Eighty per cent of the West Australian electorate put their vote with the major parties, Labor, Liberal, Nationals and Green. The Trump effect was nowhere to be seen.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation suffered a major fall in support. Trending up to 14% a few weeks ago, the actual vote was around 4.7%. (all figures based on counting last night with 64% of the vote counted). Hanson may pick up one to three seats in the upper house, far fewer than the 6 or so once predicted.
One Nation polled an average 8 per cent in the seats it contested and received up to 13 per cent in seats such as Mandurah on the outskirts of Perth.
The Liberals did very poorly at around 30%. There was a massive swing to Labor. Needing to improve by ten seats to claim government, they won an extra 20.
Whether the Liberal’s poor performance has anything to do with Malcolm Turnbull’s unpopularity is hard to say. Local issues always play a big part in WA, making it difficult to read anything into the federal scene.
The big takeaway is the failure of One Nation. Its not hard to figure out the reasons. At the top of the list is One Nation’s preference deal with the Liberals. Why on earth did Hanson do something that was always going to totally destroy her brand as an outsider? Then there was the sacking of the State President a day or so before the election. Who on earth thought this was a winning strategy?
There were also a series of candidate sackings and withdrawals with the constant refrain that Hanson was running a dictatorship. All lapped up and used to full effect by an MSM that has always been hostile to One Nation. They were also happy to bash her enthusiastically over her vaccination comments.
MSM aside, such amateurish blunders suggest there’s something askew in the leadership of Pauline Hanson’s party. There are constant rumblings that Chief of Staff James Ashby is not working out so well. Who really knows.
One thing we do know is that the election result in WA deals Pauline Hanson’s popularity a savage blow, and registers a major shift in voter sentiment that will change the whole of the Australian political landscape.