SA election: call of the board

The finer points of Labor’s South Australian election win, and a closer look at the seats still in doubt.

Tuesday night

The Electoral Commission website is finally publishing two-candidate preferred results, but as ever there remains the South Australian peculiarity that the declaration votes are not being broken down into separate results for pre-polls, postals and absents, so we will have little guidance as to why what’s happening is happening as these results inevitably bounce around over the next week or so. After essentially no progress in the count on Monday, declaration votes started being reported in some seats yesterday.

The ABC rates nine seats as being in varying degrees of doubt, but I’m not inclined to agree with respect to Hammond, where declaration votes can only widen Liberal member Adrian Pederick’s 51.3-48.7 lead over independent Airlie Keen, who seems unlikely to make the final count in any case. That leaves clear results of 26 for Labor, 12 for Liberal and four for independents. Not among the in doubt is one seat I should have mentioned in the previous update: Gibson, where the identification of errors and the allocation of saved informal votes in accordance with registered party tickets on Saturday increased the size of Labor’s lead from 486 to an insurmountable 1055. That leaves:

Dunstan. Early indications are that this is going as I thought it might, with the first batch of declaration votes breaking 924-792 in favour of Steven Marshall, reducing the Labor lead from 143 to 11.

Finniss. Despite 1939 declaration votes breaking 1115-824 in favour of Liberal member David Basham over independent candidate Lou Nicholson on the two-party preferred candidate, it remains clear that he will not close the gap. So the issue remains whether Nicholson will indeed made the final count, or whether it will be a Liberal-Labor contest in which Basham will presumably prevail. The declaration votes so far suggest she won’t make it, as they have reduced her overall primary vote from 23.0% to 21.6% while increasing Labor’s from 23.4% to 23.7%.

Morialta. Liberal member John Gardner seems very unlikely to lose from here, the first batch of declaration votes having increased his margin from 145 to 347.

Unley. Another one that will shortly be off the Liberals’ endangered list if the first declaration votes are any guide: they have broken 680-402 in favour of Liberal member David Pisoni, increasing his lead from 92 to 370.

Waite. Liberal candidate Alexander Hyde needed declaration votes to break perhaps 64-36 in his favour to rein in Catherine Hutchesson’s lead on the two-candidate count – implausible as this seemed, he’s come close on the first batch, which have broken 609-376 his way (so 61.8%). Independent Heather Holmes-Ross nudging her way to the final count on preferences should continue to be rated very unlikely.

Sunday night

The news kept getting worse for the Liberals in today’s counting, thanks to two new two-candidate preference counts in seats where the wrong candidates were picked for the count on the night:

Waite. After conducting a preference count between Liberal candidate Alexander Hyde and independent Heather Holmes-Ross on the night, which made it clear Hyde would lose if Holmes-Ross made the final count, today a new count was conducted between Hyde and Labor candidate Catherine Hutchesson that made it clear he would lose to her too. That seems far the most likely outcome, with primary votes of Labor 27.4%, Liberal 24.5%, 18.9% for Liberal-turned-independent incumbent Sam Duluk and 15.3% for Holmes-Ross. Preferences from the Greens (12.0%) and Animal Justice (1.9%) could theoretically cause either independent to reduce the Liberals to third place and leave Labor and the independent at the final account, but that seems very unlikely. Labor thus looks poised to win the state’s second most affluent seat, which has it has neither won before now, either as Waite or in its previous incarnation as Mitcham going back to 1938.

Flinders. Liberal candidate Sam Telfer has 45.3% of the primary vote here, which in a field of six candidates that includes the Nationals would normally be enough. However, a two-candidate preferred count between Telfer and independent candidate Liz Habermann, which has thus far accounted for 10 out of 27 booths, finds preferences splitting 78-22 in favour of Habermann. According to the ABC, this suggests Habermann is ahead according to a method that matches the 10 booths with their equivalent results from 2018. However, projecting the preference flow so far across the primary votes puts Telfer ahead 51.1-48.9. I would also suggest that postal votes are likely to favour him. Should she fall short, the possibility of Habermann running in Grey at the federal election was canvassed on the ABC’s Insiders this morning.

Dunstan. Labor’s Cressida O’Hanlon trailed here 7191 to 7095 at the close on Saturday, but now leads 7376 to 7233. The ABC site explains: “Greens and Family First votes with insufficient preferences that were saved by SA’s unique ticket voting provision have been added today. Both parties lodged tickets flowing to Labor so that has added around 170 votes to Labor’s total.” That leaves him 0.5% behind, but my judgement yesterday that late counting was likely to improve his position by over 1% isn’t affected by this. It remains uncomfortably close for him, though presumably there is a strong chance of him retiring from politics and O’Hanlon getting a second crack at a by-election if she falls short.

