Politics

“Bloodbath”: Labor Completely Annihilated The Liberals In Victoria’s Election

Absolutely brutal.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews

Yesterday was election day in Victoria, when Victorians head to their polling places to mark some boxes, buy a sausage sandwich, and, this time, completely fucking annihilate the Liberals.

“It’s been an electoral bloodbath,” said ABC presenter Michael Rowland last night, while Liberal MP John Pesutto sat alongside him and tried not to look like Ralph Wiggum getting his heart ripped in half. Pesutto had just lost his seat of Hawthorn on live television, a seat which had been held by the Liberal party since 1955 and which many had regarded as safe. Yet last night, Labor’s John Ormond Kennedy supplanted them for the first time in 63 years.

Labor wiped the floor with the Coalition in a decisive victory, with ABC analyst Antony Green calling it for red less than an hour and a half after counting began. It was like watching someone show up to a sword fight with a pocket knife and then lie on the floor, confused and bleeding out, while above them their opponent popped champagne bottles as graciously as possible.

“We did a lot of things right but obviously something has gone horribly wrong,” Pesutto said to the ABC election coverage panel, wondering where all the blood was coming from.

Labor’s landslide victory was helped by several of Melbourne’s conservative eastern suburbs. Traditionally Liberal, several swung in favour of Labor, strengthening their power in parliament. These included Box Hill, Burwood and Mount Waverley. “Now Labor is becoming more and more acceptable in the eastern suburbs,” Kennedy told The Age as the votes were being counted.

The tide of red was so overwhelming that even historically Liberal seat Brighton was threatened. Though it ultimately remained Liberal, for a while it appeared 19-year-old university student Declan Martin would take the seat for Labor for the first time. Martin told the ABC that he ran because “no-one was willing to fill the gap”, spending just $1750 on a six-week campaign, and that he had not expected the result to be so close. “I haven’t got notes on him,” said an equally surprised Green. “I have a brief profile and picture.”

The battle between the two major parties has widely been characterised as a battle between Liberals’ fear mongering and Labor’s positive promises for funding and improvements to services like health and education.

At time of writing, Labor had won 57 seats, Liberal 21, the Greens one and others two, with seven still to call. Labor had 45 seats going in to the election, and Liberal 30. Victoria’s Premier Daniel Andrews was elected to a second term, his supporters joyfully chanting “four more years!” as he took the stage to deliver his victory speech last night.

“Friends, the people of Victoria have today overwhelmingly endorsed a positive and optimistic plan for our state,” said Andrews. “They have, in record numbers, at the same time, rejected the low road of fear and division.”