National seat status

Updated: 04 February 2019

This fact sheet provides the status of electoral divisions (seats) using 2016 federal election results data.

How is seat status defined?

The AEC uses the margin of the count between the ‘final two’ candidates to classify seats as follows:

  • marginal (M): when the leading candidate receives less than 56 per cent
  • fairly safe (FS): when the leading candidate receives between 56 and 60 per cent
  • safe (S): when the leading candidate receives more than 60 per cent.

‘Non-classic’ results

Historically, almost all of the contests for election to the House of Representatives result in the ‘final two’ candidates being ALP and Coalition candidates. At the 2016 federal election this was the case in 133 out of 150 seats. These ‘classic’ seat margins are reflected in the tables below.  

The remaining 17 seats are categorised by the AEC as ‘non-classic’. One such non-classic seat was the Division of Port Adelaide in South Australia, which has since been abolished as part of the redistribution process. The other 16 non-classic seat margins are provided in a separate table below.

Redrawn boundaries

Since the 2016 federal election, the boundaries of seats have been redrawn in all states and territories except NSW and WA.

As part of these redistribution processes two additional seats were created - one in the Australian Capital Territory (Bean) and one in Victoria (Fraser). In addition, one seat was abolished in South Australia (Port Adelaide). As a result, a total of 151 seats will be contested at the next federal election.

State/territory Number of seats
New South Wales 47 seats
Victoria 38 seats
Queensland 30 seats
Western Australia 16 seats
South Australia 10 seats
Tasmania 5 seats
Australian Capital Territory 3 seats
Northern Territory 2 seats
TOTAL 151 seats

As part of the redistribution processes undertaken since the 2016 federal election the names of the following six seats have changed. 

State/territory Former seat name New seat name
Victoria Batman Cooper
Melbourne Ports Macnamara
McMillan Monash
Murray Nicholls
South Australia Wakefield Spence
Tasmania Denison Clark

Notional margins

In states and territories that have undergone redistributions, seat margins are calculated by applying voting patterns to the new boundaries that will be in place for the 2019 federal election. This notional seat status provides the margin that a party/candidate would have won the seat by if the new boundaries applied.

These notional margins will be used as the baseline in the AEC’s tally room at the 2019 federal election to enable the calculation of swings.

By-elections

There have been nine federal by-elections conducted since the 2016 federal election.

The tables below on this page reflect 2016 federal election results data. The seat margins that exist as a result of the by-elections conducted since the 2016 federal election are provided in a separate table.

*It is not possible to create notional margins (margins based on 2019 federal election boundaries) using by-election results data. This is because by-elections were conducted on the seat boundaries in place at the 2016 federal election.

Party abbreviations

A list of party abbreviations has been provided below on this page.

Seat margins

Note: The last column in the following tables lists the swing required to win or lose a seat. In each case an extra vote would be required to achieve a 50% +1 majority.

