Western Australia redistributed (state)

A draft new set of state boundaries in Western Australia produces little to frighten the horses.


Over the fold is a table showing an almost-complete set of Labor-versus-Liberal/Nationals two-party margins, excluding a few seats where the 2017 result was Liberal-versus-Nationals (Moore and Roe) or Labor-versus-independent (Baldivis). This treats Kingsway as the successor to Girrawheen, and Girrawheen as the successor to Mirrabooka. I am now calculating the Labor margin in Kingsway at 9.1%, which is modest enough that Labor would lose the seat at a bad election, like 2013. This amounts to a 7.6% cut in the old margin from Girrawheen – so if, as I suggested, Labor runs Margaret Quirk in Kingsway and gives Girrawheen to Janine Freeman, who is technically homeless with the abolition of Mirrabooka, Quirk would consider that regrettable.

As noted in the original version of this post (also over the fold), Labor has been short-changed by the redistribution’s determination to preserve the existing number of country seats, but finds ample consolation in a number of helpful revisions to marginal seats:

• Labor’s margin in Balcatta, which the party lost for the one and only time in 2013, goes from 5.8% to 8.0%, as it loses marginal territory (at least on 2017 results) in the north to Kingsley and gains Labor territory in the east from Mirrabooka.

• The change just noted to Kingsley also nudges the dial there very slightly in Labor’s favour, from 0.7% to 1.2%.

• In Burns Beach, the loss of territory in the south to Joondalup and gain in the north from Butler boosts Labor from 2.5% to 4.9%.

• No doubt the 2017 election is as bad as it will ever get for the Liberals in Hillarys, but I am calculating that Labor would have won it in 2017 by the barest of margins, after falling 4.1% short at the election. Marginal territory has been gained in the north from Joondalup, and Liberal territory in the south has gone to Carine.

• The transfer of part of Liberal-voting Leeming to Riverton in the north boosts Labor from 1.0% to 2.0% in Jandakot.

• Tweaking of the boundary with Fremantle improves Labor’s margin in Bicton from 2.9% to 3.6%.

• A territory swap with West Swan boosts Labor from 7.3% to 9.2% in Wanneroo.

• An exchange of rural territory in the south for Mandurah’s fringes in the north boosts Labor from 1.4% to 2.3% in Murray-Wellington.


• In Joondalup, which gains in the north from Burns Beach and loses in the south to Hillarys, Labor’s margin is reduced from 0.6% to 0.1%.

• In Swan Hills, a Labor margin of 14.5%, which belies its history as a tight marginal seat, reduces to 12.0%, as Ellenbrook suburbia is exchanged for parts of the Swan Valley.

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Queensland redistributed (state)

A thread for discussion of Queensland’s momentous state electoral redistribution.

A sweeping draft redistribution of Queensland’s state electoral boundaries has been published today, giving effect to an increase in parliamentary numbers from 89 to 93. Annastacia Palaszczuk has appeared to suggest the finalisation of the redistribution, which is scheduled for May 2017, may herald an early election. The Electoral Commission of Queensland published the boundaries at the close of business today (apparently in response to a “leak”, ahead of a planned release in the morning) without providing spatial data files, so I can’t offer much insight into what it all means exactly. However, the Courier-Mail offers a well-informed account of how it is perceived by party insiders. Hopefully Antony Green will have estimated margins in reasonably short order. Those with further insights to offer are very welcome to do so in the thread below.

BludgerTrack: 52.1-47.9 to Labor

Little change this week to a poll aggregate that now comes with the added bonus of One Nation. Also featured: South Australian and Northern Territory redistribution news.

Results from Newspoll and Essential Research have elicited next to no change on BludgerTrack, at least so far as the results are concerned – negligible movement all round on voting intention, although what’s there is enough for the Coalition to claw back a seat in Queensland on the projection. Newspoll provides a set of leadership numbers as always, and here too their effect is negligible.


