Swing king

Grey remains in Ramsey’s hands  after shift from centre

ROWAN Ramsey has retained  the seat of Grey in a dominant swing back in the Liberal member’s favour, which has largely come from the Centre Alliance, previously the Nick Xenophon Team (NXT).

He was on track to be elected on first preferences alone, attracting more than 50 per cent of votes at the time of print.

Mr Ramsey thanked supporters but quickly moved on to the job at hand, delivering on major infrastructure projects in the region.

“I will work to make sure firstly the projects committed to before the election, such as the duplication of the Joy Baluch Bridge, the Port Wakefield overpass, the EP road network upgrades, two new Headspace units and new mobile towers and other road upgrades get moving,” he said.

“I will also be ensuring projects offered as electoral commitments like the start of construction of dual lanes on the Augusta Highway and the replacement of the 100-year-old Dog Fence get through their planning stages as quickly as possible and get started.

“I have many more projects I want to see move forward like sealing the (Strzeleckie Track) and attracting more industry and businesses to Grey to grow jobs.

“I also thank and congratulate the other candidates. It takes courage to put your name forward and then commit to a campaign involving such a large part of the state.

“I complement them on the civilised way the campaign was conducted.”

Labor candidate, Karin Bolton, picked up a little bit of ground on Mr Ramsey but the most surprising result was Centre Alliance’s overall performance, slumping with swing against it of more than 21 per cent.

This was despite a lengthy campaign with localised policy announcements from candidate, Andrea Broadfoot.

A disappointed Ms Broadfoot said her results suffered from the loss of brand recognition following the departure of Nick Xenophon from the party.

“At polling booths, we were having to explain we were formerly NXT,” she said.

“I had a conversation with Senator Rex Patrick about the investment the team needs to make in its brand recognition.

“I’m disappointed the electorate, plus the organisations with their issues, won’t get the strong advocacy from a different style of representation on offer.

“It does present a real opportunity for Mr Ramsey to step up his representation of the electorate…and I will be following up with him on some of the issues I campaigned on to see if we can progress them.”

Ms Broadfoot will also be looking at making positive change through her private consultancy firms in some key local matters, including the rural GP shortage and the Gawler River floodway plan.

Ms Bolton was pleased to see some increased support for Labor.

“On a positive note, this means that a lot of voters in Grey are Labor,” she said.

“It’s never been more important to be talking to them now, involving them, and supporting each other to get even more active in one of the largest electorates in the nation.”

One Nation was also a major player, attracting more than eight per cent of first preferences, despite candidate, David Stone, doing very little campaigning at all.

Mr Stone was followed by Ms Broadfoot (5.5 per cent), Greens candidate, Candace Champion (4.4 per cent), United Australia Party’s Alexander Warren (3.72 per cent) and Animal Justice Party’s Jacqui Edgecombe (2.57 per cent).

Political debutant, Richard Carmody, who ran as an Independent, attracted 1.7 per cent of votes.

“I was hoping to do a bit better votes wise but it is what it is.

“I am very happy with the amount of awareness I drew to the job guarantee and I will continue to work on that between now and the next election, plus drawing awareness to how the economy actually works and key issues no one knows about, like inequality.”

Champion cruises in Spence

LABOR’S Nick Champion won a fifth parliamentary term, claiming the new electorate of Spence on first preferences (52 per cent) at the time of print, with a huge 29 per cent margin over Liberal rival, Kathleen Bourne, in the two party preferred stakes.

Interestingly, all candidates enjoyed a swing towards them in the absences of previous parties who didn’t run in Spence, including Centre Alliance.

• Pictured: Liberal MP, Rowan Ramsey, voting in Peterborough on Saturday.