Saturday night

Labor went into the election with 19 seats out of 47, had an easy gain in Florey with the departure of independent Frances Bedford, and have made it to a clear majority with five further gains from the Liberals. I count five potential further gains, including Steven Marshall’s seat of Dunstan, though I only reckon them to be ahead in one, and a sixth if they win Waite from a Liberal-turned-independent, which is very hard to call.

The Liberals won 25 seats in 2018, which had reduced to 22 by the election with three members moving to the cross-bench. Two of these three have been re-elected as independents while the third has been defeated – as just noted, it’s not clear whether by Liberal or Labor. If that seat remains with the Liberals and the other close races go their way, they will finish on 17. However, there is one further seat that may yet fall to an independent. Geoff Brock has proved net neutral for the Liberals in that the party gained his old seat of Frome, but have now lost Stuart to him. This leaves three or maybe four independents, or perhaps even five if it’s an independent who gets up in the complex race for Waite.

The display on the ABC site rates the most likely outcome as Labor on 28 seats, when they in fact lead in only 27. This would be the result of a probability-based determination that rates Labor as most likely to get over the line in one of the several seats where it is slightly behind, without any commitment as to which one.

The ABC’s system has booth-matching switched off, so the swings it shows are simply the pre-election margins as compared with the current raw totals. The analysis that follows, by contrast, compares election day booth results with their equivalent from last time, those being the only votes counted as of yet. All we will get today is rechecking and perhaps the reporting of a few straggler booths that didn’t get their two-candidate preferred results in from last night – counting of pre-polls, postals and absent votes, which by my reckoning should account for a bit less than 40% of the total, will begin on Monday. A further complication is that I have consistently used the post-redistribution margins calculated by the Boundaries Commission, which differ from those Antony Green has calculated for the ABC.

Labor gains:

Adelaide: The election day vote was completed at the end of the night, and showed the 0.8% Liberal margin easily accounted for by a 6.6% swing to Labor.

Davenport: The most impressive of Labor’s gains was its first ever win in Davenport, achieved by Erin Thompson with an 11.8% swing against Liberal member Steve Murray, who went into the election with a margin of 8.4%.

Elder: One of the four easy pickings for Labor with margins of less than 2% — precisely so in this case — swung to Labor by 7.5%, with Labor’s Nadia Clancy gaining the seat from Liberal member Carolyn Power.

King: The Liberals’ hope of toughing it out here on the back of Paula Leuthen’s sophomore surge weren’t realised — against a 0.8% margin, Labor’s Rhiannon Pearce scored a 3.9% swing.

Newland: In the tightest of the Liberal marginals, Labor’s Olivia Savvas did it easily with a swing of 5.0% (one booth is yet to report on the two-candidate preferred count, but this won’t matter much). In her bid to move from Florey, which she held for Labor from 1997 to 2017 and as an independent thereafter, Frances Bedford finished a very distant third with 11.9%.

Down to the wire:

Dunstan: Outgoing Premier Steven Marshall leads after counting of election day votes by 7191 to 7095, a margin of 0.3%. I calculate this as a swing of 6.2%, which given his margin of 8.1% suggests he’s likely to prevail. However, that’s the Boundaries Commission’s estimate of the margin — Antony Green only has it at 7.5%.

Gibson: The election day booths swung 10.7% to Labor, exceeding a Liberal margin of 9.9%, but not by so much that you’d call it.

Morialta: Outgoing Education Minister John Gardner had a 9.9% margin going in according to the Boundaries Commission, but only 9.4% according to Antony Green. On the election day vote he copped a swing of 8.6%.

Unley: This has been a pretty safe Liberal seat since 1993, and while David Pisoni looks like retaining it, he suffered a scare in the form of a 9.8% swing to Labor against a margin of 11.2%.

Waite: This one is very hard to read: the two-candidate preferred count has independent Heather Holmes-Ross leading Liberal candidate Alexander Hyde by 55.3% to 44.7%, but this will only apply if Holmes-Ross makes the final count and she’s actually running fourth. It’s theoretically possible that preferences from the Greens (12.0%) and Animal Justice (1.9%) could help her close the 18.9% to 15.3% gap against Liberal-turned-indepenent member Sam Duluk, and that Duluk’s preferences could then push her ahead of Hyde, although a lot of Duluk’s preferences will presumably go straight to Hyde. In that case, it comes down to a race between Hyde and Labor candidate Catherine Hutchesson that could go either way, with the result depending on the preferences of the nearly 50% of voters who voted for neither, about which we can only speculate.

