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Federal election: Vote count continues as Labor seeks one more seat to form majority government

Watch ABC News Channel's comprehensive coverage of the 2022 Federal Election.

Two tight electorates are heading towards counting three-candidate-preferred votes as Labor seeks one more electorate to win majority government.

Look back on Saturday's updates as they happened in our blog.

Key events

Live updates

By Jessica Riga

We're going to wrap up our live coverage here

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You can continue to stay up to date with all the election results here on our Australia Votes page.

See you next time!

By Jessica Riga

How Clive Palmer's next meeting with his financial adviser might go | 7.30

Clive Palmer's United Australia Party has failed to secure a seat in the House of Representatives, despite spending almost $100 million on its campaign.

7.30 satirist Mark Humphries and his co-writer Evan Williams figured that Palmer's financial adviser might have a few thoughts.

By Jessica Riga

Analysis: The election 'backlash' that shouldn't surprise anyone in Canberra

Election 2022 has been described as Independents Day. But it was also the triumph of the home-town candidate who could demonstrate a genuine connection to community and all of their concerns, writes Virginia Trioli.

This all started under John Howard, you know. I'd never before seen a prime minister campaign so willingly on issues that were traditionally those of state or even local political contests: and now campaign promises for local roads, parks and halls have become an expected part of any federal contest. The local expectation is embedded in federal thinking — so the local backlash really shouldn't surprise.

By Jessica Riga

The Brief | Albanese and Labor seize power as voters ditch Morrison’s Coalition

After six long weeks of campaigning, the voters delivered their verdict, turfing Scott Morrison and his nine-year-old government from power.

Labor won the election but even before it was clear whether the party had secured a majority, Anthony Albanese seized control, and immediately set about bringing change to Australia.

The vanquished Coalition was left reeling by the scale of their defeat and wondering where it all went wrong as a teal wave wiped out Liberal heartland seats.

By Jessica Riga

Let's take a look at Macnamara, a key seat for Labor

We're a week on from last Saturday's federal election and there are still four seats in doubt. 

It's looking likely the Liberal Party will pick up Deakin in Victoria and Gilmore in New South Wales, and we discussed earlier how the Greens are likely to win in Brisbane

Labor needs 76 seats to win majority and the ability to govern in their own right. Right now they're hovering just out of reach with 75 seats, making the outcome of Macnamara in Victoria particularly interesting. 

Currently, it's looking likely Labor will win the seat, but it's a close race

Scrutineer figures based on an AEC preference throw for the five lowest polling candidates produce preference flows of 18% to Labor, 34% to the Greens and 48% to Liberal. Applying those puts the final three candidates within a thousand votes of each other.

  • If the Green or Liberal candidates are third, Labor wins.

  • If the Labor candidates is third, the Greens win.

For this reason Macnamara is being left in doubt. The AEC has now published a partial three-candidate preferred count but it is difficult to compare with first preference votes.

Around 2,000 Absent votes have been counted but are yet to be published in the AEC data files.

As for when we'll have a final result... that is yet to be known!

You can explore our results page here.

By Jessica Riga

Does the AEC continue to count votes over the weekend?

Does vote counting continue over the weekend?

-Janet

Good afternoon, Janet — it sure does!

On Friday, the Australian Electoral Commission said "from today and over the weekend, declaration votes (including telephone votes) will begin to be counted.

"These votes have been arriving in their home divisions since Thursday, and have been verified against the electoral roll."

By Jessica Riga

'There one minute, gone the next': Banned industry's dire warning to Labor on China

Australia has never before relied so much on China for its trading wealth. However, as the devastated rock lobster industry can attest, the Asian giant can lose its appetite overnight.

The ferociousness of China's trade war against Australia — which has affected commodities including coal, beef, wine, barley, timber and cotton — has gradually faded from the public's consciousness. 

And after federal Labor's ascension to government, hopes are growing for a reset of the relationship.

However, experts caution the bitter experience of the country's lobster fishermen should serve as a warning to all other industries still reliant on exports to the Middle Kingdom.

