ACT 2020 Election – Post-election Updates

Updated: Friday 23 October

The ACT Electoral Commissioner has declared to the results (formal declaration on Wednesday) with Labor winning 10 seats, the Liberal Party 9 and Greens 6.

Brindabella As I suggested yesterday, Liberal Andrew Wall’s vote increased with the final count. With seven candidates left, 6th placed Green candidate Johnathan Davis was 82 votes ahead of third Labor candidate Taimus Werner-Gibbings. Werner Gibbings was excluded electing Labor’s Joy Burch (Re-elected 1) and Mick Gentleman (Re-elected 2). Andrew Wall was then excluded (Defeated) electing Liberals Nicole Lawder (Re-elected 3) and Mark Parton (Re-elected 4). Jonathan Davis was then Elected 5.

Ginninderra The trend against Labor’s Gordon Ramsay continued and at the critical count Liberal Peter Cain was 166 votes ahead. Labor’s Yvette Berry was Re-elected 1, followed by Liberal Elizabeth Kikkert (Re-elected 2), Labor’s Tara Cheyne (Re-elected 3), Green Jo Clay (Elected 4) and Liberal Peter Cain (Elected 5). Labor’s Gordon Ramsay was defeated, and Liberal Vicki Dunne retired.

Kurrajong As expected, the gap in the final race did narrow, but the Greens were still 407 votes in the lead. Labor’s Andrew Barr was Re-elected 1, the only candidate at the election to poll a quota in his own right. Green Shane Rattenbury was Re-elected 2, Labor’s Rachel Stephen-Smith Re-elected 3, Liberal Elizabeth Lee Re-elected 4, and Green Rebecca Vassarotti was Elected 5, Liberal Candice Burch defeated.

Murrumbidgee A straightforward result. Order of election was Chris Steel (Labor Re-elected 1), Jeremy Hanson (Liberal Re-elected 2), Giulia Jones (Liberal Re-elected 3), Emma Davidson (Green Elected 4) and Marisa Paterson (Labor Elected 5). Davidson replaced retiring Greens MLA Caroline Le Couteur, while Paterson defeated her colleague, Labor MLA Bec Cody.

Yerrabi Another straightforward result. In order of election, Alistair Coe (Liberal re-elected 1), Michael Pettersson (Labor Re-elected 2), Suzanne Orr (Labor Re-elected 3), Andrew Braddock (Green Elected 4) and Leanne Castley (Liberal Elected 5). There were two changes of member, Braddock gaining his seat by defeating Labor’s Deepak-Raj Gupta, while Castley defeated her Liberal colleague James Milligan.

A couple of notes on the wins and losses.

  • The two retiring members were replaced by party colleagues, Ginninderra Liberal Vicki Dunne replaced by Peter Cain, and Murrumbidge Green Caroline Le Couteur replaced by Emma Davidson.
  • The two members elected at countbacks were both defeated, Labor’s Deepak Raj Gupta in Yerrabi, and Liberal Candice Burch in Kurrajong. Both seats were won by the Greens.
  • The other two Green gains were elected by defeating sitting member of other parties, Johnathan Davis in Brindabella effectively defeating Liberal Andrew Wall, and Jo Clay in Ginninderra effectively defeating Labor’s Gordon Ramsay.
  • As sometimes happens under the Hare-Clark electoral system, two members were defeated by party colleagues, Labor’s Marisa Paterson defeating Bec Cody in Murrumbidgee, and Liberal Leanne Castley defeating James Milligan in Yerrabi.
  • The Greens gained four seats, two from Labor and two from the Liberals.
  • Of the 25 former members, 17 were re-elected, two retired and six members were defeated and there are eight new members.

Previous day’s updates are inside the post.

Update Thursday 22 October

Brindabella Below are the totals at the crucial count in the race for the final seat. Davis (Green) has now extended his lead over Werner-Gibbings (Labor) to 23 votes and he is now also 10 votes ahead of Andrew Wall (Liberal). The votes for the Labor and Green candidates fall from this point to match the current first preference total while the proportion for Wall will rise. That suggests Wall falling out of the count first is less likely than the count remaining as a race between Davis and Werener-Gibbings.

