SA Election Preference Recommendations

A unique feature of South Australian elections is that registered how-to-vote material for lower house seats is displayed in front of voters in the partitions where votes are completed. I explained how this works in a previous post.

These preference sheets have been released for use in pre-poll voting. Below I summarise the preference recommendations in important seats.

You can find the how-to-votes for each district on the Electoral Commission SA website.

I’ve also published the Legislative Council recommendations. The posters for these are displayed in polling places but not placed inside the voting partition. You can find the Legislative Council tickets on my ABC election site and I hope to publish more on the LC preferences later this week. Some information on how the 2018 preference count unfolded is included in my Legislative Council Preview, again on the ABC site.

The problems for most minor political parties is a lack of volunteers to hand out how-to-vote material outside polling places. This disadvantage is lessened in South Australia by the display of the how-to-vote recommendations.

For instance, Family First for many years issued how-to-votes with preferences to Labor candidates in a small number of seats, mainly those associated with the conservative SDA union. Preferences in these seats were more likely to flow to Labor rather than the Liberal Party. It was a difference in preference flows rarely seen at Federal elections where influencing voters with how-to-vote relies on volunteers handing them to voters.

Family First was absorbed by the Australian Conservatives for the 2018 South Australian election, but continued with the practice of favouring selected Labor candidates with preference recommendations. In 26 seats Conservative preferences were recommended to the Liberal Party and flowed 77% in that direction. The five seats favouring Labor split evenly, only 51.5% to the Liberal Party, and the two seats with split how-to-votes flowed only 67% to the Liberal Party. They are remarkable differences in preference flows compared to flows at Federal elections.

Here’s the preference recommendation summary in key seats.

You can find information on all the candidates and electoral contests at the South Australian election on my ABC SA Election site.

Adelaide (LIB 1.0%)

Liberal MP Rachel Sanderson versus Labor’s Lucy Hood, six candidates. Preference recommendations are –

  • to Labor – Animal Justice, Aust Family Party and Greens
  • to Liberal – Real Change SA

Badcoe (ALP 4.8%)

Labor MP Jayne Stinson versus Liberal Jordan Dodd, seven candidates. Preference recommendations are –

  • to Labor – Animal Justice, Greens
  • to Liberal – Family First, Aust Family Party, One Nation

Elder (LIB 1.9%)

Liberal MP Carolyn Power versus Labor’s Nadia Clancy, seven candidates. Preference recommendations are –

  • to Labor – Animal Justice, Greens
  • to Liberal – Family First, Liberal Democrats, Real Change SA

Finniss (LIB 14.5%)

This is a safe Liberal seat but might be interesting if the first preference vote of Liberal MP David Basham slips below 50%. The seat is being contested by Independent Lou Nicholson. There is nothing significant in preference recommendations for a Labor-Liberal finish. The preference recommendations if the Independent is in the final contest are –

  • to Liberal – National
  • to IND Nicholson – Labor, Family First, One Nation, Greens

Frome (LIB 18.1%)

Independent Geoff Brock has moved to contest Stuart leaving Frome as a very safe Liberal seat. Liberal candidate Penny Pratt is running against Labor’s Ashton Charvetto, though his party clearly gives him little hope given he is not listed on the website of Labor Leader Peter Malinauskas. A stronger challenger seems to be Independent Cate Hunter. Five candidates, preference recommendations are –

  • to Independent – Labor, One Nation
  • to Liberal – National

Liberal candidate Penny Pratt is last on the ballot paper, Hunter first, Labor second last. The Liberal HTV recommends a reverse donkey vote, straight up the ticket giving Labor a second preference. It’s a reminder that for major parties, an easy to copy preference recommendation is more important than virtue signalling preferred preferences with a harder to copy sequence.

Giles (ALP 14.9%)

Labor’s Eddie Hughes holds this safe Whyalla based seat and is under no threat of losing to the Liberal Party. But Tom Antonio finished a strong second as Nick Xenophon’s SA Best candidate in 2018. He has nominated again for the 2022 election, the only lower house candidate SA-Best has nominated. Preferences are interesting if Antonio polls ahead of the Liberal. Six candidates, preference recommendations are –

  • to Labor – Greens
  • to SA Best – Liberal, Family First, One Nation
  • Note – SA Best preferences are recommended to Liberal where they were split in 2018

Hammond (LIB 16.9%)

This is a safe Liberal seat but might be interesting if the first preference vote of Liberal MP Adrian Pederick slips below 50%. National candidate John Illingworth finished second in neighbouring Heysen at the 2018 election as an SA Best candidate, and there is a reasonably high profile Independent in Airlie Keen. The sequence of preferences for each candidate is as follows –

  • Labor – in order to National then Independent
  • Liberal – to Labor, then National then Independent. Unlikely to be distributed and a reverse donkey recommendation rather then an ideological sequence
  • National – to Independent ahead of Liberal
  • Independent – to National
  • Family First – to National then Liberal before Independent
  • One Nation – to National, then Independent before Liberal

Kavel (Independent held)

The seat where former Liberal MP Dan Cregan is re-contesting as an Independent. Every other candidates has listed Cregan before the Liberal candidate Rowan Mumford which assures Cregan’s re-election.

King (LIB 0.6%)

Liberal MP Paula Luethen versus Labor’s Rhiannon Pearce. Seven candidates, preference recommendations are –

  • to Labor – Animal Justice, Family First, Aust Family Party, Greens
  • to Liberal – Real Change SA

MacKillop (LIB 25.2%)

Ultra-safe seat of Liberal Nick McBride. The Liberal and Labor candidates have preferenced each other ahead of National candidate Jonathan Pietzsch. The Liberal recommendation is a donkey vote listing, but Labor’s message is not clear.