By Jessica Riga

First Nations woman from far north Queensland helps left-wing party to its best results in the election

Her 81st birthday is rapidly approaching, but Kuku Yalanji woman Pat O'Shane says her campaign for the next federal election has already begun.

Ms O'Shane, standing for the small left-wing party Socialist Alliance, has so far attracted more first preference votes in her seat than the big-spending United Australia Party.

Despite running in Leichhardt — a regional Queensland electorate the Coalition retained — she even topped the primaries in one booth.

"It wasn't a losing battle, I have to say," Ms O'Shane said.

The primary vote of just over 4 per cent she is on track for might appear modest, but it was Socialist Alliance's best-ever result in a seat outside Victoria and its best anywhere at this year's election.

By Jessica Riga

Key Event

Election of diverse parliamentarians prompts calls for increased representation in cabinet

The election of new, diverse parliamentarians has prompted calls for government to increase cultural representation in cabinet. 

Labor's election victory saw a record number of Asian, Indian and Indigenous Australians voted into parliament

University of Sydney Culture Strategy director Tim Soutphommasane says the next challenge for major parties is to ensure, cultural diversity is represented on the front bench. 

"Across Australian society our diversity is not yet remotely reflected when it comes to leadership positions, but what we’re seeing here is a challenge to that and we’re seeing the first signs of a significant shift in our political and public culture," he says. 

"The next step for multicultural Australia is going to be whether we see more diversity represented not just on the floor in greater number but in the ministerial positions that we see in government."

By Jessica Riga

Former Liberal staffer considers independent run after pre-selection rejection

The South Australian Liberal Party has rejected a pre-selection bid from a former staffer who has openly criticised the party's treatment of women.

Chelsey Potter has spoken publicly about being allegedly sexually assaulted by another Liberal Party staffer when they were both working in Canberra in 2015.

Since then, she has been openly critical of the party's response to her assault, and wider issues affecting women in politics.

She said she decided to run for the pre-selection for the Bragg by-election when it appeared no other women were nominating following Vickie Chapman's decision to resign.

"I think it's a very crucial time for the Liberal Party," Ms Potter said.

"We've seen a massive electoral fall out over the last two back-to-back state and federal elections.

"The electorate is sending us a clear message and I wanted to be part of that rebuilding process."

Ms Potter was told her application was unsuccessful this morning, following a meeting of the party's state executive last night.

She said it was because she was not a party member for the required three months before nominating.

"Often times, and I've sat on the state executive before, special dispensation is given to candidates who don't have that three-month membership period under their belts," she said. 

"I find it interesting that wasn't the case for me."

By Jessica Riga

The Nadesalingams are preparing to return to Biloela, but their immigration battle is far from over

The Tamil asylum seeker family removed from Biloela in 2018 are set to return to the central Queensland town within weeks, allowing their five-year-old daughter to celebrate her first birthday outside of detention. 

Nades, Priya and their daughters, Kopika and Tharincaa, are expected to arrive back in their adopted home town by early June, according to supporters who have campaigned for their return for more than four years.

Friend and advocate, Angela Fredericks, said the Nadesalingam family, also known as the Murugappans, have already begun packing but certain legalities needed to be finalised before they could leave Perth, where they've been living in community detention since June 2021.

"They now have permission that they can actually pack their bags and they can book those flights and be on their way," Ms Fredericks said.

The family were removed from Biloela by Australian Border Force (ABF) officers in March 2018 and have been held in detention – including on Christmas Island – for the four years since.

"This is the first time in four years that Priya and Nades get to decide their travel arrangements… the first time they get to choose when they get to move," Ms Fredericks said.

Ms Fredericks said the flexibility allowed the "girls to say goodbye to their school friends" in Perth and for Priya and Nades to finish their jobs.

"We'll have them home in Biloela before her [Tharincaa's] fifth birthday, which is in mid-June and we can't wait to celebrate that birthday with her – her first birthday not in detention," she said.

By Jessica Riga

Macron agrees to 'rebuild' France-Australia ties during phone call with Albanese

French President Emmanuel Macron says he is willing to work with new Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to "rebuild" the France-Australia relationship.

