NSW Election Result
30 March 2015
The Mike Baird-led Liberal-National Coalition was returned to Government at Saturday’s NSW State Election. With counting ongoing, the Coalition looks set to win at least 52 seats in the 93 seat lower house, and has secured a workable majority in the upper house. Labor secured 14 seats in the lower house, growing its presence to 32. The Greens have won two seats and possibly two more (Ballina and Lismore) depending on the final count. Independents have retained the seats of Port Macquarie and Sydney.
Despite the state-wide general swing of 9% away from the Coalition, as is normally the case, the swing was not uniform producing some interesting results across the state. Nationals MP John Barilaro looks to have held on in the seat of Monaro (on a margin of 2%) against Labor’s Steve Whan, once again ensuring the electorate’s mantle as a bellwether seat. The Liberals’ Mark Coure also managed to increase his small margin of 3.8% in Oatley, and newcomer Mark Taylor received a swing to the Liberals in the new seat of Seven Hills.
Meanwhile, Labor polled strongly in the Central Coast and Hunter to win Maitland, Port Stephens and Wyong. In inner Sydney, Labor and The Greens battled it out, with The Greens’ Jamie Parker returned in Balmain, and Jenny Leong beating high-profile Labor Transport spokeswoman Penny Sharpe to win the newly created seat of Newtown. The Greens also look to have won Ballina on the state’s north coast against the incumbent Nationals, and counting is neck-and-neck in the neighbouring seat of Lismore. Meanwhile the contests between the Liberals and Labor in Gosford and East Hills remain too close to call.
The result in the Legislative Council (upper house) means that the Government will command at least 20 out of 42 votes, and will only need to secure the support of either the Christian Democratic Party (CDP) or the Shooters and Fishers to pass legislation. Importantly for Mike Baird this enables the Coalition to progress the plan to lease the state’s electricity assets owing to the CDP’s support of the policy. On current projections, the Coalition will hold 20 seats for the next Parliament, Labor 12, The Greens 5, the CDP and Shooters and Fishers 2 each, with 1 still undecided – closely contested by the Coalition, the No Land Tax Party and the Animal Justice Party.
Premier Mike Baird will now move to unveil his new frontbench in coming days. A number of changes are expected and there is ongoing speculation surrounding key portfolios such as Treasury, Transport, Health, Planning and Attorney General. For his part, Opposition Leader Luke Foley was elected to the lower house seat of Auburn and made it clear that he wants to continue as Leader of the Labor Party.