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Risky Electoral Seats

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2019 Federal Election

Now that the Federal Election is underway, there will be countless promises pledges spin and utter bullshit. With both sides hurling criticisms and sledges padded with innuendos and deceptions.

There are 151 seats in the House of Representatives up for grabs. The major mud slingers are not going to appear in each and every electorate around the country.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has spent quite a bit of time in western Sydney, the south coast of New South Wales, Tasmania, parts of Melbourne and WA.

Some of those spots have been traditional electoral battlegrounds for many decades, but after the electoral wipe-out for the Liberals in the Victorian state election last year, we might see more canvassing for votes there throughout the campaign.

The Prime Minister has also spent time in Tasmania in recent weeks, reflecting the Liberal Party’s optimism that it might be able to target Labor-held seats in the state’s north.

Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack has been focussed on his own electorate of Riverina, but also other Nationals seats such as Cowper, which has a retiring National MP.

The Opposition doesn’t have to sandbag seats in the same way the Coalition does, and it’s already notionally picked up two seats from the Government in the latest round of seat redistributions.

Both Bill Shorten and Tanya Plibersek have been hitting the streets of Melbourne hard.

The Labor leader has also looked to western Sydney, Townsville — where the electorate of Herbert is his party’s most marginal — and parts of Perth, where Labor believes it could find rich electoral pickings.

The seats to watch

Here’s a look at the 38 seats in Victoria, with margins based on Antony Green’s analysis of the redistribution.

  • Corangamite: Liberal 0.03 per cent — It’s a tough ask for former ABC journalist Sarah Henderson to hold on.
  • Dunkley: Liberal-held, notionally Labor 1.3 per cent — Rookie MP Chris Crewther is in big danger of becoming a one-term pollie.
  • La Trobe: Liberal 3.5 per cent — Comeback MP Jason Wood is big on law and order and will be hoping to lock this seat up for another term, under significant pressure.
  • Chisholm: Liberal 3.4 per cent — No incumbent running with Julia Banks’s defection from the Liberal Party. Labor and Liberal both have Chinese-Australian candidates in an area with a significant Asian population. Labor is well placed.
  • Indi: Independent 4.1 per cent vs Liberal — Cathy McGowan is hanging up the boots and has anointed an independent successor. Is this an opportunity for the Coalition to get Indi back? Campaign resources are an issue for the Liberals.
  • Macnamara (was Melbourne Ports): Labor 1.3 per cent — A three-horse race, which the Greens are going to make a big effort for. Labor has a new candidate, but aren’t too worried. Liberals bombed in the area at state level.

If the dam breaks…

  • Casey: Liberal 4.5 per cent — Speaker Tony Smith is well respected in Parliament but if Labor secures big swings he might be the one getting ejected.
  • Deakin: Liberal 6.3 per cent — Dutton backer Michael Sukkar will be targeted for his involvement in the Turnbull coup. A strong local campaigner who knows he has to fight.

Normally safe

  • Flinders: Liberal 7.2 per cent — This is a safe seat for Health Minister Greg Hunt but these are strange times for the Liberal Party. It would take a remarkable swing for Labor to win but Julia Banks as an independent complicates the contest.
  • Higgins: Liberal 10.2 per cent vs Labor and 7.8 per cent vs Green — Kelly O’Dwyer isn’t standing, the swing at the state level against the Liberals was large and the Greens’ Jason Ball complicates the race. There may not be a result for days.

Probably safe

  • Kooyong: Liberal 12.8 per cent — The Treasurer shouldn’t have any problems, but he will have to put up a larger fight than usual.
  • Aston: Liberal 7.6 per cent — Outer-suburban Liberal territory, SPEC problems are not as pronounced here. Minister Alan Tudge should hold on.
  • Melbourne: Greens 19 per cent — Adam Bandt has built a fortress he should retain, but his party did suffer swings at a state level last year.
  • Bendigo: Labor 3.9 per cent — The margin probably makes it look closer than it is. Lisa Chester is well placed for another term.
  • Cooper (was Batman): 0.6 per cent Labor vs Greens — Once safe Labor territory, the seat has been under threat from the Greens for several terms. But internal problems and Ged Kearney’s campaign have put the Greens on the back foot.
  • Menzies: Liberal 7.9 per cent — It has not gained the same attention as Higgins and Kooyong. Conservative Kevin Andrews should add to his 28-year career despite GetUp! targeting him.
  • Isaacs: Labor 2.3 per cent — It is hard to see Labor suffering a swing against them in Melbourne’s south-east as swings were positive at the state poll.
  • Wills: Labor 4.9 per cent vs Greens — Labor should hold this seat. Like in Cooper, the Greens’ efforts in Melbourne’s inner-north have been hampered by internal issues.
  • Goldstein: Liberal 12.7 per cent — This is a safe Liberal seat, but polling has shown there are potential issues. It is highly unlikely to fall.
  • Mallee: Nationals 19.8 per cent — Nationals territory but the incumbent MP Andrew Broad is leaving politics in disgrace. An independent MP won Mildura in the state poll and results in NSW point to a problem for the Nationals.
  • Hotham: Labor 4.2 per cent — It is marginal on paper, but Labor is in the box seat.