Candidate Party Votes Quotas
Joy Burch ALP 8,542 0.9876
Mick Gentleman ALP 7,789 0.9006
Nicole Lawder LIB 7,777 0.8992
Mark Parton LIB 7,759 0.8971
Johnathan Davis GRN 6,166 0.7129
Andrew Wall LIB 6,156 0.7118
Taimus Werner-Gibbings ALP 6,143 0.7103

Ginninderra The trend against Labor continues with Peter Cain (Liberal) 98 votes ahead of Gordon Ramsay (Labor) at the critical count leading to Ramsay’s defeat. Votes to come suggest Cain will maintain this lead.

Kurrajong Rebecca Vassarotti remains 786 votes ahead of Liberal Candice Burch at the critical count. The votes to come suggest Vassarotti will maintain a clear lead.

Update Wednesday 21 October

Brindabella Below are the totals at the crucial count in the race for the final seat. In the table I published on Sunday night, Werner-Gibbings was 7 votes ahead of Davis and 89 behind Wall. Now Davis is 13 votes ahead and Wall is tied with Davis and only 13 votes ahead of Werner-Gibbings. Comparing the preference distribution totals to the first preference tallies, the quotas for the Labor candidates will decline while Davis and the Liberal candidates will rise, suggesting that Davis is favoured and the likelihood of Wall slipping behind Davis and Werner-Gibbings is low.

Candidate Party Votes Quotas
Joy Burch ALP 8,514 0.9877
Mick Gentleman ALP 7,767 0.9010
Nicole Lawder LIB 7,758 0.9000
Mark Parton LIB 7,737 0.8948
Andrew Wall LIB 6,134 0.7116
Johnathan Davis GRN 6,134 0.7116
Taimus Werner-Gibbings ALP 6,121 0.7101

Ginninderra The trend against Labor has continued and at the crucial count in the distribution of preferences, Labor’s Gordon Ramsay is now 105 votes behind Liberal Peter Cain. The current first preference tallies suggest Cain will maintain his lead and defeat Gordon Ramsay. The table below has the totals at the crucial count.

Candidate Party Votes Quotas
Yvette Berry (Elected) ALP 8,516 1.0000
Elizabeth Kikkert (Elected) LIB 8,516 1.0000
Tara Cheyne ALP 8,490 0.9969
Jo Clay GRN 7,443 0.8740
Peter Cain LIB 6,799 0.7984
Gordon Ramsay ALP 6,695 0.7862

Kurrajong The lead of the Green’s Rebecca Vassarotti over Liberal Candice Burch has slipped to 535 votes. The current first preference votes suggest the Liberal vote will continue to rise, Labor and the Greens fall. I estimate that the Green lead will narrow but the Liberal Party will not reverse the lead. The Green’s Rebecca Vassarotti should stil defeat Liberal Candice Burch.

Update Wednesday 20 October

Brindabella The addition of postal votes today has cut the Labor vote more than the Green vote, again increasing the chances of the Green’s Johnathan Davis to win the final seat. The distribution however increased Weener-Gibbings’ lead at the crucial point from 5 votes to 68. Changes in vote to the final count are important from this point. Comparing the distribution to the current first preference count, Labor’s vote will lose a relative 188 votes but the Greens only 12. However, Werner-Gibbing’s decline will be 40 votes, Davis will lose 63 but the rest of the Green ticket gain 51. I suspect we will have to wait for every vote to be counted to know the result and this looks to be the closest contest.

Ginninderra The lead of Labor’s Gordon Ramsay over Liberal Peter Cain is down to only 9 votes at the crucial count and the updated first preference votes suggest the trend favouring the Liberal Party will continue. This is the best chance for the Liberal Party to win a ninth seat. Again, it is the Belco Party that has hurt the Liberal Party, though Labor might have suffered interference of its own with the DLP polling 2.4% in column B.