What is new on BludgerTrack is that it’s now tracking One Nation, although the only hard data here is that Essential Research has been providing since the start of September. Polls that don’t report One Nation still have some influence on them through their “others” results, and the estimated results for them show up as data points on the chart. I’ve implemented a bit of a cheat to get the One Nation trendline started from the beginning by using their national Senate vote of 4.3% as a post-election starting point. However, the “since election” reading on the tables goes off the national House of Representatives result of 1.3%, which is unflattering to them as they only fielded 15 candidates.

Two bits of electoral boundaries news to relate:

• The redistribution of the two federal seats in the Northern Territory has been finalised, with no changes made to September’s draft proposal. Three thousand voters have been transferred from growing Solomon (covering Darwin and Palmerston) to stagnant Lingiari (covering the remainder of the territory), in an area encompassing Yarrawonga, Farrar, Johnston and Zuccoli at the eastern edge of Palmerston, together with the Litchfield Shire areas around Knuckey Lagoon east of Darwin. To the very limited extent that this will have an electoral effect, it will be to strengthen Labor in Solomon and weaken them in Lingiari, the area transferred being conservative-leaning.

• The South Australian state redistribution has been finalised, with a large number of changes made to the draft published in August. These are largely to the benefit of the Liberals, who stand aggrieved by their failure to win government in 2014 despite winning the two-party vote by 53-47. The draft redrew the Labor marginals of Elder and Mawson to make them notionally Liberal. However, they did the opposite in Fisher, a normally conservative-leaning seat that Labor managed to win at a by-election in December 2014 after the death of independent member Bob Such. This seat has been renamed Hurtle Vale, and pushed southwards into the Labor-voting Morphett Vale area.

The new set of changes adds a further two seats to the Liberal column, most notably Colton, where Labor cops a transfer of 8000 voters from Glenelg North and West Beach (currently in Morphett), turning the Labor margin of 2% into a Liberal margin of 3.7%. The other seat is Newland, where there was so little in it that a further 200 voters in Humbug Scrub have been enough to nudge it to the Liberal side of the pendulum. There has also been a further boost to the Liberal margin in Elder, where gains around Lower Mitcham in the east (currently in Waite) push the margin out from 1.1% to 4.3%.

The Liberals has also benefited in Adelaide, where the reversal of a proposal to move Walkerville out of the electorate leaves the margin at 2.0%, compared with 2.5% at the election and 0.6% in the draft; and in the Labor-held seat of Lee, where an extra 4000 voters from Colton reduce the Labor margin from 4.6% to 2.6%.

Galaxy: 53-47 to Liberal in South Australia

Labor’s primary vote crashes in South Australia, amid an electoral landscape transformed by the Nick Xenophon Team and a recently published draft redistribution.

The Advertiser today carries a poll of South Australian state voting intention from Galaxy, which records the Liberals with a two-party preferred lead of 53-47, essentially unchanged on the result that failed to deliver them victory at the election in March 2014. However, the two-party vote is becoming difficult to parse in what now looks like a three-party system, with primary votes showing the Liberals on 35%, Labor on 27% and the Nick Xenophon Team on 22%, with the Greens on 7% and Family First on 5%. Personal ratings indicate Premier Jay Weatherill’s gloss has entirely worn off, with 14% rating his performance good, 41% fair and 37% poor, but Opposition Leader Steven Marshall does little better, respectively at 11%, 40% and 36%. The two leaders are tied at 31% on the question of preferred premier, compared with Weatherill’s lead of 37% to 27% at the last such poll in February. The poll was conducted last Monday to Wednesday from a sample of 869.

This is an opportune time for me to finally mention the recently published draft redistribution proposal. The Liberals have once again been disappointed in their hope for a set of boundaries that fully compensates for the mismatch between votes and seats that has now cost them two elections in a row, although the redistribution is broadly favourable for them overall. The Labor-held seats of Elder and Mawson have been made notionally Liberal, but the reverse has happened in Fisher, which Labor spectacularly won at a by-election in December 2014 after the death of long-serving Liberal-turned-independent member Bob Such. The seat has been transformed by the absorption of the Labor stronghold of Morphett Vale, and its name is to be changed to Hurtle Vale. Other name changes are Ashford to Badcoe, Napier to King, Mitchell to Black, Bright to Gibson and Goyder to Narungga. Submissions in response to the draft, of which there were a great many, closed on Friday, and can be perused here.

