Most of the Larvatus Prodeo collective are away from their computers, but some of us diehard blogging tragics are on hand to comment as the results come through. Please feel free to join in on the comments thread, but remember to keep refreshing this page as we add updates to the main post.
6.08pm Wentworth (eastern suburbs of Sydney) Suze: Just turned on the TV and Ray Martin says exit polls show a swing to Labor and that Howard is in trouble in Bennelong. I’ve been so tense all day, after last night’s Newspoll. Everyone we’ve seen today has been on edge. I’d almost talked myself into accepting the prospect of the worst. But now I’m beginning to be excited…
6.10pm Helen Coonan says they are holding on in the West. Almost an admission of defeat in the east, I hope!
Wentworth 6.15pm: we voted at 9am in the heart of prosperous Paddington. My impression was that a lot more people than usual were taking Labor and Greens how-to-vote cards. GetUp were out in full.
Stephen Smith says Labor will get more than 50% of the vote!
Yesterday we had two recorded messages from Malcolm Turnbull on our answerphone. It made me think about the 2004 election when we got one from Howard. Not this time, which indicates how unpopular he is.
Shaun blogging from Roberston on the Central Coast and I have some breaking news re Roberston. It is too close to call. I repeat too close to call! Then again it is only 6:16pm
Shaun again. Anna Winter via SMS has mentioned an early turn out in WA (Anna is in Stirling). She sez that an early turnout means the voters are out to punish. Just under 2 hours left in WA and Anna tells me the Libs are not that happy. Hopefully she be able to pass on some exit polling
Gummo Melbourne 6:19 – and my drinkie phrase for the next hour is “tough ask”. I don’t think the bottle will last beyond 7 pm.
Wentworth Suze 6.30pm: Gillard says 5.2% swing to ALP in Braddon in Tasmania. She’s trying to control a grin on her face.
London mick 7.32 am (6.32 pm): It’s bloody early and I’m tired and will kill the barman if I don’t get a coffee soon. Oh yea, I’m at the ALP Abroad party. Everyone is watching Sky and Hawkie is awesome.
Gummo at 6.35: two crosses so-far from Kerry in the National tally room to reporters in empty Liberal Party function rooms. Those guys are really in the mood to party tonight!
Shaun in Robertson: Early figures suggest a 6% to Labor in Robertson with Antony Green reporting 8%. The other Central Coast seat Dobell has reported an 8% swing to Labor.
Suze: I’m swinging all over the place emotionally. Keep trying to keep my hopes in check.
6.47pm: Anthony Green shows a 10% swing against Howard – but based on just one booth. Crowd starts cheering behind him. Oh please let this not be a false dawn!
Shaun loves Nick Minchin’s blinkered optimism.
Shaun: C’mon QLD!
Shaun: The 2PP is starting to widen. NSW is going to be good to Labor and Peter McGuarin has been made to look like a dill.
Gummo (7.12): just checked the ABC 2007 Election web-site. It’s giving 47 seats to Labor, 34 to the Coalition. And with a margin of only 4.1% in Bennelong, it looks like the 4.9% swing against Howard will see him off. WOOT!
mick (8.18AM): The party here in London is gonna be huge. Bennelong is looking good!
Suze 7.31pm: I’ve been busy making pizzas to calm my nerves. I see that some Victorian seats have swung to Labor – isn’t that meant to be a very good sign?!
Wentworth is still looking tight. The Greens so far have 17% of the vote here.
mick 8.34 AM: ABC website is reporting a +5% swing towards Labor. If it holds that will do it. I wish they could start getting some results from QLD!
7.38pm: Kerry O’Brien saying ABC predicts Howards to lose Bennelong tonight and 5% swing to Labor without Queensland. It looks hopeful!!
mick 8.49: Sky just reported that on a traditionally Liberal booth in Bennelong they are recording a 10% swing against Howard on the primary vote! He is screwed.
mick 900 AM: Sky is annoying me They keep saying “very very close”. It looks like Turnball might hold Wentworth. Any bets on how long before he challenges Costello?
Shaun: The good feeling is starting to grow. Be slow but Labor looks like getting home. Antony has all but called it for Labor!
Shaun: The former member for Lindsey, Jackie Kelly, has just been slammed by both Libs and Labs on ABC.
mick: This party keeps getting bigger and bigger. Now we can buy booze.
Shaun: about time mick. I have the champers in the fridge. And it looks like Dobell on the Central Coast is a labor gain.
Shaun: The libs are in denial. Some funny stuff coming out as they try keep their heads above water.
mick: ABC website has already given the ALP 15 new seats.
Gummo: With the ABC web-site giving the ALP a 21 seat lead and all the indications they’re on track for the 16 they need, the only remaining points of interest are – Is Howard gone in Bennelong? How long before he fronts up to make his last YouTube video?
mick 9.30 AM: Woohoo!!! Our party here at the Pendrel’s Oak in London just got mentioned on Sky!
Shaun: Mark at the LP party in Sydney sez the mood is rather euphoric
mick 9.35 AM (8.35 PM in Sydney): Can we call it now?
suze: 8.44pm: Channels 9 and 7 have called it for the ALP. ABC is being cautious but we’ve just sent our child out to cheer into the street!
8.50pm: Watching Joe Hockey and Tanya Plibersek on Channel 7 – Hockey is being petulant – certainly doesn’t know the meaning of “gracious in defeat”
8.54PM: phone call from friends in Adelaide Hills, Downer’s seat. Downer’s not going to lose but there’s a big swing against him. Mainly they rang cause last election we were all together on that gloomy night. This night is very different, though the mood in our house is still held in check, almost like none of us can believe it. Tanya Plibersek said she feels the same – can’t quite bring herself to assert there’s a clear victory.
Steven Smith on the ABC says the same – wants to be sure they have the necessary seats before victory is claimed and before we get to WA count. (Imagine if we thought it was won and the ALP lost seats n WA.)
Shaun: The ABC reckons the ALP has Robertson and … BENNELONG!
mick: People are popping the bubbly here in London now.
Shaun: If Howard has retired before the election he would have preserved his legacy. Now, he joins Stanley Bruce as the answer to a trivia question
Suze: Are we all enjoying this moment – Maxine, that is. (There’s an even better one to come with Howard’s concession speech – a double concession speech.
I finally believe it!!!
Is that Little Pattie behind her – she sang on the It’s Time ads in 1972!
Shaun: Not quite a victory speech but a good one anyway
Shaun: Australia seems a little lighter at the moment. Like a veil has been lifted.
Shaun: The Chaser should hire Nick Minchim. He has been amusing me all night with his blind optimism
Suze: Channel 7 says Howard is expected in 10 mnutes or so. Get your champagne ready!
mick 11 AM (London time): Swan is going to fall to the Libs. Actually, as was predicted, the national trend has not really followed through to WA. At the moment there is a swing towards Labor but it’s only about 3%.
mick 11.23 AM: Well, I’m now drinking my first beer. I’ve just seen that with 10% of the senate vote counted in Queensland it looks like the Democrats are only getting 2% of the vote. That isn’t enough for Andrew Bartlett to keep his seat. Very sad.
10.30pm Costello is on. Boring.
Julia Gillard did know how to be gracious in victory when talking with Nick Minchin about Howard. Would we ever have heard the Libs saying they respected Hawke or Keating? No we wouldn’t have.
Shaun: A mate has called from the Anthony Albanese victory party. Needless to say it is a little raucous.
mick 11.52 AM (London): Oh, just in case you missed it Howard isn’t PM anymore.