Division of O'Connor

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Australian House of Representatives Division
Division of O'Connor 2010.png
Division of O'Connor (green) in Western Australia
Created 1980
MP Rick Wilson
Party Liberal
Namesake Charles Yelverton O'Connor
Electors 95,069 (2013)
Area 908,954 km2 (350,949.1 sq mi)
Demographic Rural

The Division of O'Connor is an Australian electoral division in the state of Western Australia. It is one of Western Australia's three rural seats, and one of the largest electoral constituencies in the world.

The Division was named after C. Y. O'Connor, the Engineer-in-Chief of Western Australia who designed Fremantle Harbour and the Goldfields Pipeline. The Division was proclaimed at the redistribution of 28 February 1980, and was first contested at the 1980 federal election.

It has always been a rural seat, and was historically based in the Mid West, Wheatbelt and Great Southern regions of Western Australia with major population centres in Geraldton and Albany. The Division was significantly altered by a redistribution in 2008, taking effect at the 2010 election. The other large country seat in Western Australia, Kalgoorlie, needed to expand in size, but it proved all but impossible to reconfigure Kalgoorlie in a way that would have left O'Connor with any rational basis. Ultimately, it was decided to abolish Kalgoorlie and push O'Connor well to the east to take in most of Kalgoorlie's former southern portion. The northern portion of the old O'Connor was shifted to the new seat of Durack.

It is now centred on the Great Southern and Goldfields-Esperance regions of the state (while incorporating the southern Wheatbelt), with major population centres in Albany, Kalgoorlie and Esperance. Local government areas within the electorate include Albany, Boyup Brook, Bridgetown-Greenbushes, Brookton, Broomehill, Bruce Rock, Coolgardie, Corrigin, Cranbrook, Cuballing, Denmark, Dumbleyung, Dundas, Esperance, Gnowangerup, Jerramungup, Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Katanning, Kent, Kojonup, Kondinin, Kulin, Lake Grace, Laverton, Leonora, Manjimup, Menzies, Narembeen, Narrogin, Ngaanyatjarraku, Pingelly, Plantagenet, Quairading, Ravensthorpe, Tambellup, Wagin, Wandering, West Arthur, Westonia, Wickepin, Williams, Woodanilling, and Yilgarn.

The seat has always been held by a conservative party. When it was created, its demographics suggested that it should have been held by the National Country Party, despite its large notional Liberal majority. However, severe infighting between the national and state Country parties allowed Liberal Wilson Tuckey to take the seat on Labor preferences.[1][2] Tuckey held it without serious difficulty until his defeat at the 2010 election by Nationals WA candidate Tony Crook with a large swing. However, the Liberals regained the seat at the 2013 election.


Member Party Term
  Wilson Tuckey Liberal 1980–2010
  Tony Crook National 2010–2013
  Rick Wilson Liberal 2013–present

Election results[edit]

Australian federal election, 2013: O'Connor
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Rick Wilson 32,284 39.13 +0.77
National Chub Witham 20,914 25.35 −3.50
Labor Michael Salt 14,234 17.25 +0.14
Greens Diane Evers 5,627 6.82 −2.04
Palmer United Michael Lucas 3,581 4.34 +4.34
Christians Mike Walsh 2,079 2.52 +2.52
Independent Jane Mouritz 1,431 1.73 +1.73
Family First Steven Fuhrmann 698 0.85 −0.58
Katter's Australian Phillip Bouwman 660 0.80 +0.80
Rise Up Australia Vanessa Korber 595 0.72 +0.72
CEC Jean Robinson 407 0.49 +0.03
Total formal votes 82,510 94.01 −0.62
Informal votes 5,256 5.99 +0.62
Turnout 87,766 92.43 −0.37
Two-party-preferred result
Liberal Rick Wilson 55,486 67.25 −5.75
Labor Michael Salt 27,024 32.75 +5.75
Two-candidate-preferred result
Liberal Rick Wilson 42,040 50.95 +4.51
National Chub Witham 40,470 49.05 −4.51
Liberal gain from National Swing +4.51


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 29°37′12″S 123°40′05″E / 29.620°S 123.668°E / -29.620; 123.668