WA state redistribution finalised

An analysis of the new state electoral boundaries in Western Australia, which were finalised on Friday.

The final boundaries for the Western Australian state redistribution were published on Friday, and can be viewed here. Listed below are my own calculations of new margins, a detailed accounting of which can be seen on this spreadsheet. Of the tweaks made to the draft proposal, two are of consequence. In the metropolitan area, a plan to realign the boundary between Mount Lawley and Maylands has essentially been scrapped, which means two booths won by Liberal in 2013 will stay in Mount Lawley, and two won by Labor will stay in Maylands. This is slightly to the advantage of both Michael Sutherland and Lisa Baker, who respectively hold Mount Lawley and Maylands for Liberal and Labor. In the country, Collie-Preston will gain the Shire of Donnybrook-Balingup instead of part of the City of Busselton, as it was argued the latter should be left intact within Vasse (which, relatedly, will no longer gain Margaret River and the surrounding area, which instead stay in Warren-Blackwood).

The other big change is cosmetic, but no less welcome for that – a plan to rename a number of electorates after notable personages has been scrapped, with all electorates maintaining locality-based names. There are any number of reasons why the practice the commissioners were seeking to import from the federal level works a lot less well for state electorates, owing to their smaller size and lesser sense of permanency from one redistribution to the next. Particularly awkardly, both the draft state and federal redistributions proposed the creation of electorates named Burt. The state electorate in question had assumed particular political interest in being ground zero for the Perth Freight Link issue and, relatedly, the scene of a turf war between two Liberal MPs, both of whom would prefer to have the much safer seat neighbouring it to the east. Burt will now take on the more logical name of Bicton, while its neighbour will retain the name of Bateman, rather than being renamed Toohey as proposed.

Albany 48.8% +0.9%
Armadale 40.4% +0.0%
Balcatta 57.0% -0.3%
Baldivis 41.2% New
Bassendean 44.8% -0.1%
Bateman 73.2% +5.3%
Belmont 51.2% +0.3%
Bicton (Alfred Cove) 60.6% -13.0%
Bunbury 61.9% -1.2%
Burns Beach (Ocean Reef) 61.5% -7.5%
Butler 49.3% +1.1%
Cannington 48.4% +0.4%
Carine 68.3% +0.2%
Central Wheatbelt 71.6% +0.5%
Churchlands 69.9% -0.2%
Cockburn 46.4% +0.5%
Collie-Preston 52.8% +2.9%
Cottesloe 71.1% +0.2%
Darling Range 62.8% -2.5%
Dawesville 62.7% -0.0%
Eyre Abolished
Forrestfield 52.2% +0.1%
Fremantle 34.9% -7.3%
Geraldton 72.8% +0.0%
Girrawheen 47.3% -0.3%
Hillarys 66.0% -3.0%
Jandakot 68.1% +10.1%
Joondalup 60.1% +5.7%
Kalamunda 60.3% -0.2%
Kalgoorlie 67.6% +0.7%
Kimberley 44.9% -0.0%
Kingsley 64.0% -0.8%
Kwinana 45.1% +7.0%
Mandurah 42.3% -0.0%
Maylands 47.6% +0.6%
Midland 49.4% -0.5%
Mirrabooka 45.4% -0.0%
Moore 73.2% -0.0%
Morley 54.7% +0.0%
Mount Lawley 58.8% -0.5%
Murray-Wellington 62.0% +0.0%
Nedlands 69.0% -0.1%
North West Central 62.2% -1.3%
Perth 52.8% +0.2%
Pilbara (NAT vs ALP) 63.8% +2.3%
Riverton 62.7% +3.5%
Rockingham 36.8% -0.0%
Roe (Wagin) 76.2% +0.4%
Scarborough 67.3% +0.0%
South Perth 69.7% -1.4%
Southern River 61.0% -6.0%
Swan Hills 53.9% -2.0%
Thornlie (Gosnells) 48.0% +0.9%
Vasse 71.2% -0.0%
Victoria Park 45.8% -0.2%
Wanneroo 61.0% -0.1%
Warnbro 39.5% -1.7%
Warren-Blackwood 66.3% +0.8%
West Swan 50.4% +2.3%
Willagee 47.1% +7.7%

Western Australia redistributed: draft state boundaries

A proposed state redistribution in Western Australia abolishes a conservative rural electorate and creates a Labor one in Perth’s southern suburbs.

