The regional Victorian seat of Nicholls isn’t a typical election battleground, but the retirement of popular sitting Nationals MP Damian Drum has sparked a tight contest that’s likely to result in an independent win. That’s despite a 20 per cent margin held by the Nationals.
“I do think it’s one of the most likely to be won by an independent, it’s a stronger chance than some of the urban seats,” says the ABC’s election analyst Antony Green.
Independent Rob Priestly has gathered steam in a campaign dominated locally by water policy, write Tom Cowie and Benjamin Preiss.
In the seats of Kooyong, Goldstein and Higgins, shifting demographics increasingly favour Labor, data analysis shows.
“Older, conservative voters in these seats are being replaced by tertiary-educated younger voters, particularly in Higgins and Goldstein,” writes Paul Sakkal. “Additionally, high-income voters are voting Labor more commonly than in previous decades – a trend experienced by centre-left parties around the western world.”
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and Liberal MP Tim Wilson are relying on personal popularity to keep their seats despite the demographic shift.
In Tasmania, an increase in homelessness and disillusionment with the major parties is affecting the fight for two must-win seats, Bass and Braddon, writes Tony Wright.