Kurrajong The lead of the Green’s Rebecca Vassarotti over Liberal Candice Burch remains a significant 736 votes or 0.12 quotas. If you compare the party votes on the current distribution to the current first preferences, the Liberal Party could make up 0.08 quotas of this gap, but that will be more around 0.06 given Elizabeth Lee gains more than Birch on both first preferences and preferences from excluded Liberal candidates. Candice Burch can still win, but it requires a very strong run on postals yet to be counted, and it is certainly less a prospect for the Liberal Party than the final seat in Ginninderra.

Update 19 October

Kurrajong A distribution of preferences for 61% counted confirms a 2 Labor, 2 Greens, 1 Liberal finish. The Labor and Green first preference vote is lower on the 78% first preference count, and the Liberal vote higher, but the changes are not enough to overturn the current Green lead in the race for the final seat.

Brindabella A distribution of preferences for 71.4% of the count has been published, producing the same outcome as the table below for Sunday evening. The difference is that Werner-Gibbings (Labor) leads Davis (Greens) by only 5 votes at the critical count. Labor’s vote is lower on the 85.1% first preference vote suggesting that Davis may yet defeat Werner-Gibbings to win a 6th seat for the Greens.

Ginninderra About 1,000 votes added to the distribution of preferences which narrows the lead of Labor’s Gordon Ramsay in the race for the final seat. But the more progressed first preference count has a lower Labor vote so Ramsay’s hopes of re-election are still looking tough.

Initial comments – 18 October Saturday night was a hectic night in a crowded tallyroom which didn’t give me much time to dissect the preference distribution sheets released by the ACT Electoral Commission.

After the drive back to Sydney, I’ve finally had time to go through the distribution sheets in detail and fine tune the seats given away on the ABC results website.

Labor has a definite 10 seats, having been adjusted down from 11 last night as the election of the third Labor MLA in Ginninderra, Gordon Ramsay, now looks less certain. Labor is still in the race for two extra seats to reach 12, Ramsay’s seat in Ginninderra as well as competing with the Greens for the final seat in Brindabella.

I’ve boosted the Greens to five certain seats, remarkably winning two seats in Kurrajong. The Greens could still take a sixth seat if Johnathan Davis can beat Labor’s Taimus Werner-Gibbing to the final seat in Brindabella.

The Liberal Party have eight certain seats, reduced to a single seat in Kurrajong with the defeat of Candice Burch, and currently only certain of one seat in Ginnenderra, still in the race for a second seat against Labor. The Liberal Party’s prospects were badly damaged in Ginninderra by Bill Stefaniak’s Belco Party.

Brindabella – 18 October

The table below shows how close the contest in Brindabella is. It comes from the distribution of preferences with 68.3% of the vote counted and is the point in the count where Labor’s Joy Burch has already been elected and six candidates remain in the race for four seats. Candidates are listed in descending vote order.

Candidate Party Votes Quotas
Joy Burch (Elected) ALP 7,028 1.0000
Mich Gentleman ALP 6,402 0.9109
Mark Parton LIB 6,289 0.8948
Nicole Lawder LIB 6,278 0.8933
Andrew Wall LIB 5,050 0.7186
Taimus Werner-Gibbings ALP 4,961 0.7059
Johnathan Davis GRN 4,954 0.7049

On this tally, Davis is excluded leading to the election of Labor’s Gentleman and Werner-Gibbing, followed by the exclusion of Wall and election of Liberals Parton and Lawder. But as the table shows, Davis is only seven votes short of Werner-Gibbing. If Werner-Gibbing were excluded, Davis would replace Werner-Gibbing as one of the elected MLAs.

The count at the end of Sunday night (18 Oct) is now at 84.5%. The total Labor vote has slipped from 2.4804 quotas to 2.4594, the Liberal Party from 2.3034 to to 2.2892 and the Greens risen from 0.6448 to 0.6513.

