoid all of these games all together!

  16. Jeremy, political parties will make preferencing decisions based on a range of pragmatic considerations

    The libs in Victoria made a decision to preference the ALP above the Greens in 2010, after Adam Bandt had just been elected on their preferences. It also allowed them to make a clearer attack on Labor as being in the thrall of the Greens

    They are not “expected” to do anything

  17. I can’t believe how poor the liberal campaign was. They had untrustworthy Guy, and used him as a poster boy with many a dumb slogan.
    Below is from the Age. How much ammunition does a party need. Dimeris must be a total dope.

    “For a first term outfit, this Labor government has been uncommonly scandal-prone.

    He’s lost a minister, Steve Herbert, to a scandal over using a taxpayer-funded car to chauffeur pet dogs around the state, while another man, Adem Somyurek, went overboard amid bullying allegations while protesting the whole thing was a factional stitch-up.

    Andrews lost two MPs, speaker Telmo Languiller and deputy speaker Don Nardella, who were busted claiming lucrative second-home allowances. Backbencher Khalil Eideh is being investigated over claims his office siphoned money from the MPs’ parliamentary printing allowance to pay for Labor Party memberships.

    Yet another minister, Jane Garrett, once considered a potential future premier, walked away from her job over Andrews’ handling of the ongoing disputes around the Country Fire Authority.

    The Premier’s relationship with the volatile leader of the United Firefighters Union, Peter Marshall, continues to dog his government.

    And then there’s the ‘red shirts affair’, where hundreds of thousands of dollars in MPs’ entitlements were channelled into Labor’s 2014 election campaign in what Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass labelled an “artifice” aimed at bolstering ALP electoral resources.

    Police are still investigating and it is beyond strange that a government with 21 of its MPs, six of them ministers, facing possible charges two weeks out from an election doesn’t appear to be under undue pressure. The Andrews’ government has in fact opened up a handy lead on its opponents in the polls and the bookmakers have him as a warm favorite.”

  18. Jeremy,

    Political parties can preference whoever they like. The liberals have flip-flopped between Labor and the Greens for last place recently (yes they often put the nazis, one-nation, lib dems above Labor). For the 2010 election Brumby goaded Ted Bailleu into putting the greens last. Ted decided this was a great idea and changed Liberal policy to put the greens last (below labor). It got a positive response (especially from the Herald Sun – who would’ve though that), was seen as a decisive move and helped contribute to the late swing that delivered them government. It thus became Liberal Party policy nationally to put the greens last. They have revisited this recently in some seats and will probably revisit it again whilst the ALP is very strong. The ALP have pretty much always put the greens above the LNP. If the ALP were forced into a minority position, better to have the greens to pass supply than be in opposition.

  19. Some years ago I spoke with one of the designers of the Melba and Mullum-Mullum tunnels on Eastlink. It made me realise that these sort of infrastructure projects have to be made almost perfect, and that every eventuality (landshifts, earth tremors, massive traffic accidents, fires, floods, explosions, terrorism etc) all have to be thought about during the process. As well as forward planning for future technology (for instance the tunnels are designed so that there could be four lanes rather than three in the future if all vehicles were autonomously computer controlled and therefore able to travel much more closely side-by-side than is feasible with manual control)

    Add in designing this to last for 120 years and the ‘resilience’ of everything you do at every stage becomes a major issue.

    Things could be built more cheaply, and often are in the third world – but occasionally there are disastrous consequences, and in our society such risks are considered unacceptable. The recent bridge collapse in Genoa for instance, which had been predicted by some because of poor maintenance, is an example of what happens when you cut corners.

    Last year I visited the memorial to the 35 workers killed in the 1970 Westgate Bridge disaster. When you stand there under the bridge and look up at the massive concrete pylons which are holding ten lanes of traffic above them, and which have now been in action for more than 40 years, it makes you appreciate that this sort of structure has to be near-perfect. Which makes it expensive.

    The late John Young, NASA Astronaut, was asked if he was nervous about making the first Space Shuttle flight. He said –

    “Anyone who sits on top of the largest hydrogen-oxygen fueled system in the world, knowing they’re going to light the bottom, and doesn’t get a little worried, does not fully understand the situation.”