New South Wales
Electorate ALP LP/NP Elected (2016) Status Swing required
to change
Banks 48.56 51.44 LP M 1.44
Barton 58.30 41.70 ALP FS 8.30
Bennelong #* 40.28 59.72 LP FS 9.72
Berowra 33.55 66.45 LP S 16.45
Blaxland 69.48 30.52 ALP S 19.48
Bradfield 28.96 71.04 LP S 21.04
Calare 38.19 61.81 NP S 11.81
Chifley 69.19 30.81 ALP S 19.19
Cook 34.61 65.39 LP S 15.39
Cowper * 37.42 62.58 * * *
Cunningham 63.32 36.68 ALP S 13.32
Dobell 54.81 45.19 ALP M 4.81
Eden-Monaro 52.93 47.07 ALP M 2.93
Farrer 29.47 70.53 LP S 20.53
Fowler 67.49 32.51 ALP S 17.49
Gilmore 49.27 50.73 LP M 0.73
Grayndler * 72.36 27.64 * * *
Greenway 56.31 43.69 ALP FS 6.31
Hughes 40.67 59.33 LP FS 9.33
Hume 39.82 60.18 LP S 10.18
Hunter 62.46 37.54 ALP S 12.46
Kingsford Smith 58.57 41.43 ALP FS 8.57
Lindsay 51.11 48.89 ALP M 1.11
Lyne 38.37 61.63 NP S 11.63
Macarthur 58.33 41.67 ALP FS 8.33
Mackellar 34.26 65.74 LP S 15.74
Macquarie 52.19 47.81 ALP M 2.19
McMahon 62.11 37.89 ALP S 12.11
Mitchell 32.18 67.82 LP S 17.82
New England #* 33.58 66.42 * * *
Newcastle 63.84 36.16 ALP S 13.84
North Sydney 36.39 63.61 LP S 13.61
Page 47.70 52.30 NP M 2.30
Parkes 34.90 65.10 NP S 15.10
Parramatta 57.67 42.33 ALP FS 7.67
Paterson 60.74 39.26 ALP S 10.74
Reid 45.31 54.69 LP M 4.69
Richmond 53.96 46.04 ALP M 3.96
Riverina 33.56 66.44 NP S 16.44
Robertson 48.86 51.14 LP M 1.14
Shortland 59.94 40.06 ALP FS 9.94
Sydney 65.31 34.69 ALP S 15.31
Warringah * 38.91 61.09 * * *
Watson 67.58 32.42 ALP S 17.58
Wentworth # 32.25 67.75 LP S 17.75
Werriwa 58.20 41.80 ALP FS 8.20
Whitlam 63.72 36.28 ALP S 13.72

* indicates non-classic seats. # indicates seats for which a by-election has since been conducted.

Victoria (notional post-redistribution margins)
Electorate ALP LP/NP Notional party Status Swing required
to change
Aston 42.59 57.41 LP FS 7.41
Ballarat 57.36 42.64 ALP FS 7.36
Bendigo 53.87 46.13 ALP M 3.87
Bruce 64.05 35.95 ALP S 14.05
Calwell 69.73 30.27 ALP S 19.73
Casey 45.46 54.54 LP M 4.54
Chisholm 47.09 52.91 LP M 2.91
Cooper #*
(Formerly Batman)
71.99 28.01 * * *
Corangamite 50.03 49.97 ALP M 0.03
Corio 58.20 41.80 ALP FS 8.20
Deakin 43.56 56.44 LP FS 6.44
Dunkley 51.03 48.97 ALP M 1.03
Flinders 42.99 57.01 LP FS 7.01
Fraser
(New seat)
69.79 30.21 ALP S 19.79
Gellibrand 65.12 34.88 ALP S 15.12
Gippsland 31.79 68.21 NP S 18.21
Goldstein 37.32 62.68 LP S 12.68
Gorton 68.49 31.51 ALP S 18.49
Higgins * 39.93 60.07 * * *
Holt 59.94 40.06 ALP FS 9.94
Hotham 54.21 45.79 ALP M 4.21
Indi * 44.90 55.10 * * *
Isaacs 52.98 47.02 ALP M 2.98
Jagajaga 55.60 44.40 ALP M 5.60
Kooyong 37.18 62.82 LP S 12.82
La Trobe 46.78 53.22 LP M 3.22
Lalor 64.19 35.81 ALP S 14.19
Macnamara
(Formerly Melbourne Ports)
51.21 48.79 ALP M 1.21
Mallee 30.20 69.80 NP S 19.80
Maribyrnong 60.40 39.60 ALP S 10.40
McEwen 56.00 44.00 ALP FS 6.00
Melbourne * 67.00 33.00 * * *
Menzies 42.19 57.81 LP FS 7.81
Monash
(Formerly McMillan)
42.49 57.51 LP FS 7.51
Nicholls *
(Formerly Murray)
27.38 72.62 * * *
Scullin 69.58 30.42 ALP S 19.58
Wannon 40.85 59.15 LP FS 9.15
Wills * 71.57 28.43 * * *

* indicates non-classic seats. # indicates seats for which a by-election has since been conducted.

Note: Margins for the 37 Victorian seats at the 2016 federal election (pre-redistribution).