Safe seats

  • Jagajaga: Labor 5 per cent
  • McEwen: Labor 5.3 per cent
  • Ballarat: Labor 7.4 per cent
  • Corio: Labor 8.3 per cent
  • Bruce: Labor 15.7 per cent
  • Calwell: Labor 20.1 per cent
  • Wannon: Liberal 9.3 per cent
  • Monash (was McMillan): Liberal 7.6 per cent
  • Holt: Labor 9.9 per cent
  • Maribrynong: Labor 9.4 per cent
  • Lalor: Labor 14.4 per cent
  • Gorton: Labor 18.3 per cent
  • Scullin: Labor 20.4 per cent
  • Calwell: Labor 20.1 per cent
  • Fraser: Labor 20.6 per cent
  • Gippsland: Nationals 18.2 per cent
  • Nicholls (was Murray): Nationals 22.3 per cent



Petrie (QLD)

LNP 0.5%: Petrie lies mostly to the east of the Bruce Highway in the north of Brisbane, extending from the northern suburbs of Brisbane City Council through to the Redcliffe peninsula and Deception Bay. In Brisbane it includes Bracken Ridge, Bald Hills, Fitzgibbon, Carseldine and parts of Aspley and Bridgeman Downs. It includes Scarborough, Redcliffe, Clontarf and all the suburbs on the Redcliffe Peninsula, plus the newer housing estates of Deception Bay and Mango Hill to the west. It is a seat that has been won by the party forming government at 14 of the last 15 elections. Gained for the LNP by Luke Howarth in 2013, his Labor opponent in 2016 is Jacqui Pedersen.

Capricornia (QLD)

LNP 0.8%: Capricornia is a Central Queensland seat that stretches along the coast from Rockhampton and Yeppoon in the south to Sarina and the southern suburbs of Mackay in the north, also extending inland to include major mining centres such as Collinsville, Moranbah, Dysart and Clermont. The electorate still includes significant agricultural and pastoral districts, but the region’s economy and workforce is increasingly dominated by the mining industry and associated transport and export facilities. In the last 113 years Capricornia has been held by the non-Labor parties for only 26 years, 15 of those years being between 1946 and 1961. It has left the Labor fold on only four occasions since 1961, and before the victory of LNP MP Michelle Landry in 2013, was last won by the National Party for single terms on the defeat of Federal Labor governments in 1975 and 1996. Labor’s candidate will be Leisa Neaton.

Lyons (TAS)

LIB 1.2%: Lyons is Tasmania’s largest electorate, taking in just under half of the state and is a seat of regions. It includes the northern agricultural districts between Launceston and the Tamar River in the east and Devonport and Latrobe in the west. It includes all the holiday and fishing towns on the state’s east coast. It includes the rural areas of the central and southern midlands, the Derwent valley, as well as the Brighton and Sorell councils areas on the edge of greater Hobart. The seat only had three sitting members in seven decades from the Second World War to the defeat of Labor’s Dick Adams by current Liberal MP Eric Hutchinson in 2013. In 2016 the Labor candidate will be public relations consultant Brian Mitchell.

Solomon (NT)

CLP 1.4%: Solomon covers the Darwin and Palmerston City Council areas and was first contested in 2001 when the Northern Territory was divided into two seats. It has been won by the CLP at four of the five elections since, but it has always been a close contest. In 2016 there will be a repeat of the 2013 contest, with CLP MP Natasha Griggs opposed by Labor candidate Luke Gosling.

Hindmarsh (SA)

LIB 1.9%: Covering 78 sq.km in the western suburbs of Adelaide, Hindmarsh stretches along the Adelaide beachside from Semaphore Park through Henley Beach and Fulham Gardens to Glenelg and Somerton Park in the south. It was the only South Australian seat to change hands in 2013 when Liberal MP Matt Williams defeated Labor incumbent Steve Georganas, who returns to contest the seat again in 2016.

Braddon (TAS)

LIB 2.6%: Braddon covers just under a third of Tasmania and runs along the north-west and west coasts of Tasmania. It extends from Devonport and Latrobe in the east, through Ulverstone, Burnie, Wynyard, Stanley, Smithton and Waratah, then down the west coast of the state to include Rosebery, Zeehan, Queenstown and Strahan. The electorate is a mix of agricultural districts in the north and mining and wilderness areas on the west coast. After two decades as the state’s safest Liberal electorate, Braddon swung dramatically to Labor at the 1998 election. Re-elected in 2001, Labor MP Sid Sidebottom suffered defeat at the 2004 election, was re-elected in 2007 but tasted final defeat in 2013. Braddon was won by former state MP Brett Whiteley, and he will be opposed in 2016 by the Labor Party’s Justine Keay.

