Last night, Federal Labor has upended the electoral standard that governments do not win by-elections from the opposition. Of course, there has been state by-elections in that time that have gone against that, such as Burwood, the seat of former Victorian Liberal Premier, Jeff Kennett, and Benalla, the seat of former Victorian National Deputy Premier, Pat McNamara, but these are exceptions to the norm.
The key result is that Victorian voters in the seat of Aston are liking what they see in the Albanese government enough for them to vote for a candidate from the Government party over the candidate from the Opposition party, in which they had previously voted for in the Federal election only 10 months ago.
The ramifications of this is that the Coalition is in shambles. The swing against the Liberals in this by-election is currently around 6%, leaving the result for Aston at about 53-47 to Labor. Not bad for a seat not won by them since 1987.
So then, who is responsible for that? The hard right factions would pin it on the moderate liberals. The moderate liberal factions would pin it on the hard right. The chances of these factions coming to a mutual agreement on this, I think, is zero.
This by-election has simply broadened the gap between the hard right and moderate right of the Liberal parties of Australia. And the next few years will be very “interesting” indeed for them.
Let’s take a look at the electoral history chart for Aston and see just how reliable it was for the Liberals until yesterday.
A hearty congratulations for Mary Doyle, the new Labor MP for Aston, and of course the vast team that supported her. A victory for a great suburban Melbourne mum who put her hand up to bring betterment to her constituents. The Light on the Hill shines brightly over Australia.