Notable contests involving independents:

Stuart: I personally didn’t like Geoff Brock’s chances against Deputy Premier Dan van Holst Pellekaan, to which he moved after his home base of Port Pirie was transferred to the electorate from his existing seat of Frome. So it was a very substantial surprise that he romped home with 65.9% of the vote on the two-candidate preferred count at the end of the night, albeit that postal votes will undoubtedly rein that in a fair bit.

Kavel: Liberal-turned-independent Dan Cregan scored a thumping win with a majority on the primary vote.

Narungga: Another Liberal-turned-independent, Fraser Ellis, has comfortably retained his seat ahead of Liberal candidate Tom Michael with 58.9% on ECSA’s two-candidate preferred count, from primary votes of 32.4% for Ellis, 28.1% for Michael and 20.2% for Labor.

Finniss: ECSA conducted a count between Liberal member David Basham and independent candidate Lou Nicholson in which Nicholson polled 5590 of the election day votes (54.7%) and Basham polled 4625 (45.3%). However, this only applies if Nicholson makes the final preference count, which would seem to be touch and go — Basham is on 36.9%, Labor’s Amy Hueppauff is on 23.5% and Nicholson is on 22.9%, so Nicholson has a gap to close on preferences. Otherwise the final count will be Basham versus Hueppauff, in which case Basham should win fairly comfortably.

Florey: Worth noting as a Labor gain, but with independent Frances Bedford vacating the seat for an unsuccessful run in Newland, this was a mere formality.

Frome: Similarly, this predictably returned to the Liberals with Geoff Brock’s move to Stuart,

Finally, a bit over half of the count for the Legislative Council has been conducted, and the most likely result looks like being five seats for Labor, four for the Liberals and one each for the Greens and One Nation, the latter being in line for their first ever seat in the South Australian parliament. Taken together with the ongoing members elected in 2018, this will mean a chamber of nine Labor members, eight Liberals, two Greens, two from SA-Best and one from One Nation.

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.

387 comments on “SA election: call of the board”

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  1. Since Covid began Marshall’s is the first government to be defeated. And it was a one term government to boot with Marshall’s seat still in doubt!

    It was also wonderful to hear the premier-elect acknowledge country.

  2. Confessions says:
    Sunday, March 20, 2022 at 5:22 am
    Since Covid began Marshall’s is the first government to be defeated. And it was a one term government to boot with Marshall’s seat still in doubt!

    It was also wonderful to hear the premier-elect acknowledge country.
    And to commit to a State based treaty, voice and truth telling as one of his first statements.

    Thanks William for the excellent commentary and analysis.

  3. Without dissing Marshall, whose concession was generous and gracious, these extracts from the two leaders’ election night comments highlight their respective values and priorities. Compare the pair:


    “I think sometimes on election nights when governments change hands, that the successful party can confuse the elation of electoral success with an inflated sense of achievement,” Mr Malinauskas said.

    “Naturally, people of South Australia and Labor are right to feel satisfied tonight. But, true satisfaction for us comes in realising our ambition, [our] ideal, of delivering a fairer, better society and more opportunity for those who need it most.


    “I’ve spent a lot of the last four years speaking to some of the largest companies in the country around the world, and I will continue to do this because I genuinely, genuinely believe this is the best place on this earth. The most liveable city. It is an affordable city, it is a city which I think has incredible values and will continue to attract the next generation of companies to our state.”

  4. Peter Brent@mumbletwits
    SA Labor actually won the statewide vote for the first time in 16 years.

    Retained govt with vote minority in 2010 and 2014. Took office with minority support in 2002.

    So most recent SA Labor vote majorities were in 2022, 2006 … 1985 …

  5. I’ve done some preliminary and very amateur number crunching on the Legislative Council numbers. i’ve come to the conclusion that the last 2 undeclared seats will be filled by Labor and One Nation, just can’t figure out which way round.

    These are what i ended up for the final four (i’ve put my rough quota for each party at the final exclusion;-

    One Nation (0.9 quota)
    Labor (0.8 quota)
    LibDemFreeAntiVax (0.5 quota)
    Legalise Cannabis (0.5 quota)

    So it all depends who ends up fourth, their preferences will elect their ideological ally, either Labor or One Nation for the 10th seat.

    For the 11th seat, i’m expecting alot of exhaustion, but i don’t think the excess votes of the 10th seat winner will help the who then left in second place (Labor prefs to LDP or One Nation prefs to Cannabis). So this’ll leave either Labor or One Nation on top.

    So we’ll get 5 Labor, 4 Liberal, 1 Green, 1 One Nation.

