Late counting: week two

Progressively updated commentary on late counting of the results from the 2022 federal election.

Click here for full federal election results updated live.

Wednesday, June 1

Pardon me for dropping the ball for a couple of days there as I made a fraught transition from Sydney back to Perth. You will now find my results facility regularly updating again as the very last votes trickle in over the next few days. As you’re all no doubt aware, it seems generally accepted that Labor will make it not merely to 76 but to 77 seats, having opened up a 301-vote lead in Gilmore with barely 1000 votes left to go. Since opening the 142-vote lead noted in the previous update, Labor has further benefited from a 181-122 break in its favour on electronic-assisted COVID votes and 1401-1335 on declaration pre-polls. While later batches of absent votes were predictably not as strong for Labor as the first, they did them no actual harm, breaking 690-682 their way, and they even got a 127-101 break from the latest postals.

Monday, May 30

The ABC is now calling Macnamara for Labor, and with it a Labor majority of 76 seats out of 151, with a growing chance that Gilmore will make it 77. The AEC’s three-candidate preferred count for Macnamara has not been updated, showing Liberal on 29202 (33.6%), Labor on 29152 (33.5%) and the Greens on 28657 (32.9%), with Labor to lose the seat if the Greens overcome the 495 deficit against Labor, unless the Liberals also lose their 50 vote lead over Labor. This leaves it lagging 2354 votes behind the primary vote count, with three batches added today accounting for the shortfall:

• The electronic-assisted COVID votes were, contrary to earlier suggestions, neither approaching 1000 in number (perhaps there are more yet to be added, though I’d doubt it) nor especially favourable to the Greens. The 477 formal votes went Labor 169, Greens 154 and Liberals 105. This would have added 10 or so Labor’s lead over the Greens, and erased the Liberals’ 50 vote lead over Labor with half-a-dozen or so to spare.

• There were 1447 pre-polls added to the 1678 that were in the count already, of which 417 went to the Greens, 412 went to Labor and 404 went to the Liberals. This would have cut about 40 from Labor’s lead over the Greens and restored to the Liberals the 50-vote lead over Labor I just said they had lost on the COVID votes.

• The 475 absent votes added today were about half of those outstanding, and were much like earlier batches in that the Greens got 169, Labor got 134 and the Liberals got 114. This would have cut about 45 votes out of Labor’s lead over the Greens and hardly affected their lead over the Liberals.

• No postals were added today. There are 266 of these to be added to the count, plus however many arrive in the post over the coming days, which surely won’t be many.

My best estimate is that this still leaves Labor 420 votes ahead of the Greens on the three-candidate preferred, with the outstanding votes consisting of at most 555 absents, 730 pre-polls (there are about 1000 fewer of these than I suggested in yesterday’s update) and 266 postals, plus the few extra postals that will trickle in over the coming days. Realistically, any cut to Labor’s lead over the Greens here will number in the dozens rather than the hundreds. There are, however, potentially enough to erase a Liberal lead over the Labor that I reckon to be about 44 votes, though whether that happens is academic if Labor stays ahead of the Greens.

There was further good news for Labor today in Gilmore, where Labor’s Fiona Phillips has opened a 142 vote lead over Andrew Constance. This was mostly due to a remarkable 334-145 break in their favour on the first batch of absents, which obviously came for a strong area for them. Labor were further boosted by a 157-132 split on the latest batch of postals, 388-278 from the first declaration pre-polls and 95-63 from the provisionals, plus a net gain of 40 on rechecking of ordinary votes.

Labor’s position further improved in Lyons, where the second batch of absent votes broke 550-306 their way, putting their lead at 932 with no more than 2000 still to come. However, Deakin continues to slip away from Labor, with the latest postals breaking 1112-836 to the Liberals, more than compensating for advantages to Labor of 998-714 and 720-696 on the latest absents and pre-polls. This puts Liberal member Michael Sukkar 619 votes ahead with at most 2500 still to come.

There are now three seats with electronic-assisted COVID results in (Macnamara, Flinders and Graynder), and it seems they typically involve around 400 votes that are roughly 10% below par for the Liberals and 3% to 4% above it for Labor and the Greens. This suggests they will boost Labor by a few dozen votes when reported in Gilmore, Lyons and Deakin.

