New South Wales election: the morning after

A quick and dirty review to an election result that proved surprisingly similar to the one in 2015.

I lack the energy to offer much in the way of a post-mortem at this late hour, except to say this was a remarkably status quo result. The Coalition dropped around 3% on the statewide primary vote, and Labor and the Greens about 1% apiece, so presumably the Coalition landed somewhere between 53% and 54% on the two-party vote. This is a couple of points better than the polls suggested, making this the first election result in a very long time that surprised on the up side for the Coalition (UPDATE: Thanks to NathanA in comments for jogging my memory about Tasmania last year). To a certain extent, that might be explained in terms of the Newspoll, with its Tuesday to Thursday field work period, only picking up part of a final week shift away from Labor – although it doesn’t explain an exit poll that was in line with the two-party result.

The Coalition went into the election needing to restrict its losses to six to retain its majority, and it is only clear that they have lost three. Two of these losses were to Shooters Fishers and Farmers, who had a rather spectacular night in picking up all three of their target seats, with Barwon and Murray joining their existing seat of Orange (I was suggesting the Nationals were more likely to retain Barwon quite late in my election night commentary, but they actually have a very handy lead there). Labor’s only clear gain is Coogee, which they now look to have in the bag, although by a lower than expected margin. It looks like they will fall short in East Hills and Penrith, but I will keep an eye on those all the same. Independent Mathew Dickerson has come close against the Nationals in Dubbo, but he is slightly behind and independents tend to lose ground in late counting.

The one seat on which I have crunched numbers is Lismore, which is likely but not certain to be lost by the Nationals. The question is whether it will be lost to Labor, who lead the notional two-party candidate, or the Greens, who had an unexpectedly good night despite the drop in their statewide vote, retaining their three existing seats of Balmain, Newtown and Ballina, and being well in the hunt in Lismore to boot. The two-party count has Labor with a lead of 1840, which looks too much for the Nationals to reel in – they should gain about 500 when pre-polls that have thus far been counted only on the primary vote are added, and the 2015 results suggest they will gain a further couple of hundred when absents and postals are added. However, Labor candidate Janelle Saffin holds a lead of just 24.85% to 23.90% over the Greens, and the race to stay ahead at the last exclusion could go either way. If the Greens win, they will certainly get enough preferences from Labor to defeat the Nationals UPDATE: Didn’t have my thinking cap on there – they may very well fail to get enough Labor preferences to do so.

The basic election night count for the Legislative Council accounts for 48.4% of enrolled voters, and only provides specific results for above-the-line votes for seven parties, when an “others” total that lumps together above-the-line votes for all other parties, and below-the-line voters for all and sundry. The only votes identified as informal at this point are those ballot papers that were left entirely blank – less obviously informal votes are presently in the “others” pile. Disregarding that complication, the current numbers show a clear seven quotas for the Coalition, six for Labor, two for the Greens, one apiece for One Nation and Shooters, leaving four to be accounted for.

The Coalition has enough of a surplus to be in the hunt for one of those; Labor probably doesn’t; One Nation look in the hunt for a second seat; the Christian Democrats and Animal Justice are both possibilities. The wild card is that three quotas under “others”, which would maybe a third of a quota’s worth of below-the-line votes for the seven main parties. My very late night feeling is that the Liberal Democrats (i.e. David Leyonhjelm), Australian Conservatives and Keep Sydney Open might all be in contention.

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.

687 comments on “New South Wales election: the morning after”

  1. Antony Green on Dubbo…

    No preference counts yet for the Dubbo pre-polls, but if the polling day preference flows apply to the pre-polls, than the Nationals in Dubbo are on 51.7% and probably home which would give the Berejiklian government a majority. #nswvotes

    Having a Liberal Party Government safely ensconced in NSW gives the voters the right to dust off the baseball bats for Scotty, Abbott and their motley crew come the big show

  2. No, I donโ€™t understand the need to add the adjectives.

    No, you don’t. You seem to want the world to be a very colourless, vanilla, rectitudinous, politically correct, place, Rex Douglas. Thank goodness others are not all like you!

  3. @ cud

    Bankstown – Currently 0.2% to Liberal
    Canterbury – Currently 2.1% to Liberal
    Lakemba – Currently 1.1% to Labor
    Summer Hill – Swing from Greens to Labor. Liberal down 1% primary

  4. Generic Person @ #298 Sunday, March 24th, 2019 – 3:00 pm

    Regarding the racist comments of Daley, they did not get enough media attention in my view. If such views were ever ventilated by a Liberal or National candidate, they would be hounded relentlessly on social media and the mainstream media. Daley was slapped with wet lettuce from the left, even from such leftist luminaries like Tim Soutphommasane, who wasn’t rushing out whipping up 18C complaints I might add.

    Yes, sadly there was only muffled angst from many Labor partisans.