    Of course, this is all done in excel with some education guesses on preference flows & quota bottlenecks. So this could all be bullshit, we won’t know for weeks.

  6. Good morning Dawn Patrollers. A lovely morning here in SA!!

    James Massola tells us why Marshall’s election defeat represents a concern for Morrison, and other premiers.
    Peter Malinauskas’s historic run to the Premier’s office began with an echo of the stunning Kevin 07 campaign, and then it got worse for the Liberals, writes Matthew Abraham.
    Mark Kenny begins this political evaluation with, “It is five minutes to midnight and some depressed Liberals are thinking the unthinkable. Naturally, most are pushing the thought away, judging it too convulsive to be viable. But it won’t completely die, because the circumstances keep calling it forth. What is this thought? Switching leaders, of course. More bluntly, dumping Scott Morrison.”
    The ABC had a choice this week: amplify Murdoch’s toxic “Mean Girls” coverage, or publish the truth, that is that News Corp is a political organisation which is exploiting the death of Kimberley Kitching for political purposes. It made the wrong choice. The ABC needs new management. Michael West reports.
    James Massola writes that Malcolm Turnbull and Scott Morrison walked away from Treasury proposals for sweeping tax changes that could have put more money in voters’ pockets and eased booming house prices, according to leaked Treasury documents.
    Infectious diseases specialists are particularly concerned about babies and toddlers who have never been exposed to the influenza virus.
    The “mean girls” tag makes us squirm because nasty politics is an equal-opportunity affair, says Jacqui Maley.
    Federal Labor leader Anthony Albanese has doubled down on his refusal to call an inquiry into the alleged bullying of Kimberley Kitching, ahead of her funeral tomorrow.
    They say at every federal election there’s usually a surprise. Some wonder if this time it could be North Sydney. Says Michael Koziol.
    Despite endorsing the IPCC’s findings, and rising emissions, Morrison still supports coal development. New climate-social system model identifies central importance of responsive political institutions for controlling global warming, says Peter Sainsbury.
    Jon Faine, in a fairly lacklustre contribution, looks at the roles federal and state leaders play in elections and the benefits, or otherwise, of appearing together.
    With an election on the horizon, Anthony Albanese and Scott Morrison are almost head to head in the opinion polls. But Albanese has something up his expertly tailored sleeve – and that’s his social media team, writes Lucinda Price.
    There are more than 4000 uninhabitable homes across NSW as people begin to wonder what to do amid the mammoth clean-up effort. Laura Chung writes about the uncertain future of Lismore.
    A free trauma service for first responders to bushfires, floods and other disasters has been told its $4 million funding won’t be renewed.
    Plastic-eating insects, plastic wrappers made from seaweed and cheap cameras in stormwater drains to stop rubbish escaping into nature are some of the ways that the national science agency says Australia can turn its waste problem into an economic earner, explains Mike Foley.
    Historian Simon Sebag Montefiore says Putin is threatening Russians with Stalinist purges while aspiring to an 18th century empire.

    Cartoon Corner

    Matt Golding – ouch!

    Peter Broelman

    Dionne Gain

    Reg Lynch

    Mark David

    Mark Knight

    From the US

  7. Thanks BK and happy days all following yesterday’s SA election. I’ve no doubt that Morrison and the Coalition are now even more worried and I’m sure there are flow-on effects for the federal election.

  8. Ruston’s “wisdom”… Ha, ha, ha!

    “The social services minister, Anne Ruston, said there were some “take-home lessons” from the result in South Australia, and said it was clear the government had not been rewarded for its handling of the pandemic.

    She also compared Marshall to prime minister Scott Morrison, saying the SA premier was a “nice guy”.

    “There’s clearly some take-home lessons for us going into the election in the next couple of months, but Steven Marshall is a really nice guy and maybe it’s a case of nice guys don’t win tonight,” she told Sky News.

    “Scott Morrison is a tough operator. Steven Marshall is a nice guy, there is absolutely no doubt about it. You used the word ‘mongrel’ – Steven Marshall does not have that nasty streak.

    “Scott Morrison will not let somebody run over the top of him and be as mean as Malinauskas was.”

    Ruston also conceded that Labor leader Peter Malinauskas had “charisma”, and said Albanese lacked the same quality.”

    So, the SA Liberal delusion according to Ruston goes something like this: Malinauskas is “nasty”, that’s why he won over the “nice” Marshall. Morrison is also nasty and that’s why he will win against Albanese, who clearly, to be consistent, she should have described as a “nice guy” but instead she described him as “lacking in charisma”. In other words, my dear Ruston: Don’t make me laugh, you and your pathetic Liberal party (SA and Federal) are clearly running out of Voting Morons! That’s your real problem….

