This is an historical day.
6.30pm: I smell a landslide to Labor. Early counts put several marginals at swings of over 5%, but it’s still early days.
6.33pm: notional seats won: ALP/Coalition/In doubt: 12/13/125 (target: 75).
6.40pm: Notional count: 21/20, no swing reported in Bennelong.
6.43pm: Eastern states show 3.5% swing to ALP but 6% in safe seats. Nick Minchin is getting cocky (on ABC).
6.45pm: Bennelong: 0.2% count, 56.2 to 43.8 ALP. Crowd on ABC going crazy, but people, there’s only been 200 votes counted!! Preferences are significant for McKew.
6.46pm: Notional count: 29/24.
6.51pm: Notional count: 32/28.
7.00pm: Boo, ABC having technical problems – no graphs.
7.05pm: Notional count: 41/31.
7.06pm: Macarthur showing swing to ALP in the order of magnitude of 10%!
7.09pm: Bennelong – 3 booths, 4.9% swing. They won’t call this for ages…
7.16pm: Wentworth, 0.5% swing to Turmbull.
7.27pm: Green says PM still on track to lose seat. Eden-Monaro borderline but towards ALP.
7.33pm: Deakin and Corangamite looks towards ALP winning. Computer is calling 4 seats going over to Labor in NSW. Bennelong is one of them. Notional: 58/37 – 4.8% swing 16.3% counted, Queensland still to report. More cheers in background, Green: “not sure why they’re getting excited about that”.
7.36pm: BENNELONG: 6.6% swing AGAINST PM with 6% counted. Phenomenal. Minchin is no longer cocky.
7.40pm: Notional: 61/41. At what point does a landslide become an avalanche?
7.42pm: Green has all but called it for Labor.
7.43pm: Macarthur called for Coalition by computer.
7.50pm: Bennelong swing is increasing…
This will be an exciting day. Just got back from donning one of the purple Maxine McKew t-shirts and handing out how-to-vote cards at one of the polling booths in Bennelong. With 13 candidates, there are all sorts of people out and about thrusting paper at voters. There are pretty much three types of people: the jaded ones who refuse to take any paper, the party loyal who brandish one piece of paper and tell off anyone who tries to give then another, and the undecided/bewildered ones who take anything you give them. It’s also pretty fascinating trying to spot what party a person would vote based on appearances.
Rumour has it that the Libs had hired out people at $80/hour to hand out how-to-vote cards, and I suspect there is some truth to that given the disproportionately high number of people from mainland China doing that.
Update (25/11): Our booth recorded a 8.75% swing.
My guesstimate for this Saturday night is that the ALP will take out 83 seats… at least. And Bennelong will be too close to call on the night. The Greens will hold the balance of power in the Senate.