LONG-TERM Liberal politician Russell Broadbent has been returned to his seat of Monash though with a reduced majority and now in Opposition following the Federal election on Saturday May 22, 2022, won by the Australian Labor Party (ALP).
The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) website’s two-party preferred (TCP) result indicates that as at Sunday afternoon May 22, Mr Broadbent recorded 52.64 per cent of the vote, with the ALP candidate Jessica O’Donnell receiving 47.36 per cent, which represents a 4.22 per cent swing against the sitting member.
The AEC’s TCP count also shows 40,906 votes for Mr Broadbent and 36,807 for Ms O’Donnell, a difference of only 4099 votes, after the distribution of preferences from the other six candidates contesting in Monash.
The Division of Monash has 111241 eligible electors, and 73.2 per cent of those turned out to the 75 polling places throughout the electorate, with an informal vote rate of 4.56 per cent, which was 0.21 per cent higher than at the 2019 poll.
In the 2022 first preference count, Mr Broadbent scored 29,165 votes or 37.53 per cent, and so an 8.45 per cent swing against the Liberals, with 20,190 votes or 25.98 per cent for Ms O’Donnell and a swing of 3.92 per cent away from the ALP.
In third first preference place was Independent Deb Leonard who received 8521 votes or 10.96 per cent of the total and so the same percentage swing in her favour.
The Greens’ Mat Morgan polled 7369 first preference votes or 9.48 per cent, with a 2.31 per cent positive swing.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation candidate Allan Hicken was given 5903 number one votes or 7.6 per cent, representing a 0.28 per cent swing in favour.
Meg Edwards attracted 2945 votes, a 3.79 per cent share and swing for the Liberal Democrats.
The Australian Federation Party runner David Welsh got 584 votes and so a 0.71 per cent share and swing.
Mr Broadbent has now won nine of the 13 Federal elections he has stood for in three different divisions.
Defeated in both 1984 and 1987 for the since abolished eastern suburban Melbourne Division of Streeton, Mr Broadbent was first elected to Federal Parliament after winning in Corinella in 1990, but then losing in 1993.
He took the western Gippsland regional seat of McMillan in 1996, lost it in 1998, then was returned in 2004, and again in 2007, 2010, 2013 and 2016.
McMillan’s boundaries were subsequently redistributed and the electorate renamed Monash in time for the 2019 election and was retained by Mr Broadbent.
“I’m thrilled to bits!” he said on Monday morning May 23, of the 2022 election result.
“It was a very hard election campaign, because the independent and Labor candidates were very strong, and many voters put the two major parties last,” Mr Broadbent said.
“I enjoy a very strong personal vote throughout the electorate though, and that’s what helped me to reclaim the seat.
“The real value is in Canberra, where I do good things for the people of Monash,” Mr Broadbent said.
“I’ve worked with the rural community on climate change, and I know that locally the air, the environment, forests and especially the soils must be managed for the future,” he said.
“Other important issues in Monash are health and aged care, and the hospital redevelopments in Wonthaggi and Warragul, along with their cancer centres, are real things rather than promises.”
When asked if he considered himself to be the most senior member of the Australian Parliament, Mr Broadbent said, “I could well be, but I’ll have to speak to my long-standing colleague Warren Entsch and find out what he thinks when we’re both back in Canberra!”
The Greens’ candidate Mat Morgan offered his congratulations to “Russell Broadbent MP on your campaign and for retaining the seat of Monash” on his Facebook page on Sunday after the election results became known.
Mr Morgan also sent “congratulations to the voters of Monash for turning this ‘safe Liberal seat’ marginal!”
“Yesterday, more people voted green than ever before,” he wrote.
“We have at least tripled our representation in the Lower House and are on track to have 12 senators and the balance of power in the Senate with the best result we’ve ever had,” Mr Morgan stated.
“Australia has seen the end of the Liberal government, and people all over the country have voted for real climate action.”