  9. Just wondering what led to Fraser Ellis’ popularity over the Libs in the face of going to actual trial after an ICAC investigation?

  10. joeldipops

    Just wondering what led to Fraser Ellis’ popularity over the Libs in the face of going to actual trial after an ICAC investigation?

    Wall to wall coverage in the Yorke peninsula Country times which is owned by his father.
    Huge support in one of the larger farming hubs (Kadina) where the entire Kadina football Club was outfitted in Fraser Ellis clobber and handing out HTV’s etc.
    There was also a promise he’d deliver 200 million buckeroos to fix problem roads in the area.
    I haven’t worked that one out yet.

  11. Something odd in Heysen. Currently Teague (Lib) just ahead (51-49, about 7% swing) and likely to win but looking at primaries, FF and PHON combine for 10%. I am a little surprised. Would love to see booth breakdowns when dusted.

    I am wondering if this is part of the religious (Pentecostal) kickback against moderate liberals we also see playing out internally in the party. Especially be after the Chapman bill on abortion and Voluntary assisted Dying bill.

    If Spiers becomes opposition leader the political climate will become quite unpleasant. I am now rooting for Marshall in Dunstan (and Teague) to help the moderates with numbers in the party room. We don’t want the loonies taking over a major party.

  12. Congrats to Labor on the win last night, always nice when the Liberals get the boot.

    Great to see the strong swings to the Greens, really good signs ahead of the Federal Election. Looks like it will be the highest Greens vote in SA state election history!

  13. If I were a TEAL candidate federally, I’d take a great deal of comfort from how well the independents did against liberals in this election. IMO, with the exception of the fellow from Port Pirie, all the successful indos appeal to the same mind set as do the teals. And they did no harm to the ALP vote.

  14. OK, breaking my promise to myself and looking at the progressive LC count. Those numbers looking a little better now. Although still a lot to go. Even when all the votes are in, the wild world of preferencing can bring in a lot of surprises, especially when you’re calculating the final spot.

  15. Also, interesting to see the SA Best vote collapse. Another example of Xenophon electoral projects having no appeal post-Xenophon. Something that Senators Griff and Patrick might be starting to feel a bit nervous about.

    Oh yeah, and you can add John Darley to the list of people who were entirely carried by Xenophon and clearly had no electoral appeal of their own.

  16. Apologies for intruding in this SA election thread with a BludgerTrack Federal election question for William.
    I have just checked the dataset for Preferred PM from the polls for the entire of 2022:
    Jan 11, 2022….Jan 15, 2022….Resolve Strategic….1,607…38% Morrison…31% Albanese.. Diff…+7 (Mor)
    Jan 20, 2022….Jan 23, 2022…Essential Research..1,001…42……………………34………………………….+8
    Jan 25, 2022….Jan 28, 2022…Newspoll………………1,526….43……………………41………………………….+2
    Feb 9, 2022…..Feb 12, 2022….Newspoll……………..1,526….43……………………38………………………….+5
    Feb 15, 2022….Feb 20, 2022…Resolve Strategic ..1,604….39……………………30…………………………+9
    Feb 17, 2022…Feb 20, 2022 ….Essential Research..1,089..40…………………..35…………………………+5
    Feb 23, 2022..Feb 26, 2022….Resolve Strategic….1,525…..42………………….40………………………….+2
    Mar 9, 2022….Mar 12, 2022….Newspoll……………..1,520…..42…………………42……………………………0
    ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..Arith. Mean:…………… +4.75%

    Question: Why isn’t the BludgerTrack more reflective of this 4.75% advantage for Morrison rather than the 10.3% appearing there? I believe that your method gives more weight to more recent results, isn’t it so?… and we are already almost 3 months into 2022.
    …. Just asking…..

  17. This result is probably the most devastating I have seen for the Liberals.

    With Davenport gone, and seats like Waite, Unley, Heysen, Morphett etc all become marginal (if not Labor) it means that they no longer have any solid metro seats they can depend on other than Bragg.

    They have plenty of country seats in their corner, but leaders are almost always metro-based. The one rural leadership prospect they did have has now lost his seat.

    They already have a talent problem, and when it is becoming harder to find safe seats for potential future leaders and ministers to slip into, I’d put a pretty strong wager on them being in opposition for another lengthy stint.

  18. Jesus Wikipedia editors, I get that you’re going to be progressively updating the page for the 2022 SA election as more results come in but can you at least wait until the vote is finalised before you craft a post-election pendulum?

  19. Firefox says:
    Sunday, March 20, 2022 at 9:23 am
    Congrats to Labor on the win last night, always nice when the Liberals get the boot.

