Status quo returns to SA politics post-election

Status quo returns to SA politics post-election


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VOTES CAST: Member for Grey Rowan Ramsey voting at Peterborough.

VOTES CAST: Member for Grey Rowan Ramsey voting at Peterborough.

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THE weekend's election could be seen as both the "return to the status quo" and the "collapse of Centre Alliance", despite one CA candidate returning to Canberra

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THE weekend's election could be seen as both the "return to the status quo" and the "collapse of Centre Alliance", despite one CA candidate returning to Canberra, according to Flinders University adjunct professor of politics Haydon Manning.

Liberal incumbents Rowan Ramsey, in the seat of Grey, and Tony Pasin, in Barker, were both returned with substantial swings towards them - based on first preferences from the returned polls of about 8 per cent and 12.5pc respectively.

Dr Manning said much of this came at the expense of Centre Alliance candidates.

"It really is the end of the post-Xenophon era," he said.

In Grey, Andrea Broadfoot from Centre Alliance experienced a 21pc negative swing to finish with a preliminary 5.5pc of counted votes.

The Australian Labor Party candidate, Karin Bolton, finished with 23.5pc of counted votes; The Greens got 4.pc, United Australia Party 3.5pc, Animal Justice Party 2.5pc, independent Richard Carmody with 1.7pc and Pauline Hanson's One Nation candidate David Stone received 8.6pc of counted votes.

Barker CA candidate Kelly Gladigau experienced a 25.7pc swing against her to finish with a preliminary count of just under 3pc.

In Barker, Labor's Mat O'Brien experienced a 5pc positive swing to a preliminary 21.3pc of votes, while The Greens got 6.5pc, UAP 5.5pc, while AJP and the National Party finished on about 2.5pc.

However there was one Centre Alliance candidate who retained her seat.

Mayo MP Rebekha Sharkie won an election against Liberal candidate Georgina Downer for the second time in less than 12 months, with a 2.4pc positive swing on a two-candidate preferred basis.

While Ms Downer gained 37.5pc of first preference votes, to Ms Sharkie's 35pc, Ms Sharkie retains the seat.

Labor received a preliminary 13.5pc, The Greens 9pc, UAP 3pc and AJP 1.8pc.

Dr Manning said in many ways Ms Sharkie presented as an independent, rather than a CA party member and was safely settled into the seat.

"In some ways her worst nightmare would have been to be part of a Shorten-Labor government that travelled badly," he said.

"This is the best of all worlds and if she keeps doing what she's doing, she will be hard for the Liberals to beat."

Dr Manning said the absence of Mr Xenophon's impact was evident in the swing back towards the major parties.

In 2013, Liberals and Labors combined scored 80.6pc of all votes in SA. This dropped to 66.9pc in 2016.

Dr Manning said votes for the two parties had returned to about 75pc, at this stage in counting.

In the Senate, early predictions show Liberals likely to gain three of the six available seats, Labor two and The Greens one.

Dr Manning said CA, from three senate seats at the 2016 election, was left with just 2.6pc of the votes above the line, leaving just the two sitting senators.

"This is really the return to the status quo, as we used to see an Australian Democrat or Greens gain one seat, then Liberal and Labor used to see who could get three and who would get two," he said.

Dr Manning said the next step would be to see how SA would be represented in a newly-formed cabinet, particularly with the resignation of Sturt MP Christopher Pyne.

"Watch and see what might happen there, although he is likely to promote Qld MPs," he said.

In the previous parliament, Mr Ramsey was announced as the government's whip.

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