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There's an interesting question arising out of the 2010 Victorian State Election: Has it now been shown that The Greens will be forever blocked from lower house representation, or is this just a hiccough along the way?

The Australian Democrats once decided that their path to permanence involved winning House of Representative seats. Their biggest effort to do this was to run high profile Janine Haines for the seat of Kingston in 1990. The two major parties (ALP and Liberal) preferenced against her, and she lost.

In 2010, Adam Bandt won the federal seat of Melbourne because the Liberals gave preferences to The Greens ahead of the ALP.

In the 2010 State Election, the Liberals directed their preferences to the ALP. You can see the big difference that this made in the charts below. Even though The Greens candidate for the State election, Brian Walters won a greater percentage of the votes than Adam Bandt there was still no doubt that the ALP would win with the Liberals preferences.

(Note: the State figures used below are still incomplete because counting continues.)

The only way for The Greens to win a seat like Melbourne is to raise their Primary vote well above their current 36-8%, to somewhere close to 50%. Or, they've got to pick up Liberal preferences. About one third of Liberal Voters in the State election preferenced The Greens despite the Liberal How to Vote cards. Even that much "initiative" (rebellion) by Liberal Voters wasn't enough to elect The Greens. With preferences splitting at that ratio, they need to raise their Primary vote to about 43%.

That will be hard.

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Comments (2)
Anthony Holmes November 28th, 2010 01:01:36 PM