Division of Parramatta
Australian House of Representatives Division
Division of Parramatta (green) in New South Wales
|Namesake||Parramatta, New South Wales|
|Area||56 km2 (21.6 sq mi)|
The Division of Parramatta is an Australian electoral division in the state of New South Wales. The division was created in 1900 and was one of the original 75 divisions contested at the first federal election. It is named for the locality of Parramatta. The name Parramatta has been sourced to an Aboriginal word for the area. The Darug people had lived in the area for many generations, and regarded the area as a food bowl, rich in food from the river and forests. They called the area Baramada or Burramatta ('Parramatta') which means "the place where the eels lie down".
The division is based in the western suburbs of Sydney. Besides Parramatta, it includes Constitution Hill, Dundas Valley, Granville, Harris Park, Holroyd, Mays Hill, North Parramatta, Oatlands, Old Toongabbie, Rosehill, Rydalmere, Telopea, Wentworthville, Westmead and parts of Dundas, Ermington, Guildford, Merrylands, Merrylands West, Northmead, North Rocks, Pendle Hill, South Granville and South Wentworthville.
As originally created, it included a large amount of conservative-leaning territory that usually swamped Parramatta itself, which has historically been a working-class area. As a result, the seat was held by the Liberals and their predecessors for all but one term from Federation until 1977. However, since 1977 it has been located between Labor's traditional heartland of western Sydney and the traditional Liberal stronghold of the North Shore. As a result, whenever the seat is redistributed, a shift of a few kilometres to the west or north can radically alter its political landscape. For instance, a 1977 redistribution turned it from a safe Liberal seat into a marginal Labor seat. The Liberal incumbent, Phillip Ruddock, opted to transfer to the much friendlier Dundas (carved out of the more Liberal-friendly areas of his old seat), allowing John Brown to become only the second Labor member ever to win it.
More recently, the 2006 redistribution shifted Parramatta from marginally Labor to notionally marginally Liberal (as defined by the Australian Electoral Commission). Nevertheless, as was widely expected at the 2007 federal election, the incumbent Labor member, Julie Owens, held the seat ahead of Liberal candidate Colin Robinson, a member of the Electrical Trades Union, with an increased majority.
Owens has subsequently been re-elected at the 2010 and 2013 elections. The latter victory came as Labor lost government, marking the second time (her 2004 win being the first) that the Liberals and their predecessors have been in government without holding Parramatta.
Prominent members of Parramatta over the years have included (Sir) Joseph Cook, a former Prime Minister; (Sir) Garfield Barwick and Nigel Bowen, both of whom served as Attorney-General before moving to senior judicial position, Barwick as Chief Justice of the High Court. Ruddock, a former Attorney-General and Immigration Minister also represented the seat (though he was the member for Berowra by then); as did Brown, a former Sports Minister.
|(Sir) Joseph Cook||Free Trade, Anti-Socialist||1901–1909|
|(Sir) Frederick Stewart||United Australia||1931–1945|
|Sir Garfield Barwick||Liberal||1958–1964|
|Australian federal election, 2013: Parramatta|
|Christian Democrats||Alex Sharah||1,957||2.43||−0.64|
|Palmer United||Gary Loke||1,760||2.18||+2.18|
|Democratic Labour||Miechele Williams||1,626||2.02||+2.02|
|One Nation||Tania Rollinson||822||1.02||+1.02|
|Total formal votes||80,615||89.48||−1.87|
- "NSW Division - Parramatta, NSW". Virtual Tally Room, Election 2013. Australian Electoral Commission. 30 September 2013. Retrieved 6 November 2013.
- Troy, Jakelin. "The Sydney Language". Macquarie Aboriginal Words. Sydney: Macquarie Library. p. 76.
- Green, Antony (2010). "Parramattta". Australia votes 2010 (Australian Broadcasting Corporation).
- Carr, Adam (2007). "Division of Parramatta". Guide to the 2007 Federal Election. Retrieved 22 September 2007.