    Great to see the strong swings to the Greens, really good signs ahead of the Federal Election. Looks like it will be the highest Greens vote in SA state election history!

    Yeah, the persistence of the Green vote is the one discouraging factor arising from this election. Clearly, too many voters remain unaware of the Reactionary inclinations of the Greens, who will do their very best to prevent the electoral destruction of the Morrison/LRP regime.

  20. Very good point, Maxxy.

    And the result won’t do anything to heal the old rift between the moderates and the conservatives, either. It’s going to get very ugly at Liberal HQ over the next few weeks (and months, if not years).

    What I find fascinating is this clear move in the hills and regions towards Independent candidates. It’s entirely possibly that, within a few elections, most of Adelaide will be red seats and most of the hills, rural and regional SA will be grey seats.

    Libs may be in the wilderness here for a very long time (unless Labor stuffs it up big time).

  21. First time commenter.

    Having kept an eye over the forum during the live election coverage and reading many of the comments posted, I’m surprised no-one had highlighted the liberals promised entertainment/basketball stadium as one of the reasons for their downfall.

    IMO it weakened the Libs argument that Labor are committing to too much spending and gave Labor easy ammo to suggest that the Libs had their priorities all wrong with the state of health and ramping atm. Labor nailed their campaign from the start, near faultless.

    Geoff Brock result doesnt surprise me, solid candidate and a great campaigner, would have worked is backside off. Frome is worse off w/o him!

  22. Peter Brent@mumbletwits
    SA Labor actually won the statewide vote for the first time in 16 years.
    Retained govt with vote minority in 2010 and 2014. Took office with minority support in 2002.
    So most recent SA Labor vote majorities were in 2022, 2006 … 1985 …
    That’s interesting historical data. Given that the ALP’s greater vote efficiency has been adjusted for in the current boundaries it might be expected that we’re not as likely to see such long stretches of uninterrupted Labor rule in SA in future.

    However sometimes the electoral environment reconfigures itself. Pre-election, based on the pendulum the ALP notionally needed a little more than 50.1% 2PP to get to 24 but based on the current results they would probably notionally need something like 49-50% 2PP next time (and sophomore surges will favour them).

    Also as a counterfactual, if the Liberals had actually taken office at some of those previous elections where they achieved a majority of the 2PP (2002, 2010, 2014) it’s quite likely their 2PP performance in subsequent elections would have been lower than it actually was (as incumbent governments generally tend to suffer a swing against them – though less so in their second election if they won narrowly last time.)

  23. The high vote for Independents in safe Liberal seat must be sending shivers down the spines of some federal Liberals. Even if the majority of them are ex-Liberals, it is clearly a sign that the party itself is on the nose.

  24. Maxxy says:
    Sunday, March 20, 2022 at 10:04 am
    This result is probably the most devastating I have seen for the Liberals.

    With Davenport gone, and seats like Waite, Unley, Heysen, Morphett etc all become marginal (if not Labor) it means that they no longer have any solid metro seats they can depend on other than Bragg.
    It’s beginning to resemble the electoral geography of Melbourne, esp at a Federal level. Improbably, many of the classic solid blue Liberal seats that served as sinecures for PMs and Ministers (Kooyong, Higgins etc) look vulnerable. Only Aston which has a very different vibe – suburban/ new money/Bible belt/aspirational – currently looks safe for them.

  25. Its as if a lot of South Australians don’t mind a lot of the Liberal candidates, but aren’t much fans of the Liberal Party.

  26. Chinda63 says:
    Sunday, March 20, 2022 at 10:19 am

    I also think the Liberal Party is in decline as a representative of urban voters. Having been colonised by Pentecostals and laissez-faire ideologues, they are now completely out of touch with contemporary expectations and values.

    As an organisation, aside from its reactionary colonists, invitees, shareholders and chaperones, the Liberals have only trinkets inside. They are a carton with a sticker on the outside. Naturally, the contents of the box are not as described on the label. Open the box and what do you see? Dress-ups. Costume jewellery, a velvet waistcoat, a moth eaten cloak (dark blue with ricrac trim and ruffles on the collar) funny felted hats, feathers, plastic daggers, swords and a pistol, Auntie’s crocheted mittens, buckled boots, a cigar box, a ukulele.

    In the bottom of the box can be found a folded map of the London Underground from 1953. There’s a much-worn copy of Biggles Flies Again by W.E. Johns and a book-marked edition of Ayn Rand’s Fountainhead. A toupee. A Groucho Marx nose. And several wigs. An inkwell, blue ink long-since dried and flaking. Photos of Ava Gardener, Mickey Rooney, Elizabeth Taylor, Burt Reynolds, Richard Burton and Kirk Douglas. An ancient Revlon lipstick.