The two leaders spoke on the telephone on Thursday night in the wake of Mr Albanese's election victory last Saturday.

Mr Macron's office said the pair agreed to "rebuild a relationship … [of] trust" after ties were ruptured over a scrapped $90 billion submarine deal.

A statement said they would "rebuild a bilateral relationship founded on trust and respect", noting the breakdown in confidence under the Morrison government which halted an agreement to buy French submarines.

Mr Macron's office said the two sides would work together on pressing global issues, including climate change and strategic challenges in the Indo-Pacific region.

"A road map will be prepared to structure this new bilateral agenda … to reinforce our resilience and contribute to peace and regional security," the statement said.

Mr Albanese took to Twitter to describe the conversation as "warm and constructive".

Ties between Paris and Canberra plummeted after Mr Morrison tore up a submarine deal with France's Naval Group last year.

He opted for US or British nuclear-powered alternatives as part of a landmark security agreement — the trilateral AUKUS alliance — with Washington and London.

The switch caused fury in Paris, with Mr Macron accusing Mr Morrison of lying about the future of the contract worth $90 billion.

By Jessica Riga

Fiji PM says he had a 'wonderful meeting' with Penny Wong

The Prime Minister of Fiji, Frank Bainimarama, tweeted "Fiji is not anyone's backyard — we are part of a Pacific family. And our greatest concern isn't geopolitics — it's climate change.

"In that spirit, I had a wonderful meeting with Foreign Minister Penny Wong to strengthen our Vuvale Partnership with Australia."

By Jessica Riga

Key Event

Dutton says Morrison did 'nothing wrong' in publicising boat turnback

Liberal MP Peter Dutton has backed the actions of Scott Morrison to request Border Force publicise the interception of a Sri Lankan refugee boat on election day. 

The ABC has confirmed Border Force released a statement with details of the interception after a direct request from the then Prime Minister's office

The release was quickly followed by texts from the Liberal party to voters in marginal seats, urging them to back the Coalition at the polls to keep borders secure. 

The government has referred the matter to the head of the Home Affairs department for investigation. 

Mr Dutton says Mr Morrison did nothing wrong.

"I think wait for the investigation instead of the allegations being pushed by Labor," he said.

"We'll understand the facts and they can present that but there's no evidence that I can see of Scott Morrison doing anything wrong."

By Jessica Riga

What is the future of the Nationals? 

ICYMI, the Nationals will meet in Canberra on Monday where leadership positions will be spilt, as they are after every election.

While Victorian Nationals MP Darren Chester announced on Friday he will challenge Barnaby Joyce for the party's leadership, he conceded he was unlikely to be successful, but said it was "time for a change" inside the party after last weekend's federal election result.

So what will the future of the Nationals look like?

Professor Mark Kenny from the Australian National University spoke to News Breakfast earlier this morning and thinks the Nationals are "likely to stick with the status quo."

"That seems to be Darren Chester's view. He's obviously a moderate within the Nationals and has a more socially progressive position than a good many Nationals. He would like to see the Nationals take on that more modern moderate persona.

"There would be some people who agree with him, but he seems to acknowledge that he's running here to make that point and Barnaby Joyce seems to have a commanding position.

"That said, there's long been a view that David Littleproud, the deputy at the moment, would be a better choice. That he represent a better long-term future for the Nationals. I've spent some time with David Littleproud and he is an impressive character, the way that he deals with people and relates to people in the regions, in the country, is probably more like the way for the future for Nationals than someone like Barnaby Joyce.

"But at the moment, they're pretty solidly lined up behind Joyce. Littleproud hasn't declared one way or another whether he's going to run. I think if he were to run, it would be interesting, because his base and Joyce's base are not absolutely the same but they pretty much overlap. It's a relatively small party room and small realignments can be quite decisive in the outcome."

By Jessica Riga

Will Pauline Hanson win a Queensland Senate seat?

Hi team, can you give us an update on the Senate please. Did Pauline Hanson win or lose her seat? Thanks.