Banks (NSW)

LIB 2.8%: Banks extends across the southern parts of Kogarah, Hurstville and Bankstown council areas in Sydney’s suth, generally between the Georges River and the M5 motorway. It covers 53 square kilometres and includes East Hills, Revesby., Panania, Picnic Point, Padstow, Riverwood, Peakhurst, Penshurst, Lugarno, Mortdale, Oatley, South Hurstville and Allawah. Banks was held by the Labor Party from its first contest in 1949 through to 2013 with only four members in those 64 years. Liberal MP David Coleman became the first Liberal MP for the seat in 2013 and has received a slight boost to his margin in the redistribution. His Labor opponent will be Chris Gambian.

Eden-Monaro (NSW)

LIB 2.9%: Eden-Monaro is a mixed electorate in the south-east corner of NSW, completely surrounding the ACT. The largest concentration of voters live in the Canberra overflow around Queanbeyan, but the electorate also includes the fishing, holiday and retirement towns of Merimbula, Narooma and Bermagui on the NSW far south coast, the agricultural and forestry districts around Bega and Eden, Cooma and the NSW snowfields, and Yass, Batlow and Tumut to the north and west of the ACT. It is he classic bellwether electorate, having been won by the party forming government at every election since 1972. The 2016 race will see a re-run of 2013, with Liberal MP Dr Peter Hendy opposed by former MP and the man he defeated in 2013, Labor’s Dr Mike Kelly.

Lindsay (NSW)

LIB 3.0%: Lindsay is based on Penrith on the western outskirts of Sydney. It has been won by the party that formed government at every election since its first contest in 1984. It was won at the 2013 election by Liberal Fiona Scott, elected at her second attempt. Her Labor opponent in 2016 is Emma Husar.

Page (NSW)

NAT 3.1%: On the far north coast of NSW, the electorate of Page includes the Lismore, Kyogle, Richmond River and Clarence River local government areas as well as parts of Ballina Shire and the City of Coffs Harbour. The electorate’s main centres are Casino, Lismore and Grafton, the electorate also including Woolgoolga and some northern parts of Coffs Harbour. Page is a marginal seat that has gone with government at every election since 1990. It was won by National Kevin Hogan at the 2013 election, defeating two term Labor MP Janelle Saffin. Hogan and Saffin will face off against each other in 2016 for the third election in a row.

Robertson (NSW)

LIB 3.1%: Robertson is a Central Coast electorate just to the north of Sydney, but the district is increasingly part of Sydney’s outer suburbs. The main centres are Gosford, Woy Woy, and Terrigal. Robertson has been won by the party that formed government at every election since 1983. In 2007 it was won by Belinda Neal, who proved to be such an accident prone MP that she was replaced as Labor candidate for the 2010 election, when Labor surprised by holding the seat with a swing against the Liberals. Gained by Liberal Lucy Wicks on the change of government in 2013, her Labor opponent in 2016 is Anne Charlton.

Deakin (VIC)

LIB 3.2%: Deakin stretches east-west along the Maroondah Highway and Canterbury Road in Melbourne’s outer eastern suburbs. It includes the suburbs of Blackburn, Nunawading, Vermont South, Mitcham, Ringwood, Heathmont, Croydon South and Bayswater North. Deakin has been won by the Liberal Party at all but three elections since it was created. Deakin was won by Labor for a single term on the election of the Hawke government in 1983, and was held by Labor for the two terms of the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd government. It was won for the Liberal Party in 2013 by Michael Sukkar. His Labor opponent in 2016 is Tony Clark.

Macarthur (NSW)

LIB 3.3%: Macarthur lies on the south-west edge of the Sydney metropolitan area and includes Harrington Park and Currans Hill from Camden Council, but most of the electorate lies in Campbelltown Council, including the suburbs of Ingleburn, Minto, Raby, St Andrews, Claymore, Leumeah, Campbelltown, Glen Alpine, Rosemeadow, Bradbury and Airds. The redistribution has slashed the Liberal margin from 11.4% to an estimated 3.3% as the electorate moves further into the Campbelltown area. Macarthur was first won by Liberal MP Russell Matheson in 2010. Matheson is a former Mayor of Campbelltown and will be opposed at the 2016 election by Labor candidate and local paediatrician Dr Michael Freelander.

