THE Federal seat of Perth is set to be won by Labor, according to a Curtin University political analyst, despite losing some Labor hotspot suburbs such as Lockridge in a boundary redistribution.
Curtin University John Curtin Institute of Public Policy executive director John Phillimore said Labor candidate Tim Hammond was likely to win the marginal seat at this weekend’s Federal election.
“The state issues are going to impact on the federal election … with Colin Barnett and the state Liberals being under a lot of pressure, you’d imagine Labor should have a swing back and a reasonably comfortable victory (in Perth),” he said.
“Most people would be pretty astonished if Labor managed to lose, on July 2, the seat of Perth.
“However, it’s very unusual this time around, Labor holds only three seats in WA and all three members are retiring, it will be interesting to see if that has an impact.”
Dr Phillimore said a recent boundary redistribution meant the seat had lost some traditional Labor voting areas and picked up coalition voting areas.
“Lockridge is the main one – it’s about 70 per cent Labor two-party preferred. Perth also lost some Dianella and picked up some Leederville,” he said.
“Alannah MacTiernan won it with a 4.4 per cent margin (in 2013), but after the boundary redistribution, there’s only 2.2 per cent.
“I think Tim has run a pretty good campaign but he certainly won’t have the name recognition that Alannah had.”
Dr Phillimore said it was becoming a trend for federal politicians to push for traditionally local or state issues during election campaigns, such as recent announcements regarding the Bayswater train station and promises for roller hockey, soccer and tennis.
“Sometimes you would wonder why a federal election was being fought over road intersections or city-based things, which are traditionally state or local,” Dr Phillimore said.
“But it also shows that the candidate has an understanding of the local area and that’s important, too.
“While those local issues are talked about, they’re not going to be the main reason people are voting one way or another.”
Dr Phillimore said Labor tended to put a “high-flier” in the seat of Perth, who often became a minister.