-Jen

Good morning Jen,

It has been a close race for the state's final Senate seat, and there was doubt cast earlier in the week about whether One Nation leader Pauline Hanson – who is currently sidelined with a bout COVID-19 – would get back in.

But now it's looking like she will.

ABC's Chief Election Analyst Antony Green says her fiercest rival was the LNP, which has already claimed two of the six seats, but that she would likely come out ahead based on preferences.

"She's well positioned to win a seat," he says.

"The race is then probably on between the third LNP member and Hanson for the final seat, maybe Legalise Cannabis but more likely, and based on analysis of the last seven election preferences from excluded candidates who favour Hanson over the LNP," he said.

He said the Senate count is less advanced than the lower house.

With the electoral commission focused on finalising the House of Representatives, we could be waiting until early July for a formal result.

By Jessica Riga

Analysis | After a shattering election loss to Albanese, the Coalition carries on with chutzpah

As the new government this week set about establishing a fresh tone for Australia, the old one seemed to continue on with its day-to-day politics as if nothing notable had happened last Saturday, writes Laura Tingle

Many of Morrison's inner circle have lost their seats in this election. But his closest political ally, Stuart Robert, was on the radio on Friday morning rejecting the idea that the order for Border Force to release the statement had breached the caretaker conventions and proper process.

He couldn't comment on it, he said, "having not been involved, but I think all Australians understand Labor by virtue of history is incredibly weak on boat arrivals".

So, even after being in office for almost a decade, the best a former Coalition cabinet minister could do when confronted by an appalling politicisation of a process his own side had long described as holy writ, was to prosecute a case against the government before his government that had just lost the election.

As if the Coalition hasn't just been devastated in its heartland and there might be a cause for pause, for reflection, for some indication that the voters may have sent a message.

By Jessica Riga

Key Event

600 votes between Greens and Labor in Brisbane

Let's take a closer look at the seat of Brisbane now that the Australian Electoral Commission are analysing the current three-candidate preferred status. 

By the raw numbers, sitting LNP member Trevor Evans is ahead on first preferences, while the Greens and Labor have shared time in second place throughout the week.

Even though Evans is leading the first-preference count, the combined votes of the Labor and Greens candidates equate to more than 50 per cent of the vote.

Right now, Greens candidate Stephen Bates is currently ahead of Labor's Madonna Jarrett by 606 votes. 

Three candidate preferred (3CP) for Brisbane, QLD

Candidate Party Votes % of 3CP
BATES, Stephen Queensland Greens 26,579 29.29%
JARRETT, Madonna Australian Labor Party 25,973 28.62%
EVANS, Trevor Liberal National Party of Queensland 38,202 42.09%

Here's the ABC's Chief Election Analyst Antony Green with some more details: 

The count in Brisbane will exclude the four lowest polling candidates first. This will determine an order for the final three candidates, LNP, Labor and Green.

The preference count shown here uses a preference estimate for the first four exclusions provided to me by scrutineers that is running at 35.1% to Greens, 15.6% to Labor and 49.3% LNP.

This currently puts the Greens ahead of Labor during the distribution of preferences and results in the Greens going on to defeat the LNP.

The result may flip to Labor winning if further counting changes the balance of Labor versus Green first preferences or alters the exclusion order during the distribution of preferences.

By Jessica Riga

Key Event

AEC releases three-candidate preferred counts in Brisbane, Macnamara

The Australian Electoral Commission has released three-candidate preferred counts for the seats of Brisbane and Macnamara.

The ABC's Chief Election Analyst Antony Green says Brisbane's count is "very complete and points to the Greens winning when absents are counted on Monday."

Meanwhile, Macnamara's count is not as complete, making it difficult to interpret at the moment.

By Jessica Riga

Key Event

Which four seats are still in doubt?

It's been one week since the federal election and there's still four seats in doubt.

Here's how it's currently shaking out:

  1. 1.

    Brisbane, QLD — Greens likely

  2. 2.

    Deakin, VIC - Liberals ahead

  3. 3.

    Gilmore, NSW — Liberals ahead

  4. 4.

    Macnamara, VIC — ALP likely

You can explore our results page here.