  5. Generic Person @ #305 Sunday, March 24th, 2019 – 3:04 pm

    C@t
    https://www.pollbludger.net/2019/03/24/new-south-wales-election-morning/comment-page-6/#comment-3109513

    Barry O’Farrell and Mike Baird will both be remembered as the premiers of NSW that started the rebuilding of NSW. Gladys served as Transport Minister and Treasurer under both and, as Premier, will see to completion to the largest ever infrastructure program in the state’s history.

    Which favours Liberal Party electorates. Which is fair enough, as it goes. That’s politics. To the winners, and their supporters, go the spoils.

  6. By the way – Gladys Berejiklian has never publicised her private life and doesn’t have a partner (gay or straight). The woman people appear to be referring to in this thread is her sister Rita.

    But the sneering jokes at her sexuality are typical of the left – they disown gays, people of colour etc when they don’t adhere to leftist politics.

  7. Generic Person @ #312 Sunday, March 24th, 2019 – 3:08 pm

    By the way – Gladys Berejiklian has never publicised her private life and doesn’t have a partner (gay or straight). The woman people appear to be referring to in this thread is her sister Rita.

    But the sneering jokes at her sexuality are typical of the left – they disown gays, people of colour etc when they don’t adhere to leftist politics.

    No, I pointed out her sister and her parents. Unless Gladys has 2 sisters that is.

  8. C@tmomma @ #305 Sunday, March 24th, 2019 – 3:04 pm

    No, I don’t understand the need to add the adjectives.

    No, you don’t. You seem to want the world to be a very colourless, vanilla, rectitudinous, politically correct, place, Rex Douglas. Thank goodness others are not all like you!

    You just had to make the point that she had a same sex partner. Why ?

    A partner is a partner, no matter their sexual orientation.

  9. If such views were ever ventilated by a Liberal or National candidate, they would be hounded relentlessly on social media and the mainstream media.

    Social media, sure. Mainstream media? You’ve got to be shitting me. Daley’s comments were the subject of one of the Telegraph’s three front page hits on him in the last week ; got front page stories in The Oz two days running; and were the front page lead in the Sydney Morning Herald on one day, another front page story on another, were mentioned in still another, and are the subject of the lead story on their website right now. Do you really believe there would have been more than this if Daley had been a Liberal?

  10. Generic Person @ #311 Sunday, March 24th, 2019 – 3:08 pm

    By the way – Gladys Berejiklian has never publicised her private life and doesn’t have a partner (gay or straight). The woman people appear to be referring to in this thread is her sister Rita.

    But the sneering jokes at her sexuality are typical of the left – they disown gays, people of colour etc when they don’t adhere to leftist politics.

    Well there you go then. ๐Ÿ˜†

  11. Have they counted the postal votes yet, My guess is they will result in a minority government. In the washout, nobody comes off good from last nights result. Daley suffered from those two gaffes (IMO the debate one was the biggest, what a plonker) in the last week, and a competent government getting things done HAD a 3% FPV swing against them… Poor results all around. Absolutely no comfort for Federal LNP who are TOTALLY incompetent…

  12. Was flicking through some old PollBludger blogs and in the Howard v Rudd tv debate blog OMG!!!!!!!! this name popped out. Did not realise nath has been around so long !!
    .
    .
    nath says:
    Sunday, October 21, 2007 at 9:02 pm

    Howard believes in the Australian people.

  13. Tricot:
    “So kind of, NSW Libs not quite bad enough to lose; NSW Labor not quite good enough to win? Or, NSW Labor still on the nose?”

    I’d think a reasonable assessment is all three, to some extent, came together.

    The way forward? Assess as best we can, campaign HARD in the upcoming fed election and do the best we can with what we have got….and exploit any fwarkups the Lib / Nats make in the meantime.

    Not that there will be any of those surely?? ๐Ÿ™‚ They may terrify and demoralize us all by bringing back daS Beetenrooter as leader of the Nats?? ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. I am curious about the tactics involved in choosing a new party leader after an election. I can understand that the initial burning disappointment feeds into a need to do something immediately to either punish the leader or to try something else, both instincts of which might be supported by the ambitious. But the next election is years away. What are the organisational or political advantages to switching immediately versus a more considered action versus not switching at all?

  15. @Bill Bowe
    https://www.pollbludger.net/2019/03/24/new-south-wales-election-morning/comment-page-7/#comment-3109537

    “Do you really believe there would have been more than this if Daley had been a Liberal?”

    Yes. There would be campaigns to deplatform him, disinvite him from major events, calls for him to resign or transparent backing of his internal leadership competitors etc, etc. If he had any significant awards, there would also be campaigns for those to be stripped.

  16. Rex Douglas @ #315 Sunday, March 24th, 2019 – 3:10 pm

    C@tmomma @ #305 Sunday, March 24th, 2019 – 3:04 pm

    No, I don’t understand the need to add the adjectives.

