Tasmanian Election Outcome

24 March 2024

It seems that Tasmania has elected a hung parliament, with the Liberal Party the largest party. Here is a quick summary of the situation as it presently stands:

  • On current projections, the Liberal Party looks set to win 14 seats, four short of the 18 required for a majority in the 35-seat House of Assembly.
  • The Labor Party is currently projected to win 10 seats.
  • Both incumbent Liberal Premier Jeremy Rockliff and Labor Opposition Leader Rebecca White have claimed a ‘path to victory’.
  • However, even with the support of the Greens, who look set to win as many as five seats (with a 1.3% primary swing), Labor would still be three seats short of forming a minority government.
  • Therefore, on current projections, it is more likely that the Liberal Party will be able to retain minority government.
  • Federal Senator for Tasmania Jacqui Lambie’s party the Jacqui Lambie Network (JLN) looks likely to win their first seat in Tasmanian Parliament.
  • The JLN could win as many as three seats and will likely be critical in any coalition negotiations with the Liberal Party.
  • Lambie stated that 'there's going to be some grovelling done', demanding an apology from Rockliff for a fake JLN website as a prerequisite to any cooperation from her candidates.
  • The full result may not be known for weeks, as the Tasmanian Electoral Commission does not distribute preferences until all votes / postal votes have been received. This will take two weeks.
  • Coalition negotiations could similarly take weeks and Rockliff will remain Premier until they conclude.
  • If Rockliff is successful, this would be a record fourth term for the Tasmanian Liberals.
  • The result is a 12.1% primary vote swing (at time of writing) against the Liberals and a 1% swing towards Labor.
  • Most of those major party votes have been picked up by the JLN, Greens, and independents.
  • There has been a swing against the Liberal Party in all five seats, with the largest being in the seat of Bass (-21.8%).
  • Labor had a swing towards them in three of the five seats, receiving a 9% swing towards them in the seat of Clark.
  • Former Labor leader David O’Byrne (who resigned following a scandal) looks set to be elected as an independent in Franklin.
  • O’Byrne says it's too early to say whether he would support a Labor or Liberal government, taking a swipe at Labor’s leadership while claiming he still has ‘Labor values’.
  • Former federal Senator for Tasmania Eric Abetz was elected to the seat of Franklin.
  • Rockliff had called the election hoping to regain majority government following the defection of Lara Alexander and John Tucker to the crossbench in 2023.
  • Both Tucker and Alexander were defeated as independents last night.
  • Tasmania’s House of Assembly has five seven-member electorates (Bass, Braddon, Clark, Franklin, Lyons) and is elected using the Hare-Clark method.
  • You can watch Jeremy Rockliff’s victory speech here.
  • You can watch Rebecca White’s speech here.

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