Queensland (notional post-redistribution margins)
Electorate ALP LP/NP Notional party Status Swing required
to change
Blair 58.14 41.86 ALP FS 8.14
Bonner 46.61 53.39 LNP M 3.39
Bowman 42.93 57.07 LNP FS 7.07
Brisbane 44.00 56.00 LNP FS 6.00
Capricornia 49.37 50.63 LNP M 0.63
Dawson 46.63 53.37 LNP M 3.37
Dickson 48.31 51.69 LNP M 1.69
Fadden 38.76 61.24 LNP S 11.24
Fairfax 39.13 60.87 LNP S 10.87
Fisher 40.85 59.15 LNP FS 9.15
Flynn 48.96 51.04 LNP M 1.04
Forde 49.37 50.63 LNP M 0.63
Griffith 51.43 48.57 ALP M 1.43
Groom 34.69 65.31 LNP S 15.31
Herbert 50.02 49.98 ALP M 0.02
Hinkler 41.62 58.38 LNP FS 8.38
Kennedy * 43.26 56.74 * * *
Leichhardt 46.05 53.95 LNP M 3.95
Lilley 55.68 44.32 ALP M 5.68
Longman # 50.79 49.21 ALP M 0.79
Maranoa * 32.46 67.54 * * *
McPherson 38.36 61.64 LNP S 11.64
Moncrieff 35.39 64.61 LNP S 14.61
Moreton 54.02 45.98 ALP M 4.02
Oxley 59.01 40.99 ALP FS 9.01
Petrie 48.35 51.65 LNP M 1.65
Rankin 61.30 38.70 ALP S 11.30
Ryan 41.02 58.98 LNP FS 8.98
Wide Bay 41.81 58.19 LNP FS 8.19
Wright 40.38 59.62 LNP FS 9.62

* indicates non-classic seats. # indicates seats for which a by-election has since been conducted.

Note: Margins for Queensland seats at the 2016 federal election (pre-redistribution).

Western Australia
Electorate ALP LP/NP Elected (2016) Status Swing required
to change
Brand 61.43 38.57 ALP S 11.43
Burt 57.11 42.89 ALP FS 7.11
Canning 43.21 56.79 LP FS 6.79
Cowan 50.68 49.32 ALP M 0.68
Curtin 29.30 70.70 LP S 20.70
Durack 38.94 61.06 LP S 11.06
Forrest 37.44 62.56 LP S 12.56
Fremantle # 57.52 42.48 ALP FS 7.52
Hasluck 47.95 52.05 LP M 2.05
Moore 38.98 61.02 LP S 11.02
O’Connor 34.96 65.04 LP S 15.04
Pearce 46.37 53.63 LP M 3.63
Perth # 53.33 46.67 ALP M 3.33
Stirling 43.88 56.12 LP FS 6.12
Swan 46.41 53.59 LP M 3.59
Tangney 38.93 61.07 LP S 11.07

# indicates seats for which a by-election has since been conducted.

South Australia (notional post-redistribution margins)
Electorate ALP LP/NP Notional party Status Swing required
to change
Adelaide 58.30 41.70 ALP FS 8.30
Barker * 36.13 63.87 * * *
Boothby 47.29 52.71 LP M 2.71
Grey * 42.25 57.75 * * *
Hindmarsh 58.43 41.57 ALP FS 8.43
Kingston 63.55 36.45 ALP S 13.55
Makin 60.79 39.21 ALP S 10.79
Mayo #* 46.73 53.27 * * *
Sturt 44.61 55.39 LP M 5.39
Spence
(Formerly Wakefield)
67.17 32.83 ALP S 17.17

* indicates non-classic seats. # indicates seats for which a by-election has since been conducted.

Note: Margins for the 11 South Australian seats at the 2016 federal election (pre-redistribution).

Tasmania (notional post-redistribution margins)
Electorate ALP LP/NP Notional party Status Swing required
to change
Bass 55.42 44.58 ALP M 5.42
Braddon # 51.73 48.27 ALP M 1.73
Clark*
(Formerly Denison)
65.33 34.67 * * *
Franklin 60.73 39.27 ALP S 10.73
Lyons 53.83 46.17 ALP M 3.83

* indicates non-classic seats. # indicates seats for which a by-election has since been conducted.

