Margin: Liberal 17.6%
Region: Rural South-East
Click here for electoral boundaries map
Held safely for the Liberals by Adrian Pederick, Hammond covers the mouth of the Murray River along with territory to the north and east, its biggest population centres being Goolwa at the river mouth and Murray Bridge 80 kilometres to the south-east of Adelaide. The redistribution has transferred a large but thinly populated area from Karoonda east to the Victorian border to Chaffey, accounting for 2200 voters. The seat has undergone frequent name changes through its history, previous member Peter Lewis having variously served from 1979 to 2006 as member for Mallee, Murray-Mallee, Ridley and Hammond.
Peter Lewis spent most of his parliamentary career as a Liberal, but resigned from it in July 2000 and was re-elected under the banner of the Community Leadership Independence Coalition in 2002. Emerging from the election holding the balance of power, he shocked his old party by throwing his lot in with Labor, despite having denounced suggestions he might do so during the election campaign as sleazy nonsense. Lewis served as Speaker for three years after the election, but resigned in April 2005 pending a no-confidence motion after volunteers in his office circulated unsubstantiated claims that MPs and senior police were involved in a paedophile ring. With polls showing him in no position to retain his seat at the 2006 election, Lewis abandoned Hammond and ran for the upper house, but made little impression.
The seat was then easily won for the Liberals by Adrian Pederick, a Coomandook farmer who faced the public revelation during the campaign that his mother had taken out a restraining order against him in 1991. It was briefly suggested the Right faction would have Pederick dumped in favour of Chris Kenny, then a staffer to Alexander Downer and now a media commentator with The Australian and Sky News. Pederick nonetheless went untroubled at the election and was promoted to the front bench in September 2008, in the River Murray, agriculture, food and fisheries and forests portfolios. However, he was twice demoted in the current term, first losing River Murray immediately after the election, and then being dropped altogether in the reshuffle that followed Steven Marshall’s ascent to the leadership in February 2013.
All post-redistribution margins are as calculated by Jenni Newton-Farrelly of the South Australian Parliamentary Library. Corrections, complaints and feedback to William Bowe at pollbludger-at-bigpond-dot-com. Read William’s blog, The Poll Bludger.