As expected, Labor has been returned with a slightly reduced majority, losing one seat (Lake Macquarie) to an Independent and one seat to the Nationals (Tweed). And John HoWARd’s really really really close friend Pru Goward has won the seat of Goulburn.
- NSW State Election 2007 Guide according to everyone’s favourite psephologist Antony Green.
In the (safe Tory) seat of Cronulla, Australia First came Last, John Moffat receiving 1,193 votes (3%) of 43,950; only narrowly defeating Ian Formal on 1,013. Warren Feinbier of Australians Against Further Immigration, meanwhile, received a few dozen more votes with 1,299 (3%).
In The Gold Coast Bulletin (‘Australia First cadidate [sic] rates his chance of election low’, March 1, 2007), it was reported that Little Mister Moffat ‘expects to attract at least 10 per cent of the primary vote in a consciousness raising exercise, waking people up to what he terms as the coming catastrophe of becoming “Asianised”.’ If AFP’s vote is added to that of AAFI, and if these votes can be read as expressing a shared fear of Asians, 6% of voters in a safe Tory seat voted in support of racist candidates. Beth Smith, the religious right candidate (Fred Nile‘s Christian Democratic Party, CDP) received 1,963 votes (Hallelujah!), or 5% of the total, while Greens candidate Naomi Waizer received 7% (2,948 votes).
On the other side of the political spectrum, the results for the Socialist Alliance and the Socialist Equality Party have been even worse: Pip Hinman (SA) in Marrickville received 666 votes (2%) and Patrick O’Connor (SEP) just 216 votes (1%) of a total of 45,540. (Ian Formal received 1,340 votes.) In Wollongong, SA candidate Jess Moore received 591 votes (1%) of 45,217, and in Heffron, James Cogan (SEP) received a similarly small number, just 875 votes (2%). However, the worst result for the socialist candidates appears to have been achieved in Newcastle, where Noel Holt (SEP) did really really really badly, acquiring just 110 votes (0%).
In the Upper House (Legislative Council), SA received 12,525 (0.38%) of a total of 3,280,997 votes (electors enrolled on March 5, 2007: 4,374,029), thus soundly defeating not only Dawn Fraser (2,469 votes) but the Human Rights Party (11,883 votes) and Save Our Suburbs (9,111 votes). Their next task will be to leap ahead of the Horse Riders Party / Outdoor Recreation Party which, with just 19,416 votes (0.59%), is surely do-able come the next state election in 2011.
- In a shocking development, SA has declared the results to be yet another victory in a long string of triumphs: ‘Socialist Alliance more than doubles vote in NSW’, SA Press Release.
On the other hand, Terry Cook and Nick Beams — “a leading figure in the Australian and international socialist movement for more than three decades” — appear to have failed to obtain any result at all, ‘cos Beams and Cook (and Divjak and Jobson and Symonds and Head and Zabala and Hopperdietzel and Robinson and Hood and Klindo and Plater and Lohr and Christian and Redzovic) got stuck in Group D on the ticket. Well, sorta:
Another anti-democratic electoral mechanism has prevented the SEP’s Legislative Council slate from appearing “above the line” on the ballot paper. To choose candidates in the upper house, voters can either select their preferred party or group above the line, by simply marking “1” in the relevant square, or they can mark a minimum of 15 boxes for individual candidates listed on the lower half of the ballot paper. Most people choose to vote above the line as it provides the least complicated means of selecting one’s preferred party.
The SEP, however, has been forced to list its candidates below the line because NSW electoral laws require those above the line to allocate a preference for another party or group. The official pretext is that for a vote to be valid in the upper house, a minimum of 15 candidates must be selected. Since the minimum number in a Group is 15, if one or more candidate dies before election day, a group may end up with fewer than the minimum number of candidates. This argument is entirely spurious, because there are 65 members in the upper house, and the 15-candidate requirement is completely arbitrary…