On those trends, Davis could defeat Werner-Gibbing in the race for the final seat, though there is an outside chance that Wall could drop below both which would probably favour Werner-Gibbing. That will be less likely once postal votes are included as these would favour the Liberal Party.

Ginninderra – 18 October

The table below shows the totals in Ginnenderra from the distribution of preferences with 66.7% of votes included. It comes at the point after the exclusion of the final Belco Party candidate Bill Stefaniak. At this point two Labor and one Liberal MLAs have been elected, and one Labor, Liberal and Green candidate remain in the race for the final two seats. Candidates are listed in descending vote order.

Candidate Party Votes Quotas
Yvette Berry (Elected) ALP 6,514 1.0000
Elizabeth Kikkert (Elected) LIB 6,514 1.0000
Tara Cheyne (Elected) ALP 6,514 1.0000
Jo Clay GRN 5,792 0.8892
Gordon Ramsay ALP 5,283 0.8110
Peter Cain LIB 5,011 0.7693

On these numbers, the Green’s Jo Clay looks safe to win a seat, with the last spot a race between Labor’s sitting MLA Gordon Ramsay and Liberal Peter Cain.

The election count is now up to 80.6% and the shift in first preference votes is enough to overturn Ramsay’s lead and elect Peter Cain. Labor’s vote has slipped while both the Liberal and Belco Party totals have risen. The next distribution of preferences on Monday night may clarify the picture.

Kurrajong – 18 October

The possibility of the Greens winning two seats in Kurrajong despite a lower vote than the Liberal Party now looks certain after analysis of the preference distribution.

The current first preference party totals on Sunday night (18 Oct) with 76.4% counted are Labor 2.29 quotas, Liberal 1.61 quotas and Greens 1.42 quotas.

The table below shows the 72.1% counted distribution of preference totals after the election of Andrew Barr (Labor), Shane Rattenbury (Green) and Rachel Stephen-Smith (Labor). The second Green candidate and two Liberals remain in the race for two seats.

Candidate Party Votes Quotas
Andrew Barr ALP 5,496 1.0000
Shane Rattenbry GRN 5,496 1.0000
Rachel Stephen-Smith ALP 5,496 1.0000
Elizabeth Lee LIB 5,258 0.9567
Rebecca Vassarotti GRN 5,022 0.9138
Candice Burch LIB 4,385 0.7979

The power of preferences in Hare-Clark is shown above. The Liberal total has risen to 1.75 quotas, but strong flows of preferences from third parties and especially the Labor surplus has lifted the Green total to 1.91 quotas. There is little chance that Burch can catch Vassarotti producing the result 2 Labor, 2 Green and 1 Liberal.

Postal votes, where the Liberals do well and the Greens less well, could narrow the gap but probably not enough to change the result.

Murrumbidgee – 18 October

The result in Murrumbidgee is straight forward. Labor elects two MLAs, Liberal two and Greens one, the same as in 2016, but there are two changes of MLA.

Labor’s Chris Steele and Liberals Jeremy Hanson and Giulia Jones are re-elected, Labor’s Bec Cody has been defeated by colleague Marisa Paterson, and retiring Green Caroline Le Couteur has been replaced by Emma Davidson.

As I wrote before the election, Hanson no longer being Liberal leader, and Labor having two sitting MLAs, produced a substantial change in party support, Labor’s vote up 3.2% and the Liberal vote down 8.7%, Hanson’s personal vote responsible for most of that drop, down 5.8%. A notable feature of the result was the strong showing by Independent Fiona Carrick, polling 7.1% in the hard to be noticed Ungrouped column.

Yerrabi – 18 October

The Liberal Party polled strongly with 2.42 quotas despite Alistair Coe becoming the first party leader since Wayne Berry to poll less than a quota in their own right. Labor did poorly, perhaps missing the vote pulling power of Meegan Fitzharris. Her replacement, Deepak-Raj Gupta, lost his seat to second time Green candidate Andrew Braddock.

