Coalition holds on to power in NSW

Coalition holds on to power in NSW


Farm Online News
The Gladys Berejiklian government looks to have been reelected in NSW.

The Gladys Berejiklian government looks to have been reelected in NSW.

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Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party have picked up at least two seats.

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NSW voters have backed the Berejiklian government for another term but it wasn't a ringing endorsement and it's not yet clear if the coalition will maintain its majority.

Ms Berejiklian on Saturday became the first woman to be popularly elected premier of NSW and she'll lead the coalition into a third straight term for the first time in 50-odd years.

Labor's poorer-than-expected performance means Michael Daley - who stumbled badly in the final days of the campaign - could soon face a challenge to his leadership.

Ms Berejiklian told the party faithful she was incredibly proud of NSW where "someone with a long surname - and a woman - can be the premier".

With 60 per cent of the vote counted the Liberal party and Nationals had won 46 seats in the 93-seat lower house.

Labor had 35 seats, the Greens had three, the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party had at least two, and there were three returning independents - Wagga Wagga's Joe McGirr, Sydney's Alex Greenwich and Port Macquarie's Greg Piper.

The Nationals lost the seat of Murray to the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers, while Barwon is also likely to fall that way.

"Whether or not my government is a majority government or a minority government, we will work closely with the three independents," Ms Berejiklian said.

Mr Daley took over as Labor leader 134 days ago when Luke Foley was forced to quit after being accused of sexually harassing a journalist.

He argued on Saturday night he didn't have enough time to cut through with the electorate "but I can tell you it is my intention to remain the leader of the party".

Labor frontbencher Jodi McKay - a potential leadership contender along with Chris Minns - backed Mr Daley to stay in the top job.

"In saying that, last week we had a bad week," she acknowledged on ABC TV.

"We had two incidents there which I think all of us wish hadn't happened."

A video emerged on Monday of Mr Daley in September 2018 saying Asian migrants were taking local jobs.

Then, during the mid-week leaders' debate, he couldn't remember how much cash the opposition had committed to schools and TAFE.

Federal Labor leader Bill Shorten nevertheless saluted Mr Daley and his team stating: "They were asked to achieve the near-impossible in just a few months."

Prime Minister Scott Morrison didn't join Ms Berejiklian campaigning on Saturday but he took to the stage before her victory speech.

"How good is Gladys Berejiklian and how good is the Liberal Party here in NSW," he said.

The coalition won't need to rely on the Shooters which could triple its representation in the lower house with some regional voters turning away from the Nationals.

The Shooters retained Orange with a huge swing towards sitting member Philip Donato and picked up Murray with candidate Helen Dalton.

Vegetarian cattle farmer Roy Butler looks likely to claim Barwon for the SFFP.

The Greens retained Ballina, Balmain and Newtown.

Early voting was popular, the NSW Electoral Commission revealed, with more than 1.3 million people casting their ballot before March 23.

Australian Associated Press

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