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Docklands voters turn Green

02 Jul 2019

By David Schout

Figures from the recent federal election show that for the first time ever, The Greens received the highest number of votes in Docklands.

As MP Adam Bandt held onto the seat of Melbourne for a fourth term, final numbers confirmed that 38 per cent of Docklands voters gave The Greens their first preference vote.

This was higher than both the Liberal Party (34.6 per cent) and Labor Party (18.5 per cent).

Perhaps most significantly, however, the numbers indicated a shift away from conservative votes in the area.

In previous elections, Docklands has voted strongly in favour of the Liberal Party, belying the wider Green swing throughout Melbourne since 2010.

Bandt won the seat nine years ago, putting an end to 106 years as a Labor stronghold, but up until now Docklands votes have remained predominantly blue.

As recently as the last federal election in 2016, 39.8 per cent of Docklands voters opted for the Liberals over the Greens (31.9 per cent).

In 2013, the Liberals received a staggering 41 per cent of the votes in Docklands despite just 22.8 per cent of the vote throughout the seat of Melbourne.

While there were likely several explanations for Docklands’ shift to Green on May 18’s federal election, a key reason was likely the fact both major parties fielded relatively weak candidates.

Labor candidate Luke Creasey was forced to resign before the election due to social media indiscretions (his name, however, remained on the ballot paper) while the Liberals fielded unknown candidate Lauren Sherson.

Combined, they received just over 40 per cent of primary votes.

For the first time, in-person federal election voting in Docklands was moved to Library at the Dock, away from the The Hub on Harbour Esplanade where it had been for the 2010, 2013 and 2016 elections.

The number of votes cast in Docklands also rose from the last election, from 1428 to 1667.

These numbers don’t include postal or pre-poll votes, which the Australian Electoral Commission confirmed were higher this election.

In total, the 1667 votes lodged in Docklands read:

The Greens (Adam Bandt): 38.02 per cent

Liberal (Lauren Sherson): 34.57 per cent

Australian Labor Party (Luke Creasey): 18.48 per cent

Reason Australia (Judy Ryan): 4.62 per cent

Animal Justice Party (Lawrence Pope): 2.09 per cent

Independent (Dave Blake): 1.23 per cent

All other candidates recorded less than 1 per cent of first-preference votes.

 

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