Draft boundaries have been published for the Western Australian state redistribution. It proposes abolishing the electorate of Eyre in the south-eastern corner of the state, which is held for the Liberals by Graham Jacobs, who narrowly saw off a challenge from the Nationals at the March 2013 election. Its major centres of Esperance and Boulder are respectively to be absorbed by Wagin and Kalgoorlie. The seat created in its place is Baldivis, from the rapidly growing southern suburbs centre of the same name. A number of electorates have been renamed, apparently on the principle that geographic electorate names are best avoided. Antony Green might have projected new margins at some point today, and I might take a stab at it myself if I get time this afternoon.

UPDATE: Below is my own stab at a pendulum with redistributed boundaries, without making the effort to accommodate the many name changes. Antony Green doesn’t provide a margin for the new seat of Baldivis because of the complication of independent candidate Carole Adams in the Kwinana electorate in 2013, but I’ve done an elaborate bit of modelling to produce an estimate of 8.2% using Legislative Council results. Non-trivial differences between my margins and Antony’s are in Darling Range (11.9% from him, 10.6% from me), Cannington (2.3% from him, 1.5% from me), Joondalup (10.9% from him, 10.2% from me), Southern River (11.3% from him, 10.5% from me), Churchlands (20.0% from me, 20.9% from him) and Riverton (12.6% from him, 11.9% from me).

Change Coalition seats Labor seats Change
0.3% (1.2%) BELMONT WEST SWAN (0.3%) 1.6%
0.1% (2.1%) FORRESTFIELD MIDLAND (0.7%) 0.6%
0.1% (2.8%) PERTH BUTLER (1.0%) 0.8%
3.5% (3.3%) COLLIE-PRESTON ALBANY (1.5%) 0.6%
2.0% (3.9%) SWAN HILLS CANNINGTON (1.5%) 0.5%
0.0% (4.7%) MORLEY GOSNELLS (1.9%) 1.0%
0.3% (7.1%) BALCATTA MAYLANDS (2.0%) 1.1%
1.7% (7.7%) MOUNT LAWLEY GIRRAWHEEN (2.8%) 0.4%
0.5% (10.0%) KALAMUNDA COCKBURN (4.1%) 0.1%
6.4% (10.5%) SOUTHERN RIVER VICTORIA PARK (4.2%) 0.1%
8.4% (10.6%) OCEAN REEF WILLAGEE (4.2%) 6.4%
4.7% (10.6%) DARLING RANGE MIRRABOOKA (4.6%) 0.0%
6.4% (10.9%) JOONDALUP KIMBERLEY (5.1%) 0.0%
0.0% (11.1%) WANNEROO BASSENDEAN (5.1%) 0.0%
0.0% (11.5%) PILBARA KWINANA (5.8%) 3.2%
12.1% (11.5%) ALFRED COVE MANDURAH (7.7%) 0.0%
2.7% (11.9%) RIVERTON BALDIVIS (8.2%) NEW
0.0% (12.0%) MURRAY-WELLINGTON ARMADALE (9.6%) 0.0%
1.0% (12.1%) BUNBURY WARNBRO (10.6%) 1.8%
0.0% (12.7%) DAWESVILLE ROCKINGHAM (13.2%) 0.0%
0.8% (14.0%) KINGSLEY FREMANTLE (15.0%) 7.1%
2.3% (16.7%) HILLARYS
0.0% (17.3%) SCARBOROUGH
3.4% (17.8%) VASSE
0.2% (18.3%) CARINE
10.6% (18.7%) JANDAKOT
0.0% (19.1%) NEDLANDS
1.4% (19.7%) SOUTH PERTH
0.0% (20.9%) COTTESLOE
0.8% (20.9%) CHURCHLANDS
5.2% (23.1%) BATEMAN