Reid (NSW)

LIB 3.3%: Reid runs along the southern shore of the Parramatta River from Iron Cove in the east to Duck River in the west, generally north of Frederick Street, the Hume Highway and Rookwood Cemetery. It includes all of Canada Bay Council and parts of the Burwood, Strathfield and Auburn local government areas. Suburbs include Drummoyne, Five Dock, Abbotsford, Concord, Silverwater, Strathfield, Burwood, Croydon, Homebush and parts of Lidcombe. Reid had been a very safe Labor seat for nine decades before falling to the Liberal Party’s Craig Laundy in 2013. His margin has been boosted by the redistribution, which has moved the seat east making it look more like the marginal seat of Lowe abolished at the 2010 election. Laundy’s Labor opponent will be Canada Bay Mayor Angelo Tsirekas.

Bonner (QLD)

LNP 3.7%: Bonner is in Brisbane’s inner-eastern suburbs, covering the area between Creek Road, the South East Freeway, Moreton Bay and the eastern boundary of Brisbane City Council. From north to south it includes the Port of Brisbane, Wynnum, Manly, Lota, Tingalpa, Belmont, Carindale, Mansfield, Mount Gravatt, Wishart and Rochedale. Bonner was a new seat created ahead of the 2004 election and has since been won at three of its four contests by the LNP’s Ross Vasta. His only defeat was on the election of the Rudd government, returning to recover the seat in 2010. Vasta increased his majority at the 2013 election against Labor candidate Laura Fraser Hardy, who returns to contest the seat against Vasta again in 2016.

Gilmore (NSW)

LIB 3.8%: Gilmore is a mixed electorate on the NSW south coast covering the Kiama, Shoalhaven and the northern parts of Eurobodalla local government areas. Its main population centres are Nowra-Bomaderry, Kiama, Milton-Ulladulla and the area around Batemans Bay. It was held by popular Liberal Joanna Gash from 1996 to 2013. Without her personal vote, there was a swing to Labor though Liberal Ann Sudmalis was elected MP. The Labor candidate is Fiona Phillips.

Corangamite (VIC)

LIB 3.9%: Corangamite is a southern Victorian electorate including the growing surf coast area, the southern suburbs of Geelong as well as rural areas to the west. Corangamite has a long history as a conservative seat, only being won four times by the Labor Party, and two of those victories were achieved on the election of the Rudd and Gillard governments. What was once a predominantly rural electorate has become more urban as the Surf Coast has grown and parts of suburban Geelong have been included in the electorate. Liberal MP Sarah Henderson is a former journalist and won the seat at her second attempt in 2013. Her Labor opponent is Surf Coast councillor Libby Coker.

Bass (TAS)

LIB 4.0%: The electorate of Bass covers 7,378 square kilometres in the north-east corner of Tasmania and is dominated by the city of Launceston. Over the last two decades Bass has offered little career opportunity for would-be politicians, Bass resembling a turnstile with new members elected at seven of the last eight federal elections. Current Liberal MP Andrew Nikolic gained Bass on the election of the Abbott government in 2013, and will defend it in 2016 against new Labor candidate Ross Hart.

La Trobe (VIC)

LIB 4.0%: La Trobe is an electorate that surrounds Cardinia Reservoir in the Dandenongs, east of Melbourne. It includes parts of Boronia and Ferntree Gully as well as suburbs along the rail line to Cockatoo and Gembrook in the north of the electorate. In the south the electorate takes in parts of Melbourne’s south-east growth corridor, including new housing estates around Narre Warren and Berwick. Current Liberal MP Jason Wood was first elected in 2004, survived the election of the Rudd government in 2007, but was defeated in 2010 before returning to regain the seat in 2013. His Labor opponent at the 2016 election is teacher and former local councillor Simon Curtis.

Brisbane (QLD)

LNP 4.3%: Covers the Brisbane CBD and inner city suburbs on the northern side of the Brisbane River. The electorate extends along the Brisbane River from the Gateway Bridge to Milton and north as far as Stafford Road. Existing since Federation, Brisbane has generally been a Labor seat. Current MP Teresa Gambaro was formerly MP for Petrie through the Howard years from 1996 until defeated in 2007. She returned to contest Brisbane in 2010 when she defeated long serving Labor MP Arch Bevis, a victory that took the Coalition close to winning government. Re-elected in 2013, Gambaro is retiring. Both Labor and the LNP have chosen openly gay candidates. Labor’s Pat O’Neill has spent the last seventeen years serving in the Australian Army, while the LNP candidate Trevor Evans was CEO of the National Retail Association until the election was called.

Forde (QLD)

LNP 4.4%: Forde is based in Logan City Council south of Brisbane, but also includes some northern inland parts of the Gold Coast City Council. It includes the Logan suburbs of Waterford, Eagleby, Beenleigh, Loganlea, Shailer Park, Bethania, Park Ridge and Boronia Heights, before extending south of the Albert River on the western side of the Pacific Motorway to include parts of Gold Cost City Council as far south as Upper Coomera. It was won by the LNP’s Bert Van Manen in 2010, who then repulsed a challenge from Peter Beattie in 2013. The Labor candidate in 2016 is Des Hardman.

