Saturday, July 13, 2024
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Historic win – the Greens take Newtown

Independent Alex Greenwich has won Sydney for a second time, increasing his margin from well under 1 per cent to nearly 10 per cent.

The Greens have held Balmain and they have also taken the new seat of Newtown.

Labor’s Penny Sharpe, contesting Newtown, might have been given hope by a Fairfax poll showing that Newtown’s voters preferred her over the Greens’ Jenny Leong by 53 to 46 per cent. It was not to be. Leong won almost 47 per cent of the primary vote, finishing strongly with a two-party preferred vote of 60 per cent.

WestCONnex Action Group spokesperson Janet Dendy-Ward attributed the result to local anger over WestConnex: “Seventeen community groups representing 185,000 voters had united on WestCONnex, and to have Labor fundamentally ignore that simply pushed votes to the Greens.” Dendy-Ward went on to say: “We have met with Anthony Albanese and told him that his seat would go next if he didn’t wake up and start representing locals on key issues.”

Certainly, the Greens result was up: up by 2.2 per cent in Heffron, and by up 7.6 per cent in Balmain, handing the Greens’ Jamie Parker a comfortable win. But outside Newtown, the Labor result was also up: by 4 per cent in Sydney, by 2 per cent in Balmain and by almost 9 per cent in Heffron.

It was the Liberal Party who saw their vote collapse, dropping from 32 to to 24 per cent in Balmain, from 33 to 29 per cent in Heffron and falling from 35 to 32 per cent in Sydney. In the newly formed seat of Newtown the Liberal primary vote was a paltry 17 per cent, well down on their previous results in the area.

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