Landslide victory celebrated in style
Mark McGowan’s landslide election triumph on Saturday has been hailed as Labor’s greatest ever victory in WA.
Labor secured dramatic swings, while the Liberals’ primary vote collapsed and several ministers were bundled out of Parliament.
Colin Barnett, who was deposed after more than eight years in the top job, said his government’s long tenure was the biggest factor in the huge defeat, which underscored the “brutal, harsh business of politics”.
Labor enjoyed a night of unbridled jubilation at the sheer magnitude of its victory. To the strains of AC/DC’s
TNT, Mr McGowan, set to be sworn in as the State’s 30th premier, was given the rock star treatment when he entered Gary Holland Community Centre in Rockingham about 9.20pm last Saturday night. Flanked by wife Sarah and three children, an ebullient Mr McGowan thanked WA voters, whom he said had voted for “hope and opportunity” and spoke of his love for the State.
“Can I say this: Western Australia is truly a wonderful State,” he said.
“I love this place . . . it has done more for me than I can ever repay.
“I came here 27 years ago in my Corolla across the Nullarbor and today the people of WA made me Premier. Thank you.”
It had been his wife who had encouraged Mr McGowan to keep going after he was beaten in the 2013 election, he said.
“She told me after 2013 ‘You can win’,” Mr McGowan said.
They kissed in front of the crowd, as he told Mrs McGowan he loved her.
For the people of WA, he said: “I won’t let you down. We will govern for everyone.” And in a clear dig at One Nation he said: “Today, West Australians voted for hope and opportunity over desperation and division.
“Today, we showed we are a State of decency and intelligence, not a State of stupidity and ignorance.”
Mr McGowan and Labor will hold a commanding majority in the Legislative Assembly with Seven West Media predicting Labor will hold at least 35 seats.
The Labor Party swept up seats across the metropolitan area and has dramatically changed the State’s electoral pendulum.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation had a disappointing night, recording just 4.6 per cent of the primary vote.
The Greens recorded a small increase on their 2013 result with 8.6 per cent of the vote.
The National Party was slightly down, but held key seats.
Premier-elect Mark McGowan and Federal Labor leader Bill Shorten on election day.