Cowan (WA)

LIB 4.5%: Covering 180 sq.km in Perth’s mid-northern suburbs, Cowan lies generally east of Lake Joondalup and the Mitchell Freeway north of Beach Road and the Reid Highway, running east to include Whiteman Park. It includes the suburbs of Wanneroo, Warwick, Greenwood, Darch, Lansdale, Marangaroo, Girrawheen, Koondoola, Ballajura and parts of Beechboro and Lockridge. It has been held by the Liberal Party’s Luke Simpkins since 2007, but the recent redistribution has cut his margin. The Labor Party has picked a high profile candidate in terrorism expert Dr Anne Aly.

Macquarie (NSW)

LIB 4.5%: On the outer western and north-western fringe of Sydney, Macquarie covers the Blue Mountains and Hawkesbury local government areas. It includes Windsor, Richmond and surrounding market gardening districts in Hawkesbury, as well as the Blue Mountains communities from Blaxland through Springwood and Katoomba as far west as Mount Victoria. It has been held by the Liberal Party’s Louise Markus since 2010, having previously held the seat of Greenway 2004-10. As in 2013, her Labor opponent in 2016 will be Susan Templeman.

Dunkley (VIC)

LIB 5.6%: Dunkley is based on Frankston in Melbourne’s bayside south east. It includes all of Frankston and the surrounding suburbs of Langwarrin, Skye and parts of Seaford, as well as Mount Eliza and Mornington. It has been held by Liberal Bruce Billson since 1996, and the loss of his personal vote on retirement opens up prospects of Labor gaining the seat. The new Liberal candidate is Chris Crewther, his Labor opponent Peta Murphy.

Burt (WA)

LIB 6.1%: Burt is a newly created electorate covering 172 square kilometres in Perth’s growing south-east suburban corridor. Major suburbs include Armadale, Gosnells, Thornlie, Canning Vale, Huntingdale, Harrisdale, Piara Waters and Southern River. It has been formed from parts of the former seats of Canning, Hasluck and Tangney, where Labor mounted only a token campaign effort in 2013. With the electoral mood having turned in the west, a greater effort from Labor makes this seat highly winnable. Labor candidate Matt Keogh was blooded in the 2015 Canning by-election where Labor gained a 6.5% swing. His Liberal opponent will be Matt O’Sullivan.

Herbert (QLD)

LNP 6.2%: Herbert covers most of the urban area of Townsville. The City of Townsville local government area is too large to be contained in one Federal electorate, so some of the city’s outer suburbs are included in the neighbouring electorates of Dawson and Kennedy. It is a seat that tends to go with government and has been held by the LNP’s Ewen Jones since 2010. His Labor opponent, as in 2013, is Cathy O’Toole.

Boothby (SA)

LIB 7.1%: Boothby covers the southern suburbs of Adelaide, beginning on the coast between Brighton and Marino and extending inland to include southern hillside suburbs. It includes the suburbs of Sturt, Seaview Downs, Bedford Park, Torrens Park, Mitcham and the hills suburbs of Belair, Hawthorndene and Upper Sturt. It has been held by the Liberal Party continuously since 1969, and by retiring MP Andrew Southcott since 1996. The seat was highly marginal at both the 2007 and 2010 elections before receiving a boost to its Liberal margin on the defeat of the Rudd government in 2013. The new Liberal candidate is Nicolle Flint, Labor’s candidate Mark Ward. Karen Hockley is the candidate of the Nick Xenophon Team.

Mayo (SA)

LIB 12.5%: Mayo is based in the Adelaide Hills and also includes the Fleurieu Peninsula and Kangaroo Island to the south of Adelaide. The main population centres include Bridgewater, Mt Barker, Victor Harbor and Goolwa. The electorate covers 9,315 sq.km. This has been a safe Liberal seats since first contested in 1984 and was the seat of former Foreign Minister Alexander Downer from 1984 to 2009. Liberal MP Jamie Briggs faces a challenge in 2016 from the surge in support for the Nick Xenophon Team, whose candidate Rebekha Sharkie is strongly tipped to outpoll Labor and make this seat a much tighter contest.

New England (NSW)

NAT 19.5%: Covers the rich agricultural districts of the New England tablelands in northern New South Wales. From south to north, main centres include Scone, Murrurundi, Quirindi, Tamworth, Armidale, Glen Innes, Inverell and Tenterfield. While New England has always been a safe conservative seat, it was held from 2001 to 2013 by Independent Tony Windsor. While always popular in his electorate, Windsor upset many conservatives by backing Julia Gillard to form government after the inconclusive 2010 election. Windsor then chose not to contest the 2013 election when the National Party’s Barnaby Joyce was elected. Joyce is now Nationals Leader and Deputy Prime Minister, but faces the strong local challenge he missed in 2013 with Tony Windsor’s decision to return to the fray.

