New England by-election, 2017

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New England by-election, 2017

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The New England seat in the House of Representatives
Registered 110,685
Turnout 87.05% Decrease 6.14

  First party Second party
  Barnaby Joyce Portrait 2010.jpg No image.svg
Candidate Barnaby Joyce David Ewings
Party National Labor
Percentage 64.92% 11.12%
Swing Increase 12.63 Increase 4.11
TPP 73.63% 26.37%
TPP swing Increase 7.21 Decrease 7.21

Division of NEW ENGLAND 2016.png
The Division of New England covers 66,394 km² in northern rural New South Wales. From south to north it includes the regional population centres of Scone, Tamworth, Armidale, Glen Innes, Inverell and Tenterfield.

MP before election

Barnaby Joyce

Elected MP

Barnaby Joyce

A by-election for the Australian House of Representatives seat of New England was held on 2 December 2017.

Previous incumbent Barnaby Joyce, serving as Deputy Prime Minister and Nationals leader from February 2016 until October 2017 when his seat of New England was declared vacant, won the by-election with a large primary and two-party swing.[1][2]


Amid the 2017–18 Australian parliamentary eligibility crisis, the trigger for the by-election was the judgment of the High Court of Australia sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns on 27 October 2017, which found that the sitting member, Deputy Prime Minister and Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce, was ineligible under Section 44 of the Constitution to sit in the Parliament of Australia, by virtue of holding New Zealand citizenship at the time of his nomination and election. The seat was declared vacant by the High Court on the same day. Joyce had renounced his dual citizenship effective from August in order to become a sole citizen of Australia, and was thus eligible to run for the by-election.[3]

Speaker of the House of Representatives Tony Smith issued the writ for the election on 27 October 2017, the same day as the High Court's judgment.[4]

Key dates[edit]

  • Friday 27 October 2017 – Previous election ruled void
  • Friday 27 October 2017 – Issue of writ
  • Friday 3 November 2017 – Close of electoral rolls (8pm)
  • Thursday 9 November 2017 – Close of nominations (12 noon)
  • Friday 10 November 2017 – Declaration of nominations (12 noon)
  • Tuesday 14 November 2017 – Start of early voting
  • Saturday 2 December 2017 – Polling day (8am to 6pm)
  • Friday 15 December 2017 – Last day for receipt of postal votes
  • Sunday 4 February 2018 – Last day for return of writ

As at least 33 days must elapse between the issue of a writ and the date of a by-election, the earliest Saturday that the by-election could take place was on 2 December.


Former independent member for New England Tony Windsor, who retired at the 2013 election before unsuccessfully contesting the seat at the 2016 election with a 29.2 percent primary vote, announced he would not be nominating as a candidate in the by-election.[5] Pauline Hanson's One Nation and Shooters, Fishers and Farmers also announced that they would not run.[6]

17 candidates in ballot paper order[7]
Party Candidate Background
  Christian Democrats Richard Stretton Self-employed plant mechanic and perennial candidate.
  Animal Justice Skyla Wagstaff Environmental and animal rights activist.
  Affordable Housing Andrew Potts Former Sydney Star Observer contributor and party founder.
  Independent Jeff Madden Single father, part-time truck driver and traffic controller.
  Liberal Democrat Tristam Smyth Cardiologist based in Tamworth.
  Independent Dean Carter Tamworth resident.
  National Barnaby Joyce New England MP 2013−2017, Nationals leader and Deputy Prime Minister 2016−2017.[3]
  #Sustainable William Bourke Party founder and perennial candidate.
  Seniors United Warwick Stacey Former business owner and Army Reservist.
  Independent Rob Taber Independent Bennelong candidate in 2016. New England Solar Owner and Jobs Australia Chairman.
  CountryMinded Pete Mailler Local cattle and grain farmer, CountryMinded co-founder. Queensland Senate candidate in 2016.[8]
  Labor David Ewings Local coal miner and Australian Defence Force personnel. Labor's New England candidate in 2016.[3]
  Rise Up Donald Cranney Farmer based in south-central Queensland.
  Greens Peter Wills Quirindi farmer and Liverpool Plains Alliance campaigner.[3]
  21st Century Jamie McIntyre Entrepreneur, banned from corporate directorships for 10 years by for property spruiking
  Science Meow-Ludo Meow-Meow Adviser to nutritional infant formula startup company and bio-hacker.
  Country Ian Britza Former Liberal member of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly.


New England by-election, 2017[9][10]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
National Barnaby Joyce 57,016 64.92 +12.63
Labor David Ewings 9,764 11.12 +4.11
Independent Rob Taber 5,959 6.79 +3.99
Greens Peter Wills 3,824 4.35 +1.43
Christian Democrats Richard Stretton 2,129 2.42 +1.03
CountryMinded Pete Mailler 2,112 2.40 +0.99
Science Meow-Ludo Meow-Meow 1,183 1.35 +1.35
Independent Jeff Madden 1,145 1.30 +1.30
Animal Justice Skyla Wagstaff 930 1.06 +1.06
Sustainable Australia William Bourke 628 0.72 +0.72
Affordable Housing Andrew Potts 605 0.69 +0.69
Independent Dean Carter 590 0.67 +0.67
Liberal Democrats Tristam Smyth 515 0.59 −0.62
Country Ian Britza 494 0.56 +0.56
Rise Up Australia Donald Cranney 365 0.42 +0.42
Seniors United Warwick Stacey 342 0.39 +0.39
21st Century Jamie McIntyre 222 0.25 +0.25
Total formal votes 87,823 91.06 −1.90
Informal votes 8,618 8.94 +1.90
Turnout 96,441 87.13 −6.14
Two-party-preferred result
National Barnaby Joyce 64,664 73.63 +7.21
Labor David Ewings 23,159 26.37 −7.21
National hold Swing +7.21

Early in the evening, ABC election analyst Antony Green predicted an easy victory for Joyce. Claiming victory that evening, Joyce picked up a large primary and two-party swing.[1][2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Barbour, Lucy (2 December 2017). "Barnaby Joyce declares victory in New England with huge swing against low-profile opponents". ABC News (Australia). Retrieved 2 December 2017.
  2. ^ a b "'A stunning victory': Barnaby Joyce claims New England by-election win". SBS World News. 2 December 2017. Retrieved 2 December 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d "2017 New England by-election - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)". ABC News.
  4. ^ "AEC to conduct Senate special counts and New England by-election". Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 27 October 2017.
  5. ^ "Windsor won't run against Joyce in New England by-election". ABC News. 27 October 2017. Retrieved 27 October 2017.
  6. ^ Karp, Paul (30 October 2017). "Barnaby Joyce gets boost as One Nation and Shooters decline to run in New England". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 November 2017.
  7. ^ "2017 New England by-election". Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 24 February 2018.
  8. ^ "Tally Room – Senate candidates in Queensland". Australian Electoral Commission. p. 2. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  9. ^ "New England, NSW: By-election". Australian Electoral Commission. 21 December 2017. Retrieved 24 February 2018.
  10. ^ "Results - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)". ABC News.

External links[edit]