January 2023

Fifteen Parties Registered to Contest the 2023 NSW Election

Fifteen parties are registered to contest the 2023 NSW election on 25 March including two that have undergone late name changes.

The rules in NSW for registering political parties were substantially toughened after the farcical “tablecloth” ballot paper at the 1999 Legislative Council election.

NSW parties require 750 members for registration, and all members relied upon for registration must provide a signed Declaration of Party Membership, a substantially tougher requirement than is necessary to register a Federal party. Parties must also pay a $2,000 fee and provide substantial detail on the workings of their constitution. Parties also undergo reviews to ensure they maintain the required membership.

Importantly for the coming election, NSW requires parties be registered for 12 months before they can access to the benefits of party registration. The main benefits registration gains are the ability to centrally nominate candidates, and having a party name printed next to party candidates on ballot papers.

So the 15 names listed inside this post are the only parties eligible to have their names printed on ballot papers for the 25 March election.Read More »Fifteen Parties Registered to Contest the 2023 NSW Election

VIC22 – 2-Party Preferred Results and Swings by District

Inside this post I am publishing corrected two-party preferred (2PP) results, state-wide and by district, for the 2022 Victorian election.

The post is based on the Victorian Electoral Commission’s (VEC’s) published two-party preferred totals. At the moment the difference in my table is that I include corrected the two-party preferred totals for Brighton and Werribee.

These two corrected totals have been calculated from the data entered ballot paper files for both seats. The VEC did not publish a completed preference distribution for either seat but the correct 2PP can be calculated from the data files. I recently analysed the preference flows for seven districts where data entry was available, including for Brighton and Werribee.

In February the VEC intends to undertake formal preference distributions in districts where a distribution was not required. I will update the table and this post as the new figures become available.

As well as publishing two-party preferred totals, the post explains the VEC’s counting procedures that are responsible for me having a different state-wide 2PP, and also why there will be further changes when the VEC conducts the additional distributions in February.Read More »VIC22 – 2-Party Preferred Results and Swings by District

VIC22 – Werribee – Analysis of Preferences

Werribee was one of the seven districts where the Victorian Electoral Commission (VEC) conducted its re-check of election night votes by data entering ballot paper preferences into a computer system. Werribee had 15 candidates, and as explained in my Melton post, this presented difficulties for the VEC in conducting manual re-checks so data entry was used.

Werribee was of interest in 2022 after the second place finish of Independent Joe Garra in 2018. Werribee had a very safe 13.4% margin versus the Liberal Party, but slightly less safe 9.2% margin versus Garra. Labor MP Tim Pallas was saved from another challenge when Garra contested Point Cook after his home suburb of Werribee South was transferred to Point Cook in the redistribution. But a new Independent emerged in local car dealership owner Paul Hopper. In the end Hopper’s challenge fizzled and he finished fourth with only 5.9%.

With 15 candidates, Werribee saw a very high informal vote at 9.7% on a turnout of 85.6%. A very low 30.1% of votes were cast on polling day, 57.3% were Pre-polls, 8.2% Postal votes and 3.8% Absent votes.

The two major parties attracted 70.7% of the vote between them, Labor 45.4%% and the Liberal Party 25.3%. The other 29.3% was split across 13 candidates, none of whom passed 7%.

As with my previous posts on Northcote, Preston, Hawthorn, Brighton, Melton and Point Cook, this post will use of the electronic ballot papers to analyse preference flow statistics and also to look at the influence of candidate how-to-votes.

The key findings for Werribee are –

  • The Liberal Party how-to-vote, which switched in 2022 to recommend preference for the Greens ahead of Labor, resulted in 71.5% of Liberal voters following the recommendation and putting the Greens ahead of Labor. Note that Liberal preferences were not distributed.
  • For the 12 Point Cook candidates that registered how-to-votes indicating preferences, 25.6% of ballot papers exactly matched the how-to-vote of the chosen first preference party. Labor at 26.9% and the Liberal Party 34.6% were the highest concordance rates, with Independent Hopper third at 27.4%. Fewer voters for the plethora of minor parties and independents followed a how-to-vote.
  • In the two-party preferred count, a relatively low 53.1% of preferences favoured Labor over Liberal.
  • The full two-candidate preferred count finished as Labor 23,517 (60.9%) to Liberal 15,086 (39.1%), 0.4% higher for Labor than the VEC’s count derived from polling place results.

More detail with tables inside the post.Read More »VIC22 – Werribee – Analysis of Preferences

Electoral Pendulum for the 2023 NSW Election

With just 11 weeks to go until the NSW election on 25 March, I thought it was time to publish the Electoral Pendulum that I am advising the ABC to use for the election.

Since the 2019 election there has been a redistribution of electoral boundaries, five by-elections and a number of members who have left the party for which they were elected.

The pendulum inside this posts tries to account for the numerous changes. I’ve also summarised the 2020/21 redistribution, and provided notes on alternate margins for seats.

Depending on nominations, there may be one or two seats where I change the margin between now and March.

The Coalition won the 2019 election with 48 seats to Labor 36 with nine members on the crossbench, three Greens, three Independents and three Shooters, Fishers and Farmers. (Three SFF in total, not one of each.)

As I explain in the post, accounting for redistributions, by-elections and defections, the starting point for the 2023 election is Coalition 46 seats, Labor 38 and nine on the crossbench, three Greens and six Independents. Majority government requires 47 seats.

With the increasing number of NSW seats that are no longer major party contests, talking about the uniform swing each side needs to win is becoming less meaningful. The Coalition holds five seats on margins under 4% and Labor six. The nine crossbenchers will be trying to retain their seats, and there will be new Independents nominating, especially in safe Liberal seats.

Labor needs nine seats on a daunting swing of 6.2% for majority government, but can hope to form government with support from the crossbench if it can gain five seats to finish with more seats than the Coalition, though the presence of at least three Greens may open the possibility that Labor could form government with fewer seats than the Coalition.

Premier Perrottet and his predecessor Glady Berejiklian have managed to govern for more than two years without a clear majority in the Legislative Assembly. It is one of the rare occasions in recent years where a Coalition government has successfully managed a hung parliament. The size of the crossbench, and the chance it will increase in size on 25 March, mean the result of the election may only be the starting point for the formation of the next NSW government. Read More »Electoral Pendulum for the 2023 NSW Election