Murray (VIC)

LIB 20.9%: The electorate of Murray extends along the middle reaches of the Murray River. In an overwhelmingly rural electorate, the main population centres are Echuca, Cobram, Kyabram, Yarrawonga and Shepparton. It is a safe conservative seat, but has become a three-cornered contest following the decision of Liberal MP Sharman Stone to retire. She originally won the seat from the Nationals in 1996 at a three-cornered contest. In 2016 the new Liberal candidate is Duncan McGauchie, while the Nationals have nominated MLC and former AFL coach Damian Drum.


Dobell (*) (NSW)

ALP 0.2%: Dobell is a NSW Central Coast electorate north of Sydney that includes the northern suburbs of Gosford, as well as Terrigal, The Entrance, Bateau Bay, Berkeley Vale and Wyong. Dobell was held for Labor’s two terms in office by the controversial Craig Thompson. He was defeated re-contesting as an Independent in 2013, the seat being won by the Liberal Party’s Karen McNamara. The redistribution has not helped McNamara’s chances of re-election by including areas from Shortland that make the seat notionally Labor held. As in 2013 his Labor opponent will be Emma McBride.

McEwen (VIC)

ALP 0.2%: Covering 4,592 sq.km to the north and north-west of Melbourne, McEwen includes Sunbury and Gisborne along the Calder Highway, and parts of Craigieburn, Mernda and Doreen along the northern edge of Melbourne. The electorate then extends north along the Hume Highway to include Wallan, Kilmore, Broadford and Seymour, and also includes Whittlesea and St Andrews further to the east. On paper this is the closest seat that Labor is defending at the 2016 election, but rapid population growth in the south of the electorate in Melbourne’s northern suburbs may be helping the cause of Labor MP Rob Mitchell. His Liberal opponent is Chris Jermyn.

Paterson (*) (NSW)

ALP 0.3%: Based in the lower Hunter Valley , Paterson covers 1,123 square kilometres and includes Maitland, Kurri Kurri, Raymond Terrace and Nelson Bay. Radically altered by the recent redistribution, it now covers only a sixth of its former area, the new boundaries contracting Paterson into the lower Hunter Valley and turning the safe Liberal margin of 9.8% into a notional Labor margin of 0.3%. Sitting Liberal MP for most of the last two decades, Bob Baldwin, is retiring, further harming Liberal chances of victory. The new Liberal candidate is former President of the Hunter Business Chamber Karen Howard, opposed by Labor candidate and former radio announcer Meryl Swanson.

Lingiari (NT)

ALP 0.9%: Lingiari covers 99.98% of the Northern Territory and includes the whole of the Northern Territory except for the Darwin and Palmerston metropolitan areas. It also includes the Commonwealth Territories of Christmas and Cocos (Keeling) Islands. First created on the division of the Territory into two electorates in 2001, the seat’s only member to date is Warren Snowdon, who also represented the former Northern Territory seat 1987-96 and 1998-2001. As in 2013 his Country Liberal opponent is grazier and businesswoman Tina MacFarlane. The Labor Party has suffered big swings against it at the last two Federal elections and Warren Snowdon’s current margin is the smallest since he first won the seat.

Bendigo (VIC)

ALP 1.3%: In central Victoria to the north-west of Melbourne, Bendigo is based on the old gold mining city of the same name. The electorate also includes Heathcote, Harcourt, Castlemaine, Kyneton and Macedon. Bendigo was won by Labor’s Steve Gibbons in 1998 and he retained the seat until retiring in 2013. His retirement produced a well above average 8.2% swing to the Coalition, but Bendigo was retained by Labor’s new candidate Lisa Chesters. Her Liberal opponent in 2016 will be Megan Purcell.

Lilley (QLD)

ALP 1.3%: Lilley lies in the inner northern suburbs of Brisbane, with a Moreton Bay frontage extending from the Brisbane River to Sandgate and Brighton, stretching west to the boundary of Brisbane City Council. The electorate includes Kedron, Nundah, Boondall, Zillmere, Brighton, Sandgate, Chermside, Stafford Heights, McDowall and parts of Aspley and Bridgeman Downs. It has been held by Labor’s Wayne Swan since 1998, after previously holding the seat 1993-96. Swan was Treasurer for the first Rudd government and the Gillard government, also serving as Deputy Prime Minister to Gillard. As in 2013, his LNP opponent is environmental engineer David Kingston.

