WA election bloodbath as Labor triumph in historic, landslide victory
Mark McGowan has been returned as WA Premier for another four years after an unprecedented landslide victory for Labor and an historic crushing wipeout defeat for the Liberal party.
As of 9pm AWST last night (midnight AEDT) the ALP had 50 seats, with the Liberal party on just two and the Nationals three, with four in doubt. Thirty seats are needed for victory and Labor reached that target just over two hours after polls had closed.
Labor won 44 seats on first preference votes. It is the biggest win for a state party in Australian political history.
WA Election: How an historic night played out
The result looks set to leave the National party as opposition in the lower house and Mia Davies leader of the opposition. The extent of the defeat would see the Liberals left without party status which means it would not qualify for important Parliamentary resources.
WA Liberal leader Zak Kirkup became the first major party leader in the state to lose his seat in 88 years to cap off a disastrous night for the opposition. He announced he would no longer seek office for the Liberal party in his concession speech – which was delayed by a faulty microphone, a moment which summed up what has been a disastrous campaign.
Nine political editor Chris Uhlmann called the defeat an ‘extinction level event’ for the state Liberal party. All eyes will now be on the ramifications the result will have at a Federal level.
There is also likely to be a majority for the ALP in the upper house too.
‘A mandate to deliver’
Mr McGowan said he would lead a government for all West Australians.
“”This is a humbling experience,” he said in his victory speech.
“To have the support and faith of so many West Australians in one of the most important state elections is a great honour,” Mr McGowan said.
“We’ve been through a lot together over the course of the last year.
“The pandemic has been a difficult time for every West Australian. I’ve been so fortunate to have West Australians helping and supporting us every step of the way as we dealt with the crisis and made the difficult decisions that needed to be made.”
He also talked of implementing “positive plans for the future”, including “bringing back manufacturing, keeping TAFE and training affordable for West Australians”.
“Today is an endorsement of perseverence, hard work, optimism and never giving in.
“The magnitude of what happened today is not lost on me. With it comes great responsibility. We will continue to deliver stable, competent, responsible and caring government for all West Australians.
“We’ve been given a mandate to deliver and that’s what we intend to do. We are a government for all West Australians. Regions and the city, young and old, men and women, workers, small business owners, farmers, trades people.
“We will always govern for all West Australians. Tomorrow, we get right back to work, continuing to build a Western Australia that is safe, fair and strong.”