Monday, November 29, 2010
THE Coalition last night was on the verge of pulling off an improbable quinella not only winning government, but winning control of both houses of Parliament.
The electoral landslide that swept across Victoria could give the Liberals and Nationals up to four new seats in the 40-member Legislative Council, mostly at Labor's expense. Only one seat has clearly changed hands.
As expected, the Liberals won a third seat in their heartland of Southern Metro, with Georgie Crozier unseating Labor's Jennifer Huppert.
But Coalition candidates were also well placed to pick up three other seats, although final results could be weeks away. The Coalition needs to win all three to give it a majority of 21 seats in the new upper house. But if its vote climbs slightly as pre-poll, postal and absentee votes are counted, it could do just that.
Labor took a battering, with the party at risk of losing four of its 19 seats in the upper house. The Greens failed to make any gains, and have an outside chance of losing Western Metro MLC Colleen Hartland.
The DLP lost its sole representative, Western Victoria MLC Peter Kavanagh, who polled just 2.6 per cent to come last this time.
But as we have seen so often before, bizarre preference deals could land several other unlikely politicians in the red velvet chamber.
Journalist Stephen Mayne, an insatiable candidate for parliaments and company boardrooms, might just pull it off this time, despite winning only 1 per cent of the vote in Northern Metro.
On Saturday night's figures, Mr Mayne would take the final seat thanks to preferences from everyone from the Greens to Family First, the DLP, the Sex Party, and ultimately Labor.
But it would take only a small change in late voting to tip him out early, with the Liberals' Craig Ondarchie more likely to claim the seat from Labor's Nathan Murphy.
The fishing and shooting party, the Country Alliance, could cause an upset in any of the three regions outside Melbourne, although on last night's counting it was more likely to lose the lot. Despite averaging just 4.5 per cent of the regional vote, preference deals will see it fight out the last seat with Labor in Eastern Victoria, the Liberals in Northern Victoria, and the Nationals in Western Victoria.
Legislative Council president Bob Smith is likely to lose out in a three-way fight for the last two seats in Western Metro, with the Liberals and Greens edging him out. The most likely outcome is: Liberals 18, Nationals 3, Labor 16, Greens 3.
WINNERS AND LOSERS
IN GRAHAM WATT
After two unsuccessful attempts trying to win Northcote, the small business owner tried his hand in the mortgage belt and returned a formerjewel to the Liberal crown.
OUT BOB STENSHOLT
Stensholts 11 years in Parliament is essentially the story of Labors reign. He won Jeff Kennetts seat of Burwood at a byelection after the former premier resigned in 1999 and suffered a massive 9.5 per cent swing at Saturdays election.
IN NEIL ANGUS
After falling agonisingly close in his first attempt to unseat Labor from the eastern suburbs seat in 2006, the accountant has added Forest Hill to the swath of electorates now painted Liberal blue on the electoral map.
OUT KIRSTIE MARSHALL
The loss of the marginal seat leaves just one celebrity Labor sports star in Parliament former footballer Justin Madden. Marshall, a former Olympic skier, suffered a cost of livingfuelled swing of around 3.8 per cent.
IN BRAD BATTIN
A former police senior constable, Battin was able to push the law and order button in the outerurban seat that takes in parts of Berwick and Pakenham. Gembrook goes to the Liberals for the first time since it was created in 2002 with a 7 per cent swing.
OUT TAMMY LOBATO
The outspoken Labor MP has frustrated her party with her stances on genetically modified crops and logging, but they hoped her strong local support would put the seat in the ALPs retain column.
The City of Casey councillor swaps her mayoral robes for a comfortable green leather lower house seat. With a swing of over 5 per cent, Wreford looks to have claimed almost 47 per cent of the primary vote.
OUT JANICE MUNT
With Mordialloc another of the mortgage belt seats, cost of living issues like stamp duty and utilities bills ended-up costing Munt. The parliamentary secretary loses the seat she held since 2002.
It was a case of second time lucky for the lawyer, businessman and former deputy lord mayor Newton-Brown. In 2006, he won the primary vote but couldnt win the seat. This time around, he collected both.
OUT TONY LUPTON
The lawyer and Brumby government cabinet secretary came in with the Bracks-slide of 2002 that decimated the Liberals. On Saturday, he suffered a likely swing of 8.3 per cent swing and couldnt hold the Labor line.
IN TIM BULL
The 43-year-old former journalist becomes a Nationals hero for being the man who finally sandblasted off the barnacle that was Craig Ingram to the country party.
OUT CRAIG INGRAM
There was a symmetry to Ingrams departure. In 1999, he was one of the independents who delivered Steve Bracks power. One Saturday he went out with the Labor tide.
IN DONNA BAUER
The current deputy ayor of Kingston has been given a political promotion by bayside residents. Bauer did it easily smashing the ALP with a huge 10.3 per cent swing to her she only needed to secure 6.8 per cent.
OUT JENNY LINDELL
The 33rd speaker of the house first won Carrum in the 1999 landslide that ousted Jeff Kennett from Spring Street. Eleven years later she is on the wrong side of the political avalanche.
IN GEOFF SHAW
In his first attempt to win the crucial bayside seat, Shaw succeeded in making up 3.3 per cent to topple Labor. Shaw is textbook Liberal, he runs a small financial planning business.
OUT ALISTAIR HARKNESS.
Former Steve Bracks electorate office staffer, Harkness was true-blue Labor. Born and raised in Frankston with a PhD in political science, he departs after two terms in Parliament.
IN DEE RYALL
Ryalls win is significant for Teds chance of being Premier. The bellwether seat has always, with one exception, been held by the government of the day and is part of the mortgage belt targeted heavily by the Coalitions campaign.
OUT TONY ROBINSON
The Gaming Minister was always going to be a longshot Let to retain his seat when the Coalition gained Momentum. Robinson won Mitcham at a byelection in 1997, the first sign Kennetts regime was faltering. On Saturday he was defending just 2 per cent and in the end suffered a 5.3 per cent swing.
IN MICHAEL GIDLEY
In 2006, Gidley fell agonisingly short of entering Victorian Parliament, going down by less than 250 votes. There was no question over the result this time with the former tax accountant steaming into Spring Street with a swing of 7.1 per cent.
OUT MAXINE MORAND
The Minister for Womens Affairs was unable to defend Labors narrowest margin. Even with Greens preferences, they backed her because of her pro same-sex marriage stance, Ms Morand farewells Parliament after eight years.
IN CINDY MCLEISH
In 1999, Seymour turned on Kennett. In 2010, Seymour turned on Brumby. It was a rocky road for the Libs with McLeish joining late after Mike Laker controversially quit his candidacy. McLeishs vote was boosted on the back of preferences from anti-North-South pipeline campaigner Jan Beer.
OUT BEN HARDMAN
Like many of his ALP colleagues that have lost their seats, Hardman came to government in 1999 when voters turned on Kennett and now he has fallen victim to a similar fate.
IN ANDREW KATOS
Katos is another local councillor joining the ranks of state politics. The managing director of a fish supply company, has regained the seat that had been in Liberal hands for decades after eight years of ALP rule.
OUT MICHAEL CRUTCHFIELD
Parliamentary secretary for Environment, Water and Climate Change was meant to be one of a swag of regional Labor members to go. ALP managed to hold on Bendigo and Ballarat but could not stem the tide in South Barwon.