Margin: Liberal 6.3%
Region: East Metropolitan
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Electorate analysis: Created with the one-vote one-value redistribution at the 2008 election, Kalamunda extends from the Darling Scarp suburb of that name northwards across the Helena Valley to Darlington, and south through an area of undeveloped escarpment to Labor-voting Maddington. Although greatly smaller in area, Kalamunda was effectively the successor to Darling Range, taking its name from its main source of voters. Only 15% of Darling Range voters carried over to the newly drawn electorate of that name, the majority coming from abolished Serpentine-Jarrahdale. Darling Range was created at the 1962 election and renamed Kalamunda in 1974, with both electorates co-existing from the recreation of Darling Range in 1977 until the abolition of Kalamunda in 1989. Both Darling Range and Kalamunda were held by the Liberals throughout their respective histories, except when Ian Thompson quit the Liberal Party in 1990 to sit out most of his final term in Darling Range as an independent.
John Day easily recovered Darling Range for the Liberals at the 1993 election, going on to serve as Police Minister and later Health Minister in the Court government’s second term. In 2001 he nearly suffered a surprise defeat when strong performances from Liberals for Forests candidate Frank Lindsey (10.4%) and One Nation (9.8%) powered a 12.6% two-party swing to Labor, cutting the two-party margin to 0.3%. Lindsey went on to successfully challenge Day for Liberal preselection ahead of the 2005 election, harnessing discontent among social conservatives over his pro-choice policy positions while Health Minister. However, the result was overturned by the party’s state council, which reportedly played out against rivalry between Day’s supporters in the Northern Alliance faction of Peter Collier and Mathias Cormann, and Lindsey backers Senators Chris Ellison and Ian Campbell. Day remained on the front bench throughout the years in opposition, and became Minister for Planning, Culture and Arts on the election of the Barnett government. He further gained science and innovation at the reshuffle held to accommodate Troy Buswell’s return in December 2010.
Analysis written by William Bowe. All post-redistribution margins are as calculated by Antony Green at ABC Elections. Read William’s blog, The Poll Bludger.