    Forgotten fantasies in a cardboard carton. The LRP.

  27. My postcount threads are at

    In Waite, a path to victory for Holmes-Ross has been suggested by a scrutineer: she gets enough Green and Duluk preferences to overtake Labor rather than the Liberal, with the Liberal moving into the lead off Duluk. They estimate she’s currently just a bit short. Also they think the Libs are toast in either case, ie Labor is in the box seat. I’d be interested to see other scrutineering views.

  28. what tiler agree with you abbout Xenephon candadates strugiling with out him there acsept for Rebecka Sharkies popularity in Mayoe increasing her vote evry election i think patrick will do well focusing on nashanal security and manufacturing Grif wont as he hasnt established his own brand downer couldnt retake mayo for libs

  29. Also a factor no one has mentiond yet is among the sky news extreme right base Cris Kenney constantly attackt Marshil from the right basicly advicatting a protest vote agaainst the libs based on Marshils friendship with pine maybi conservative votres like the old Bernardi camp voted for ffp and Phon as protest

  30. I remain of the view that it is ridiculous to ignore federal issues here. Health was a bit issue, but it’s also been a hybrid federal/state issue for a long time. Marshall lost when he caved to Morrison and opened the borders, immediately ravaging SA with covid after nearly 2 years of being almost covid free.

    Morrison is also responsible for the state of Medicare, the PBS etc. People are not idiots, they know that a small and relatively poor state like SA is significantly affected by federal funding issues.

    Also, people here were not unaware of Morrison’s failure to provide income support for our big wave of covid. After the feds handed out money to their base in NSW and corporate benefactors, they screwed Victoria and then double-screwed SA.

    All of those things are big issues in Labor’s strongest area, health.

    Separately, SA Health is a disgrace and I hope Labor regards itself a having a mandate to have an absolutely huge clean out.

  31. In the light of day, this is really looking like a dreadful result for the Liberals, especially considering the relatively favourable pendulum they had going into the election. That they’ve lost so much ground to independents is also a rather grim omen for the federal party.


    So, let’s talk about opinion polls, the ghost of the 2019 federal election, and Scomo’s hopes that he can get “miracles” on demand from some “high places”.

    Results of the SA state election so far:
    ALP primary vote 40.4%, with a +7.6% swing. Antony Green is currently suggesting that the ALP will end up with a 2PP of about 55%.

    The last Newspoll before the SA state election:
    54% ALP (2PP)

    55% vs 54%?…. Pretty close, eh?

    …. Waiting to see the opinion polls results for the federal election during the official campaign, with special focus on the last Newspoll before the vote…..

  33. Oh, two more things.

    SA is inherently moderate. So was Marshall, but in the background we are all aware that he answers to a man who believes the Bible is literally true and is guided by voices, and we are also aware of the ongoing attempts by fundamentalist Christians to take over the SA party. South Australians will always find that a turn off.

    And secondly, I think some of the Liberal preselection choices smacked of arrogance. E.g. the 8 year old young liberal in Waite, it just reeks of patronage. No surprises the voters of Waite were quite interested in two older, more progressive women.

  34. “Asha says:
    Sunday, March 20, 2022 at 11:40 am
    In the light of day, this is really looking like a dreadful result for the Liberals, especially considering the relatively favourable pendulum they had going into the election. That they’ve lost so much ground to independents is also a rather grim omen for the federal party.”…

    I agree. The coming federal election looks like it will be an ALP win but a Coalition double-loss: to the ALP and to Teal-Independents.

  35. Newspoll pretty close to the mark, slightly under-estimates Labor in the end result, and over-estimates the LNP, like in WA and Qld.

  36. Green leadership, and some of their support, may with for the easy increase of influence and political relevance(as they see it) bestowed by hung parliament. The Guardian’s Political editor also has been salivating at the prospect. So many clicks, so much psycho babble, personality not policy. Kudos to their #auspol blog team though!

    But if the Greens did then sustain a Liberal government it would be then end of them. Think Meg Lees X 10.

    But it is not going to happen, it’s a last decade obsession. The Federal election result is shaping as decisive. SA appears to be one of the places the current Libs have done the least damage, though watching 9’s coverage it seemed to me that integrity was an issue alongside Health, though only hinted at, because Marshall himself seems pretty clean. They had lost MPs to expense scandals, and having a deputy with big conflict of interest must mean something.

    NSW will be carnage on Federal election day, if the people I know reflect anything. Their state MPs are resigning to distance themselves from federal policy around the floods, where only their voters get disaster relief, accentuating a pattern that has become blatant and obvious to all. And I don’t think anyone out around Western Sydney will forget the double standards in COVID restrictions. It’s not just Morrison. The state government is also toast once their turn comes around, I’d have to assume, though its further away.