  20. PeeBee……..the reality is Labor votes with the Libs more often than not……and still won’t come clean and oppose Adani and anymore coal mining projects…….so despite Labor’s climate change rhetoric….it is playing both sides for self-seeking political advantage……and certainly does not deserve credit for such irresponsible behaviour. And that is why I support the Greens…..who are prepared to keep flying the flag for genuine climate change action…..irrespective of how popular that is in certain sections of the community.

  21. PeeBee……..the reality is Labor votes with the Libs more often than not……and still won’t come clean and oppose Adani and anymore coal mining projects…….so despite Labor’s climate change rhetoric….it is playing both sides for self-seeking political advantage……and certainly does not deserve credit for such irresponsible behaviour. And that is why I support the Greens…..who are prepared to keep flying the flag for genuine climate change action…..irrespective of how popular that is in certain sections of the community.

  22. Let’s be honest here. Greens are more likely to deliver Labor Government or supply, so it makes sense for Labor to preference them. In terms of bill passage, you go with whatever takes to get the numbers or outcomes that you want to get your legislation through. You also have to evaluate that through the prism of who you are going through and what demands they make to get the legislation through.

    90% of all bills would pass most members without any real discussion. Some will oppose anything and everything just because.

    If an individual (independent or minor party candidate) is constructive and makes sensible amendments or proposals there is also life after parliament or the reward of being seen as having done good work for the community.

  23. This stage of the count in the doubtfuls is always frustrating. Lots of checking going on in the background with very little new info for tragic poll watchers.

  24. Robbo, ‘that is why I support the Greens…..who are prepared to keep flying the flag for genuine climate change action….’

    I guess that means ‘genuine climate action’ didn’t include an emissions trading scheme then.

  25. “I guess that means ‘genuine climate action’ didn’t include an emissions trading scheme then.”

    It certainly doesn’t mean winning government and actually doing stuff

    “And that is why I support the Greens…..who are prepared to keep flying the flag for genuine climate change action…..irrespective of how popular that is in certain sections of the community.”

    Wow, look at those brave Greens taking “a stand” on an issue that 95% of the seats they are trying to win are onside with. So very brave….

  26. Libs now in front in Ripon. Slight extend in Baywater to Libs. Mount Waverley back in play but Labor still have too big a lead. Early new 2pp in Morwell is favouring Labor.

  27. michael – That doesn’t really hurt Labor’s chances in any of those seats I don’t think, it’s to be expected. Results from today’s counting (postals & pre-polls, which won’t be huge amounts) should result in small shifts towards the Liberals because postals always go their way and pre-polls had a much smaller swing than ordinary votes on the day.

    When the absentee votes start being counted tomorrow (in most cases in larger numbers), that’s where the shifts back to Labor are likely to happen because absentee votes not only usually lean a little more left than ordinary votes, but because they were also from Saturday there’s no reason they shouldn’t have the same pro-ALP swings as Saturday’s ordinary votes.

  28. Actually as of 20 minutes ago, Bayswater just got updated with 2216 absent votes and the ALP are back in the lead.

    Ordinary votes in Bayswater went 52.7% to ALP; so far the absentee votes have broken 55.1% to ALP so it looks like the theory holds that absentee votes will favour ALP even more than the votes on the day.

    ALP ahead by 165 votes now.

  29. Update to Hawthorn as well:

    More postals & pre-polls updated about an hour ago, Libs have extended their lead to 235 votes. Looks like postals are pretty much exhausted now and absents haven’t started being counted so only 235 is a very precarious lead and doesn’t look promising for Pesutto.

    Similar situation in Prahran, another 1600 or so postal votes counted which have moved the 2PP 0.8% in the Lib’s favour (meaningless anyway) but more importantly widened Labor’s lead over Hibbins to 346 votes.

    However, same situation – no absent votes counted yet which will potentially close the gap between Pharaoh & Hibbins, and (less importantly) will increase the 2PP v the Libs closer to the 59% range.

