With former ‘safe’ seats being challenged, new electorates and the rising influence of independents, we share some of the key seats to watch in the NSW State Election.
The NSW State Election is fast approaching and the final days look like a tight sprint to the polls – with several seats set to be a photo finish. Adding pressure (and excitement) to this election is the razor-thin majority currently held by the Coalition – with the loss of even a single seat being enough to tip the scales.
With former ‘safe’ seats being challenged, the rising influence of independents and new electorates voting for the first time, we share some of the key electorates to watch in the lead up to March 25.
With no precedent or sitting MP, this newly established electorate will be one of the most interesting seats to watch as a cross-section of NSW voters. Formed from a collection of fringe Sydney suburbs, it encompasses a broad range of demographics and areas including parts of Liverpool Council, Campbelltown and semi-rural areas. Notionally Labor, based on past voting patterns, it is far from a ‘sure thing’ for Labor candidate Nathan Hagarty. A Liverpool City Councillor since 2016, Hagarty currently leads with a slight margin of 1.5% against Liberal Candidate and Mayor of Camden, Therese Fedeli.
Other electorates with changed boundaries to watch – Parramatta, Winston Hills and Londonderry.
During her two decades as MP, Former NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian established Willoughby as a guaranteed safe seat for the Liberal Party. Since stepping down as Premier however, this lower North Shore area is open to new options – and change could be on the horizon. Liberal candidate Tim James was only narrowly elected in the February 2022 by-election, with the Liberal margin dropping from 21.0% to 3.3%. James is once again facing strong competition from Independent Larissa Penn, who gained momentum in 2022 campaigning against proposed northern beaches toll tunnels. Could Willoughby follow the trend of rising independent support, which has been seen in the other federal and state elections over the past 12 months?
Other electorates with an independent influence to watch – Upper Hunter, North Shore, Wakehurst and Pittwater.
Only narrowly holding onto Kogarah following its loss of office in 2011, Labor is now at risk of losing its 0.01% margin altogether. Particularly problematic as the sitting member is Labor Leader Chris Minns, who was elected in 2015. The tide has been turning against Minns in this area since the 2019 election, in which his margin was reduced by 5% and new electoral boundaries have further escalated the downward trajectory. Although Minns’ role as party leader gives him a higher profile coming into this election, his state-wide campaign obligations mean he hasn’t had the same time to dedicate to the local area – unlike his competition which includes former Sydney City Councillor Craig Chung, who is running for the Liberals.
Other electorates with >1% margins to watch – East Hills and Penrith.
Is your government-facing team ready for the election (no matter what the results are)? If not, see our quick tips to prepare here.
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