Note: Margins for Tasmanian seats at the 2016 federal election (pre-redistribution).  

Australian Capital Territory (notional post-redistribution margins)
Electorate ALP LP/NP Notional party Status Swing required
to change
Bean
(New seat)
58.85 41.15 ALP FS 8.85
Canberra 62.94 37.06 ALP S 12.94
Fenner 61.84

38.16

ALP S 11.84

Note: Margins for the two ACT seats at the 2016 federal election (pre-redistribution)

Northern Territory (notional post-redistribution margins)
Electorate ALP LP/NP Elected (2013) Status Swing required
Lingiari 58.19 41.81 ALP FS 8.19
Solomon 56.09 43.91 ALP FS 6.09

Note: Margins for the two NT seats at the 2016 federal election (pre-redistribution).

'Non-classic' seats

Two candidate preferred (TCP) margins

At the 2016 federal election there were 17 seats where the final two candidates were not the ALP and the Coalition. These seats are commonly referred to as ‘non-classic’ contests.

One non-classic seat at the 2016 federal election – Port Adelaide – has since been abolished as part of the redistribution process undertaken in South Australia.

The TCP margins for the remaining 16 non-classic seats are:

State Electorate Leading party TCP Other party TCP Status Swing required
to change
NSW Cowper NP 54.56 IND 45.44 M 4.56
Grayndler ALP 65.82 GRN 34.18 S 15.82
New England # NP 58.52 IND 41.48 FS 8.52
Warringah LP 61.55 GRN 38.45 S 11.55
VIC Cooper #
(Formerly Batman)
ALP 51.27 GRN 48.73 M 1.27
Higgins LP 57.38 GRN 42.62 FS 7.38
Indi IND 55.52 LP 44.48 M 5.52
Melbourne GRN 69.04 LP 30.96 S 19.04
Nicholls
(Formerly Murray)
NP 52.49 LP 47.51 M 2.49
Wills ALP 54.93 GRN 45.07 M 4.93
QLD Kennedy KAP 61.00 LNP 39.00 S 11.00
Maranoa LNP 65.86 PHON 34.14 S 15.86
SA Barker LP 53.43 CA 46.57 M 3.43
Grey LP 51.07 CA 48.93 M 1.07
Mayo # CA 52.92 LP 47.08 M 2.92
TAS Clark
(Formerly Denison)
IND 67.77 ALP 32.23 S 17.77

# indicates seats for which a by-election has since been conducted.

Note: The status of non-classic seats in Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania are notional post-redistribution statistics.

By-election margins

Below are the margins of the nine federal by-elections conducted since the 2016 federal election.

State Seat

Leading party

TCP

Other party

TCP

Status

Swing required to change %

NSW Bennelong LP 54.88 ALP 45.12 M 4.88
New England NP 73.63 ALP 26.37 S 23.63
Wentworth IND 51.22 LP 48.78 M 1.22
QLD Longman + ALP 54.45 LNP 45.55 M 4.45
SA Mayo + CA 57.53 LP 42.47 FS 7.53
TAS Braddon + ALP 52.31 LP 47.69 M 2.31
VIC Cooper +
(Formerly Batman)
ALP 54.38 GRN 45.62 M 4.38
WA Fremantle ALP 73.33 LD 26.67 S 23.33
Perth ALP 63.10 GRN 36.90 S 13.10

+ Seats that have since had boundaries redrawn.

*It is not possible to create notional margins (margins based on 2019 federal election boundaries) using by-election results data. This is because by-elections were conducted on the seat boundaries in place at the 2016 federal election.

Party abbreviations

Party Abbreviation
Australian Greens GRN
Australian Labour Party ALP
Centre Alliance CA
Independent IND
Katter’s Australian Party KAP
Liberal Democratic Party LD
Liberal National Party of Queensland LNP
Liberal Party of Australia LP
National Party of Australia NP
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation PHON

Further information

Contact the AEC’s national media team.

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