The polls in Western Australia’s state election have closed and the count is on.
Mark McGowan’s Labor Party is widely expected to be returned for a second term in government, with the Premier riding a wave of personal popularity through to polling day.
Even Liberal leader Zak Kirkup has predicted a Labor win — but the question is by how much?
An election-eve Newspoll published in The Australian newspaper suggested Labor was on track for a landslide victory.
The poll showed Labor ahead 66 to 34 per cent on a two-party preferred basis.
That result would see the Liberals reduced to just three of the 59 Lower House seats, a result that would put the party’s official opposition status in doubt.
It is exactly the kind of result Mr Kirkup has repeatedly warned voters about in the lead up to election day. Kirkup was also criticised for his unusual strategy of conceding defeat two weeks out from polling day.
If the pre-polls are anything to go by, it should not be too long before it is revealed whether that gamble has paid off. The Liberal leader’s main message throughout the campaign has been, “Don’t give Labor too much power”.
But Mr McGowan repeatedly played down the pre-polls and labelled the Liberal party’s warnings of a Labor landslide as “scaremongering”.