Liberal MLA James Milligan has been defeated by Liberal colleague Leanne Castley.

8 thoughts on “ACT 2020 Election – Post-election Updates”

  1. Hey Antony, notice you said there’s a definite 11 Labor, 8 Liberal, 3 Green elected so far, but your “elected” tally on the ABC has 10 Labor, 8 Liberal, 4 Green.

    Am I missing something?

    COMMENT: The post as it is currently written is my best estimate of the result.

  2. Hey Antony – In Brindabella is there any effect if Joy Burch reaches a quota before Johnathan or Taimus are excluded? Could that assist Taimus if some of her distributed votes presumably go to him? Cheers.

    COMMENT: Your suggesting that on the exclusion of Day, Burch would just reach a quota and there would be a small surplus. I think the numbers are so small it is impossible to be certain.

  3. I don’t understand how you can say that the chances of Davis winning over Werner-Gibbings have increased, when the vote difference (after preference distribution) has gone from 5 to 68 in favour of Werner-Gibbings. Maybe you didn’t have the preference distribution when you posted?

    COMMENT: I saw the preference distribution, but I think the slippage in Labor vote to come as more votes are added to the distribution will turn that figure around. He can still win but it will be close and the drop in the Labor vote won’t help.

  4. As you frequently submit ideas/proposals to the joint electoral matters committee of Federal Parliament and noting the success of the ACT electronic voting system, why not [if you’ve not already done so] suggest to the committee the use of electronic voting in the three ACT federal seats [Bean, Canberra & Fenner] for all pre-poll voting centres [PPVCs] at the next federal election as precursor to its national roll-out over time. It would of course require an amendment to the Act but only to provide the Commonwealth’s chief electoral officer with the discretion to use electronic voting at [eventually all] PPVCs where stand-alone hard drives are [already] installed, where paper ballots are still offered, and which would allow the speedy counting of PPVC votes as occurred at the recent ACT election. I suggest that, as well was the ACT, the 5 TAS seats and 2 NT seats be included in the trial run. These electorates have relatively small numbers and fewer PPVCs. The CEO of the ACT Electoral Commission could be seconded for the task. Electronic voting could be rolled out nationally over say 4 elections. Something has to happen given that more of us are pre-polling.

  5. Hi Antony,

    Are these current figures inclusive of postal votes noting that there were some 22,000 postal votes and these can be received until 23 October. If not, when do they start getting counted and is it likely that the postal votes could sway the outcome in electorates such as yerrabi, ginnenderra and kurrajong?

    COMMENT: As of today, around 14,600 postal votes have been included in the count. You can find the postals by district at the bottom of the polling place results list on the ACTEC results site.

  6. A bizarre result where a party (Greens) which attracts only 13.5% of the vote ends up with 6 seats while ALP has only 10 seats even though attracting 37% of the primary vote. Surely top 5 candidates in each seat before preferences seems more representative of the electorate.

    COMMENT: Except the number of votes to elect each candidate would have been vastly different. The point of the Hare-Clark system is that all elected candidates end up with around the same votes after preferences, and all have more votes than the next unelected candidate. On highest vote per candidate, Labor would have elected only 1 member in Kurrajong to 2 Liberal and 2 Greens which would be a far less representative outcome given Labor had by far the highest vote.

    1. Tom the first and best

      The vote in the ACT this time landed in a sweet spot for the Greens, with multiple victories with preferences and few leftover votes in most to all seats, with lesser results getting the Greens only 2 seats for 10% of the vote last time. The relative similarity of the seat totals this year is largely a result of the 5-member electorates. The Greens would have won only 6 seats on these results even if each electorate had 7 or possibly even 9 members.

  7. Now that the counting has finished, will the full distribution be released on Wednesday along with the official results, or will it be released later than that?

    COMMENT: The full distributions of preferences have already been published on the ACT Electoral Commission’s website.

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