Mawson (ALP 0.7%)

Labor’s Leon Bignell had a remarkable win against the odds in 2018 after the Boundaries Commission radically re-drew Mawson’s boundaries. His Liberal opponent in 2022 is Amy Williams. There are seven candidates, preference recommendations are –

  • to Labor – Animal Justice, Greens
  • to Liberal – Aust Family Party, Family First, One Nation

Leon Bignell is in the last spot on the ballot paper, Liberal Amy Williams second last. Labor has recommended a reverse donkey vote which means a second preference for Williams before the Greens (which will never be distributed) and helpfully puts the top positioned One Nation candidate last on the Labor ticket.

Mount Gambier (IND 10.3% v LIB)

Independent Troy Bell competes against Liberal Ben Hood. There are only four candidates with Family First recommending to Liberal, Labor recommending to Bell. In 2018 Labor recommended to Liberal and only 53.2% followed that recommendation. You would expect Labor’s preferences to flow more strongly to Bell in 2022.

Narungga (Independent held)

The seat where former Liberal MP Fraser Ellis is re-contesting as an Independent. Other candidates have listed Ellis before Liberal candidate Tom Michael which assures Ellis’ re-election. The one exception is Independent Dianah Walters who has issued an open ticket.

Newland (LIB 0.1%)

Liberal MP Richard Harvey is opposed by Independent MP for Florey Frances Bedford and Labor candidate Olivia Savvas in a nine candidate field. The order of who finishes second and third could be critical. Overall the preferences favour Labor. The recommendations to the three leading candidates from other candidates are –

  • Liberal – to Labor
  • Greens – to Labor then Bedford
  • Real Change SA – to Liberal then Labor before Bedford
  • Animal Justice – to Labor then Bedford before Liberal
  • Family First – to Labor then Liberal before Bedford
  • Labor – to Bedford
  • One Nation – to Labor then Bedford before Liberal
  • Aust Family Party – to Labor then Bedford before Liberal
  • Bedford – no recommendation

Stuart (LIB 11.5% v ALP)

Stuart is held by Liberal Deputy Premier Dan van Holst Pellekaan and the above margin is measured against Labor. But Stuart will not be a two-party preferred contest. The redistribution has seen the electorate gain Port Pirie from Frome, where that seat’s Independent MP Geoff Brock polls more than 75% of the two-candidate preferred vote. The re-drawn Stuart has been calculated with an 11.5% margin based on two-party preferred results because it is impossible to measure a margin for Liberal versus Brock given Brock only contested the Port Pirie part of Stuart. There are five candidates and the preference recommendations are –

  • to Brock – Labor and Greens, plus Liberal preferences that won’t be distributed to Brock ahead of Labor
  • to Liberal – One Nation

Waite (Independent held)

The seat where former Liberal MP Sam Duluk is re-contesting as an Independent. There are six candidates and four have a chance of polling very well. The candidates are Duluk, another Independent in Mitcham Mayor Heather Holmes-Ross, Labor candidate Catherine Hutchesson and Liberal Alex Hyde. The preference orderings for all candidates are –

  • Holmes-Ross – no recommendation
  • Greens – to Holmes-Ross then Labor, Duluk and Liberal
  • Duluk – to Liberal then Holmes-Ross before Labor
  • Animal Justice – to Holmes-Ross then Labor, Liberal and Duluk
  • Labor – to Holmes-Ross, Duluk then Liberal
  • Liberal – to Duluk, Labor then Holmes-Ross

7 thoughts on “SA Election Preference Recommendations”

  1. “Every other candidates has listed Cregan before the Liberal candidate Rowan Mumford which assures Cregan’s re-election.”

    Hi Antony. By the above, do you mean that Cregan is assured of re-election, unless Mumford polls well into the 40s on primary votes, or do you mean that Cregan is assured of re-election full stop?

    While I don’t disagree that Cregan is favourite for the seat, it seems to me a) that the endorsed Liberal candidate is always going to be in with a chance in Kavel, and b) that it’s highly unlikely, notwithstanding that the other candidates are all recommending preferencing Cregan ahead of Mumford, that Cregan will obtain more than about 80% of these preferences.

    It seems to me that there’s still room for Mumford to come out on top.

  2. Is there a reason Finniss has been left off this list? While it is a safe Liberal seat there is a strong independent candidate who could make it interesting this year.

    COMMENT: I have added Finniss to the list.

  3. LIGHT seems to be missing from your listing?

    COMMENT: I’ve included seats which may be in play. Light is a safe Labor seat with a margin of 8.4%.

  4. What are your thoughts on Light? My understanding is Tony Piccolo could make it a safe seat and no longer marginal.

    COMMENT: Light is already a safe seat, held by Labor with a margin of 8.4%.

  5. I notice that Florey isn’t on the list. As it’s had such a large redraw for this election could that put it in play? I’m in Mawson Lakes and part of that, very large suburb is now in Florey, last election it was in Playford.

    COMMENT: Florey is a very safe seat which probably won’t need preferences to decide the winner. Here’s my Florey guide.

    1. Louise, I presume you may have thought Florey would be competitive because of independent Frances Bedford who currently holds the seat. However, due to the major boundary changes, she is now contesting Newland instead.

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