Sunday, May 29

With the Greens now effectively confirmed as the winners in Brisbane, Labor’s bid for the seventy-sixth seat needed for a majority hinges on three seats: Macnamara, which like Brisbane will be won by whichever out of Labor and the Greens survives to the final count against the Liberals; and the conventional contests of Gilmore and Deakin.

The Australian Electoral Commission’s efforts yesterday were devoted to preparing for a big push of counting in these three seats, meaning I have nothing to add to my updates from Saturday. In Macnamara especially, the result may well prove so close that it may not be definitively known until the final eligible postal votes have trickled in at the end of the week.

Note also the post directly below this one taking a deep and overdue look at the Senate result.

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.

272 comments on “Late counting: week two”

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  1. Hey William
    Thanks for all the great work you’ve done. Bravo!
    Just a question-
    When Bludgertrack resumes, will you still have PHON in it?
    Seems to me now that the former government has been banished, what benefit will there be in having it? Pauline’s presence surely is unwarranted now.

  2. Deakin margin down to 525 or .26%. Not that it matters – except for Sukkar remembering when he becomes Prime Minister how one year he nearly didn’t make it.

  3. GlenO – that’s really good work and “sounds” right as someone on the ground in Kooyong for several campaign cycles now and seeing Labor and Greens analysis of the prospects of capturing the seat (always more bullish than head office has ever given credence to, judging from resourcing). Labor would have fallen a little short but not so much as some people would think – the Liberals vs Labor battle in Kooyong grinds slowly but inexorably left. The maybe 6% percent Monique Ryan has taken off the Libs, coupled with outpolling Labor and the Greens thanks to tactical Labor and Greens voters unlike poor old Oliver Yates, made the difference.

    And now Frydenberg’s personal vote in the seat goes into the wind unless he rechallenges next time.

    By the time Ryan quits politics I expect Kooyong to be an ALP seat.

  4. There is always one last race in late counting: which seat will end up with the smallest margin? In today’s counting, Phillips has increased her lead to 298, whilst Sukkar’s lead is down to 525. By the end of counting on Friday, there won’t be much in it! The excitement continues……

  5. I was so pleased to see Phillips at the back of the room with the swearing in today. Albanese acknowledged her and there were smiles everywhere for her. She is one of those true believers – I am so happy she got back in. Go get em !!

  6. Gilmore is an especially good result. I would have liked to see the back of Michael Sukkar, but maybe next time if Labor puts some more resources into that seat, anyway I imagine he will hate being in opposition

  7. Neither Deakin nor Gilmore are mathematically decided. The equation for the candidates trailling in both seats is roughly the same: they will need about two-thirds of the remaining ballots.

    Extremely unlikely, but not impossible.

  8. I was sitting here, trying to figure out why Eden-Monaro, of all seats, was the first one declared.

    It took a bit, but I see it, now. Even if there were 100% turnout (so all possible remaining votes are still coming), there’s no doubt that the 2CP is between Labor and Liberals, and there’s no doubt that Labor wins against Liberals.

    Compare with, for example, Grayndler. There’s no doubt that Labor beats the Greens. But the gap between the Liberals and the Greens is small enough that, if all 13,826 ballots that haven’t been theoretically counted (assuming 100% turnout), and enough of them went Liberal, it could make it a Labor vs Liberal 2CP, in which case they haven’t done the count needed to confirm that Labor beats the Greens. So they can’t declare it, yet.

  9. The movements in Gilmore are pleasing. Constance McConstanceface seems like he might be less actively hateful that your average federal Lib, but he’s an absolute clown and idiot, and parliament will be enriched by his absence.

  10. It’s completely academic as the final winner is clear, but I just thought I’d note that with only a few thousands votes left to be added – ~1400 absents, ~500 postals & the rest declaration votes – the Greens are now only 36 votes behind Labor on primary votes in the seat of Brisbane.

    For psephological nerds who were looking forward to seeing the rarity of a candidate winning from 3rd place on primaries – it’s now possible that might not quite happen, as the Greens may just get above Labor (fairly likely if the last absentees go to trend, but that can never be guaranteed).

    Final votes won’t be counted until Monday after the last postals have come in, and the Greens will win easily regardless – current 2CP margin versus the Libs is 3.7% – but it’s one last thing to look out for.

  11. Wilkie won from third in Denison / Clark in 2010. Only a couple of thousand ahead of the greens in fourth (could have plausibly finished fourth and won)

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