Minor parties make inroads in South East

United Australia Party candidate for Holt, Gerardine Hansen. 0278998 Picture: SUPPLIED

In years to come, the 2022 federal election will be remembered for the rise of smaller parties and independent candidates who overthrew the stronghold of the Liberal/National Coalition.

While the teal wave didn’t make it to Melbourne’s South East, the United Australia Party had the third-highest percentage (10) of first preference count votes in Holt, ahead of the Greens on eight per cent.

UAP, the Greens, One Nation (four per cent) and the Liberal Democrats (2.5 per cent), combined for 24.5 per cent of first preference votes, just shy of Liberal candidate Ranj Perera on 29.6 per cent.

It coincided with a swing of six per cent away from the Liberal party and nearly nine per cent against the successful candidate, Labor’s Cassandra Fernando, who won 41.7 per cent.

Labor and Liberal’s first preference percentage numbers in Holt were the lowest since the start of the millennium, with Labor averaging 50.4 per cent and the Liberals 32.9 in that period.

UAP candidates Matt Babet and Merryn Mott also benefited from four per cent upswings in neighbouring seats of Bruce and La Trobe, respectively.

Labor candidates in both La Trobe and Bruce suffered a swing of -5.7 per cent, while James Moody, standing for the Liberals in Bruce, suffered a -5.9 per cent fall.

The re-elected member for La Trobe Jason Wood, however, suffered a minor swing of less than one per cent as he won 45 per cent of first preference votes.