  30. As a side note – even though in 2014 a higher percentage of Greens voters in Prahran preferenced the Libs than Labor voters (hence why the Libs would have won the ALP v LIB run off but the Greens won the Greens v LIB contest), I think if Labor stay in front of the Greens and switches to an ALP v LIB 2PP this year, the 2PP margin will increase.

    I suspect that a lot of Liberal voters who swung to Labor may have put the Greens last, so their ALP vote while the 2PP is being counted as Green v Liberal is currently contributing to the Liberals.

    I say this because almost every election in Prahran, the Liberal 2PP is only about 5% higher than their primary vote. Currently it’s about 9% higher which is abnormally large and I think the phenomenon of Liberal voters swinging to Labor for the first time this election is a factor in that. Their switch is a tick of approval for a proactive Andrews government in contrast to a dysfunctional Liberal Party but the Greens would be a step too far.

    I expect in an ALP v Liberal count, a lot less Greens voters (whose increase in the Prahran area is probably more organic when you consider demographic change) would have preferenced the Liberals higher so I’d expect the 2PP to settle more around 61-39 in that case.

  31. Hibbins looks safe in Prahran. Too bad for Pharaoh but he should have got more primaries. In any case, Prahran could easily radically change (or disappear completely) after the next re-distribution.

  32. Re Prahran

    The Green came back from 409 after primaries last time and did 163 better on absentees….but

    Almost 50% of the other vote was AJP and the Greens had the number 1 spot, which presumably would grant them some preferencing donkies

    This time the 4th and 5th biggest primaries are Reason, who are directing their preferences to Labor, and “Labour DLP”, who have the top spot.

    I’d still marginally favour the Green from here assuming only absentees to come

  33. Yep I still think Prahran is way too close to predict.

    Exactly as you mention, Labor’s lead is slightly smaller but the preferences are likely to favour Labor more this time. You’d expect that most Sustainable, DLP & Battler preferences will go Lib and be excluded from the ALP v Green contest altogether, but there’s no doubt there will be idiot voters who saw “Labour DLP” first, thought it was Labor and voted for the wrong party. Particularly since Labour DLP outpolled Reason & AJP in one of the least conservative, least religious and least homophobic pockets of the entire state, that DLP result seems way too high to be genuine DLP support.

    I don’t think any pre-polls have been updated since Saturday, so all out of district pre-polls would still be awaiting counting and they’re the wild card I think.

  34. I’ve patched up my results facility so it shows the numbers from the new 2PP counts — the swings it shows are screwy as they are comparing independent with major party results from 2014, but the important stuff works. Does anyone else concur with my assessment that Russell Northe is likely to reverse his current 52-48 deficit in Morwell?

  35. William when the count for the new 2PP for the pre-polls (around 17000 votes) for Morwell starts, that will decide if Northe has a show. I am not sure of what happens until they starting counting that batch because Northe will need a decent flow to him to have any chance.

  36. Labor will win Bayswater, 89% counted. Libs only got 400 votes out of postals, and Labor got 200 out of the Absent votes which gave them the lead. There are not enough postals left, Labor has it.

  37. Thanks Zoom

    I saw 94 and 89 but did not delve apart from wondering

    Be a big effort for Labor to claim Bayswater given the candidate was only endorsed less than 4 weeks out and, as I understand, had minimal resources apart from his own energies and those of his campaign personnel and supporters

    From one of our children who spoke to him at a shopping centre he presents very well

    So best of luck to the young man

  38. Obs

    Always stories like that when there’s a big swing — I knew someone who was so sure the seat he was running for was unwinnable that he went on holiday for ten days during the campaign. Came back to find he was an MP.

  39. Zoomster

    Speaking of candidates being away during the election because they aren’t expecting to win – I gather that Catherine Deveney (stand up comedian, writer and Reason Party candidate for Brunswick) spent last weekend conducting a writer’s workshop down the Surf Coast somewhere, not sure if she was present in the electorate on Saturday or not!! I mean, that’s her main career so I guess you can’t criticise her too much?

    At any rate, she said she was aiming for at least 4% primaries and got 6%, so she was happy enough.

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