    I can’t think of anywhere that’s looking positive for them nationwide. WA is so bad Morrison is claiming to be part of MacGowan Labor. What else will they come up with to try to stem the tide? I’m guessing pork-barrelling bribes will be discounted by voters unless paid in full before the election. So that leaves crazy shit to enthuse the base, which is probably net-negative, driving away more (blue ribbon) voters in educated seats. Like the Mean Girls BS. How many female doctors would see that as the last straw?

    People expect them to lose now, and lose ugly

  37. On the face of it, not a bad effort by the Greens to lift their primary vote from 6.7% to 9.6%. However, this must be tempered by the disappearance of the 14% vote gained by Team Xenophon at the 2018 election. The reallocation of that vote would account for a fair chunk of the Greens rebound.

    As it stands, the Greens will pick up a LC seat. With the higher quota at the Federal election, and Labor with a PV potentially in the low 40% range, the Greens will need to do a bit better than 9.6% to be sure of a Senate seat. (They polled 10.9% in the 2019 Senate election)

    Barring some kind of stuff up, Malinauskas will enjoy a healthy honeymoon period which will coincide with the Federal election campaign. Any ruboff of the glow onto Federal Labor will deliver Labor (in SA) a 3rd Senate seat at the expense of the Greens, who are also hampered by the fact that SH-Y will not be on the ballot.

  38. Agree with Bludgings first paragraph about what’s happened to the Liberal Party.
    It’s lurch to the reactionary Right has resulted in a loss of urban seats and further more a loss of voters who are now looking at Teals or Indies (who are basically moderate Liberals). This is a fairly conservative nation but on the Right side of politics there is a growing number of voters who are sick and tired of reactionary politics.
    I wonder if there are enough moderates in the Liberal Party to drag it back to a more centrist position? ATM, people like Simon Birmingham are , Canute-like, desperately trying to ignore the absolute reality of what the far Right have done to his Party.
    Last night’s result in SA has delivered a painful lesson to the Liberal Party. There now is only one mainland Liberal State Government and it appears that the Gutwein gloss in Tasmania is wearing off. How much longer can they claim that these losses are due to ” not getting their message across” or “Labor is lying or tricking” the voters of this country?
    It appears that many voters now have not one but many reasons to vote against the Liberals – Climate Change, factional and fundamentalist power-plays within the Party , NDIS, Robodebt, lack of accountability, Morrison himself, mismanagement of the vaccine roll-out and disaster response, the treatment of refugees, the blatant favouritism shown to fossil-fuel interests, the “Car pork” and other pork -barrelling scams, the Submarine scandal…the list goes on.
    Undoubtedly, local factors played the major role in the SA result, but those factors cross-over into Federal politics.
    There is a deeper malaise within the Liberal Party that transcends the SA result.
    The Liberals appear to be digging their own grave.

  39. ALP primary vote 40.4%, with a +7.6% swing. Antony Green is currently suggesting that the ALP will end up with a 2PP of about 55%.

    Oh shit. That’s rather higher than last night’s projection.

    I would note that the final Newspolls for QLD 2020 and WA 2021 also underestimated the Labor vote a little.

  40. Patrick
    The AMA is going to run hard on the Feds underfunding Health and want the 45-55 split changed to 50-50.
    And you’re right that the voters blame Marshall for obeying Morrison and opening the borders and staying open despite, I’m told, very strong opposition from Nicola who was so upset she or someone close to her leaked the dissent to the media.
    Marshall would have won if he kept the borders closed for longer and wasn’t let down by SA Health who were totally unprepared.
    Flinders Medical Centre is in the heart of Boothby and they now have more Covid patients than the RAH partly due to large numbers of patients catching it IN the hospital.
    Fed Libs might decide Boothby is gone and ignore SA completely.

  41. All bar one seat in the federal seat of Grey failed to return a liberal candidate.. Normally Giles safe Labor.. Stuart. Marginal liberal leaning.. Flinders safe liberal and N. The other one based on the York peninsula is also safe.Think Labor needs in excess of 80% in the iron triangle which is a big ask to win but. The independent in Flinders could

  42. Whenever I look at Credlin she reminds me of Cruella De Ville….is it the hate and malice dripping from every pore?…is it the gaunt cadaverous face hungry to devour any innocent voter?…..Is it the cold dead eyes that could piece the soul of even the most fervent athiest? Or is it the cold clamy hands rubbing together as another evil plot formulates and ferments in her mind,,,,or all of the above?

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