At 22:00 last night, independent candidate Kerryn Phelps led the Wentworth City Council down to the night with 54% of…
At 22:00 last night, independent candidate Kerryn Phelps led the Wentworth City Council down to the night with 54% of the two candidate’s preferred vote for the liberal candidate Dave Sharma and most commentators (not to mention the candidates and parties) had called Phelps. But when we woke up this morning, the competition was much closer. After a few more bills today, Phelps has strengthened his lead and seems to win, but what happened?
In short, Phelp’s leading position was weakened due to low support in the post and voting poll, but she recovered after a few errors identified during the election night.
Phelps won a clear majority of the votes cast at the local polling stations on the election day. She managed 54% of the vote after the distribution of preferences. Nevertheless, she did much worse at bargaining and post-voting.
Vote for voting (counted last night) was strongly favored Sharma, who succeeded 55% of the vote after preferences over the four main negotiating stalls. He did particularly well on Rose Bay, in the strong pro-Liberal Harbor suburbs, while Phelps only succeeded with a narrow majority in Waverley, despite winning strong majorities in the surrounding booth on election day.
We are still waiting for the rest of the votes to report but the first rate strongly favored Sharma. He polled over 64% of these votes by preference.
It’s hard to know how many postings are left to count. The Australian Electoral Commission sent out 12,788 voice mail packages to voters, but they will not all be returned. So far, 5,463 post votes have been counted, while another 1,266 is waiting to be opened. Earlier today, it was likely that another strong group of post-voters could put Sharma in front.
Thus, the Phelps campaign hopes that relatively few postal votes will be returned, or that the remaining postal votes are less favorable to Sharma.
Why were the votes in the right to vote and the pre-voting so much stronger for the liberal party? It is normal for the liberal party to do well with postal vote, but not 18 percent better. It is also unusual to see voting before the vote deviate so much from the poll’s vote.
This is possible this reflects a late transition to Phelps during the campaign’s last days. It may also reflect Wentworth’s major Jewish population, some of whom would be more likely to choose to vote before the election day and would probably benefit Sharma.
None of this was particularly encouraging for Phelps but there is another potential problem.
Analysis of the election day’s results suggested that there may have been a potential problem in two or three booths, where Phelps got much lower preference flows than in other booths.
In most booths, Phelps got about 65% to 80% of preferences from the 14 other candidates. Nevertheless, she only received 57% of the preference on Bondi Beach and 49% on Bellevue Hill.
After a countdown day, we now know that the night of walks is counting in Bondi Beach and Bellevue Hill was really wrong and the corrected results have increased Phelp’s leadership by 1,000 votes.
This probably was due to a bill at the end of a long working day with booth workers who needed to allocate preferences from 16 candidates.
AEC always guarantees that votes are counted again to check if it’s wrong, so if there is an error, we can expect it to be downloaded in the next few days.
(@ AntonyGreenABC)  After much digging around I have prepared the following. AEC currently calculates Bondi Beach, Bellevue Hill and Vaucluse polling sites. At 3 o’clock they will start a number and another 1,200 postings. The result will be clearer or closer to tonight.
After this correction, it seems undoubtedly for Sharma to win Wentworth. He would need almost all possible postal votes that would be returned, and to get a higher proportion of these votes than he has so far waived. It seems very unlikely, but we will know if it is possible when the next batch of mail voices is reported.
Why was it so difficult to accurately project the result in Wentworth last night? It was particularly difficult because Phelps was a new candidate, without a story to run in the voter.
Choice forecasts usually compare voice returns to data from the same booths at the previous selection. This process makes it possible to eliminate bias in which booths report first and predict what the voice numbers will look like at the end of the bill.
It was possible to make some assumptions about how pre-election and post-voting would go, compared to the poll’s election, but the actual votes have so far been surprisingly strong for the Liberal Party, which is the main reason for the final predictions yesterday being replaced of more careful analysis today.