Parramatta (NSW)

ALP 1.3%: The electorate of Parramatta covers 57 square kilometres at the head of the Parramatta River. Crossing Sydney’s social divide, Parramatta includes the suburbs of Oatlands, Dundas, Toongabbie, Wentworthville, and parts of Granville, Blacktown, Parramatta, Dundas, North Rocks and Carlingford. It has been held since 2004 by Labor’s Julie Owens, and she will be challenged in 2016 by Liberal candidate Michael Beckwith.

Chisholm (VIC)

ALP 1.6%: Chisholm is an eastern Melbourne electorate that stretches north-south between Koonung Creek and the south-east railway and includes the suburbs of Box Hill, Mont Albert, Blackburn South, Burwood, Ashwood, Syndal, Mount Waverley, Oakleigh and Clayton. Chisholm was Liberal held from 1949 until being won by Labor’s Helen Mayer in 1983, but she was defeated by Dr Michael Wooldridge at the 1987 election. Given the difficult nature of his Health portfolio, Wooldridge moved from Chisholm to the safer seat of Casey at the 1998 election when Chisholm was first won by current Labor MP Anna Burke. The Gillard government’s third Speaker of the House, Burke has retained this marginal seat at five elections but will retire in 2016. The new Labor candidate is Stefanie Perri, opposed by the Liberal Party’s Julia Banks.

Moreton (QLD)

ALP 1.6%: Moreton runs along the south bank of the Brisbane River from Yeronga to Oxley and extends south east through southern Brisbane as far as Runcorn and Kuraby. Its lies generally to the south of the South East Motorway and also includes the suburbs of Tarragindi, Moorooka, Salisbury, Coopers Plains, Robertson, Sunnybank, Archerfield, Macgregor, Eight Mile Plains, Acacia Ridge and Sunnybank Hills. Moreton was a Liberal seat through the years of the Howard government, but won by Labor’s Graham Perrett at his second attempt in 2007. He hung on grimly to win on Green preferences in both 2010 and 2013. His LNP opponent in 2016 is Nic Monsour.

Richmond (NSW)

ALP 1.6%: Covering 2,148 square kilometres in the north-east tip of NSW, the electorate of Richmond includes Tweed Heads and Murwillumbah in the Tweed local government area, Byron Bay and the whole of Byron Shire, plus Ballina and the northern parts of Ballina Shire. It has been held by Labor’s Justine Elliot since 2004, and as in 2013 her National opponent will be Matthew Fraser. After winning the local state seat of Ballina in 2015, the Greens are mounting a challenge with candidate Dawn Walker.

Bruce (VIC)

ALP 1.8%: Bruce is a compact 73 sq.km electorate on both sides of the Mulgrave Freeway in Melbourne’s south-east suburbs. It includes the suburbs of Wheelers Hill, Mulgrave, Glen Waverley, Springvale, Noble Park North, Dandenong North and parts of Dandenong. Bruce was first contested at the 1955 election and remained a safe Liberal seat until being gained by Labor’s Alan Griffin in 1996 after major changes to electoral boundaries. Griffin has retained this at times marginal seat for two decades but will be retiring in 2016. The new Labor candidate is Julian Hill, while the Liberal Party will be represented by former Senator Helen Kroger.

Perth (WA)

ALP 2.2%: The electorate of Perth stretches along the northern shore of the Swan River from the Narrows Bridge to Bassendean. It includes the Perth CBD and adjacent suburbs to the north and north-east, including Northbridge, Mount Lawley, Mount Hawthorn, Maylands, Morley, Inglewood, Noranda, Morley, Bayswater and Bassendean. The most marginal of Labor’s seats in Western Australia, it has been made tougher for Labor by the redistribution, and the decision of popular MP Alannah MacTiernan to retire. The new Labor candidate is lawyer Tim Hammond, the Liberal candidate Jeremy Quinn.

Greenway (NSW)

ALP 3.0%: Greenway lies within Blacktown City Council in Sydney’s west, starting at the Great Western Highway between Blacktown and Pendle Hill, and running north between Old Windsor and Windsor Roads and the Richmond rail lines as far as Vineyard. South of the M7 Greenway includes the older suburbs of Girraween, Seven Hills, Lalor Park and parts of Blacktown, Toongabbie and Pendle Hill. North of the M7 it includes newer housing estates around Quakers Hill, Parklea, Stanhope Gardens, Glenwood, and Kellyville Ridge. It has been held by Labor’s Michelle Rowland since 2007, fortunate in both 2010 and 2013 to be opposed by accident prone Liberal candidate Jaymes Diaz. The Liberal candidate in 2016 is Yvonne Keane.

Melbourne Ports (VIC)

ALP 3.6%: This electorate covers the port suburbs of Melbourne south of the Yarra, as well as suburbs to the south-east beyond Punt Road. The electorate includes the suburbs of Port Melbourne, South Melbourne, Middle Park, South Yarra, St Kilda, Balaclava, Elwood and parts of Elsternwick and Caulfield. It has been held by the Labor Party’s Michael Danby since 1998. His Liberal opponent in 2016 is Owen Guest, while the Greens are also running a vigorous campaign with their candidate Steph Hodgins-May.