    No, you don’t. You seem to want the world to be a very colourless, vanilla, rectitudinous, politically correct, place, Rex Douglas. Thank goodness others are not all like you!

    You just had to make the point that she had a same sex partner. Why ?

    A partner is a partner, no matter their sexual orientation.

    Why not? And I wasn’t making the point for the first time, I have made it before. Without any particular attitude towards it. Unlike you who appears to be hung up about the fact. I simply observed that I saw a person onstage last night with Gladys who could have been her partner.

    Look, I was told a long time ago by a member of the gay community that Gladys was gay. I was simply happy that it seemed as though she had decided to finally come out about the fact last night. As nath said, ‘who cares’? However, I am prepared to accept GP’s assertion that she has 2 sisters and it was probably them on the stage with her.
    End of story.

  17. C@t:

    True. Our Nats don’t seem to be as ideological as NSW and Qld Nats. Plus they are separate from the Liberals which gives them greater independence than Nationals in other states.

  18. Generic Person @ #325 Sunday, March 24th, 2019 – 3:16 pm

    @Bill Bowe
    https://www.pollbludger.net/2019/03/24/new-south-wales-election-morning/comment-page-7/#comment-3109537

    “Do you really believe there would have been more than this if Daley had been a Liberal?”

    Yes. There would be campaigns to deplatform him, disinvite him from major events, calls for him to resign or transparent backing of his internal leadership competitors etc, etc. If he had any significant awards, there would also be campaigns for those to be stripped.

    I think the media did pretty well for 10 days until an election.

  19. I look forward to reading GP’s posts after the Federal election. Meanwhile, he might like to refresh his memory banks thusly:

    https://timhein.com.au/2012/05/22/the-top-10-most-publicised-abusive-comments-about-julia-gillard/

    I called out Daley’s racist comments because I call out racist comments regardless of the politics.

    It would be refreshing were the leadership in the Nationals and the Liberals apply the same standards to themselves but I am not holding my breath.
    Ditto their puppetmeisters among the shock jocks, Sky After Dark, PHON preference distributors, and Murdoch’s Bought-and-Paid-MSM scribes.

  20. A bit slow there, but in my research of things Berijiklian, I cam across this photo of Gladys at her 21st birthday party….

  21. Really? Daley has been crucified by the MSM, who would have thought it. people cannot have it both ways. If Gladys has said what he said, there would have been wall to wall outrage on here. Daley is a twerp and the best thing he can do for Labor, after a suitable time is to resign from parliament.

  22. Can anybody assist with how to properly quote and italicise in this forum? It has been a long time since I’ve engaged and the posts used to be numbered back in the old days.

  23. Iโ€™m sure Gladys is feeling very gay today. Have to think at least one of the two doubtful seats will go to the government giving her the majority she wants.

  24. Pro-Remain MPs are drawing up plans for a vote on revoking article 50 as an emergency measure to stop Britain crashing out of the EU, after an online petition to cancel Brexit became the most popular ever.

    By Saturday night more than 4.6 million people had signed the petition on the parliament website, which states: โ€œA Peopleโ€™s Vote may not happen โ€“ so vote nowโ€.

    Public discussion about halting Brexit was considered politically toxic until just days ago. But that shifted last week as the prospect of crashing out drew closer and the number of petition signatures rose dramatically.

    A cross-party group of parliamentarians is now examining the possibility of cancelling the Brexit process, following concerns that Theresa May could end up backing Tory MPs who favour a no-deal departure if her own withdrawal agreement is rejected again. They are planning to table an amendment to Brexit legislation closer to the day of Britainโ€™s scheduled departure from the EU.

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/mar/23/remain-mps-plan-vote-revoke-article-50

  25. @Boerwar
    https://www.pollbludger.net/2019/03/24/new-south-wales-election-morning/comment-page-7/#comment-3109551

    I was opposed to the leadership changes and the Federal Coalition is doomed for essentially the same reasons I espoused back in the Rudd/Gillard days. Revolving door PMs are a turn-off to voters to the point where they’ve basically stopped listening. Morrison might be able to scrape a save-the-furniture result but the Liberals are badly damaged in Victoria and Queensland.

  26. poroti
    says:
    Sunday, March 24, 2019 at 3:13 pm
    Was flicking through some old PollBludger blogs and in the Howard v Rudd tv debate blog OMG!!!!!!!! this name popped out. Did not realise nath has been around so long !!
    .
    .
    nath says:
    Sunday, October 21, 2007 at 9:02 pm
    Howard believes in the Australian people.
    _______________________________
    there were 2 nath’s going around then. Was I being sarcastic? If it was even me. I was not a massive Rudd fan, but I definitely voted for him over Howard.

  27. I’m sure WordPress has the ability to add Rich Text formatting options to the comments fields.

    @Bill Bowe you need to investigate ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. Dirty tricks… the national pamphlet labor will steal your retirement savings nothing was safe…
    Was this handed out in regional areas. If so? What were reactions

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