Barton (*) (NSW)

ALP 4.4%: Covering 40 square kilometres in Sydney’s inner-south, Barton lies along Botany Bay and the Cooks River between President Avenue and the Bankstown rail line at Marrickville, running inland to Kingsgrove Road and King Georges Road. It includes Earlwood, Arncliffe, Rockdale, Bexley, and parts of Kingsgrove, Beverly Hills, Hurstville and Marrickville. Once a key marginal seat, Barton had been held continuously by Labor from 1983 until 2013 when it was won by the Liberal Party on the retirement of former Attorney General Robert McClelland. New Liberal MP Nick Varvaris received a bad deal from the redistribution, his 0.3% winning margin in 2013 replaced by a notional Labor margin of 4.4%. His Labor opponent in 2016 will be Linda Burney, who has been member for the state seat of Canterbury since 2003 and was Labor Deputy Leader. Burney hopes to become the first female indigenous member of the House of Representatives.

Batman (VIC)

ALP 10.6% v GRN: Batman is a solid working class electorate in Melbourne’s north, covering 66 square kilometres and running from the Yarra in the south to the Metropolitan Ring Road in the north, lying generally between Merri and Darebin Creeks. It includes the suburbs of Fairfield, Northcote, Preston and Reservoir, as well as the campus of La Trobe University. Existing since 1906, Batman has been held by Labor for all but two terms since 1910, and was held from 1996 to 2013 by Martin Ferguson, former President of the ACTU who served as a senior Minister in the Rudd and Gillard governments, before resigning from the ministry in March 2013 for not supporting Julia Gillard’s leadership. He was succeeded in 1993 by Labor’s David Feeney, transferring from the Senate. Feeney’s victory in 2013 was dependent on the Liberal decision to recommend preferences for Labor ahead of the Greens. His Green opponent in 2016 is Alex Bhathal, who has contested this seat at four of the last five elections. This seat could be won by the Greens if the Liberal Party revert to recommending preferences to the Greens ahead of Labor.

Wills (VIC)

ALP 15.2% v GRN: Wills is in Melbourne’s inner north-west suburbs and includes the suburbs of Brunswick, Coburg, Strathmore, Pascoe Vale, Hadfield, Glenroy and Fawkner. It has traditionally been a safe Labor seat, but Labor has increasingly come under challenge from the Greens in recent years. The Greens finished second after preferences in 2013, and Labor will be disadvantaged in 2016 by the retirement of two-decade veteran MP Kelvin Thomson. The new Labor candidate is Peter Khalil, his Green opponent Samantha Ratnam.

Grayndler (NSW)

ALP 18.8%: One of Australia’s smallest electorate at just 32 sq.km, Grayndler covers the inner-western suburbs of Sydney including the Leichhardt and most of Ashfield and Marrickville local government areas. Once the home of Sydney’s working class, this electorate’s demography has been radically changed in recent years by first migration and more recently gentrification. It has been held by senior Labor figure Anthony Albanese since 1996, and his main opposition in 2016 will come from Green’s candidate Jim Casey. The Greens slipped to third place in 2013 but did finish second in 2010, which could make Liberal preferences important if the Liberal Party chose to put the Greens ahead of Labor.



Indi (VIC)

IND 0.3% v LIB: An electorate in north-east Victoria, dominated by the City of Wodonga, but extending down the Hume Highway to include Wangaratta, Glenrowan and Benalla. The electorate also includes Mansfield, Bright, Myrtleford and the Victorian snowfields, and extends as close to Melbourne as Kinglake. A traditional conservative seat, Indi saw one of the major upsets of the 2013 election when Liberal frontbencher Sophie Mirabella was defeated by local independent Cathy McGowan. Despite poling 44.7% of the first preference vote, Mirabella was run down by Independent Cathy McGowan, who trailed on first preferences with 31.2%, but attracted more than three quarters of preferences from the other nine candidates. Mirabella will again be the Liberal candidate in 2016, the Nationals also nominating a candidate in Marty Corboy.

Melbourne (VIC)

GRN 5.3% v ALP: A compact inner city electorate of 46 sq.km covering the area south of Maribyrnong Road and Park Street, and between the Yarra River, Maribyrnong River and Merri Creek. The electorate includes the Melbourne CBD, Docklands, Richmond, Collingwood, Carlton, Fitzroy, North Melbourne and Flemington. The seat has been held since 2010 by the Green’s Adam Bandt, and he had no difficulty holding the seat in 2013 despite the Liberal Party recommending preferences for Labor. The Labor candidate in 2016 is Sophie Ismail.

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